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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Disney Interactive Studios
Developed By: Behavior Interactive
Genre: Action
Players: 1
Rated: E10+ for Everyone 10 & Up (Fantasy, Violence)
Release Date: June 19, 2012
Screenshots: Link
Amazon: Buy Now!
Written By: Matthew Prunty

July 15, 2012 - For many years games based on licensed products lacked that special something that made the movie, TV show or comic book great. Part of the reason is due to the timeframe from which they have to complete the project. Other reasons include lack care for the product and simply trying to cash in on a quick buck. Thankfully, Brave: The Videogame isn't one of those titles. While the game doesn't have the development timeframe of a games like Starhawk or Max Payne 3, Disney was able to crank and solid and enjoyable title with this game. While the game does have its moments, itís an enjoyable and entertaining experience that people of all ages can enjoy.

Similar to the movie, the game puts you into the role of Merida, a Scottish process who is to be wed to one of three Lords. The daughter of King Fergus and Queen Elinor, Merida is a bit stubborn and doesn't want any part of the royal ceremony. The actual events within the game pick up where Merida asked the local witch for a potion in order to turn her mother into a bear. While that part of the spell worked without a hitched, chaos ensues and now itís up to Merida to remove the smile or the kingdom is doomed.

As you progress through the game, you will acquire special elemental powers - Fire, Ice, Wind and Spirit - which will aide you in defeating monstrous foes that part put in your from completing your goal. Once acquired, these elemental powers can be applied to both your sword and bow. These elemental power all you access to closed off areas, complete broken paths and take advantage of an enemy weakness. Tree enemies are weak against fire, fire enemies are weak against ice, and so and son. Exploiting these weaknesses will allow you to vanquish your enemies quicker and keep you from being swarmed by enemies.

Combat is pretty straightforward in Brave: The Videogame. You use the square button/X button in order to attack with your sword, while the right analog stick is used to control the direction and fire off your bow. Switching between elemental powers is done via the triggers/bumper buttons or the dpad. Those familiar with twin stick shooters and action-RPGs will feel right at home with the controls. There are also segments when you are overwhelmed and your mother bear comes to your rescue. In these sequences, you control the mom as you try to protect Merida. You can pound the grounds to take out enemies, charge at them and take them out with a quick swipe of the paw. Then you also have segments where you have to control Merida's triplet brothers, who also were turned into bears, in order to sold puzzles that prevent her from moving forward.

With every vanquished enemy or chopped down plant, you will earn gold coins which can be used to upgrade your abilities, which is a necessity when fighter larger groups of enemies or boss like enemies. The upgrades range from being able to perform charged shots (more powerful), firing off multiple arrows at once, inflicting more damage with various attacks, etc. These upgrades make life a bit easier as you advance through your quest.

Your adventure is broken down into 8 levels, which doesn't seem like much, but could take upwards of 30 minutes to an hour to complete (depending on how you approach the game). Because the ladder levels require a bit of strategy to complete, you'll find the levels taking you a bit longer to complete. Couple that with finding all the collectables and acquiring all the abilities, you can easily spends upwards of 8-10 hours within the game. You will acquire new weapons and clothing during you quest, which are all for cosmetic purposes. Your attacks do become stronger when you acquire a new weapon, however the enhancement is the same from the first sword to the last bow.

From a visual standpoint, Brave: The videogame won't win any awards, but then again it wasn't meat for this game to compete with properties that spent 2-3 years in development. The game has a simplistic presentation, mimicking some of the environments from the movie. Character animations and fluid, however there are moments within the game where you will notice the framerate takes a bit of a dip. This doesn't hinder the onscreen action in any way. Cutscenes utilize the in-game engine and are within the same vein as the actual gameplay. The voice work in the game is rather solid with notable actors from the movie also lending their voice to the game. The music is very much Scottish and is very pleasant on the ears.

If you didn't collect everything on the first playthrough, you can tackle it again in order to collect the forgotten items. You can also complete the game on a harder difficulty to make sure you acquire all the achievements/trophies within the game. If that's not enough to get you to come back for more, there is the inclusion of local co-op, which offers up a different perspective to the gameplay.

Brave, though a game based on a movie IP, doesn't follow the horrible trend we have seen for the past decade. Like I said earlier, this is an enjoyable experience for all ages. For those who enjoyed the movie and looking for a bit more to hold them over until the DVD and blu-ray release, I recommend picking up this game.


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