Travis Touchdown (トラヴィス・タッチダウン Torabisu Tacchidaun) is a main character and the anti-hero protagonist in both installments of the No More Heroes video game series. He is introduced as a 27-year-old (30-year-old in Desperate Struggle) American assassin and stereotypical otaku – his motel room decorated with professional wrestling and anime collectibles – living in near poverty in the Motel "NO MORE HEROES" of Santa Destroy accompanied by his kitten Jeane (most likely named after his lost love). He appears to have interest in lucha libre, video games, Japanese pro wrestling icons, and anime; his favorite being a moe-driven anime series called Pure White Lover Bizarre Jelly.
Travis Touchdown returns as the primary protagonist of No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. Goichi Suda previously said he will be retired from the series from No More Heroes 3 and potentially onward, but later changed his mind when speaking about how the third game would come out in a long time, talking about how Travis would be much older then.
Appearance and PersonalityEdit
Travis usually wears a lightweight leather jacket, t-shirt, jeans and sunglasses, though his outfit varies slightly in No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. Travis has dark spiky hair, and blue eyes. While Travis displays crude, punkish and immature behavior, and is especially cruel toward the male assassins he fights, he displays normal and decent behavior whenever he isn't on the job. Travis is relatively calm about killing people, and has been shown to be sexually stimulated by it in Desperate Struggle. In his starting days of the first No More Heroes, killing women made him feel uncomfortable, until Holly Summers told him that all assassins, no matter what gender, must die when they lose. He is capable of being touched by people's emotional and personal experiences, seeing that he didn't seem entirely settled after killing Dr. Peace , whose daughter was estranged from him, and with Margaret Moonlight , where he fulfilled her dying wish by remembering her song. Travis also has a certain amount of honor and respect for people he believes to be "true warriors" as he tries to spare the assassin Ryuji in Desperate Struggle, and soon shows a great deal of his humanity after the death of Alice Twilight, weary of the arranged manslaughter he accidentally promoted and by the various corporations that took advantage of it. Touchdown is very driven to prove himself, is shown to be highly intelligent and a quick learner, and can be surprisingly witty and even poetic. Travis takes his friendships very seriously as well, as evidenced by his quest to avenge the murder of Bishop Shidux , after which he seems to learn something about the repercussions that death has on others aside from the one being killed. Travis only ever removes his aviator glasses on-screen once, when he has sex with Sylvia Christel .
Travis Touchdown's past is somewhat explored in the first game, where it is at times deliberately (and humorously) muddled and filled with stereotypes. His parents were killed when he was young, apparently by his love (and in actuality, the daughter of Touchdown's father and another woman), Jeane, who had a traumatic and complex past, leaving Touchdown on his own. He had an older twin brother, Henry, he never knew, who apparently grew up in Ireland. Travis has apparently had interest in being a pro wrestler at one point, and practiced the use of the sword via a mixture of his trainer Thunder Ryu's teachings, correspondence courses and videotapes.
One night after winning a beam katana in an online auction, Touchdown meets Sylvia Christel in the local Death Match bar, where Christel ushers him into joining the United Assassins Association, so long as he can qualify by killing the eleventh ranked assassin, Helter-Skelter. Having run out of money to buy video games he accepts the job and easily snags UAA rank eleven. Nonplussed that he has now made himself a target for aspiring assassins, Touchdown only agrees to set out and secure himself as number one in the UAA when Christel teases him with the possibility of sex, so long as he can reach the top. He ultimately reaches the top, fighting and killing Jeane.
After the fight with Jeane, while in the bathroom, Ermen Palmer attempts to kill him while defenseless, presumably to take his rank as an assassin; in the game's "real" ending, Henry slices Ermen in half before he could harm Touchdown and challenges him to a fight outside the motel. The game ends as they dramatically jump towards each other, presumably to finish each other off. In Desperate Struggle both Henry and Travis seem to be dissatisfied with the fight since Sylvia had interrupted it before one could kill the other.
Three years pass and despite Touchdown having withdrawn from the ranks of the UAA, Santa Destroy continues recognizing him as a hero, thanks to whom the city "has never been safer," even erecting a statue in his honor. It is during this time that Touchdown and his friends become targeted by members of the Mafia. Mentor Randall Lovikov is slain, and after a preliminary Ranking Battle against Skelter Helter, Touchdown's best friend Bishop Shidux's death follows. An enraged Touchdown fixates himself on reassuming first rank in the UAA to both avenge his friend and claim Christel once and for all. After making his way through the ranked fights and killing the hitmen responsible for murdering Bishop, Touchdown slays Jasper Batt Jr., the wealthy entrepreneur responsible for the deaths, and sometime afterward, locates Christel where she presumably disappeared to work in a brothel. The two rekindle their relationship and return to Santa Destroy.
