No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle
No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle continues the tale of punk anti-hero Travis Touchdown, the Japanese anime Otaku, and pro wrestling-obsessed assassin. Travis finds himself at the bottom of the UAA (United Assassins Association) rankings and must wage war to become the No. 1 assassin once again. The follow-up to the popular No More Heroes will offer fans infectious, fun gameplay that allows you to wield not just one, but two swords and face multiple bosses simultaneously in bigger-than-ever boss battles.
Reviews View More
The absence of Suda51 in this title is absurdly noticeable. This sequel absolutely misses the point of the previous game, including not only the story itself but also the character's writing and whole tone of the series.
At leats they gave us some serious bangers.
If you ever wanna know what the definition of "missing the whole point" is, look no further than No More Heroes 2. It's like if someone looked at the satire and irony of NMH1 and decided to make it a real thing.
Despite some well intended attempts at adding a bit more depth to the (intentionally) shallow combat of the first game by giving Travis a selection of new lightsabers that change up the pace and provide some tactic advantages to the player, it ends up feeling less visceral and "orgasmic" than NMH1, with sword hits that dont feel as immediate and cathartic, an aspect that was integral to the NMH experience.
NMH2 feels like it's trying at every step to one up the first game's more cartoonish elements, but instead of understanding why those worked before in the first place and how it built up to them in meaningful ways, it just throws wackyness at the screen with no real purpose other than for it's own sake. Bosses that before made you question the nature of the game itself now only exist to fullfill the player's basic expectations of a regular action game. Side characters that were used to juxtapose the more grounded elements of NMH1 with its more bizarre and out of place moments are now just trope-y anime walking cliches.
Even the side gigs are wrong. Now they amount to pixel retro based minigames that all look and sound the same, further distancing themselves from the mundane and muted minigames of the first game that gave character and uniqueness to Travis and his surrounding lifestyle.
Whatever pretenses at saying something about the nature of sequels that NMH2 might have had, like the onslaught of enemies in the later levels that bordeline on mindnumbness or Travis' frustration and jadedness with the whole "being number 1" affair, it ultimately ends up falling flat on it's face because it never feels like an intended goal.
It's not a bad game. The soundtrack is amazing and on it's best moments it provides some great bursts of spectacle. But Travis get's the girl in this one. That's what we wanted, but is that what we really needed?