Max: The Curse of Brotherhood

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Former Xbox console exclusive Max: The Curse of Brotherhood headed to PS4

Enchanting puzzle-platformer Max: The Curse of Brotherhood - formerly an Xbox console exclusive - is coming to PlayStation 4 this autumn.

Publisher Wired Productions and Danish developer Flashbulb Games revealed the news with an announcement trailer, which you can watch below.

Max: The Curse of Brotherhood is the sequel to Max and the Magic Marker and sees protagonist Max in yet another pickle. This time, Max becomes so frustrated by his little brother Felix that he looks online for a spell to make him disappear. When Max reads the spell out loud, he summons a mysterious portal from which a large claw appears and snatches little Felix. Realising what he's done, Max sets off on a quest to get his annoying little brother back while exploring a challenging, puzzle riddled world and fighting his way past strange enemies.

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Max: The Curse of Brotherhood PC and Xbox 360 release dates announced

Max: The Curse of Brotherhood PC and Xbox 360 release dates announced

After successful Xbox One launch, Max branches out.

Platformer Max: The Curse of Brotherhood launches on Xbox 360 on 9th April and on PC via Steam on 15th April, developer Press Play has announced.

It launched on Xbox One earlier this year.

Creative director Mikkel Thorsted said: "We are really proud of releasing what we believe will be one of the best-looking games on XBLA. Originally, Max: the Curse of Brotherhood was developed for Xbox 360. Late in development we couldn't turn down the opportunity to reposition the game as an Xbox One launch title.

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Max: The Curse of Brotherhood review

As a generation of video game designers enters its 30s and 40s and, in many cases, takes on the responsibilities of parenthood, themes of custody and paternity begin to feature more regularly in games. In the last couple of years, Telltale's The Walking Dead, Naughty Dog's The Last of Us and Irrational's Bioshock Infinite have each investigated the male custodian's role in a fallen world, asking us to assume the role of father figures protecting younger girls. Max: The Curse of Brotherhood - a resolutely traditional platform game with a resolutely traditional business model and, as such, an anomaly in the Xbox One's early catalogue - is another game based on family dynamics. It shifts the angle slightly with an investigation of the love/hate feelings so often experienced by young siblings toward one another - conflicting yet conjoined emotions that will be familiar to any parent with young children.

The game opens as Max arrives home to find his younger brother, Felix, playing with his beloved toys. Enraged, Max searches the internet for advice on how to rid himself of his troublesome brother and happens upon a spell to spirit Felix away, which he recites. A portal opens in the bedroom and the younger boy is snatched away by some nether-fiend. Realising the appalling mistake he's made and driven by a primal horror to rescue an imperilled loved one, Max dives after his brother and begins the winding and creative rescue operation.

So the fable's moral is delivered in the first few minutes: you might regret wishing misfortunes on the ones you love. There is no subsequent development; the rescue goal is straightforward and unwavering. Texture comes instead from a parade of increasingly spectacular puzzles and the small, expanding clutch of tools Max must use to overcome them, each squeezed from the nib of a magic marker pen.

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How Max made his way to Xbox One

Meet Press Play, the Microsoft developer you forgot existed.

When Press Play got its 2.5D physics-based puzzle platformer Max: The Curse of Brotherhood up and running on an Xbox One dev kit for the first time, the Danish developer was jubilant.

Microsoft hasn't lost touch with indies, insists XBLA dev

"It's a huge organisation, and they might be slow but they're definitely heading in the right direction."

Microsoft's relationship with indie studios remains strong, the developers of forthcoming XBLA title Max: The Curse of Brotherhood have insisted - and while it might seem that the platform holder is losing its grip on indie gaming as Sony attracts more and more developers to PlayStation, there's plenty going on behind the scenes to ensure that won't be the case come the next generation.