Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is a unique adventure game from Starbreeze Studios game development company based in Sweden, who developed titles such as The Darkness and Payday. This is an entirely new approach to an adventure genre. The emotional fairy tale with such a difficult challenge where you have to control both characters at the same time.
The intro shows a smaller sibling kneeling in front of a gravestone and it’s quite clear their mother was hurried there. After that the story has to be unravelled and the journey you will take is full of touching moments that will keep you going on in a game. Unlike most adventure games, the dialogue in A Tale of Two Sons is scarce and brothers talk to each other in a language you don’t understand. That leaves you to figure out what has to be done in order to save their dying father. Their path is full of puzzles and dangerous creatures, but brothers have to try and find the cure.
Each sibling has his own strength. For example a smaller brother can hop on his brother’s hands and hang on the rope ladder to reach the top of the rock. Then he throws down a rope for his big brother so the latter one can climb up as they both need to pull the lift up at the same time. As soon as you start thinking that you have finally got a grip on how to control both characters at the same time, the new puzzle appears and puts you two steps back.
Controlling brothers was the biggest challenge I faced in a game and as much as it might have been annoying, it offered a unique experience. W,A,S,D keys used to control a bigger brother, and arrow keys for a smaller one was tricky at first, but once you get used to an idea, you just want to see what lies ahead and explore the world thoroughly. It has all been done this way to give you a stronger bond with characters. Depending on each other every step of the way, siblings won’t even go far before they start shouting to the other to join. At least that’s how I interpreted the game, since the words they were speaking were in some unknown language.
The puzzles are not that hard, most of them have an obvious solution and can be easily done if you follow the logic. They are there to give you clues about what’s going on, and to create a strong bonding between brothers and yourself. As I said, there is no proper dialogue so the gameplay is an actual story on its own. Innovative and addictive experience that can get you through the whole story within three hours. That is, if you are not as clumsy with controls as I was. Although you will have to think a little in some areas and that will sometimes means splitting brothers apart.
Most of us listened to fairy tales while growing up and this is a storybook that can be heard time and time again. Narrated without words, yet it will stay in your head for months after you have completed a journey. The journey has to be completed in order to understand the story and you won’t get a right feeling if you play for an hour or two. It is a highly emotional game even though you won’t understand what characters are talking about.
Beautifully designed with a setting of a Nordic village and landscape, A Tale of Two Sons had me admiring its world all the way through the game. Amazing landscapes with rivers and mountains made an adventure seem as I dived into a mystical, long forgotten Norse world. One of the best designed adventure games I have seen in a while. Different environments will caught your sight, though you will never stay in the same screen for long.
Achievement hunters will have something to do as well, though I want name any of those since it could be a big spoiler. Twelve achievements can be collected and just by reading them you can get an idea what will be needed in a Brothers game.
Brothers is an entirely emotional game which has been fantastically designed and offers a unique gameplay. This is one adventure game that fans should definitely try. I wanted to have a go at Brothers as adventure games are my favourite, though I could never imagined how challenging and heart-breaking this title was. Those who enjoyed classic adventure ones, will fall in love with Brothers in no time. One thing that I dislike about this game is that it’s just really short. Once you get into it, you will want more puzzles and more hours to enjoy this stunning world.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.