Guide two brothers on an epic fairy tale journey from visionary Swedish film director, Josef Fares and top-tier developer Starbreeze Studios. Control both brothers at once as you experience co-op play in single player mode, like never before.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (11,397 reviews)
Release Date: Sep 3, 2013

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Recommended By Curators

"My top game of 2013 and probably of all time. A truly unique game in which you control a pair of brothers on a quest to save their father. Powerful."
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Winner of dozens of awards in 2013 including the DICE Award for Best Downloadable Game and BAFTA Award for Innovation, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is a must for any discerning gamer.

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Reviews

“"Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is an exquisitely told story set in a world overflowing with personality. It’s an immersive, emotional gem that’s not to be missed."”
4.5/5 – Adventure Gamers

Steam Big Picture

About This Game

Guide two brothers on an epic fairy tale journey from visionary Swedish film director, Josef Fares and top-tier developer Starbreeze Studios.

Control both brothers at once as you experience co-op play in single player mode, like never before.

Solve puzzles, explore the varied locations and fight boss battles, controlling one brother with each thumbstick.

A man, clinging to life. His two sons, desperate to cure their ailing father, are left with but one option. They must set out upon a journey to find and bring back the "Water of Life" as they come to rely on one another to survive. One must be strong where the other is weak, brave where the other is fearful, they must be... Brothers.

This is one journey you will never forget.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP SP3
    • Processor: 2.4 GHz Dual Core Processor
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 8600 /ATI Radeon HD 2600
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Initial installation requires one-time internet connection for Steam authentication; software installations required (included with the game) include Steam Client, DirectX 9, Microsoft .NET 4 Framework, Visual C++ Redistributable 2010, and AMD CPU Drivers (XP Only/AMD Only)
Helpful customer reviews
30 of 31 people (97%) found this review helpful
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 12
People that have played Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons usually fall into two groups. The first group of people looked at the glowing reviews that this game received, tried it, then found it stupendously overhyped and underwhelming. Then, there’s the other group, who found the game to be perfect. I am glad to say that I belong to the latter party.The late great film critic Roger Ebert once said that videogames can never be art, a controversial statement at best and blatantly offensive and wrong at worst. With that said, we’re going to have to forgive Mr. Ebert, because a)He was great at what he did, and b) He never got the chance to experience Brothers: A Tale of two Sons.

Story:
It’s difficult to talk about the story without spoiling too much. Essentially, you play as two brothers who are sent off on a journey to find a cure for their father’s ailment. You, as the player, are tasked to guide the two brothers through multiple trials and tribulations throughout a variety of beautiful and mystifying locations. Along the way, you will encounter numerous characters, many of which are heavily inspired from classic fairytales and fantasy mythology. There is so much more to talk about here, but once again, this is something you really need to experience yourself. You really will get more out of this game if you go in mostly blind.

It’s worth noting that the game is completely dialogue-free. No, I don’t mean that the game merely lacks voice acting. I mean that there is essentially no actual dialogue – voice or text, in the game at all. Sort of. The characters technically do talk, but in a fantasy language without translation. Instead, the story and interactions are told through beautifully-animated gestures and changes in tone and inflections. Despite this, there is never any ambiguity about what’s happening on-screen, and somehow, the game manages to weave a heartfelt story that, at times, can truly invoke a heavy feeling in the chest.

Gameplay:
Brothers is a story-driven adventure/puzzle game with a novel control scheme. Each brother is mapped to a single stick on the controller. The left and right stick/shoulder buttons control the older and younger brother, respectively. It’s a unique control scheme for sure, in the sense that this game looks like a co-op game for two players, but is actually a single player game, intended to be played on the same controller. The challenge in the game is largely dependent on the player’s ability to co-ordinate both characters at once. The ambidextrous be warned – this game will probably offer you very little challenge.

It’s worth pointing out at this point that contrary to what the text in the orange box says on the store page on Steam, a controller is not required to play the game. The game will work fine using a keyboard, and you’ll be more than able to progress to the end of the game without a controller. With that said, a controller is strongly recommended for this game.

