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No More Heroes (series)

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No More Heroes is a video game franchise comprised of two main titles, No More Heroes and its sequel, No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. While series creator Goichi Suda has expressed his belief that the series' home is with Nintendo consoles, the first installment was ported to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 by outside parties, under the title No More Heroes: Heroes' Paradise.

InspirationEdit

Suda has compared each installment of the series to bowel movements. Suda explained, "the idea [for No More Heroes] came when I was literally sitting on the toilet. It was the result of trying to empty my bowels, if you like." The second game, Desperate Struggle, was likened to having "tried to get rid of whatever was left over in my bowels, and luckily it all happened." While Grasshopper is not currently developing a third game, Suda's intentions for this future project will be "probably to digest everything we eat and then purge absolutely everything in our guts, just like diarrhea!"[1]

Principle charactersEdit

  • Travis Touchdown – An American otaku and the lead character. Touchdown originally enters the ranks of the United Assassins Association after purchasing a beam katana online. Over time, his reasons for enduring the ranks become more realistic and personal than a pursuit for money and sex.
  • Sylvia Christel – An agent working for the UAA. In No More Heroes, Christel is found to be exploiting Touchdown, however some examples of her deceit are later debunked in Desperate Struggle.
  • Henry Cooldown – An American-Irish assassin and twin brother of Touchdown. Cooldown's early appearances are treated almost specter-like, and his background remains a mystery until a showdown with Touchdown reveals the brothers' relation, as well as Cooldown's marriage to Christel. By the plot of Desperate Struggle, he his divorced, however.
  • Shinobu – The eighth-ranked UAA contender until her defeat by Touchdown. Shinobu spends three years training in Asia to better serve Travis, who she becomes the disciple of.
  • Bishop Shidux – Touchdown's best friend. Shidux is the owner of the video rental outlet Beef Head, where he is murdered as part of an elaborate revenge plot against Touchdown.
  • Dr. Naomi – A scientist based out of Santa Destroy. Naomi is the founder of the Tsubaki series of beam katanas, in addition to other models. She also developed Touchdown's Schpeltiger Mk-II.
  • Randall Lovikov – A Russian man who devotes his life to drinking at Santa Destroy's bar plastic model. He imparts a series of abilities onto Touchdown, however he is killed by the group of assassins who later murder Shidux.

ReleasesEdit

  • No More Heroes – The first installment, released for Wii in 2007.
  • No More Heroes Flash Games: Chapter Shuperutaiga – An i-mode minigame developed by Marvelous Mobile Games in 2008.
  • No More Heroes Flash Games: Glastonbury Chapter – An i-mode minigame developed by Marvelous Mobile Games in 2008.
  • No More Heroes Flash Games: Travis Edition – An i-mode minigame developed by Marvelous Mobile Games in 2008.
  • No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle – The second official installment, released for Wii in 2010. Chronologically this is the latest chapter in the series' narrative.
  • No More Heroes: Heroes' Paradise – Developed without the assistance of Grasshopper Manufacture, 2007's No More Heroes was enhanced and expanded by feelplus for release on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2010.
  • No More Heroes: Red Zone – An extended edition of Heroes' Paradise published exclusively for PlayStation 3 in 2011. This version of the port was released overseas entitled Heroes' Paradise instead of Red Zone, which is something of a misnomer in that this English version named Heroes' Paradise is not strictly the same Heroes' Paradise released in Japan in 2010.
  • No More Heroes: World Ranker – A social video game for Android and iOS devices released only in Japan in 2011. World Ranker is the most recent property of the series developed by Grasshopper.

Future installmentEdit

Suda has spoken of a third No More Heroes title many times throughout the years. In anticipation of Desperate Struggle, one critic questioned Suda on the possibility of a sequel developed for Nintendo DS. Suda assured no such game was in development, though he expressed interest in a WiiWare installment. While promoting Desperate Struggle, Suda also confessed that, "Wii is a great platform, but we've done everything we can with it now." This statement triggered confusion among fans, unsure whether Suda intended to keep the series exclusive to Nintendo but preferred to wait until its next platform released, or if he was expressing openness to developing for Xbox or PlayStation consoles next. Speaking to 1UP during the website's five-day Desperate Struggle cover story, Suda confirmed his statement was likely misinterpreted, clarifying that, "What I wanted to say was, looking at the Wii, I think No More Heroes 2 will probably be the last iteration for this current platform. But there's probably going to be a "Wii 2" or other next-gen system from Nintendo at some point, so I was saying that I would want to do another game in the series on the next Nintendo platform."[2]

At a charity event for the March 2011 Tōhoku earthquake, Suda reconfirmed his interest in producing a second No More Heroes sequel, though he added, "it won't happen soon."[3] Speaking to Destructoid's Jonathan Holmes at the 2011 Electronic Entertainment Expo, Suda mentioned he had played a Wii U and was now evaluating how to proceed with a third No More Heroes game on that console.[4]

In 2013, the unannounced Lily Bergamo briefly caused a stir when No More Heroes character Shinobu was mistakenly identified in a piece of concept art.[5] The rumor was swiftly debunked, and at the 2013 Electronic Entertainment Expo, Suda sounded less confident about a third game, while assuring, "Travis is one of the characters I'm really fond of, that means a lot to me. So if there was the opportunity to create another sequel then yeah, I'm always up to the idea."[6] The game's intended console was also no longer certain. While Suda has reiterated that Nintendo consoles are "very important" to Grasshopper,[7] the studio now works heavily with Unreal Engine 4,[6] which is not supported by Wii U.

The premise of a third game has varied over time, with Suda suggesting in 2010 that the game would star a new hero, while in more recent years expressing the return of Travis Touchdown to recover something he has forgotten.[8] Suda refers to the game explicitly as No More Heroes 3,[5] however this could be for simplicity in lieu of any real title for the undeveloped project. Suda once gave a release window between 2030 and 2040, attributing the distant date to his desire to work on new properties before returning to an established one.[8] He has also spoken positively about crowdfunding the title.[8]

The third No More Heroes game took one step closer to reality on January 12, 2017, when Suda appeared at a Nintendo Switch event to announce the return of Travis Touchdown on the platform. The game has not been given a proper title or release window and no footage accompanied Suda's announcement, however Suda's words have made it clear that the game is currently in development.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. No More Heroes 3 Is Just Like Diarrhea, According To Suda51. Siliconera. Spencer. April 6, 2010.
  2. Goichi Suda Interview. Ray Barnholt. 1UP.com. September 21, 2009.
  3. No More Heroes 3 'won't happen soon' - Report. Tor Thorsen. Gamespot. March 30, 2011.
  4. Suda speaks part 3: Wii U, No More Heroes 3, and more. Destructoid. Jonathan Holmes. June 13, 2011.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Suda51 And GungHo's CEO Talk About Lily Bergamo For PS4. Siliconera. Spencer. April 15, 2013.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Suda 51 and Grasshopper are using Unreal Engine 4 'heavily'. Joystiq. Sinan Kubba. June 19, 2013.
  7. Suda 51 Interview – Indie Games, Nintendo and How To Become A Game’s Writer. Expansive DLC. Tom Regan. November 15, 2013.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Suda 51 Hopes To Release No More Heroes 3 By 2040. My Nintendo News. lmcontaldi. July 2, 2015.

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