31st Oct2019

‘Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes Complete Edition’ Review (PS4)

by Chris Cummings

travis-strike-nmh-ps4-cover

I remember all the way back in 2008 playing the original No More Heroes on the Nintendo Wii. It was a fresh, original, quirky and vibrant action video game that was really funny, very weird and a whole ton of fun. I hadn’t revisited the game since, or anything in the No More Heroes world, until this PS4 release so I was pretty eager to check this one out and see what it had to offer.

I was immediately struck by just how self-aware and meta Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes is, which is to be expected from a No More Heroes game. It’s really a “selling-point” here though, with a lot of the dialogue being sarcastic, silly and related to gaming culture. If you like games like the Deadpool video game from a few years ago, then the concept and dialogue will appeal to you here too, I’d guess. I thought the writing and delivery of it from the voice performers was fun and well-done. The gameplay is old-school in a sense, with a handful of unique elements thrown in in an attempt to keep it fresh and original. It isn’t a game afraid to laugh and joke about itself and other games, which is a plus-point, but sadly the gameplay itself lets it down.

There’s a real feeling of repetition with the gameplay, and while you can easily hack, slash and special-move your way through hordes of enemies and bosses, it becomes a little stale quite fast and you’re left wondering why they changed things up so much from the game that we loved to much on the Wii over ten years back. The concept of the game is to put you through a series of games that you unlock as the story plays out alongside it, and conceptually I can’t accuse the game of being lazy or uninspired, but as far as the gaming aspect, I can. The top-down action is okay to start, but after a while you start to wonder what else it has to offer, and it turns out… not much. Sure, the mini-games and dialogue do keep things interesting, but I was bored a lot here, and I didn’t expect that from a No More Heroes title.

Plot-wise, you take control of No More Heroes’ Travis Touchdown and you bang and bash through pop-culture references and in-jokes on your way through a variety of “games” which you slash through, upgrading your character along the way, and encountering boss-fights and collectables. It’s an oddity of a game, because it isn’t terrible, it’s just very disappointing and in the end it becomes style over substance, with some great ideas at its core, but a painfully tedious style of play at it’s surface. I played for a few hours and found that nothing really changed so much, which in a game like this, which pretty much advertises itself as being diverse and unique, is a strange thing to experience. I had fun once in a while here, but for the most-part I thought Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes Complete Edition was an overly long indie let-down that promises a lot but delivers very little. Hopefully next time we get a game with Travis Touchdown, he manages to score.

** 2/5

Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes Complete Edition is out now on Playstation 4 and PC.

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