This is going to be a delicate entry to write for a couple reasons. First, the game is, in terms of hours to completion, pretty short. That means my inclination would be to go into greater detail about the specifics of the game. Second, the story is truly something to be beheld, and I'll have to do my best to avoid giving anything away the best I can. I take this task very seriously because I truly think Brothers is a game everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy. It does so many things well and is truly unique in a number of different ways.
Here comes the most vague and unrevealing plot desciption I can possibly give. This game features two brothers going on a long and dangerous quest to retrieve materials that may save the life of their terminally ill parent. You play as both brothers as they go through their adventures together. They encounter hardships, emotional and physical trauma, and that's about as much as I'm comfortable saying.
It's frustrating to write about a game that relies so heavily on story just as I'm sure its frustrating to read about the same thing. Luckily there's something else that immediately grabs your attention the moment you pick up the controller and start playing, the gameplay.
You play as the Brothers, both of them, at the same time. The simplicity with which they achieve this is pretty elegant. Your left analog stick and trigger controls brother the elder, and your right analog stick and trigger controls brother the younger. It honestly seems so simple and intuitive, but for the life of me I can't think of a single game that has had you controlling two characters simultaneously, and certainly not with this method.
It can be more than a little disorienting at first and will definitely require some getting used to, but you'll get there. Personally, I found that my pea-sized brain simply could not manage these two characters unless the left-stick character was on the left side of the screen and the right stick character on the right. My brain simply would not allow me to have those characters switch sides without causing one to immediately plummet to his death.
Once you learn to position the characters in a way that's comfortable for you, the puzzles and movement really start to feel cool and unique. On a basic level you're solving relatively simple traversal challenges with puzzle elements, but the introduction of two moving pieces allows for some unique design that stays pretty fresh throughout this game's relatively short duration.
It only took me a little over two hours to complete the story, but the impact that story had left me verging on tears on at least two or three occasions. This game is heavy, and as someone who does not have a brother, I can only imagine it will strike a chord with you much more deeply if you do. One of the final impressions Brothers gave me was one that left me absolutely awestruck. Again, without trying to get into too many details, the game manages to use a mechanic of the controls to build the significance of an extremely emotional moment. This was pulled off unbelievably effectively and is something that I find truly rare and incredible.
It's not a long game, and from a gameplay variety standpoint it probably doesn't have a lot of replay value, but I managed to pick this game up for about 7 bucks and my first playthrough was easily worth twice that in terms of the impact I felt. I'd gladly recommend this game to anyone, but you definitely have to be ready for a heavy emotional commitment.