Crispy Gamer

The Secret of Eddie Riggs' T-Shirt

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Last week me and a dozen or so other games journalists attending GDC were invited to visit nearby Double Fine studios to have a look at Brütal Legend. You'll find my story, "Stranger in a Strange Land: The Intricate World of Brütal Legend" in the main feed for Crispy Gamer features. But there's some stuff that didn't make the story that I want to share with you. A special tidbit that (I hope) nobody else zeroed in on. Maybe I'm revealing a little too much about myself, but I've been thinking about Eddie Riggs' t-shirt lately. See, I've recently become enamored with the sub-genre of heavy metal called black metal. One of the defining traits of black metal bands is the way they craft their logos -- the text that makes up the band name is usually obscure in the extreme, hidden in gnarled flourish. It's like the bands don't want you to be able to learn and perhaps utter their hidden names. When the debut trailer for Brütal Legend hit the web last December I immediately noticed that Eddie Riggs was wearing a shirt emblazoned with the same kind of logo. I knew in my black metal heart that Tim Schafer wouldn't just slap a logo onto a t-shirt. There had to be something behind it -- a secret.

At Double Fine last week, standing in front of a wall plastered with the game's concept art, I posed the question. "What's the deal with the black metal logo on Eddie's shirt? Does it say something?" My suspicions were correct. But, sadly, my question will have to go unanswered. Turns out the shirt does say something. Something significant. I'll let Tim Schafer explain in his own words, "I can’t tell you what Eddie’s shirt says! It’s an important plot point. That would be a metal spoiler."

So unless you posess the arcane ability to parse black metal helvetica, we're going to have to wait to learn just what the heck Eddie Riggs' t-shirt has to do with the fire beast Ormagöden, the demon Doviculus and the price of tea in China. Considering the lengths Schafer has gone to embed his game with metal lore, I'm hoping the revelation will be worth the wait. Or at least worth a chuckle.