While the canonicity is questionable, Touchdown and Christel are represented by their respective voice actors in a skit heard in "N.M.H. The Outer Rim Remix", set 120 years after the events of No More Heroes. Taking place on Christel's birthday, Touchdown muses, "Hard to believe it's been 120 years since we tied the knot, and 76 years since we rode the shuttle into outer space. Seems like ages ago when we were on Earth." This means Touchdown and Christel's marriage lasted 44 years before they departed for a life traveling space. Christel reflects on Touchdown's obsession with UAA ranks, but recalls that after achieving immortality, Touchdown "finally thought about eternity and how important love is." Touchdown then proceeds to give Christel her birthday gift, a music box culled from a crater on Satellite 13. Christel finds the music "so dramatic," and calls the figurine band atop the music box The Outer Rim. The event is depicted on the cover of The Outer Rim's self-titled album, where the song appears, showing Touchdown and Christel dressed as astronauts.
Travis is a very formidable assassin, being skilled in the art of swordplay and physical combat. After becoming acquainted with Randall Lovikov, the town drunk, Travis is able to rely on Lovikov to teach him special techniques that compliment his fighting and questing skills. He is able to snap into a "Dark Side" mode by lining up three objects in a slot machine mini-game after executing a Death Blow. Each trance of Dark Side Mode entails Travis with superhuman strength, speed, invincibility and other powers. By Desperate Struggle, Travis appears to have gained limited yet passive powers over his ki, which culminates at its maximum as a power known as Super Mode, and gives him immense vitality and speed.
His preferred weapon is the beam katana, which he relies on scientist Dr. Naomi to design for him, and to optimize the models he already owns. Throughout No More Heroes, Travis acquires the Blood Berry, followed by the durable Tsubaki, the heavily upgraded and empowered Tsubaki Mk-II which is comprised of five rotating beams, and requires more finesse to wield, and finally the Tsubaki Mk-III, a very showy beam katana designed from the beam Samurai sword of his mentor, Thunder Ryu. In Desperate Struggle, Travis also gains the beam katanas Peony, a heavy, but powerful and potentially far reaching blade, and the dual katanas Rose Nasty, which gives Travis a powerful balanced edge to accomplish his ends.
His former experience of pro wrestling training through the use of correspondence tapes and some experience in Calgary allows him to use a great variety of wrestling moves to take down foes, and because of the dangerous nature of his career, Travis has taken a creative incentive to allow his Beam Katana to haphazardly finish off his intended targets.
Travis also shows to have some resistance to firearms, one instance being when Helter-Skelter riddled him with bullets and rockets, which culminated with absolutely no effect. In the lowest difficulty of No More Heroes, Travis is able to automatically block ranged bullets as long as the player does not move the Control Stick. Furthermore, in all subsequent difficulties, all it takes for Travis to block oncoming bullets is to guard using the Z Button. Aside from bullets, Travis also survived an electric shock and several laser attacks from the assassin Destroyman as well as three concussive grenade explosions from the assassin Holly Summers .
Travis Touchdown is shown to have a high degree of durability, probably because it is just a game and the protagonist of a game can't die from outside means. But combat wise, Travis is extremely resistant to firearms as mentioned above. He is also extremely resistant to poison as shown when he does not die upon inhaling Cloe Walsh's mist of poison. In addition to that, he is able to withstand nearly, if not all attacks that common enemies or bosess deal to him. He is able to withstand the devastating blades of a chainsaw, beam katanas and the massive earthquake that Dr. Letz Shake has created during in-game. In fact, he is able to withstand Jeanne's punch through the gut and still stand on his two feet, he is able to endure Bad Girl 's endless hits and even withstand Alice's attack in which the beam katana pierces through his chest during the clash battle.
Travis also seems to be very lucky. He is always rescued from his untimely death. In the first series of No More Heroes, he could have died from Bad Girl's endless hits with her bat if she did not succumb to her wounds. During his battle with Jeanne, he could have been killed if it weren't for Shinobu's timely arrival to save him from being killed. In No More Heroes:Desperate Struggle, he is once again rescued by luck when Henry came crashing in at the right time when Jasper had Travis' life in his hands.
