At the 1999 Electronic Entertainment Expo, Canadian developer Silicon Knights unveiled Too Human, a sprawling action-role-playing game inspired by Norse mythology. Originally intended as a multidisc epic for the first PlayStation, the game was delayed long enough to be briefly shifted to the GameCube...before being put on indefinite hold. As it lay in stasis, Silicon Knights developed other projects for Nintendo's pre-Wii console, including Eternal Darkness and the remake Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes.
After years under the radar, Too Human resurfaced at Microsoft's X05 event as part of the initial wave of Xbox 360 projects. Since then, though, the project has had a rough ride, being beset by delays which Silicon Knights blamed on problems with the Unreal Engine 3. A nasty series of tit-for-tat legal battles ensued between the Ontario, Canada-based shop and North Carolinian Unreal-makers, Epic Games, with each party blaming the other for the game's woes.
But while the Silicon Knights-Epic Games spat remains unresolved, Too Human's fate is now finally sealed. Today, Microsoft Game Studios announced the Xbox 360 exclusive has gone gold and will make its announced August 19 release date. A demo for the T-for-Teen-rated, $59.99 game has been available on Xbox Live marketplace for just over a week, and has already been downloaded over 900,000 times. That's "more than any other action demo on Xbox Live Marketplace," according to Microsoft.
In Too Human, the pantheon of Norse gods--Odin, Thor, Loki, Heimdall, and the like--are reimagined as powerful half-human cyborgs, called Aesir, ruling over humanity in a distant future. The protagonist, Baldur, must defend his mortal charges against a new machine race bent on murdering humans and using their body parts to create a new race to fight the Aesir.
Too Human's gameplay will be fast-paced ranged and melee combat, with a variety of weapons to choose from, such as dual-wielded swords, shields, maces, polearms, and mass driver guns. Players will also have a range of classes, including command and defender, and can increase their abilities with cybernetic enhancements.
For more on Too Human, check out GameSpot's extensive previous coverage.