Review code provided by Decibel PR
It’s been a few years since Travis massacred his way to the top and then disappeared without a trace. Upon his return to Santa Destroy he gets caught up in a vicious cycle of revenge, and once again climbs the ranks of the UAA. Though this time he’s much lower on the leaderboard.
Same Shit Different Day
The first thing I noticed immediately was the visual upgrade, while still originating on the same hardware. Not only are character designs changed but everything’s more detailed and levels feel bigger (though they aren’t really). Secondly, the emphasis on the storytelling seemed excessive at first and the game doesn’t feel any stronger for it.
My wish for the open world to be replaced with a map came true. The only issue is that the distractions between levels have become arcade like games and while charming, you may still find yourself carting coconuts. It seems that Jeane got a bit too much love between games so you have a bit more interaction with her. Since there’s no longer any fees to participate in ranking fights you don’t have much reason to stray from the main path. But if pointless side content is to your liking there is a not-so-pretty shoot ‘em up at home.
Throwing a Touchdown!
One addition to Travis’s repertoire is the Ecstasy Gauge which works sort of like a style meter, going up with increased combos and losing power when you take damage. This can be used to activate a high slash mode and helps finish enemies off. The power ups you get from the death blow slot rolls have changed a bit with one transforming you into a tiger, otherwise gameplay feels mostly the same, just improved. Sometimes things are shaken up a bit and there may or may not be a mech fight and additional playable characters for a couple of levels. Yet some of the bosses don’t feel as memorable as most were in the prior entry.
I’ve already talked about the visual improvements and while the screams haven’t ceased they are a touch less grating. I honestly think the soundtrack is better though. I had no problems with it in the first game but I’ve been listening to Philistine long before I even played this. No More Heroes 2 runs just as well as its predecessor on the Switch and is perfectly fine to enjoy in handheld play.
This game certainly changes things and while some tedium is erased, the attention on the story isn’t really worth it. Still the adrenaline pumping action fun is here along with some banger tracks.
- More fun action
- Some more variety in gameplay
- Visual upgrade
- Some arcade games just as tedious as the mini games from the first
- Characterisation can be lacking or a touch inconsistent