Too Human

Too Human will thrive on its online community, only this time around there’s no monthly subscription fee to fork out for. The entire world levels up in order to challenge any team of which you’re a part, so there’s always a fresh challenge on the horizon. Say you and three mates team up over Xbox Live. You may all be at the same level, but what if one player is massively more powerful? Too Human calculates any combination, so in this situation it would throw a couple of powerful enemies your way for the strongest member to battle, and plenty of weaker enemies that need mopping up by the rest. If they fail, the swarm will swamp the stronger member, so the system ensures that everybody has an equally important role to play regardless of rank and bicep-size.

The game has a level cap of 50, so you can’t begin Too Human 2 as a level 99 superhero. That’s not to say that things are over once you’ve hit the big five-oh. Part of the draw of Too Human is the search for rare items, and there’s a frighteningly long list of weapons and armour to find. There should be more than enough to tide you over until the sequel’s out, anyway. Balancing your items takes place in a deep and intricate system. Armour and weapons need to be juggled to maximise the stats, so break out that calculator.

The combat’s a radical departure from the norm. Dropped into this pseudo-RPG is a system not wholly unlike that of Devil May Cry, only slightly more versatile. Flicking the right stick in the direction of an enemy will cause Baldur to dash across to said foe. Another flick will attack with your melee weapon (be it sword or hammer), and holding the right trigger will turn it all a bit Dante and whip out the guns. From what we’ve seen Baldur will be able to target individual enemies with each weapon for big-scale combo-kills and, more importantly, style. Fancy upper-cutting your enemy into the air, jumping up to bash him around and then slamming him back down to the ground, sending a few bullets his way for good measure? Not a problem. When you consider that you can then mix all this with magical attacks (again, you choose how Baldur evolves and what attacks he’ll gain by the way of a skill-tree) and summons by using the face buttons, the potential is huge.

Despite a definite slant toward melee combat, Too Human still offers plenty of long-range weapons and you’ll need to make good use of them. Projectiles will fly in thick and fast if you’ve not killed everything on screen, and unlike your standard RPG’s you can’t take your time getting the job done. The aiming reticule shows what Baldur’s currently attacking - most handy when you’re surrounded and you’re trying to shoot down a troublesome enemy. However, it’ll also tell you what level they’re at, so you always know if you’re better off running than you are fighting. Although you’re capped at level 50 in the first game we’ve spied beasts that are 53 and above, so don’t think you’ll have it easy when you’re maxed out.

There’s also a handy gauge that keeps track of your health, weapons, magical energy and so on - as you’d expect, but there’s a combo meter tucked in as well, and it’ll shoot up during the big battles. It’s not there simply for show though, and you’ll be rewarded with goodies should you fight well. The same attack time and time again won’t work so you really need to mix things up if you want the prizes.