For the combat-oriented players – sorry, but this game is completely combat-free. Instead, the game largely involves puzzles comprised of environmental interactions and exploration. Each brother has their own perks. The older, taller and stronger brother is able to reach heights, boost the younger brother, push levers and swim, whilst the younger brother can fit into smaller spaces. Unfortunately, delving into more of the interactions between the two brothers would spoil the game for you.

The game is never overly challenging or frustrating. OOT Water Temple this is not. Puzzles are, for the most part, fairly straightforward, but are often challenging enough to invoke a sense of satisfaction when you do overcome them. Death can and likely will occur, but checkpoints are frequent, sparing you from repeating the same segments repeatedly.
One of my only gripes, gameplay-wise, was the repetition of some of the puzzles. Using the big brother to boost the little brother up to a ledge got very old very quickly. With that said, even the puzzles that are solved the same way are often presented in a different setting, with a different outcome, which helps to keep them fresh.

My only other "criticism" is that this game is short and lacks any compelling reason to go back to it after you’re finished. This is, unfortunately, a consequence of any game that is primarily narrative-driven. The game does support achievements, but these involve optional, easily-missed activities in the game, and are neither challenging or particularly satisfying to obtain.

Presentation:
This game is beautiful. Not the realistic kind of beautiful that we’d expect from AAA games such as … The Watch Dogs E3 trailer, but appropriately beautiful. You would not want to play this game and have it look like anything other than what it looks like. The world that Brothers takes place in is strikingly magnificent. The town you begin your journey in is vibrant and colourful, whilst later settings are often appropriately darker and harsher. The shadowing and lighting in this game also look tremendous.

The most impressive aspect of the graphics however, is the incredible work that was done to illustrate the enormous scale of the game. No matter where you are, there is always a lot going on in the background, making you feel incredibly small and insignificant in the grand scheme of things – something that will be very familiar to those that have played the God of War series, or the critically acclaimed Shadow of the Colossus. Moving to new locations was often breathtaking, although each individual is area is so gorgeous on its own that it's hard to move on.

This, of course, was no accident. The game was clearly deliberately designed to immerse you in the environment, and allows you to interact with almost everything, despite the fact that this is completely optional and you are not awarded with anything other than the short animation that accompanies your action. In other words, the game doesn’t force you, or even encourage you (from a gameplay perspective) to sit on a bench in town and really take in the gorgeous scenery, but you, the player, will want to anyway.

The music and sounds also complement the game perfectly, and contribute immensely to the emotional impact of the game. I’ve honestly listened to the music numerous times since finishing the game, and all the emotions I experienced from the game just come rushing back. I honestly can’t fault a single thing about the audio in this game, as I feel that it perfectly complements both the emotions and the atmosphere that are conveyed.

Overall thoughts:
In case it wasn’t obvious, I loved Brothers. There is very little about the game that I can fault. With that said, I’ll admit it’s not for everybody. The game is very narrative-driven and requires a heavy emotional investment – something that not every gamer is prepared to, capable, or willing to do. It’s worth noting that this game could very well have been another To The Moon, or Gone Home – games which I personally loved, and are very story/emotionally-driven, but lack any real gameplay, closely flirting with the definition of what a “Game” truly is. No one played either of those two games and said “Wow, that was fun”, because plain and simple, the gameplay in those two games are complete garbage. Brothers, however, manages to capture the same kind of narrative and emotion (and arguably exceeds them both) without compromising on the gameplay. There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that this is, in fact, a game. That is the true magic of Brothers.
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14 of 15 people (93%) found this review helpful
2.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
This game shows, says, and impacts you more in its 3 hour duration than nearly any other game can do in 100 or more.
Video game story-telling reaches its pinacle in this game. The gameplay, pacing, enviornment, and gibberish-spewing characters all coalesse into a game that makes you feel happiness, frivolity, intensity, melancholly, dismay, suspense, terror, and most overbearingly, that motley mix of pride and deep sadness at the game's end.

