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Not a Hero Review

Not a Hero Trainer
 CHEATfactor Game Review by:  Joe Sinicki Reviewed on: PC 
 

Welcome to our CHEATfactor Game Review of Not a Hero. We review the game and then factor in how the available cheats affect the overall game experience. For better or worse, our reviews will help you decide whether or not to use cheats when playing the game.

It would be easy to call Devolver Digital's Not a Hero a limited and repetitive Hotline Miami clone because well, in ways it is. But it's style, action and (most of the time) humor make it a game that you'll want to play if you're even the least bit interested in over the top action. While it's true that this is not a game for everyone and the humor won't land with a good number of players, Not a Hero is a unique enough spin on modern action games to create a fun and worthwhile experience, even if it does overstay it's welcome long before the end credits roll.

 
...win by shooting people in the face ...
Not a Hero Review Screenshot
 

The premise of Not a Hero is simple; you're hired by Bunnylord, an anthropomorphic rabbit that's come from the future to save the world by winning an election for Mayor. Even more simple is his campaign promise; to win by shooting people in the face and blowing things up. Somehow even the most simple and mundane tasks devolve down to emptying bullets into criminals faces and causing large explosions. Oh that electronic campaign billboard is out? Why don't you stop by and make sure it goes back up? Oh and make sure you've eliminated all of the bad guys around it in as gruesome a fashion as possible.

Not a Hero stops itself from being as over the top as Devolver's other game Hotline Miami because of it's simply off the wall humor. Bunnylord is a different leader to say the least, and his sense of humor shines throughout most of the experience. You'll meet after every mission at the diner for milkshakes and nearly everything in the game feels like a caricature of something else. From the characters you'll control to the advertising in the game, Not a Hero feels like one big in-joke and not everyone is going to get it or even care to get it. It's silly enough though more often than not you can dismiss it without it even mattering to the end game.

The game itself is also a strange beast. It's easiest to think of it as a Contra style shooter meets Gears of War. You'll enter into a level, running and gunning the whole time but being able to take cover and shoot behind most objects you find in the area. The experience becomes mostly a challenge to match up the rhythm of what you have to do with the enemies on the screen. Be sure though, there's not really a right answer here and you're free to take care of things in any way you want, as long as you're getting the job done for Bunnylord. You're going to fail a lot, and it's mostly because you slide when you should have taken cover or vice versa but the levels are never large enough to warrant frustration, and while Not a Hero never really reached the "I need to play again" level with me that games like Super Meat Boy did, I still came back more often than not.

 
...more distinct play styles will become available.
Not a Hero Review Screenshot
 

As you progress through the game you'll unlock different characters to play through the game. You'll start with Steve, an all-round type character but after you get to different approval ratings for Bunnylord new characters with more distinct play styles will become available. There's Cletus, the shotgun toting redneck who thinks he's Scottish and Jesus (no, not that Jesus), the salsa dancing assassin who is hard for enemies to hit. I had a fun time playing through with each of these characters and changing my play style to suit their strengths and weaknesses. Interestingly enough, I still don't know which character was my favorite, as they all feel that different.

Even with all of this variety, Not a Hero falls short of being a completely engaging experience. The 8-bit look has been done to death and though it's well done here, it's hard to get excited about. Though you'r encouraged to play the game the way you want and improvise on how to get through levels (one mission for example had me chasing down a private investigator with dirt on Bunnylord and I swooped in and out of windows to catch him rather than just following him), most levels are filled with the same type of gameplay and you'll grow more and more tired of them as you approach the end. Combine that with the humor that won't land with everyone and you've got a game that's sure to please some but leave others questioning what the hell they just played.

Not a Hero is not a game for everyone, but if you like over the top violence and off the wall humor, you might just find that you get your $20 worth. It's an engaging and fun experience, at least for the vast majority of it, before it really starts to get repetitive. If you liked Hotline Miami and aren't afraid to take the intelligence level down a few notches, you should feel right at home here with Not a Hero.

 
Overall:  8/10 Presentation: 7 Gameplay: 8 
Lasting Appeal: 6 CHEATfactor: 0 
 
 
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