South Park The Fractured But Whole: From Dusk Til Casa Bonita DLC – Review

South Park and Ubisoft have decided to show up at the DLC bus stop with some brand new content, From Dusk Til Casa Bonita.

And while this is the most SEO un-friendly name ever, this piece of content adds a ton of cool new features and gameplay to an already awesome game to make it better than ever.


Like that new superhero class?

Just like the Netherborn class. You can harness the powers of the occult and even take that back into the main game if you want, which is an immediate bonus for anyone who owns Casa Bonita. The abilities are really cool, too, like the Ghastly Grasp which spawns skeletal arms up from the ground to chain an adjacent attack on a group of Vamp Kids or anyone stupid enough to test your might. There’s also the Soul Slash attack which can push enemies back with a devastating swiping scythe, damaging them in the process.

Outside of your Ultimate, there’s also Dire Shroud which is a unique attack that can either be used to protect and buff you, or an ally. It can also spawn a hungering demonic Chtulhu-esque essence which launches a devastating attack on one enemy. As for the Ultimate Attack, Grim Fate will summon the Grim Reaper himself and chill all nearby enemies, rendering them unable to attack and causing serious swiping damage. The class itself, is solid, and offers some genuinely cool animations, as well as attack and defensive combinations to make for a formidable ally and opponent.

 

Henrietta will eventually join your party too as she has a common enemy in the Vamp Kids. Likewise, the Goth has a seriously bad-ass move set, including a cigarette burn which scorches a line of enemies, leaving them to ask if she’s a Pyromancer class. Henrietta also offers some neat buffs, like a lifesteal to heal her allies and a Satanic Seal to increase attack and defensive properties. Beyond Casa Bonita, she will also be playable in the base game.

Of course, the big thing here is story, and fortunately Casa Bonita is quite an entertaining ride. Along with Mysterion and The Coon, you crash Mike Makowski’s birthday at Cartman’s favourite restaraunt, Casa Bonita. The reason? Mysterion’s sister, Karen, has made friends with the Vamp Kids and the crew are worried she’s going to turn into one of them. But after confronting them the Vamp Kids whisk Karen away behind a protected door, forcing the group to complete a Scavenger Quest for Vampire relics in order to unlock it.

And this is when the DLC really opens up and the creativity really starts to shine through. For example, you have to earn enough tickets in an arcade to claim the Vampire Relic, including playing a Flappy Bird esque scorer where you’re drifting through broken pillars as a Unicorn who farts rainbows.  Then there’s a quirky little gallery shooter called El Chupacabra which is ridiculous in that most targets are clustered together rather than spread apart.


Sounds great, actually!

It genuinely is. There’s a lot of fun to be had in Casa Bonita, between the quirky puzzle solving, collectible items and absolutely hilarious lines, like Vamp Kids asking ‘What would Bella Swan do?’ I almost choked on my tea with that one.

There’s also a lot of new stuff that’s been added in, like additional crafting, extra artifacts, new powers, and constantly unexpected events throughout.

All that said, in order to play Casa Bonita you’ll need to be the appropriate level or you’ll fail the very early fights in the content. You’ll also need to have unlocked certain abilities, otherwise you’ll not be able to progress. And that sort of fits in with my one problem with the content.

Basically, you’ll need to have practically finished Fractured But Whole in order to properly play Casa Bonita. Which is fine as this adds to the end-game content, but a lot of the cool things acquired in Casa Bonita likely won’t get explored outside of the content unless you’re up for starting a new playthrough. Meaning, it’s all well and good adding in a new class and additional character, but it’s quite possible most people won’t spend much time with them once they’re done with this DLC. And that’s a shame. Especially since new lines of dialogue have been added into Fractured But Whole and recorded to make them feel at home.

The good news is you can at least unlock the Netherborn class very early on and you can’t really fail the fight as you’re constantly revived. So, hypothetically, if you were just starting out on a new playthrough, you could hop on the DLC bus and unlock Netherborn, then get back to the base game. Henrietta, however, is impossible to unlock unless you’ve beaten a significant portion of Fractured But Whole.

True, you’re not really likely to play the DLC until you’ve finished the base game anyway, but you’re never actually warned in-game that you’re not the appropriate level or you don’t have the necessary abilities so kind of need to figure that out for yourself.

The price is also on the more premium side for DLC content at £11.99, and with around 2 hours worth of content here, it’s up to individual preference whether that’s value for money or not. I can say I had as many laughs as I did in the base game, and I really enjoyed the quirky nature of the mini-games and the new abilities, but it is possible to whizz through this quite sharpish if your characters are strong enough.


Conclusion

As far as DLC goes, From Dusk Til Casa Bonita is up with the best of them in terms of what it offers and what it adds. The new class is a refreshing change of pace, your new ally is great, it will make you laugh till your ribs hurt, and the quirky side-quests and mini-games are genuinely cool additions.

Agreed, it’s a premium price for DLC and can be over quite quickly, but I value the time I spend with each piece of content, if it manages to change the experience for the better, and whether it kept me entertained throughout. Overwhelmingly, the answer to each of these is yes.

South Park The Fractured But Whole: From Dusk Til Casa Bonita is a great example of how DLC can add to a great game, and in some cases, enhance it.


Pros

+ Netherborn Class is bad ass and powerful
+ Henrietta is a great new addition to the game
+ Ludicrous, over-the-top, fun mini games.
+ As hilarious as ever

Cons

– About 2 hours of content can seem short
– Ally can’t be used outside of DLC unless beaten significant portion of base game.


South Park The Fractured But Whole: From Dusk Til Casa Bonita DLC

9 out of 10

Tested on Xbox One

Code provided by the publisher

About the author

Ray Willmott

Ray is the founder and editor of Expansive. He is also a former Community Manager for Steel Media, and has written for a variety of gaming websites over the years. His work can be seen on Pocket Gamer, PG.biz, Gfinity, and the Red Bull Gaming Column. He has also written for VG247, Videogamer, GamesTM, PLAY, and MyM Magazine,