Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes is the kind of the game that revels in poking fun at its contemporaries – and yet somehow finds itself part of the punchline. This irreverent slice of post-modern punk has all of the verve of its Nintendo Wii predecessors, but it’s padded by stale gameplay segments which threaten to undo all of its hard work. As a shorter, more experimental piece this curious concoction of fourth-wall breaking grindhouse gimmicks would have been utterly essential, but it can’t help but overstay its welcome.
The plot mindlessly segues from one pop culture reference to the next, as Santa Destroy’s posterboy assassin Travis Touchdown is pulled into a fictional game console named the Death Drive Mark II. Spread across six fictional game cartridges – and anchored by classic visual novel segments – you’ll find yourself slashing your way through a BTEC adaptation of Hotline Miami, which fast runs out of steam. Famed director Suda51 – his first gig in the top seat for some time – tries to keep things interesting by twisting perspectives and even adding minigames, but the tedium sets in quick.
To its credit, there’s so much off-the-wall content here that you’ll be willing to push through its drier segments just to see what oddity the developer has in store next. Whether it’s reviewing ramen recipes or watching on dumbfounded as the title tosses out a completely unconnected FMV sequence, this is a real rollercoaster of ridiculousness that needs to be seen to be believed. But it’s a three or four hour experience which lasts more than double that, and no amount of Boneface designed bossfights are going to prevent you from getting bored at points.