I do not like the top-notch "big poet" attitude, and that is a mass phenomenon among the people in the case of the latest game of Tim Schafer - Brutal Legend. Because, as long as I agree with the opinions of the author's great craftsmanship and the ability to create classic adventures - the latest history, the work created after his departure from LucasArts and the founding of Double Fine Productions, is no longer the case. Psychonauts, yes, they enchanted me with an idea of the world and all the backstory - but the game itself was already a great torment. I'm sorry to say that I was tired of this game mainly for the later opportunity to promote in the salons and to take out the woods for the text "hey, kitty, play in such niche, artistic and non-commercial (and how!) Games like Psychonauts." Do not go this way.
And so, more mature about this experience, quite suspiciously watching Brutal Legend, whose world in the promises of the creators was preparing for an absolute cemetery. The Universe, which was created in the image and similarity of album covers of the so-called. Metal music. To this a few legendary names and army pieces, leaving behind even music games - divine. Nevertheless, because history likes to repeat itself, the most important question that kept me upset - what about the game itself?
Brutal Legend tells the story of Eddie Riggs. It is a "road", that is, after our member of the technical team - ensuring that the facilities of each concert were fixed on the last button. The problem of our hero, however, looks that although he can construct every scene and repair every instrument, he can not, unfortunately, fix the music played by modern bands (at least by the way he travels in the intro). What irritates him immensely and deprives him of the job of taste.
Fortunately, Eddie's life turns 180 degrees - he is crushed by the scene's decoration ("nothing changes a life like death"). Yet death itself is so spectacular, and the appearance of the ancient metal god, Ormagodena, who carries his "soul longing for those forest hills ...", etc., or, in short, to the ancient Metal Land.
Metal Land is a place where the "power chords" played on the guitar actually have the power: they cause earthquakes, fires or electrical discharges (naturally jumping through the strings). Demons are wandering everywhere, and innocent indigenous people are fighting fiercely with General Lionwhyt - the Hair Metal. If it does not seem to be twisted, it's just because of fear of spoiling your fun skipping the most interesting fragments.
Because Tim Shafer's youngest child is at every turn evidenced by his unconventional approach to games and from the beginning literally attacks the player with good patents. To be non-fiction - the first thing we usually encounter in the games, the main menu is the sequence of viewing the album (from the perspective of the first person), and the next menu items are simply the next pages of the album, skillfully translated, or opened with the hands of Jack Black (because the whole shot Was "live" camera). How do we get into this album? Ha, it's best to check it out yourself. In any case, playing in the first moments after launching it makes an amazing impression.
Another equally important component of the Brutal Legend is its ubiquitous schematic sense of humour. They are already seen in the very way of creating the world that seems to be subdued from the typical metallic sub culture of darkness, gravity, and sometimes a pump. It perfectly emphasizes and mocks Jack Black, who leads Eddie both his voice and likeness (and who knows what else). Hard to imagine a better person in this role.
Speaking of roles, one can not fail to mention the good people of the music world that we meet through the Land of Metal. In addition to Jack Black, Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead, Lena Ford, Jack Tenacious D's colleague Kyle Gass, Rob Halford of Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne himself. And they really are playing themselves there - but in a way that matches the universe created by Schafer. If, like me, you have been following their musical actions for a long time, you probably have heard of them in the game, too.
Brutal Legend very hard to classify. Starting the game, it seems that we are dealing with a simple slasher in the style of a very simplistic Devil May Cry. We run for free in the world (the hero can not jump), with opponents we fight in the short term - using the ax and for the distance - giving them guitar riffs, which play a role of specific spells. Fun with the axe is made up of two keys and allows you to output literally a few, differentiated combos. The action of the guitar is very similar to another legend - The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, because the same to trigger a "spell", we have to rhythmically tap on the corresponding keys.
However, after several scenes of this type, we sit at the helm of a powerful hot road called The Deuce. Quickly it turns out that we are dealing with an open and quite wide world, which we can freely traverse, performing various main and secondary tasks. The storyline itself is 100% linear, it's a sequence of successive missions and it can be completed in about 7 hours. However, returning to our vehicle - the driving model is one of the most pleasant components of the Brutal Legend, and it is attractive to the fact that the car can be ridden (guns, mines, armour) and nothing in Carmageddon - smear on his mask here and there. And it is worth emphasizing - the game is very bloody, but in a very grotesque manner. Here even a finger fountain springs from a cut-off fountain.