Beautiful visuals: artistic and technical. Plays solid. Gameplay's very innovative and welcomed.
2 Brothers out of 2.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
Rarely does a game come a long which can take you through emotional highs and lows. Rarer still is a game which blends those emotional experiences so seemlessly with the gameplay mechanics instead of shoving it down your throat in lengthy cutscenes. Brothers is a shining example of a successful blend of story and mechanics. The game's puzzles are well designed and feel satisfying to solve, almost always making use of the 'one player coop' asymmetry between the characters in unique and celver ways to progress through the game. Brother's Environments are extremely varied from grand mountain vistas to muted yet intricate caves. It feels like a world teeming with interesting fables and legend, yet the game insists on leaving lore and backstory to your imagination. This means the pacing feels pretty impecible throughout.

Now, the game's characters don't speak a word of English. Pretty much all of the communication between characters is done via body language. This perhaps sounds a little pretentious - but it works SO much better this way. Never did I feel like I didn't understand what a character was trying to communicate. Admittedly it was jarring at first, but after a half hour you'll start to see why this method of communication works in harmony with the game.

I won't spoil what makes up this game's 'emotional' qualities. - and I know you want to punch me in the face for saying "emotional qualities". Just know that Brothers isn't just a sad game. Quite the opposite, it makes you feel a range of emotions. This game is funny, charming, thoughtful and touching. For me personally it's had a greater emotional impact in its 4 hour length than any film, book or indeed game I've ever played. All that whilst not saying a single word of English. Do yourself a favour, lock yourself away for a few hours, play this game from start to finish and immerse yourself in the story.

As a final note - I would recommend playing this game with a gamepad. Wait! Don't through your pitchforks yet! The game still plays on a keyboard - though this game feels like it's built for a controller in mind. I would argue that keyboard control would detract from experience, and I'm pretty damn ardent about mah keyboard n' mouse.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
This Game makes me Cry even though i can't understand a single Language in this game. 10/10 would develop again
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
+ Musical score, while limited, did a fantastic job setting the tone
+ Absolutely fantastic environments
+ Creative creature and level design
+ Rich, incredible atmosphere
+ Without discernable dialogue, tells a great story; will leave you with emotional trauma
+ Unique gameplay for a platformer
+ Controls and movement were smooth and simple

- "Puzzles" were far, far too easy
- Ending dragged on a bit
- Game was very short (less than 3 hours on my first playthrough)
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 5
A Masterpiece.
I never expected to enjoy this game so much.
Amazing gfx, deeply immersive, a surreal fantasy world, and so many emotions even without a single written dialogue.
Thank you for the amazing experience..!
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 7
HOLY CRAP THIS GAME!!!! I loved the crap out of this game, and while it is short (it took me about 3 hours to beat the game), I think this is one of my favourite games ever. At least in my top four. 9.8/10 (really crazy good for me).

The basic plot: two brothers have to go to a far away land to get a cure for a rare illness their father has. The story adds onto this and has several twists and turns but this is the basis of it.

Whats interesting about this game is that there is no actual interpretable dialog. what i mean by that is they make sounds, but its gibberish, and you have to look for context clues and hear the emotion in their voices to understand whats going on.

This game is basically a puzzle game with two buttons, analog stick for movement and action buttons to act upon the world (im pretty sure you can only play this game with a controller). the controls are smoothe and the difficulty is good, i failed a few times but no part was frusterating. The graphics are amazing and the art and world they create will stick with me for months (seriously breathtaking).. If you love art, BUY THIS GAME. if you have emotions, BUY THIS GAME!!!!! basically the only reason i wouldn't say to buy this game is if you just are not that sympathetic. because this game relies on the fact that you WANT the dad to be cured and want these kids to succeed, if you dont give a rats ♥♥♥ about the dad or the kids you wont be motivated to play the game and probably wont have that much fun.

Like i said before, probably one of my favourite games ever, I would recommend this game to basically anyone. It was short but incredibly sweet, I loved the crap out of this game :)
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 6
More than a beautiful and endearing game. It's quite clever in how it ties in the surroundings, story, and gameplay. And do have fun on all the benchs. The dual character control in one controller takes some getting used to, but is not difficult. My only complaint is that the puzzles were a little on the simple side. If you've played Tomb Raider, then you'll breeze through it. Take your time to enjoy the scenery, though. So much effort was put into making this game, I felt bad I got it on sale. Well worth the asking price.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
A simple, yet brilliant approach at expressing the bond between two brothers through gameplay mechanics.

