Review by TornadoTN

"A Mixed Bag - But Overall A Solid, Fun, and Entertaining Game"

I have been following the development of this game for quite some time, through all the ups and downs. The lawsuit, the dropping of 4 player co-op, the unrealistic "previews" and now the aftermath. The final product is in our hand and after sinking some time into the game the reactions are coming in.

Personally, the game was nowhere near the train wreck that many people claimed that it was. In fact, some of the reviews leave one questioning whether they were even playing the same game. On the other hand, the game certainly doesn't meet the hype that Silicon Knights and the infamous Denis Dyack were throwing out there through development. Not even close. I knew the game was going to be in trouble when Game Informer put up a preview several months ago that compared certain aspects to Gears of War and Denis Dyack kept running his mouth in the media about how "groundbreaking" and "fresh" the game was going to be without really expanding on his claims.

But surprisingly enough, what we were left with is a solid, fun and interesting game that should appeal to anyone that is interested in RPG's and Hack n' Slash games. In my first hour of play, I was somewhat put off by the controls and some of the design options that were put into the game. "Why did they take so long to get this game out if this is it? Where's all of the complexity that was promised?", I asked myself. But after plugging along for a little while longer, the combat started to flow and begin becoming fun. As my character leveled up, I was presented with even more options and skills that helped to round out the character. I was having fun! I

I. Gameplay - 8/10
The only thing keeping game play from being even higher is the multitude of bugs that some people are experiencing and the bi-polar AI, such as falling through the world and the horrendous Valkyrie death scene that is more of an annoyance than a real penalty for death. Once you get a feel for the control scheme, combat flows nicely and there are some very nice moves and combos that add to the action. The AI is adequate overall and not as bad as many claimed. Yes, the enemies do swarm you and yes its like leading lambs to slaughter in many cases, but there are a variety of enemies that use different tactics or weapons that will cause you to rethink your "zerg rush" right into the middle of a pack of bad guys. I would have liked to have seen more variety of bad guys which makes me scratch my head when considering the development cycle of this game. Bosses are a lot of fun and overall very well-rounded. The classes you can pick from are far-from standard RPG fare, with a mix of fantasy and high tech. Leveling your character is rewarding and the skill tree has some interesting choices so that overall you can build your character in a number of different ways to suit your play style.

2. Graphics -6/10
Not exactly the best out there in the generation and certainly doesn't live up the hype. While they aren't bad, they don't push any boundaries or make you say "WOW" like some other games.

3. Sound - 6/10
Not very impressive but it manages to do the basic things that you would expect. The guns sound very weak and the swordplay is a bit subdued, they both feel very generic. The Voice acting is decent and manages to have a few moments during cut scenes that really pull you into the emotion of the situation. It's not Two Worlds bad, but its not Mass Effect, GoW, or BioShock quality by a long-shot.

4. Story 7.5/10
The story was one of the areas where reviewers seemed to take a few swipes that resonated with anxious gamers. While it can be tough to follow if you aren't familiar with the characters or the setting, it can be very interesting to follow and compare this high-tech version of Norse gods and goddesses to their ancient world counterparts. After the first level, the story starts to pick up and does its best to keep you involved. It's hit or miss depending on your attention span and your knowledge of the setting and major players, so your mileage may vary.

5. Replayability 8.5/10

If you are into these types of games, then you might argue that this could be a solid 10/10. The loot options and the classes make this a game where you could definitely sink a great deal of time into and still want to come back for more. For the average gamer, the opportunities for replay are limited because of the lack of map and settings - you essentially play on the same maps over and over again just with enemies that scale to your level.

6. Bottom Line 7.5/10
Is it a blockbuster? No. Is it a complete disaster? Not by any stretch. It manages to do the things it sets out to do right (for the most part) and delivers the fun and personalization that this type of game thrives upon. If you are curious about this game, I recommend renting it if possible. If you are a fan of this genre, then you most likely will not be disappointed. Is it worth popping $60? That's entirely up to you, but I feel that my $60 was well spent for this title. It's closer to an 8 than a 7.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 08/21/08

Game Release: Too Human (US, 08/19/08)

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