XBOX Reviews

Brutal Legend Review

Brutal Legend promises to offer something to avid fans that very few games these days offer – individuality. There is nothing quite like this title and that alone is a good enough reason to give it a go. That’s before we even mention the numerous other positives on offer for gamers that take the plunge to spend their hard earned cash on Brutal Legend.

From the outset it will become obvious that this is very much a tongue in cheek game, designed to poke fun at the somewhat diluted forms of metal music around today. Its primary focus is on recognising classic heavy metal music and it’s not shy in attacking spinoff genres such as nu metal at any and every opportunity. Don’t worry; the plotline won’t have you rolling your eyes at the bitterness of the game’s creators. In fact it’s more likely you’ll be spending your time mopping up tears of laughter, especially from the opening scenes.

So we’ve established that the cinematic portions of the game are likely to have you literally laughing out loud. But what of the game itself With a title like Brutal Legend you wouldn’t be alone to expect a beat-em-up of magnificently gory proportions. While there’s elements of this included within the title, and the gore is certainly prevalent throughout (though it can be turned off if you’re worried about youngsters accidentally stumbling into your playtime), there is far more to this game than meets the eye.

The gameplay is actually a hodgepodge of different genres all squeezed together into one. You might be instantly dismissive, quoting the old adage ‘jack of all trades, master of none’, but don’t be too quick to write Brutal Legend off. It seems that developer Tim Schafer backed by his studio Double Fine has actually managed to master each and every area.

Throughout the majority of the story you’ll actually find yourself commanding your own minions on your battlefield in what is essentially a real time strategy format. If that doesn’t appeal, never fear as you’ll also be able to jump into the action, pounding on some of the emo-dressed bad guys yourself. Outside of the story itself you’ll have a world to explore, packed to the brim with side quests which will test your skill in shooting, beating up your opposition and even racing.

Stepping into the multiplayer mode you’ll find yourself in an RTS environment once more. Your mission to destroy the opposition’s bases is made increasingly exciting with the option for up to eight players to do battle with four per side. You may find yourself returning to this mode long after you’ve completed your single player story mode which, despite its positives, is a little on the short side.

All in all then Brutal Legend successfully combines a multitude of different modes of gameplay with some classic humour delivered expertly by the well known Jack Black. While the shortness of the single player mission and some repetitiveness in the side quests do drag the game down from a completely perfect score, there is certainly enough contained within the disk to keep you occupied for many hours.

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