SouthPeak GamesDeveloped By:
E10 (Everyone 10 and Up) Release Date:
August 10, 2009Screenshots: LinkAmazon: Buy Now! Written By:
When first looking at the casing for Brave: A Warriorís Tale, I had to admit that I thought I would be met with a lackluster gaming experience that neither adults or kids should show any interested in. The reason why is because gamers of the current generation are rather spoiled with the likes of Ratchet & Clank, Mario, Zelda, etc. etc. etc. to the point where games like this wouldnít get the time of day. However after a bit more time invested within the game you come to realize that this game has lasting appeal and enjoyment that many would love.
Upon hopping right into the heart of Brave: A Warriorís Tale, you are greeted within a tutorial, which gets you very familiar with the game. Upon completing the tutorial, the actual game begins with your grandmother sitting you down to tell you the tale of Brave, a warrior who had to overcome all odds and defeat an evil Wendigo in order to save his people. Itís from here that you begin your adventure as the beloved protagonist from your grandmotherís story. This concept isnít really new to videogames, but itís a clever way of making the player feel like he or she is reliving a great moment in history.
While this game is designed for kids, I found some entertaining elements within the story that allowed me to enjoy the experience without having to scrutinize every little issue that you come across within the game. The game is very linear, so there really isnít any need to worry about getting lost when exploring a level. As you explore each level, you will come across numerous activities and skills that you can partake in and acquire for use later on in the game. Learning how to fish and track animals is indeed fun, however the real enjoyment comes with being able to transform into a bear. There will be parts of the game where Braveís human strength alone wonít get the job done, and being able to change into animals offers a new dynamic for the storytelling but also for the gameplay experience.
Aside from gathering items and partaking in combat activities, Brave also has a knack for the arts. Spread throughout the game is hidden totems, which when collected, unlocks a variety of digital artwork. While this feature wonít appease the average child, perfectionist will love the daunting task of finding everything possible within the game. Braveís knack for the arts and discovering things will help him develop his skills further as he progresses through the game. Most of the skills you acquire within the game are obtained through finding the appropriate carvings to unlock said abilities. Rounding out his love of the arts is wood carving, which Brave is a professional at. There are within the game where Brave will have to develop weaponry through uprooting small trees in order to create sticks. These sticks will be used for battle and completing other tasks as the game deems necessary.
With the combat system, Collision Studios wanted to ensure that it was simple, yet intuitive so anyone could pick up the controls without too much effort. Like I mentioned before, early within the game you will use sticks made from uprooted trees in order to fight off enemies. As you progress through the game, you will acquire other weapons in which to protect yourself and thwart your enemies. These weapons include axes and the all mighty bow and arrow combination. Within the hands of Brave, each weapon seems to showcase some sort of weight to them, creating a since of realism for the weaponry. I will say though when it comes to being very accurate with the weaponry, you have an uphill battle on your hand. When using the bow and arrow, you can hit your targets 9 out of 10 times, however you are trying to hit your enemies in specific sports, it can prove a bit more difficult to pull off.
Seeing how most children donít pay too much attention to the visual details of a game, you can see why there wasnít a strong emphasis placed on this area. Within Brave: A Warriorís Tales, many of the environments are rather blocky and seem to lack detail within their presentation. This not to say that they donít look good because they do, it just seems the visual presentation took a backseat to the rest of the game. When it comes to character motions, especially those of Brave, they seem a bit jerky, lack of fluidity within the characterís movements. The cutscenes within the game utilizes the gameís own engine, so the transition to and fro is subtle, but still noticeable. Overall, the game gives off a nice presentation for a kids game, however isnít up to par for those who crave a visual masterpiece.
In regards to the in-game audio, Brave: A Warriorís Tales has a 50/50 slit. While there are moments where the voice-acting is pretty solid and convincing, there are other moments where you wonder who allowed this to happen. In regards to the musical score, I though it befitting of the title, keeping the action and exploration interesting. Considering that Collision Studios and SouthPeak Games werenít trying to create a title to compete with the likes of a Zelda or Mario, the overall value of the in-game audio is pretty well done.
For those simply looking for the next platforming experience within Brave: A Warriorís Tale without realizing that this title was designed for kids, they will be met some dissatisfaction. Not to say this game canít be enjoyed by an older crowed because I enjoyed it myself. Sometimes you have to look beyond the surface to see the true value in a person or a product, and thatís the case with this title. While this game can be completed within 4-6 hours without trying to find everything within the game, itís a solid gaming experience for the money. 7/
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