Temple Run: Brave arrives on Windows 8 and RT after a seemingly endless run

Way back in March, Microsoft announced a big batch of Windows 8 games that would be launching the following weekend. These mostly included Xbox-enabled games, but they mixed some indies in there too. And all of those games did launch that weekend but one: Temple Run: Brave from Disney and Imangi.

We never learned what caused the holdup, but the important thing is Temple Run: Brave has launched for Windows 8 and RT at last! In our previous article I said it might not have Xbox Live features, and unfortunately that has proven to be the case. At least Windows tablet and PC users can now enjoy an installment of the popular Temple Run series… No word on a Windows Phone port of this one, unfortunately.

Head past the break for a hands-on video and our full impressions!

 Run, Merida, run!

Temple Run: Brave is essentially the original Temple Run game with a coat of Brave-colored paint on top. In other words, it plays like the game Windows Phone 8 owners have enjoyed since March but is themed after the Disney Pixar movie Brave.

Now, I didn’t care for the film but it makes for fine windows dressing in the game. Players control the feisty protagonist Merida as she runs away from the super ruthless and uncool bear Mordu. The areas she runs through include lovely Scottish hills, forests, and ancient ruins. Merida makes little vocal quips about the action, and the game displays cute drawings of whatever accident befell her when she gets a Game Over.

This version does add a new gameplay element in the form of archery. At certain times during a run, an archery symbol appears at the top of the screen. This lets you know that archery targets are coming up along the sides of the path soon. Hit them all and you’ll get a coin bonus. The Gunstringer: Dead Man Running borrowed the same mechanic when it launched on Windows 8 a while back.

Shop opening soon?

The main goal of any run is to collect as many coins as possible. These can then be spent on power-ups and new outfits for Merida in the shop. The prices are actually reasonable so you can conceivably unlock everything if you play enough. However, the game does still give the option to buy coins with real money.

At least, it’s supposed to – at launch, the game can’t actually connect to the online store. Hopefully Disney and Microsoft get that straightened out soon.

Windows 8 specifics

If playing on a touch-screen device, you swipe in the appropriate direction to move Merida left or right or make her jump or slide. You have to use the arrow keys for the same functions on a keyboard; this title unfortunately doesn’t support controllers. Shooting archery targets is much easier on a touch screen too because keyboard players have to move a mouse pointer to hit them.  Temple Run: Brave is still quite playable without a touch screen, but more control options would make it even better.

Graphically, the only enhancement of note is the game’s new widescreen display. It definitely looks better on a 16:9 PC monitor with the scenery extended from edge to edge instead of making a tiny portrait view screen with borders like they could’ve done. Otherwise, the geometry and environments make sparse use of polygons and certainly don’t look much better than a 2012-era phone game (or 2011, for that matter).

Overall Impression

Temple Run: Brave resembles Ice Age Village in that it combines a movie license with a tried-and-true game design. Does anybody else find it slightly creepy that the star of a Disney movie is basically guaranteed to die by the game design? There's no winning in Temple Run, and no escape from Mordu in Temple Run: Brave. Ah well, still fun!

Gamers who like endless runners and/or the Temple Run series in general will probably want to pick this one up. Gunstringer: DMR does boast slightly better graphics, an actual story mode, controller support, and Xbox Live Achievements, but it also has much longer loading times, steeper prices in the shop, and a very annoying narrator. Yeah, Disney and Imangi should have published this one as an Xbox title. Still, if I was playing just for pleasure, I’d choose Temple Run: Brave instead.

Temple Run: Brave for Windows 8 and RT costs $1.49 and clocks in at 39 MB. Get it here (opens in new tab) from the Windows Store.

Thanks to Edwin R for letting us know this game came out!

Paul Acevedo

Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!

