Max: The Curse of Brotherhood for Xbox One and Xbox 360 developed by Press Play and published by Microsoft Studios puts you in control of Max who, after reading text from a child’s spell book, sees the spell actually worked causing a rift to appear in your bedroom and a monster arm grabs your brother and pulls him into it.
Brotherly instinct takes over and Max jumps in the rift after him in the hope to saving his brother. It’s not long before he meets an old woman who helps Max by making his weapon magical by injecting her soul inside it, his weapon being a marker pen. It’s a light hearted story filled with light hearted moments, Max and his brothers’ relationship is stereotypical to that of modern day sibling rivalry and the world they get transported too is full of weird and wonderful creatures and characters who carry the narrative at a nice pace and it kept me engrossed throughout.
The gameplay is Mario-esque platforming missed with a puzzle overtone which keeps the game interesting thanks to the mixture of this traditional style of play with the mechanic of the markers function. Platforming is nothing new, running, jumping, climbing ladders and vines. The marker is activated by pressing the Y button which brings it onto the screen, you can then place it using the left stick and holding the X button makes the marker draw either a vertical or horizontal line which magically activates something within the environment such as making platforms raise from the ground and removing or moving obstacles. The Curse of Brotherhood isn’t an amazing game by all means but it is simple to pick up and play and, though you won’t complete this game in one sitting, you will find yourself coming back occasionally to progress.
The visuals impressed which is showcased from the start as the huge monster slowly walks away with Max’s brother in tow in the back ground as Max attempts to keep up in the foreground. It gives the game depth and sets the tone for the scale of the game. Max: The Curse of Brotherhood could in fact be a family film as the characters, both good and bad, look cutesy like something from a Disney Pixar film. There are also some funny bits crammed in there as well and the entire game holds a bright colour scheme which is pleasing to the eye.
This game is worth a look whether you’re into platforming games or not as it’s easy to pick it up and play even though it with be in short spurts. The light hearted vibe that this game gives off means its ideal for players of all ages and even the selling point of this game being Max’s magic marker is easy to use.
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Max: The Curse of Brotherhood
Developer: Press Play
Publisher: Microsoft Studios
Release Date: 20th December 2013
Story – 4/5
Graphics – 4/5
Gameplay – 4/5
Overall – 4/5