Video game review: 'Brutal Legend'
Games that want to associate themselves with the world of music are usually banished to the rhythm game genre where pretend performers happily strum their plastic guitars in the name of rock 'n' roll. Allowing music and all its rich history to muscle its way into a more action-oriented game hasn't been seen since the 1994 release of Aerosmith's "Revolution X." Now, as we rest comfortably with our alien shooters and military fragfests, EA Games is ready to unleash the power of rock once again with its celebrity-strewn title "Brutal Legend" for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Eddie Riggs isn't your ordinary roadie; he's the best there is. When it comes to making sure the bands are prepared to take the stage, nobody can do it better. Eddie has even managed to memorize every name, lyric and album cover in the vast annals of heavy metal history. When an accident knocks him unconscious and sends him hurtling into another world, he must use all his roadie skills to lead a band of rebel rockers against their evil oppressor, Doviculus.
"Brutal Legend" is straight-up action from start to finish thanks to expertly designed close, ranged and vehicular combat. Whether you decide to rid the world of bad guys using your broad ax, The Separator, or dispatch them with your guitar, Clementine, you'll have a variety of well-animated maneuvers at your disposal. If fighting bloodthirsty demons on foot seems to be a bit dangerous, just jump on your hot rod, The Deuce, for a bit of automotive mayhem.
Metal fans are sure to find the over-the-top combat enjoyable, but the characters and environments will have them throwing their devil horns in the air. Aside from Tenacious D's Jack Black providing the voice of Eddie, Rob Halford of Judas Priest, Lita Ford, Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead and other rock legends have stepped up to bring the characters to life. Their playground, created from album art and nods to the lyrics of famous songs, only helps to satiate the fan base.
Sure, EA Games' latest title may be bathed in all the colorful characters, scenery and lyrics found in metal lore, but that's not all this game is about. With its solid graphics, comedic storytelling, and spot-on controls, "Brutal Legend" is sure to please any console action fan regardless of music taste.
Media Link: Jack Black also voices Po in " Kung Fu Panda," which airs Friday, Oct. 16, on HBO.