When it came out on Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, and PC in December of 2022, the snarky sci-fi first-person shooter High On Life immediately became one of my favorite games of the year. But it was also a “must play” for fans of Rick & Morty because one of the main characters, a talking gun named Kenny, was voiced by Justin Roiland, who’s the voice of both Rick and Morty, as well as the founder of High developers Squanch Games.
A month later, though, it came out that Roiland had been arrested and charged with felony domestic battery and false imprisonment, which prompted other people to come forward with accusations about his behavior. Roiland was subsequently fired from Rick & Morty, and his other sci-fi ‘toon, Hulu’s Solar Opposites, and he resigned from Squanch Games. And while the criminal charges were dismissed, and Roiland has denied any wrongdoing, he has not been rehired by Adult Swim, Hulu, or Squanch Games, nor has he been forgiven by the public at large.
Now, some people believe you should not equate the art with the artist, especially when said art is a collaboration with other people, like, say, a video game. Other people believe you cannot separate them. Me? I believe you’re innocent until proven guilty, but also that where’s there’s smoke there’s often fire, so you should do what feels right for you and leave everyone else to do the same. So, if you can’t play High On Life because of Roiland’s voice, or involvement, fine. If you can, fine. To each his own.
That said, as someone who was still able to play it, even with Roiland’s problematic accusations very much on my mind, here is my review of the newly released PlayStation 5 / PlayStation 4 version of High On Life.