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No More Heroes 2

Reviewed on: Wii

Grasshopper Manufacture
Publisher: Ubisoft
Rated: "M" for Mature

CHEATfactor Game Review
by Joe Sinicki

Audio/Visual: 6
Gameplay: 5
Lasting Appeal: 5
Overall: 6
CHEATfactor: 6

For some reason I’ve always been drawn to anti-establishment culture. Maybe it’s a bit pretentious but I’ve always enjoyed anyone or anything who gives the proverbial middle finger to the norm. Perhaps that’s why I’ve always had a special place in my heart for Suda 51’s No More Heroes series, in the realm of the Wii, the quirky game is the definition of anti. Void of family friendly mini games or fitness programs, the game is a quirky, adult themed love letter to video game nerds everywhere, complete with references and in-jokes that are sure to fly over your mom’s head.

For the sequel, No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle, it would have been easy for Grasshopper Studios to rest on its laurels and rehash their original sleeper hit, but to their credit they listened to fans and literally improved every one of the game’s flaws. Is it perfect? Of course not, but it is, much like its predecessor, one of the most original, quirky and fun titles on the Wii.

Desperate Struggle reunites gamers with Travis Touchdown, the wrestling obsessed Otaku who, in the first game climbed the ranks of the world’s top assassins.  All is not well in Santa Destroy however, as in the three years since becoming the world’s top ranked assassin, Travis has become inactive, slipped off the rankings completely and the town has been taken over by the “Pizza Butt” (it’s been renamed for the American version of the sequel, but the original name is all kinds of funnier). What follows finds Travis attempting to re-climb the ranks and avenge the murder of his friend Bishop.

"From a gameplay standpoint, No More Heroes 2 remains unchanged from the original."


From a gameplay standpoint, No More Heroes 2 remains unchanged from the original. You’ll still hack and slash your way through an endless series of identical looking bad-guys through a mixture of the a-button and carefully timed waggles. While other action titles rely on the Wii’s motion controls and suffer as a result, No More Heroes’ core gameplay mechanics are mapped to the Wii’s face buttons with only certain kill moves done with motion. The result is extremely satisfying and you’ll look forward to slicing someone in half or tearing someone’s limbs off with your electric katana.

The game’s real payoff though is the utterly ridiculous boss battles. Each one of the assassins’ you take down is introduced with a unique and engaging Tarantino-esque opening cinematic. Like old school boss battles, you’ll have to develop a strategy for each boss and when you do defeat one (especially in the game’s later half) it’s incredibly satisfying.

"... the entire game has been given a visual upgrade..."


As fun as the original No More Heroes was, it was also incredibly flawed.  While the game succeeded as a hack and slash romp, it also featured a number of underdeveloped elements that seemed ripped from other popular titles. Take for instance the game’s side missions; to raise money to enter ranked matches in the tournament, Travis must take a number of side-jobs in the city. In the original game, you would travel through Santa Destroy GTA style to get to each side mission and while that sounds fun – it was anything but. It was glitchy, confusing and most off all – boring. For the sequel, Grasshopper studios ditched the entire open-world system and incorporated a much more streamlined map, allowing players to simply click where they want to go. The side-jobs themselves have also been redone to incorporate a much more stylized, 8-bit look. In truth, the entire game has been given a visual upgrade – whether it’s the PS2 style effects or the much more detailed visuals in general, No More Heroes 2 is a definitely an upgrade from its predecessor.

If you’re into the typical Wii experience, the overdone motion controls and fitness games, you’re best advised to stay away from No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle, but if you’re looking for a stylized action title with loads of blood, gore and humor you can’t go wrong here. No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle deserves to be in every true Wii gamer’s library. 



CHEATS USED: Full Sword, Unlimited Health, Enemy Swarm

When I think of electric swords, I think how awesome it would be to have unlimited power to it. Luckily, the trainer from Cheat Happens for No More Heroes 2 allows Travis’ beam katana to have an endless power supply, which means more hacked off limbs and people torn in half.

The trainer also features unlimited health and one of the coolest features I’ve seen in quite some time – the ability to make enemies swarm to you instead of away from you – making for some awesome kills.



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