Tim Schafer: 'Brutal Legend' Was Thought Of 15 Years Ago


Posted May 7, 2009 - By Stephen Johnson

'Brutal Legend'

Double Fine's Tim Schafer is a longtime hero to video game fans. He brought us ground-breaking, funny adventure game The Secret of Monkey Island back 1990 and tragically under-purchased video game Psychonauts in 2005. Schafer's upcoming Brütal Legend looks like it will continue the man's streak of amazing titles. The open-world action game stars Jack Black as a rock and roll roadie transported to a fantasy world based on the the covers of heavy metal albums.

In an interview with Eurogamer, Schafer said he's basically been working on the game for the past 15 years, and the inspiration was the self-seriousness of some games in the fantasy genre:

 "When we were working on Monkey Island I used to think about our competition, which were really serious fantasy games, or what we called in our mean tone of voice, 'elves in tights'. We wanted to make something different... But I thought, if we were to make a fantasy game it would be cool to out-fantasy the fantasy games and go even farther. And what would be the name of something like that? And that's where the name Brütal Legend came from, because it just sounded like the hardest core fantasy thing out there."

When asked why it took so long for the title to come out, Schafer said:

"You don't often get an idea all in one chunk; the whole game as you see it now didn't just fall into my lap 15 years ago. The name came and various ideas, and I've always liked the music, and I always wanted to do a game where you're controlling minions, you know, and had minions at your disposal, and I always liked roadies. And it just seems like these ideas slowly moved together over time, and then it just kind of hits you that they all work great together and you can make a game about it."

Another interesting Schafer observation: In a sense, Brütal Legend owes its existence to Guitar Hero. Schafer says when the game was first pitched, the reaction was less than enthusiastic. According to Schafer, game development people often responded, "We like the game, but could we change it to be a hip-hop game, or maybe country music?'" Luckily, the success of Guitar Hero revealed that the power of rock would live on, and thus, a legend, a brutal legend, was allowed to be born.

You can read the whole interview over at Eurogamer and get an idea of the way Schafer is thinking about the game. Seriously, if you don't want to play this game, there's something wrong with you and we can't be friends. I'm sorry. I won't be able to forgive gamers if Brütal Legend suffers the same fate that befell Psychonauts. In fact, if you aren't looking forward to this game, I may have to come over there and slap the taste out of your mouth.

Brütal Legend will be available on the PS3 and 360 on October 13th and 16th.


Tim Schafer: 'Brutal Legend' Was Thought Of 15 Years Ago


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