"I know a lot of gamers out there who don't have much patience. 'least that's what Bishop the dude at the video store said. So I'm at the register and then I realize: I got no money! I was seriously broke! Why? 'cause I met this smoking hot chick last night at the deathmatch bar and MAN did she smell GOOD! So, being the gentleman I am, I bought her a drink. Anyhoo, I decided to get a job. The gig: assassinate 'The Drifter'! So I went where I was supposed to and waited for the guy to show up. And there he was: this cat, well-dressed, cool. Couldn't tell if he was the shit, or just plain old shit. Yeah, so he's stylin', fast, aggressive, and packin' heat. Bada-bing. Or at least it was supposed to be. 'Til she showed up. Her name: Sylvia Christel, an agent with this whatchyamacallit association. "Congratulations; you are certified as the 11th best hitman. How about getting rid of the 10 killers above you, and aim for the top?" I wanna be number one. How's that? Short and simple enough for ya? It's gonna be a long, hard road. But who knows? Could kick ass. Could be dangerous. Could totally suck. Whadaya say, bro? Join me. Let's see how far we can take this. And for you there, holding the Wii Remote right now, just press the A button. Let the bloodshed begin!"
"(During ranked battle with Death Metal) This Count... I feel as if I'm looking at my future self. Mega bucks, big-ass house, fast cars, dining in style with a world class chef and a trusted nutritionist counting every calorie! A team of hot Yoga instructors to keep me in shape... Nurses, to attend to my body... Maids and loyal servants at my beck and call... On the weekends, tanned babes knocking on my door every two hours... Every day full of exitement and luxury, that'd be the life! Everything in its right place, it's the perfect life, it's the life of winners! That'll be my life! I thirst for selflessness, hypocrites lusting for their own desire to get killed by young rookies like me! This is how it goes down... And for the old killers? They'll croak anyway. I guess you could call this a "Comedy". I realize there's really nothing here for me. But what else CAN I do but keep going? Maybe I should've been a little more careful before I jumped in... Gotta find the exit... Gotta find that exit, to Paradise! But I can't see it... I can't see anything! There's this sense of doom running down my spine like it's... Like it's trying to suck the life out of me! I need to get rid of it, before I bail... Something deeper, somethng deeper then my instincts is taunting me! Can't find the exit... Can't find the exit... Can't find the exit... Can't find the exit... Can't find the exit... "
"This isn't a battle anymore; it's a motherfucking war!"
"(in an Irish accent) I don't know who you are or what ya' want, Sir Henry. Where are ya manners? That was my kill ya NAUGHTY BOY."
"MISTER SIR HENRY MOTHERFUCKER - HE JUST JETTED! What a pussy..."
"Just sit back Sylvia...and watch the HELL I'm gonna raise!"
"(lecturing on UAA situation) Don't be stupid! If you get tired of the battles, just fucking quit!"
"Will you shut up? I just need to make one thing clear...I'm not gonna kill you because of Henry. I'm gonna KILL YOU because your big metal ass is in my way!"
"Hold on a minute you violence-loving bastard! Before you begin your...desperate struggling...you should drop a nice save!"
"Everybody deals with grief differently right? Some people fuck at funerals ... I cut off heads."
"See that? Now THAT was a battle! LOOK AT THIS BLOOD? We humans are alive, even if we are assassins! It doesn't matter if its a videogame, movie, drama, anime, manga! WE'RE ALIVE! PEOPLE SHED BLOOD AND DIE. THIS ISN'T A GAME! You can't just selfishly use DEATH as your tool! This...is ALICE'S BLOOD! I bet you already forgot she existed! The same way you would've forgotten me! And THAT'S why I'm tearing down the UAA! (realizes he's burning Sylvia's hand and after listening to her response) Fuck that! I want to be a hero by my OWN standards!"
"STRAWBERRY...ON THE SHORTCAKE!"
"It's called fashionably late, fuckface."
"When you see your bro in hell, tell him: He's STILL a DOUCHE!"
"That's the CRAZIEST shit I've ever heard! Why would bring up something like that at the VERY last minute of the game!?"
"Aww, SHIT! All news to me! I'm gonna need SHOCK treatment to get over this one!"
"Once I'm number one, these bullshit ranking fights are over. Got it?"
"Assassins aren't tools. As fucked up as we may be, we're HUMANS, too!"
- Creator Goichi Suda's favorite film is said to be Paris, Texas, wherein the main character is named Travis.
- Travis Touchdown's red jacket, unique swordplay, dark hair, physical abilities and amoral persona as well as his love of women are comparable to Samurai Champloo's Mugen. Curiously, No More Heroes developer Grasshopper Manufacture was involved in the video game adaptation Samurai Champloo: Sidetracked. It should also be noted that in the Japanese version of No More Heroes: Heroes' Paradise, Travis is voiced by Kazuya Nakai, who voiced Mugen.
- While concept art on the trading card "Travis Touchdown" Front depicts Touchdown holding a gun which bares a strong resemblance to the Star Wars DL-44 blaster pistol, in No More Heroes he never makes use of any firearms.
- ↑ Goichi Suda Interview. Ray Barnholt. 1UP.com. September 21, 2009.
- ↑ Nordic Game Conference: No More Heroes' film influences. Andrew Hayward. 1UP.com. May 20, 2009.