Brütal Legend (stylised with a metal umlaut) is an action-adventure game created by Double Fine Productions and published by Electronic Arts for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The game was released during October 2009 in North America and Europe. Though Brütal Legend was originally to be published by Vivendi Games prior to its merger with Activision, Activision had dropped the game from its portfolio after the merger. It was later picked up by Electronic Arts, though Activision and Double Fine brought counter-lawsuits against each other over publishing issues. The issues have since been settled out of court.
Tim Schafer, the game's creative director, was inspired to create the game by his own past musical experiences. The game features the character of Eddie Riggs, voiced by and modeled after Jack Black, a roadie who is transported to a fantasy world inspired by the artwork of heavy metal album covers. Eddie becomes the world's savior, leading the down-trodden humans against a range of supernatural overlords using a battle axe, his Flying V guitar that can tap into the magical powers of the world, and a customizable hot rod. The game, a hybrid of the action-adventure and real-time strategy genres, includes Stage Battles in both the single-player and multiplayer mode, where the player must command troops to defeat their foes while defending their own stage. In addition to Black, the game features voices of heavy metal musicians including Lemmy Kilmister, Rob Halford, Ozzy Osbourne and Lita Ford and other celebrities such as Tim Curry, as well as more than one hundred metal songs selected by Schafer for inclusion in the game.
Brütal Legend was generally well-received by game reviewers, praising Schafer's vision and writing of the heavy metal-inspired world, and the performances of the voice cast, particularly of Black and Osbourne. Many found the hybrid gameplay of action and real-time strategy games did not mix well, however, blaming console control limitations and missing features normally found in games of either genre.