The long awaited game Brutal Legend from the legendary creative designer Tim Schafer (The Secret Of Monkey Island, Grim Fandango, Psychonauts) finally hit the Xbox 360 and PS3 on Rocktober 13th. The game is based around the idea of a world where metal music is the only thing that matters, and a character named Eddie Riggs who knows how to rock. Riggs (voiced by actor and Tenacious D guitarist/vocalist Jack Black) starts out as a roadie, but gets sucked into an alternate reality after a little ancient magic takes over. After acquiring “The Seperator”, a giant battle axe, and “Clementine”, a Flying V guitar that casts magic when you play it, and “The Deuce”, Eddie’s hot rod, he explores the world. Riggs figures out that using his roadie skills, he can help save the heavy metal world from The Fire Beast Ormagöden.
Along the way Riggs meets lots of allies including Lars and sister Lita, love-interest Ophelia, The Kill Master (Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead), Rima (Lita Ford of The Runaways), and The Guardian of Metal (Ozzy Osbourne formerly of Black Sabbath) who provides him with upgrades to his axe, guitar, and car.
But Ormagöden has his share of evil glam metal minions too. Emperor Doviculus (Tim Curry) oversees the oppression of the heavy metal world with his flunky General Lionwhyte (Rob Halford of Judas Priest).
The game plays a little bit like a mixture between Fable and Starcraft with a little bit of Banjo Kazooie mixed in. A lot of the game is spent exploring Tim Schafer’s beautiful open-world design, meaning that you can explore the entire map and it’s side-quests without following the main storyline. There are tons of collectable checkpoints, and by completing quests like races and ambushing the enemy, you receive fire tributes, which act as the currency in the game. Bring these to The Guardian of Metal to upgrade your gear and buy some cool unlockables.
The main quests in Brutal Legend play like a real time strategy game. The battlefield is a rock concert, and the object is to eliminate the opposing group by using fan energy to build new troops (like the Headbanger) and use them to take down the bad guys. Some of the metal references get to be a bit farfetched, but overall it becomes functional and humorous at the same time.
I haven’t come close to finishing the game yet, but keep checking back for a review (probably sometime next week). So far, I’m really excited about what this game has to offer, and I suggest checking out the game’s website for more information.