alphazero's Too Human (Xbox 360) review

Baldr's Floating Gate

I bought Too Human for a few reasons. First, there was the game's fearless leader, Dennis Dyack, and his multiple  forum based shenanigans. I found the whole thing endlessly entertaining and want to do my part to support outlandish behavior in the people who make games. Second, I'm a big fan of Norse mythology, and cybernetically tarting the whole thing up appeals to me. Third, I like killing pretend dudes with giant pretend swords. I don't regret my purchase in the least.

The game is fun. I enjoy killing pretend dudes, and there were plenty of pretend dudes that needed killing. The highlights, for me, were jumping right into the middle of a huge cluster of baddies, and relentless wailing on them with the various Ultimate Swords of Total Annihilation and Doom.

I also quite enjoy leveling up. Something about getting slightly better equipment and slightly better skills over and over scratches that particular OCD itch that makes me susceptible to gaming in the first place. The main character Baldr drops some dudes, who in turn drop some weapons. You pick them up, and occasionally, if the game thinks the equipment is something special, a chorus of a thousand voices sings out about your skill and worth. You feel good about yourself, until you check the stats on the new gear and see it's about the same as what you have already.

I played through the whole campaign, and quite liked the story, clunky character models and all. I liked killing hoards of dudes. After a while, however, I felt like I was just watching Baldr kill hoards of dudes. He seemed to enjoy it, but I was getting less out of it than he. Because you're just picking the direction of Baldr's next attack, I started feeling a disconnect between what he was doing, and what I was. There's more to the fighting system than just holding up a stick, of course, but there isn't a whole lot of motivation to do so. Many times you can get through just fine by holding the stick in a certain direction and waiting.

I think Baldr's method of getting from enemy to enemy while in mid combat bugged me the most. He literally skates from one to the next. He's fast. He's a God. He looks like they ran out of time to animate a run cycle and just shipped it ice-capades style.

Just like Mr. Dyack, the game has issues, but despite them I had fun. Dudes need killing, and Baldr's just the God for the job.


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