AWOLNATION

Why simply watch a music video when you can actually play it?

That seems to be the theory behind “Megalithic Mayhem,” a side-scrolling beat-em-up game for the iPhone/iPad, starring the indie pop band AWOLNATION (or at least cartoon avatars of them).

The game, which recalls the glory days of 8-bit Nintendo, is based on AWOLNATION's video for their hit "Not Your Fault." The video itself looks like a mix of the manic Claymation of Peter Gabriel’s classic “Sledgehammer” video combined with the hijinks of MTV’s “Celebrity Deathmatch.”

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The game borrows some scenes from the video, in which the bandmates – Aaron, Dave, Christopher, Kenny and Hayden – battle yetis in an ice world, take on reptilian-men at the beach, and fend off a gang of bug-eyed aliens on the moon.

Players start off with the option of controlling two of the band members, but you can unlock the rest over the course of the three different levels by setting them free from the clutches of the enemies. Each member has a different weapon and special attack – from a sonic boom signing voice to a mustache boomerang.

In addition, the song “Not Your Fault” plays in the background, with the option of hearing it in its original form or in an 8-bit chiptune version.

“Megalithic Mayhem” is a cool way to experience AWOLNATION and continues a long, sometimes strange tradition of artists promoting their music through video gaming. Here are a few other notable crossovers. 

50 Cent

You might think that a shooting game based on 50 Cent would be terrible, especially one in which the story is about a paramilitary group led by a terrorist stealing a diamond-and-pearl encrusted human skull from 50 Cent and his G-Unit crew after a concert. But “50 Cent: Blood on the Sand,” released in 2009 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, was an oddly compelling game. The combat included upgradable weapons, on-foot combat, boss battles against helicopters, a chase scene with a Humvee and a minigun shootout. Plus, 50 Cent created 18 exclusive tracks just for the game.

Kiss

Don’t remember that a game called “Kiss Psycho Circus: The Nightmare Child” existed? It’s probably for the best. The first-person shooter released in 2000 for Sega Dreamcast and PC wore the name of the '70s glam-rock band all over it, but it was based on a Todd McFarlane comic series and it played like a lame version of "Quake" with circus freaks as enemies. But that’s okay, because Kiss gets a lifetime pass for the 1978 Bally pinball machine based on the band. It remains one of the most kickass pinball games of all time.

Journey

The instruction manual for “Journey Escape,” the 1983 Atari game based on the '80s arena rockers, describes the game this way: "You're on the road with Journey, one of the world's hottest rock groups. A spectacular performance has just ended. Now it's up to you to guide each Journey Band Member past hordes of Love-Crazed Groupies, Sneaky Photographers, and Shifty-Eyed Promoters to the safety of the Journey Escape Vehicle in time to make the next concert. Your mighty manager and loyal roadies are there to help, but the escape is up to you!"

In reality, it looks more like a guy who is running in space, avoiding disembodied heads with blue hats, hearts with legs, flashing diamonds and yellow squares. It was totally bizarre and one of the worst video games ever made. But hey, Don’t Stop Believin’, right?

Follow AWOLNATION and Red Bull on Twitter for the latest news, updates and sweet iPhone/iPad app collaborations.

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