But the most frantic idea was to implement a simple RTS on the Sacrifice. In the Brutal Legend, as a "technical" fit, we collect and lead to victory with the troops of General Lionwhyte's army of daredevils. Battles, as well as the whole game, are the allegory of the concert - two scenes are facing each other, and our task is to destroy the one belonging to the opponent. In addition to the convention - everything works as in the classic RTS: we fund the construction of units from geysers, which in schaferowski terms are really places where the energy of the fans and of course, to use it - we have to take care of them.
But the nicest - all three, so different, parts were very smoothly connected with each other. And so, hovering over the battlefield (in the course of the battle our wings are sprouting up) and commanding troops, we can land and support them at any time - using the mechanics we learned during the cutting and chopping session. There is not even a problem to summon our carriage and exterminate it from its deck. The interface was really well thought out and in practice, it works properly, but you have to get used to it.
Battles were so fond of the authors that they decided to make them the main and only attraction of multiplayer games. I must admit that the idea is stupid. We play up to two sides on a map, with up to four players each. The parties to the conflict are three (people, demons and gothic followers) and these are really diverse factions. At this point it is worth mentioning that our hero can enter with a unit (because the units are invaded by troops) in cooperation mode - for example, the infantry surrounds him with a wheel and acts as a living shield, a bride (a unit from the world of metal doom - it is impossible not to associate with the band My Dying Bride) makes our character a black mutilator that poisons enemies like Black Liquid in the X-Files series - and this is just a small sample of creative inventiveness, because the units are a lot, and the combinations are incredibly ingenious.
The same units also deserve a separate paragraph - in the case of people we start with the so-called. Headbangers, that is young people happily waving their hard heads on muscular toes, which plays the role of infantry. Long-range troops are girls armed with rifle-powered rifles (to understand this - you have to experience the feature mode), medications - the basics. We also have, for example, "technical", worn on their back columns to destroy enemy buildings, etc. - in any case always the function of a given type of troops is explained by the role played in the world of Brutal Legend. Interesting are the demons, whose army, like the Starcraft Zerg, is based on the tree of dependence between the units.
At intervals between successive missions of the main story line, we can take on secondary tasks. They are not very varied and rely mainly on pursuing others and fighting in various smaller skirmishes. For the tasks done - we get money. We can buy upgrades for our vehicle, axe (various attack properties), guitars (various magical attacks), new combos, etc. - all in Ozzy's "store", here called Metal Guard. In addition, we can search for dragon statues for which we get healthy and look for sculptures that depict the entire history of the Land of Metal - really sensational.
Unfortunately, as long as on paper all the above elements look at least so exquisitely, so in practice at Brutal Legend feel that it is not exactly a miracle, as the authors announced. As soon as the first shock and the emotions accompanying this interesting and charming product come to light - we can get the impression that we have a remake of the PlayStation 2 platform game mechanics.
None of the less experimental components of the Brutal Legend, that is, races and blasts of enemies, is out of the question, and the default nail of the program - big battles - despite the good interface, it's tiring chaos (eg lack of map, weak AI units and consequent problems) For this reason the duration. For these reasons, we often do not know why we actually lost or won - which is very irritating.
As for the anarchy of the least controversial chopping mission, there is very little in the game: we sneak into the metal spider cradle playing guitar strings or take part in an escapade to the Wall of Scream - and not much more. And it is a pity that these stages, unlike battles, do not tire and simply enchant the climate. We spend a lot of time behind the wheel of our hot rouge, covering a huge truck with our army as it goes deep into the enemy territory. These missions, apart from the route, do not differ unfortunately from each other.
To make matters worse, the authors (as far as they themselves have confessed themselves in interviews) are forcing us to move as quickly as possible to present as little of the world as possible. And so in the later stages, we literally fly without looking and reflecting through many interesting landscapes.
At Brutal Legend I really played, all the while comforting that "it is fun" while in fact, it was not pink at all. The game looks very attractive to outsiders - I often called someone to show cut scenes or various interesting patents. However, when I was playing alone, there was a void in the game, and in practice, I just wanted to get to the next movie. What's wrong with that?
Unfair - because it is really a piece of innovative and full of charm product. Letting the player play fresh, intriguingly beautiful (the artistic side of the luminaire effectively surpasses all the technical shortcomings) and full of unforgettable fantasy worlds, meet many great characters and savour the need for a story that is a hyperbolic metal story - in the eyes of Tim Schafer. And it's all immersed in a dose of incredibly positive vibration, which is guaranteed by Jack Black.
It is hard for me to recommend the Brutal Legend and at the same time have a clean conscience. On the one hand, because of the artistic layer, the game just needs to be seen and supported by such an interesting initiative, on the other - to commit to ingesting the not-so-perfect-gameplay is certainly not nice. These are not, fortunately, some great torments, but it is a pity that I can not mention the new schaferowski as an undisputed gem.