If you’re looking for a mix of cutthroat competition and goofball humor, the obvious place to turn is the American electoral process.

That’s the idea behind “Hail to the Chimp,” a T-rated party game developed by Wideload Games for Gamecock. The game will be released in late May on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

The setting for the competition is a world in which the animal kingdom has decided to switch to an animal democracy and various critters are seeking to be elected president.

Players must select their animal avatar from the likes of Crackers the chimp, Santo the armadillo, Toshiro the octopus and Moxie the yak. Each has his own strengths and weaknesses that come into play in the minigames that make up the campaign season. Up to four players can play on one console or online.

The game mines the foibles of the electoral process and the media for its ornery brand of humor. Although much of the satirical wit comes through in the game, some is saved for the Web site, which is updated frequently with material from writers at “The Daily Show” and the Onion.

However, being a video game, the key to success lies in the game play — and that came across pretty well during a demonstration presented by Wideload

The minigames involve time-tested American institutions, such as stuffing the ballot box, hacking the election machine and “fund racing.” Of course each is just an excuse to dive into traditional party games that involve racing, bashing and smashing opponents. Players can temporarily team up, combining their strengths to smack down common enemies.

The easy controls and cartoony graphics help make this a good party game for families. And that’s a pretty big deal because very few of those games are available on the new-generation consoles.

'Hail to the Chimp'

Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

On the Web:

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