Written by Twisted Ideas
No More Heroes: Heroes Paradise is a HD port of the original version on the Wii developed by Suda 51 and Grasshopper Manufactures. You play as Travis Touchdown, an otaku who won a
lightsaber beam katana on an online auction. Travis hears about an assassin and tries his new beam katana and kills him. Upon winning Travis is told by an organizer Silvia Krystal that he has defeated the Rank 11th assassin and fight and kill his way to the top. Silvia promising sex if he becomes motivates him to fight his way through 10 unique and colourful assassins on his way to Rank 1.
Heroes Paradise is not just a graphical upgrade, Paradise add DLC, PS Move support, a cutscene viewer and bosses from No More Heroes 2. New modes are also added. Score Attack allows you to re-fight bosses and allows you to upload high scores to leaderboards. Very Sweet mode is a new difficulty setting that gives a majority of the female cast skimpier outfits.
No More Heroes is a hack and slash game. The controls are basic. There are high and low attacks for you katana combos, melee attacks to stun enemies to perform wrestling moves. When an enemy’s health is low enough you can perform a finisher to slice them into pieces. Your beam katana has to be recharged after use and has to be recharged by shaking the controller where Travis makes suggestive gestures. Each finisher you perform starts a slot machine and a match enables Darkside mode where you can wreak havoc on enemies. Paradise allows you to stock up to three Darkside mode unlike the Wii version where it would activate automatically. New skill can be unlocked by finding Lovikov Balls within the city.
I have not played the game on the Move but I get the feeling that the game is more suited for the motion control as was the original. Playing on the standard controller complicates things and at the same time makes them simpler. Assuming the Move controls are mostly the same performing high and low attacks required you to raise and lower the Wiimote while the controller has high and low as two separate buttons. Swinging the Wiimote for finishers and grabs was simpler assuming the controls worked the way you wanted but oddly you have to click R3 then you had to move the analog stick in the correct direction which slows the pace. The game doesn’t exactly tell you certain how to use new unlocked abilities or how to use stocked Darkside mode and on the controller with all of the shoulder buttons made it that much more complicated as you basically have to guess.
In order to fight the next ranked assassin you have to earn enough money. You earn money by doing part-time jobs and assassinations. Part-time jobs are minigames that are entertaining but are low paying. Part-time jobs unlocks assassinations which requires you to fight goons under various conditions but pay much higher. The city of Santa Destroy is the most dull sandbox as there could be. You ride around in you giant motorcycle thing in a world that doesn’t interact with you. The city is full of collectibles like t-shirts, money and Lovikov balls and you can perform neat tricks with your motorcycle but pedestrians don’t really speak or react to you unless you drive into them which does not kill them. Vehicles knocks you off your bike when you crash but they don’t budge and never honk. When you Walk around Santa Destroy there is no music making the what could have been such a lively city in to one that feels dead.
Ranked battles through you into various locals where you have to fight through goons before the boss. These sections can be very fun as defeating goons leads to fountains of blood on the screen and if you manage to kill multiple enemies at once then you may see entirely red for a few seconds. Moments like those are very exciting play through. Combat can be frustrating at times. Blocking and locking on are the same button so backing off to recharge leaves you vulnerable. Enemies with guns and swarms can leave you unable to attack safely and without knowledge of defensive attacks that the game does not teach you then it becomes even harder to fight back. Fighting in both the ranked battles and assassinations gets repetitive but higher ranked battles vary and shorten the fighting before the bosses. The boss fights are the climaxes of the game. Each of the Ranked assassins are well introduced and in a few two or so minute cutscenes at the beginning and the end of the fights you get a good understanding of who they are and they leave a strong impression.
No More Heroes: Heroes Paradise is an unique experience that you probably haven’t seen in anywhere else. The silly but badass heroes and villains, great soundtrack, and bizarre design make old school games like me remember why we got into video games in the first place. There is much to be desired with the plot as it is paper-thin but No More Heroes is supposed to be a parody of bad video games. Whether you believe that or not is debatable but is something that Suda 51 would do. When I first played this game on the Wii I felt a rush of excitement as I was slicing through goons and fighting intense boss fights and wanting to see what would be next. If you can find it in you to look over the flaws No More Heroes will not disappoint.