Brutal Legend User Reviews
Developer and Publisher: Double Fine Productions
While I tend to convey the message that a concept alone cannot save a game, there are always exceptions to the rule. Brutal Legend is one of them. Okay, being developed by Double Fine would ensure that there's at least something resembling quality whilst it bombards you with style out the ass whilst being legitimately funny. After all, Grim Fandango and Psychonauts are fantastic games due to their crazy successful marriages of style and substance. But what about Brutal Legend? Well, it certainly has the style and humor that Double Fine fans kn...
When you think about metal, you think about a bunch of dudes banging on their drums, randomly strumming their guitars, and screaming into the mic like dying hyenas. Although people have proved this ignorant stereotype wrong time and time again, who cares, ignorance for the win! Besides, that just means one less poser in the metal culture.. So here's a game that embelishes the culture - the music, and the positive stereotypes... I hate Metalocalypse because it glorifies the negative stereotypes associated with metal (that, and it's about as funny as Dane "MAYBE IF I YELL IT'LL BE FUNNY" Cook...
Give a game designer some drugs, and he’ll create Psychonauts. Give a game designer Jack Black and some of the strongest alcohol you could imagine, and he’ll create Brutal Legend. Tim Schaffer is easily one of the best game designers out there, managing to take simple concepts like platforming and psychic powers, and turn them into gold. It doesn’t take a genius to acknowledge how impressive Psychonauts is. However, there’s a different sort of genius with Brutal Legend. As opposed to psychic powers, it dives into the world of metal, and with the staple goofball known as Jack Black, hilarity...
These graphics are those that could only be executed by the masterful Tim Schafer. Characters are believable, yet clearly fantasy creatures brought from the mind of Metal itself. Exaggerated character models that include over-sized hands and the like, let you know that the mastermind behind Psychonauts is at the helm. The world itself is quite vibrant and pleasing to the eye as well. No overused textures to cover ground. Each area has a unique geography and plenty of landmarks relating often to the type of Metal that area endorses. The special effects are also delightful, especially the light and pyrotechnic display during guitar solos. Possibly the most attention to detail goes to the Druid Plow aka The Duece, and the main characters such as Eddie, Lionwhyte, and Deviculous. It couldn't have been easy to graphically represent an entire continent of an alternate time of Metal, but Tim Shcafer pulled it off.
Where could I begin? The soundtrack, which is accessible to the player I might add, of over 100 songs of pure, awesome and ear shattering Metal? The authentic hot rod sounds produced by the one and only Deuce? The wonderful voice acting performed by the entire cast that are mapped perfectly to their characters? Let's start with the soundtrack, shall we? It's full of songs selected by Tim Schafer personally for the game. Each one is unlockable throughout the course of the game and can be put into your very own special playlist in the Mouth of Metal. This ranges from classic Heavy Metal, to Hair Metal, to Goth Metal. Literally anyone who appreciates a guitar will enjoy this soundtrack, even if they only ever play some songs once. It's turned me into a tried and true Metal-head. The voice acting is well executed. Deviculous sounds the way and evil and overbearing demonic emperor should, and Eddie Rigs is perfectly portrayed by Jack Black. Although not a high point of the game, it is entertaining to hear the commentary from your soldiers during Stage Battles and in the living world. Passing by a group of Headbangers, you may hear comments such as, "We're just marchin' around, kickin' ass!"
The premises is, that while being killed by a collapsed stage prop in his time, Eddie Rigs is sent back to an age of Metal by the eternal fire beast, Ormagoden. In this time, humans are a minority compared to the demonic Tainted Coil who wish to wipe them out entirely. Eddie Riggs is quickly recruited to fight back against the demonic overlords and does so naturally. Although centered around the ridiculous world that Heavy Metal brings to mind, the story follows a usually serious tone in contrast to the abstract surroundings. Humankind wants to be free, and so the army of Ironheade goes through the trials of attaining that freedom, seeing the casualties of friends and family along the way and the hardships of maintaining a force strong enough to turn the tides of battle in the face of overwhelming odds. Despite this, Eddie and the gang never lose their spirit and march onward to every new challenge no matter what grief consumes them. The vibrant and often positive outlook of Eddie Riggs provides a needed comic relief for later in the game. Though towards the very end, he becomes serious and quite visibly angered. It was fun to see how the changing times changed the characters in the way a real person would over time. Of course, it ends on a lighter note, but it's engaging the entire time through.
To my lament, the gameplay is nothing outstanding compared to the rest of the game. It sits on an average level that can reach slightly higher when new moves are unlocked. The RTS element is also average. It's just a summoning of units, sending them to attack, and upgrades for only a few. Though the actual RTS element itself is utterly bad ass and fun as hell to play, it mostly lends that energy to the fact that you're summoning troops from your Ormagoden styled stage to tear down that of the enemy. This element is also the basis of a plain and average Multiplayer mode. Though of course, still awesome just for being done in the fashion of Brutal Legend. The combo attacks can be quite entertaining, though. Power Slide into an army of your enemies, rip off a quick Face Melter solo, then slaughter your remaining foes with your mighty axe. It's not bad at all, just that it's not impressive as the rest of the game. Then again, with all the awesome that Brutal Legend offers, it makes the simple combat completely acceptable within the game. Deuce weapon controls are also a bit odd, as is the button for a nitro boost. I'd often try to turn, and would accidentally press in on the thumbstick and rocket off a cliff into the water Eddie can't swim in. The bad:
For anyone who has survived the true age of Metal, fans of the music genre, or anyone who needs an outstanding game this fall, Brutal Legend is for you. With plenty of unlockable upgrades, music tracks, and a vast game world to explore, this is a game that quite literally rocks.