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Article for the week of 12/12/08

Too Human a bad-guy walloping good time

An Xbox 360 Review
By Ezra Mann

(This article has also been published at and soon at

As the holiday season brings out our classier sides from deal crazed moms at the shopping malls to the innevitability that uncle insert name here will have a bit too much egg nog again, we all need a little stress relief. Since homicide is generally frowned upon many of us take out our aggressive desires in the video game world.
Thanks be to the slice ‘n’ dice those including Silicon Knights and Microsoft have generously given gamers another outlet for that pent up frustration. This time around those with an Xbox 360 get to experience the hours of butt kicking melee with plenty of references of Norse mythology and futuristic robotic mayhem thrown in for good measure. “Too Human” is an encouraging offering from the action RPG market that will keep you hooked for hours and without some of the more annoying digital drawbacks.
In this adventure you play the role of a god named Baldur, favored son of Odin and one of the protectors, which are called the Aesir, of the remnants of humanity. True to nature, humanity has settled in and become complacent, even in a winter wasteland known as Midgard.
Things might just continue in the little snowball enclave, but even the gods get bored and need to finish some sort of business that might just wipe out what they are protecting. The quests are manageable and broken up to the point where you can play as long as you can keep your eyes open or just a piece at a time. There is also quite a bit of customization from weapons to skills and in a way that feels rewarding for your hard work.
One of the parts of this game that could have gone horribly wrong is that there are occasions when you cannot start where you saved during levels, but you are allowed to keep the kill experience even if you have to start that section over. The game also requires you to use your noggin if you don’t want to keel over repeatedly, though there seems to be no game over, so it’s just a matter of waiting to be regenerated.
You can play by yourself or you can join a friend in Co-Op mode via Xbox Live and since even your armor is customizable you can mold your appearance to fit the type of fighter you want to be. All of this takes place in the real and virtual world that often blends more than the characters realize. Though not the most awesome RPG, it is still rather addictive with plenty of reasons to keep playing until the end which earns “Too Human” four out of six toggles.

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