  • No trial though just to test the controls on my Win8 laptop
  • Yes!
  • Oh! When I opened up the WPCentral app, i thought it was gonna say, 'for windows phone 8'. Now I'm like, 'aint nobody got time for that!'
  • Ha ha, well we do cover tablet stuff too ya know. But a WP8 version would've been awesome as well... :)
  • Yeah, I knows. When I had a W8 tablet I appreciated it. (I will get another hopefully this fall :)
  • LOL
  • Hahaha lmbo!
  • I wish toast notifications scrolled across the top so I could view the whole message
  • Paul, not to troll or anything, but when you say it runs like Temple Run for WP8, do you mean in terms of performance, or game play likenesses? I don't know about you, but Temple Run on my Lumia 920 is god-awful in terms of stutters and poor frame rate. Regardless, great insight into the Brave edition, I don't have a windows 8 PC running just yet but as im upgrading over the weekend, ill give it a try. Just a note, if you could cover any fixes for Temple Run or Temple Run 2/Brave coming to WP8, that would be awesome. Kudos from Australia! :)
  • Good to hear from you, Kyriacou. :) Oh no, I said it PLAYS like the original game in that the controls and mechanics are all the same (plus archery). It runs perfectly great on my laptop and I'd expect the frame rate to be reasonable on lower-end devices since the graphics are pretty simplistic. We'll see if any RT players chime in with their experiences. As for covering future Temple Run news, unfortunately and without any good reason, Imangi has given us the cold shoulder since earlier this year. They used to be really cool, but perhaps the dumptrucks of money from Temple Run 2 inspired a change of heart...
  • Temple Run still isn't available for 512 MB RAM devices. Makes me sad :'(.
    I'm willing to pay for it!, but can't play...
  • That is unfortunate given the obviously simplicity of both the game and its graphical engine. Shame on the dev.
  • Exactly! the developer is ignorant. Why does such a simple game require 1 GB ram while the graphic intensice Asphalt 7 is running smoothly on 512 MB ram devices.
  • Works great on RT, no performance issues and swipe response is better than TR on WP8. I'm used to changing direction by turning the tablet ala Gunstringer and keep forgetting to swipe left and right, be nice to have that option.
  • Without xbox live? This is not for me, no time! Still good news
  • I can feel it's coming closer to WP!!! \m/
  • Awesome. The TP:Brave release is a decent one in my opinion, but I think Temple Run 2 bug-free is the game we need most to come to Windows Phone 8. Lets be honest, a lot of the first adopters of WP7 (myself included) wanted a fully-fledged mobile gaming experience, and we all saw the opportunity Microsoft created for themselves with the Xbox platform integration. That hasn't changed, even as a WP8 user, and I really hope that mobile gaming picks up for the platform. Games like Chimpact and the recent Death Worm have certainly reinstated some confidence, but until those big games like Subway Surfers, Temple Run 2 and Jetpack Joyride come to us, we just have to wait patiently for something big to happen. Let's hope its soon. :)
  • Xbox live achievments ?
  • Read first, comment last, my man. ~ ~
  • Yes David there is, there's tons of them. They're mentioned in the article, YOU SHOULD READ IT!
  • When temple run brave will come for window phone 8
  • Probably after temple run 2. I hope that even comes.. :'/
  • Not Xbox Live? Bleh. I'm admittedly too addicted to my achievements, so a no buy for me.
  • +1
  • Annoying Narrator? YOU ARE INSANE. The Narrator is the best part of the Gunstringer.
  • In the real game, sure. But in Dead Man Running, he says the same stuff over and over again. You never got tired of that?
  • yes !
  • Did the fix the swipe issues in this one? Temple Run had poor swipe recognition which would cause me to die.
  • But not Windows phone 8
  • I wish they could have made an effort to make the graphics better than PS1 - pretty frustrating low quality on the Surface Pro. But I guess that's the downside of it also running on RT (I.e. on less powerful ARM chips)
  • Next they need Temple Run: Tangled, with Flynn Rider escaping from the guards. My daughter would love that.
  • i dont know the fascinations of these games. 
  • no trial ?? no xbox live? wtf ?
    i would try it to see how it runs on my Samsung Slate 7 but, I wont buy it unless i know how well it runs on my device so,a no buy for me !
  • Runs great on Surface RT!
  • Does this game require an accelerometer built in, Temple run classic requires it.
  • The article mentions mouse and keyboard controls. My laptop certainly doesn't have an accelerometer. :)
  • please upload LIC temple run