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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes — January 2019

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Sorry for once saying I knew what was going on about this game.

Back in April 2018, I wrote an article about Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes headlined, “We might finally understand what Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes is”. Unfortunately, most of that article turned out to be wrong.

For one, Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes isn't coming out in 2018, and that's become more obvious as the year has progressed. Instead, the game is releasing worldwide January 18, 2019. According to developer Suda51, the reason for the delay was to make sure that Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes's release wouldn't negatively impact the sales of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. That's the bigger game that didn't have its release date (December 7, 2018) announced until as late as Nintendo's E3 2018 — the grand event that Travis Strikes Again didn't appear at. Suda51 couldn't wisely date the release of Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes until after he knew the release date of Smash Bros. I think it's a valid enough reason for a delay.

I was right that Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes is not No More Heroes 3. Suda51 is still saying No More Heroes 3 is a theoretical project he wants to work on, and Travis Strikes Again is a side-story in the same universe.

Here's 15 minutes of direct feed gameplay from PAX West. I'm almost scared to watch it:

At least the game features the Pro Controller as an option. But the game doesn't look any better than any other time I've viewed it, in that it looks like the game is just Travis running around an overhead view swinging his katana around lamely with not much interesting action going on. I mean, the combat in the first two No More Heroes games had a lot more activity, strategy, and at least humour. And it felt a lot more impactful.

Travis Strikes Again No More Heroes Electro Triple Star wrestle move suplex boss finish
It's a wrestling move! ...As an end-boss-cutscene QTE.
Would be nice in normal gameplay, too.

Destructoid reports that, according to Suda51, this kind of gameplay represents about 50% of what's going on. That's different than what we initially thought, where each of the in-game games (six of them) would have very different styles. Either that's not completely true, or the games are of very different lengths.

For some reason, Travis Touchdown has Banjo-Kazooie mumbles for voice-acting in dialogue scenes, but I guess he talks during gameplay? But the enemies are all glitchy apparitions who don't talk and scream about their spleen like the previous No More Heroes games.

Let's put it this way—if the game didn't have No More Heroes in the title, I would have no interest in Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes.

I don't like that this game will be used to gauge interest in a third, mainline No More Heroes game. No one who isn't already a No More Heroes fan—already a small audience—would buy this. Not all No More Heroes fans will get this. I'm unsure of it, personally.

The only way this will work out is if Travis Touchdown gets to be in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Then delaying the game past the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate would be... genius. Travis Touchdown's mumble-voice-acting would then be explained as a way to get him in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate without it becoming M-rated. That'd make this all worth it.

Ludwig feels like he keeps ending articles about how bad Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes looks by saying that everything will be justified and good if Travis Touchdown gets in Super Smash Bros. That probably isn't going to end well in a few months. Of course, with anything made by Suda51, everything is still very subject to change, and KoopaTV will continue to monitor the game's progress.

The game did come out on time for January 18, without Travis in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.


  1. So the 50% thing is confusing, but now I think that gameplay is inside the console and then going into the other games is when the gameplay switches... I guess? The early interviews made it sound like that top-down hack-and-slash stuff was just the first game.

    I saw someone make the claim that they changed their mind about no voice acting and have added voice acting to the game, but I haven't found where they got this information from (and they didn't answer me when I asked for their source). Do you know anything about that?

    (About Smash, they went out of their way to include a T-rated version of a Bayonetta line in her reveal trailer, so I'm sure they'd figure out something to do with him.)

    1. Well, let's make this clear: All of the core gameplay, from what's been said, is in one of the 6–7 games in the console.
      In order for the top-down gameplay to be 50% of the game, it will have to be in multiple games.

      As for voice-acting, I only know what's in the video — and that's clear. Travis occasionally talks out loud during gameplay. There's written dialogue that are mumbles. Motion cutscenes might have voice-acting. How many of those would there be? Dunno.

      (Of course they can figure it out, but would they retain his appeal?)

    2. I thought the 50% part might be gameplay outside of the games... like... in the console itself? I don't know. XD

      I see you found the Reddit post in question.

    3. In the console itself? Like... as the user interface...? The other 50% are the unique parts of the other games like racing or pinball or whatever.

      ...Incidentally, I found it by trying to research your question, and coincidentally saw your comment there. Reminder that you didn't tell me it was on Reddit, you just said you "saw someone".

    4. He's inside the Death Drive console, right? So maybe it's an area you can actually run around in, and then you go into the individual games.

      Yeah, when I saw your comment, I figured it probably came up when you were looking for an answer.

    5. Well, clearly the in-game footage embedded here was after Electric Thunder Tiger II had begun, but yeah, a "hub" world is possible.

      Sure would be a boring way to navigate it though.

    6. And the real world will be the visual novel style parts, I believe.

    7. Right (though who really knows?), which... clearly ain't the top-down running and slashing.


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