Without Guitar Hero, We Might Never Have Had Brütal Legend

The fate of Double Fine Productions' Brütal Legend has been in doubt before, but without the success of Harmonix and RedOctane's Guitar Hero, it might never have seen the light of day.

Double Fine founder Tim Schafer tells OXM that pre-Guitar Hero, when the team was pitching concept of a roadie turned savior of a mystical, heavy metal inspired fantasy world, it was met with a response bordering on brain dead.

Says Schafer of the game's initial pitches: "We got feedback like, ‘It's good, but have you thought about making it a hip-hop game, or making it country?' And then Guitar Hero debuted, and that stuff changed. Harmonix had such great taste when they created the tracklist. It's obvious that music fans picked those songs. So metal really has had a resurgence."

Schafer points to another cultural zeitgeist, one that spoke to him, saying that "It's time for this game to be made!" That moment? A scene from the 2003 movie School of Rock, which also happens to feature Brütal Legend star Jack Black.

"There's a scene in School of Rock where Jack is singing ‘Immigrant Song' by Led Zeppelin," Schafer recalls. "He does this thing, ‘Hammer…of the gods!' And they cut to a shot of the girl in the van, and there's an Iron Maiden sticker on the wall." Truly a watershed cinematic moment.

Mr. Schafer dishes much more dirt on the forthcoming Brütal Legend, including new details on gameplay features yet to be revealed.

Brütal Legend [OXM Online]