Metal Game Review: Judas priests Road to Valhalla

The existence of this game makes me happy. This is a game in which Rob Halford is playing guitar on top of the bike from the painkiller album whilst riding through hell on the way to valhalla. It’s a game revolving around classic Priest songs, it’s so metal it might physically make your iPhone heavier. It’s also utterly, hilariously awful.

The idea is you rhythmically tap your way to success by jabbing at your screen in time to tiny cogs lining up with tiny circles on the ground. Get enough cogs lined up with circles and you add another layer (guitars, vocals etc) to the song and get fun animations of attacking zombies and monsters magically combusting or getting knocked back. I’ll forewarn now though,keeping an eye on tiny cogs does not a fun game make. They all move at different speeds and end up in different places and, even more frustratingly, aren’t always in the same time to the music as you think they should be.

Add to this the somewhat forced looking cutscenes between levels of Rob Halford himself addressing the player about how awesome the whole thing is and it becomes an exercise in trying your best not to visibly cringe.

The saving grace here is of course the music. This is a rhythm action game with the song’s turbo lover and painkiller on it, no dodgy game systems, level design and cheesy cutscenes will ever take this simple fact away. And yes, it will make you continually smile about how ridiculously fan pleasing everything is, right down to the main menu having the cover of redeemer of souls where the figure in the foreground is playing a riff on a superimposed guitar. At £1.99 your not going to feel too ripped off anyway if your a big fan of Judas priest, just don’t be expecting the game of the year here.

 

2 Screaming for Vengeance Eagles out of 5

 

Try some Black Metal with your rally

So after setting off on the first track in dirt rally, a rather realistic in handling and straight up rally sim, it suddenly dawned on me. I was driving a rally specced 1960s mini through the cover of a Winterfylleth album! Of course it was only a matter of time before the ignominious directions man was turned off (theres handy diagrams of upcoming corners anyway) and wonderful pagan black metal was turned on. What a fantastic combination it proved to be.

Suddenly hurtling through the snow in Sweden turned from fiddly stress over sliding tyres into an epic journey through long lost fantasy woods with the simple addition of last years Borknagar album. The surrounding forests in the Finland based tracks became deep cavernous mazes of impenetrable darkness when Waldgefluster or Hyperion was added to the ears. Adding metal to this game feels like your seeing it in the true light it was always meant to be, imbuing each carefully rendered track with loneliness and personality far beyond the screech of your car’s engine included in the regular audio. Driving through a wooded valley in Wales as night encroached along to the Skuggsja masterpiece “A piece for mind & mirror” was truly one of the best gaming experiences I’ve had in recent times.

Even if pagan black metal isn’t your cup of tea (although it does seem odd that it would be) try some melodic death stuff instead, I tried Insomnium’s masterpiece concept album “Winter’s gate” along with some fast paced snow based racing and it really hit the spot.

So try it now all you racing game and/or metal enthusiasts. Your experience will be sublime, I can promise you that.