gooddoggy's Brütal Legend (Xbox 360) review

O but a man's reach should exceed his grasp...

I really wanted to like this game.  Actually, liking it isn't the hard part.  Brutal Legend is an amazingly easy game to love; the setting, the music, the writing are all fantastic.  Unfortunately, it's not a particularly easy game to like to play.  As a hack-and-slash, it compares unfavorably to less conspicuous games like Mini Ninjas.  As a Real-Time Strategy game, it quite simply does not work.  For every genre it attempts, one can easily name five other games that have done it better.  This wouldn't be problem if the whole were greater than the sum of its parts, but it might actually be less.
 
For all that, I keep wanting to go back to it, because the world is so head-bangingly, fist-pumpingly METAL that you can't quit.  And maybe that's the problem right there.  Heavy Metal is undeniably awesome, but it's hard to make the argument that it's good by any objective standard.  In the end, the game is too ambitious for its own good.  Maybe if Double Fine had scaled back the scope and focused on making one or two gameplay elements really excellent, they would have had something.  As it is, they have a well-produced comedic story that is utterly ruined by the experience of playing it.

1 Comments
Posted by CrazyCrazyDoctor

I agree. I desperately wanted to love this game, as I loved Grim Fandango (though I feel Psychonauts is good, it's also dreadfully overrated) but the RTS elements and the too simple combat kept pushing me away. Also, I felt like most of the comedic elements kind of disappeared after the first 20 minutes. Also, those first 20 minutes were exactly what I wanted from the game...then after that not so much.

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