I don’t know a lot about PewDiePie’s schtick beyond the fact it’s loud, and its popularity generally makes me mistrustful of today’s youth. At the same time, I understand that said schtick simply isn’t for me, as I’m a curmudgeonly games writer who was raised on magazines like GamePro and Nintendo Power (and is consequently ticking towards obsolescence).
So even though I don’t watch any of PewDiePie’s videos, I bear no grudge towards him whatsoever. But YouTube celebrity or not, I’m obligated to review his new game for what it is. If PewDiePie: Legend of the Brofist is simply a hackneyed cash-grab, I must say so.
Here’s the thing, though: it’s not. Legend of the Brofist is a good platforming game. It’s not particularly original, and it suffers the same occasional control issues as most platforming games that rely on touch screens do, but it’s not awful by a long shot.
Legend of the Brofist begins with PewDiePie discovering all his fans have been kidnapped after he gets zero views on a video about making bread with one’s buttocks. He quickly learns an army of Barrels is behind the plot, so he goes on a quest to save his fans.
Barrels are apparently the mortal enemy of PewDiePie. I tried to look up the reason why, but I got deep into some weird YouTuber lore that made my brain seize up and blue screen.
Legend of the Brofist is chock full of similar in-jokes and memes. Several famous YouTubers pop up to aid PewDie, and you can play as them. Unfortunately, only PewDiePie voices the game’s story segments. I’d rather listen to Markiplier’s honeyed voice, but like the other personalities that pop up in Brofist, he doesn’t have much to say outside his cameo.
Legend of the Brofist’s platforming action is pretty typical. The action is chopped up into different levels spanning different types of terrain and mechanics (ice, mines, auto-scrolling). You dispatch enemies by jumping on them, or by deploying skills that take time to recharge once they’re spent.
It should be noted Legend of the Brofist’s action can get slippery when tight jumps are in order. The game’s small sprites are a mixed blessing. You can see hazards coming at you from a mile away — definitely a boon in the auto-scrolling stages — but it’s pretty easy to inadvertently cover up your characters with your thumbs. This becomes a noteworthy problem in the shoot-em-up stage.
Yes, there is a shoot-em-up stage. And pugs are your co-pilots.
Really, “pugs are your co-pilots” sums up the kind of content you can expect from PewDiePie: Legend of the Brofist. There’s a pretty decent platformer here, but to reach it you have to dig through exposition you may not understand.
That said, if you are a PewDiePie fan, Legend of the Brofist is stuffed with appearances and jokes you’ll adore. More importantly, you shouldn’t have a problem experiencing said jokes, because the game is built on solid foundation. There’s lots to do, lots to collect, and lots to laugh at — if jokes about barrels and farting pugs are your thing.