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Platform

Xbox 360

 

Genre

Action

 

Publisher

Microsoft Games Studio

 

Developer

Silicon Knights

 

ESRB

T (Teen)

 

Released

August 9, 2008

 

 

- Great two-player action over Live

- Tons and tons of loot

 

 

- So much loot, it's hard to find any of it really special

- The story mode is over pretty damn quick; and it ends suddenly

- The unskippable death/resurrection sequence can get really frustrating

 

 

Review: Dead Rising (360)

Review: Stranglehold (360)

Review: Earth Defense Force 2017 (360)

 

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Too Human

Score: 7.0 / 10

 

too human          too human

 

Years in the making, albeit in different forms, Too Human finally arrives, all the way from St. Catherines, Ontario, cloaked in techno-Norse garb and swinging a big hammer.  And it's about as fun and straightforward as any dungeon crawling, hack 'n' slash action game ought to be, especially when played with a friend.

 

Following the trails and tribulations of Baldur (Norse god of zombie and robot killing),  Too Human, the first game in a planned trilogy, players are put into environments populated with waves and waves of enemies that drop so much loot that it's like Hallowe'en from beginning to end.  Players will spend a good deal of

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time rooting through the bag of candy - reviewing and equipping armor types, runes, weapons (ranged and melee), charms, and blueprints of items that can be crafted.  From level to level, Baldur can take on some radically different looks, and from moment to moment he can have different weapons equipped.  No doubt, some will find this staggering variety overwhelming and that it somehow diminishes the significance of powerful equipment

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because it can be replaced so soon after acquiring it.  But for the loot fans among us, this is awesome.

 

In what seems to be a clear nod to the more casual crowd of gamers, Too Human won't let you die.  Whenever Baldur's hit points fall to zero a Valkyrie descends from above, pick-ups Baldur, ascends then Baldur rematerializes a little ways from where he dropped.  The only real penalty is that the equipped weapons and armor take damage, making them less effective until Baldur can get back to the hub world and have the items repaired.  The other penalty is that you can't skip the death/resurrection sequence.  It's not a long wait - clocking in around 12 seconds - but it feels a lot longer because when the action is at a high tempo, especially during co-op mode over Live, sitting through a slow animation for the 100th time (Achievement Unlocked!) the experience turns to frustration.

 

too human          too human

 

Too Human could be viewed as a twin-stick action game, similar to the control scheme as Smash TV or Geometry Wars Evolved.  Left stick moves Baldur around, right stick starts him on a sword slashing combo.  There's some variation with the ranged weapons, special attacks, the ability to juggle opponents, and some context sensitive actions but pretty much anybody could play Too Human and do all sorts of cool looking stuff without too much effort.  In that sense, Too Human won't be hardcore enough for fans of games like Ninja Gaiden.

 

This seems like a cop-out list of qualifiers but as long as players don't take Too Human too seriously and don't mind some of the games negative aspects, like the game's tendency to lock on to enemies that are already dead or the massive, empty environments or a quarter-realized "cyberspace" that allows Baldur to interact with the "real" world and they're playing with a friend, there is some enjoyment to be had.  Honestly, when you want to tune out and just hack through hordes of rushing enemies for a half hour, Too Human fits the bill.

 

- Aaron Simmer

(September 9, 2008)

 

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