With a beautifully rendered world and an universal fantasy-appeal, this game will quickly capture the player in its world and soon he will find himself immersed into captivating landscapes. Despite all that beauty, the world of Two Brothers is not easy to traverse and only through teamwork can the brothers succeed.

Control the two brothers via a single controller and feel how close these two sons are to each other. Feel their togetherness, wonderfully expressed via gameplay and level design.

Highly recommended.
I also recommend playing this great, albeit short game in a single session, to really connect to the journey that the two sons, as well as you, have brought behind themselves.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
Epic in every sense, a true fantasy adventure.

Not only is the concept amazing, telling a story about brotherhood in both plot and mechanics, this game delivers on every level. The art direction hits home its fantasy roots, and the score is wonderful, enhancing every moment. However, perhaps the most impressive is the cinematography. Yes, cutscene cinematics are great, but Brothers is one of the first games I've played where the in-game cinematography is more nuanced than a pre-rendered camera. The third person perspective does a fantastic job of highlighting objectives and story details, while providing a fantastic frame of the gorgeous set pieces, all without obstructing gameplay in the slightest. I could go on and on about the details, but the best way to see it is just to play for yourself. The player camera is expressive yet functional, and few games can claim such.

If I was to get critical, the only drawback is the gameplay. The mechanics are solid, ingenious really, and I was impressed with just how much of the world I could interact with (even if such interaction weren't always meaningful). However, it is simplistic. A couple of puzzles made me smile out of sheer ingenuity, but most, if not all, can be solved without much thought. If anything, I'd say that the greatest puzzle lies in the controls itself, as controlling two characters simultaneously on a single gamepad is quite the mental obstacle, and the game highlights this throughout. Still, there were a few moments where I wish the designers had pushed mastery of the controls further, as you can stumble your way through every chapter without much problem. However, providing such a challenge could possibly distract from the experience itself, so it's hard to fault the creators for going with accessibility over difficulty.

The bottom line is this; if you want a great story where gameplay enhances the user's experience, play this game. Brothers is a great glimpse into the possibilities games present in the narrative arts.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
A really short game that tells a compelling story with unexpected twist.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
Short, but well made game. A little saga. Worth playing through once to the end. Pretty unique experience for a game. Must use controller. Worth 4 hours and 10$.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
There is no actual dialogue and yet Brothers manages to convey powerful emotions better than most other games. It is short, but highly recommended to experience.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
This game is so great. You get to control 2 brothers at the same time, but the game is not very difficult, in fact, it is quite straight-forward. Nice graphics and epic scenery. A bit short but worth the play!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 13
I'm going to start off saying that this game is one of my favorite games of all time. The basic premise is you have to save your father using his 2 sons to overcome obstacles. Very nice sounds. This game was a tearjerker for me. You may get around 4 hours in it if you are trying to experience everything and for the price of $15 that may seem not worth your money, but i highly disagree. The 4 hours I played in this game was so worth it. If you want to play this game I highly suggest using a wired controller (has a usb end on it). I think this game has ingame support for controllers but I don't know for certain (google it if you don't know). If is doesn't have ingame controller support download JoyToKey. My highest recommendations for this game.

Infinity/10
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 12
Great but sad game.
Singleplayer Co-op with 2 Sticks is a good idea! Sometimes a little bit hard to control, but its fun.
A little bit short, took me 4 hrs with all Achievements.
Its worth the time! Be prepared for a heartshaking game!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
This game left me with a sense of emotional insecurity like a hole in my heart. With that being said, this is one of the most creative and incredible plots that I've ever had the privilege to play. Put simply, fear+humor+sadness+beauty+confusion-everything you know about gaming=Brother-A Tale of Two Sons
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
Very nice gameplay, beautiful atmosphere and graphics, and nice story. Go on ;) !
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 23
One of the only games that can tell a story with no talking at all. I spent a lot of time staring at the surroundings, its so beatiful. The puzzles arent that hard, its a game that focuses more on the story telling with awesome atmosphere than gameplay. I recommend using a controller to play.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
32.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
One of the absolute best video game experiences of all time. This is a must play. I hope they produce a sequel.
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