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Brutal Legend [PlayStation 3]

A videogame by Double Fine Prod. for PlayStation 3

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One of the Most Creatively Designed Games Ever

  • Mar 19, 2011
Rating:
+4
Here's something to disclaim. My first impressions of Double Fine's heavily-influenced homage to the heavy metal genre, Brutal Legend, were very high. The overall premise of the game's story, gameplay, and colorful character designs gave me the urge to want to buy this game on the first. Unfortunately, one other game swayed me from buying Brutal Legend, which I will talk about for another time. Having played this awesomely creative after all this time, one thing is clear: I regretted not buying Brutal Legend sooner.



Double Fine Productions, the makers of Psychonaughts and Costume Quest, along with director Tim Shafer, outdid themselves by creating a video game of many flavors: a well done storyline, an open world with creative and chaotic environments, a musical experience, and a cast of characters with favorable personalities; all of these dedicated to the heavy metal genre and its fans. Without further ado, it's time to sound the Battle Cry with Brutal Legend.


Presentation/Story

Brutal Legend gives us an opening of Jack Black taking you (the player) to a music record store and showing you the rarest of all records in history, which is called, of course, Brutal Legend. This brings up the menu for choosing the single-player campaign, multiplayer, extras, and vise versa.

The story follows the adventures of Eddie Riggs, the greatest roadie of all time. A roadie does all of the grunt work from behind the scenes. From building the stage to sweeping the floors. The opening kicks it up in modern times, when metal has deteriorated into the crappy tween metal you hear every now and then, such is the cameo of the band Kabbage Boy. After an unexpected turn of events, Eddie gets sent into a whole new world ruled by the evil Doviculus. Eddie must gather an army big enough to defeat Doviculus and his demonic sons of bitches.
 



The story is as engaging as it sounds, presenting you with a mix of mythology and pre-modern history; meaning that the characters in this world have no idea what an engineer is. As a matter of fact, this dark and cartoony world is one of the things that make Brutal Legend one of the most heavily licensed games of 2009. For example, much of the sites are influenced by the CD covers of several metal bands. The overall story is great through my entire experience. It's filled with comedy, tension, and many fun antics that remind me of the Jak & Daxter series. The humor eventually gets watered down, which could bore some people, but that's not to say the story is still not awe-inspiring.

The characters are also great with many diverse personalities that the western audience can relate to. For example, Ophelia, Eddie's love-at-first-sight interest, is more of a badass than she is a damsel. Eddie, as a roadie, has the makings of an inspiring leader and is a enthusiastic go-getter. With this well done presentation, Brutal Legend's single-player campaign is an enjoyable experience for the players.

Gameplay:

Despite the story being great, it's the gameplay that makes Brutal Legend a mixed bag for certain gamers. The game has an open world environment that you can explore as you ride The Deuce (a.k.a. The Druid Plow). You have an axe and a guitar that shoots lightning, which can be upgraded as you pay "Fire Tributes" to the Metal Forge (hosted by Ozzy Osbourne). At the beginning of game, players can assume that this is a hack-and-slash game, but at the core, Brutal Legend is both an action and real-time strategy game. This is revealed once you partake in war battles in the form of a rock concert. You conquer these Fan Geysers which can give you points to spend to summon units at your favor. The goal is to destroy the opponent's stage before he or she can destroy yours. You also have an arsenal of guitar solos to shift the battlefield, such as the Battle Cry, which increases the strength of your units, and the Facemelter, which, of course, melts faces. There's also the Double Attacks you can use with each different unit.



This mixture of the action and RTS genre is pretty good chemistry in my opinion, despite the fact that I don't like RTS games. It makes the single-player campaign all the more fun. These elements can be used fully in the multiplayer modes as well, but unfortunately, nobody seems to be playing this mode anymore. Either that or my internet connection still sucks. And one small note: Eddie can't jump.

There are also side missions, but the lack of variety is what makes this game capable of being repetitive. They range from ambushes, mortar strikes, to racing. It wasn't the biggest gripe for me, but I wish the race missions were more challenging and that they were included in the multiplayer.

Sound:

The sound department is also what makes Brutal Legend one of the most heavily licensed games. Double Fine has put a lot of time and effort to add many icons of the metal genre in this game, from the soundtrack, name references, to the voice actors. There's friendly neighborhood Jack Black as Eddie Riggs, who does an outstanding job being true to the character. We also have the likes of Lemmy Kilmister (from Motorhead), Rob Halford (from Judas Priest), Jennifer Hale, and, more notably, Tim Curry as the evil Doviculus. The dialogue consist of many fun antics that contain the following.

Lars: "I wish I could help them, but I mean...what do you do with a bunch of kids who don't know how to do anything but bang their heads all day long?"

Eddie: "You start a revolution, Lars. Right now! It's time to sound the battle cry!"

Lars: "Have you been...looking at my sword?"

Eddie: "...(looks down and up)"

The soundtrack, besides the in-game compositions, consists of over a hundred songs from many artists: Motorhead, Ozzy Osbourne, 3 Inches of Blood, Megadeth, Tenacious D; just to name a few. These tracks are played consistently while you ride The Deuce or partake in missions.



Final Verdict:

The side missions can be a pain and there may not be many people playing the multiplayer modes anymore, but Brutal Legend is a very fun game throughout. Whether or not you're a fan of heavy metal, the single-player campaign has enough eye-candy for you to enjoy. I highly recommend getting this game now that it's cheap. After all, every first step to buying a good game begins with an epic mosh pit.
One of the Most Creatively Designed Games Ever

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March 19, 2011
Great review man! Always good to see more BrĂ¼tal Legend fans. :D
 
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More Brutal Legend [PlayStation 3] reviews
Quick Tip by . March 13, 2011
posted in Siliconera Bounce
A badass action game for good old rock fans like me, with Jack Black(I love this guy) as the savior of one damn crazy world! You gotta love all the hints and homages of the real rock culture, mixed in one of the most hilarious game worlds there is.  The soundtrack is obviously great, the gameplay satisfying, it's like a rock version of Overlord and other games, where you have control over a group of minions, you have a bigass car with the craziest heavy metal equipment, and not to forget …
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ESRB: MATURE
Publisher: EA Games
Developer: Double Fine Prod.
Console: PlayStation 3
Genre: Action
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