Quantcast
Not a Hero's 2D cover-based shooting killed me about a dozen times - Destructoid




Game database:   #ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ         ALL     Xbox One     PS4     360     PS3     WiiU     Wii     PC     3DS     DS     PS Vita     PSP     iOS     Android


Not A Hero  




Not a Hero's 2D cover-based shooting killed me about a dozen times photo
Not a Hero's 2D cover-based shooting killed me about a dozen times

2:00 PM on 04.16.2014

Which means I wanted to play it about a dozen times


Devolver Digital had a great showing at PAX East this year. Though Hotline Miami 2 might have had the most buzz going in, not long into the show people were shouting about Not a Hero. Developed by Roll7 (of OlliOlli fame), it could just be the next pixel shooter juggernaut.

Though its visuals are beautifully retro (complete with the neon pink and teal color palette that is in vogue right now -- though each of the game's five districts will have a different look), its gameplay takes cues from more modern shooters. Specifically, Not a Hero features a cover mechanic, and it punishes players who do not use it well.

Not a Hero (PC)
Developer: Roll7
Publisher: Devolver Digital

At first, Not a Hero seems fairly simple. In addition to standard movement, there are buttons for shooting, reloading, sliding, and context-sensitive actions. The PAX demo featured three non-heroes: a well-rounded pistol wielder, a low ammo shotgun bearer, and a super slidey machine pistol holder.

It only takes a few bullets to the chest to be defeated, so cover is key. Fortunately, buildings are rife with desks to duck behind and alcoves to sidle into. Enemies can use cover just as the player can, so even a simple one-on-one battle can turn into a cat-and-mouse game, in which each party is counting shots and waiting until the other reloads.

To that end, the slide maneuver is much more useful than it initially seems. Not only can the player slide into enemies to knock them down, but sliding also automatically sticks the player into cover, providing him with a fast method of moving while staying relatively safe.

The first mission was straightforward: clear a building of enemies. Even so, it took a couple of tries to get a hang of the mechanics and complete it. After that, the player is dropped from a helicopter onto the roof of a much larger building, tasked with putting up posters of Bunnylord. With more dense enemy placement, this mission was particularly difficult; through about ten tries over all three characters, I was able to get close, but never did get the last poster up.

Near the spawn point, there was a random cache of explosives to pick up. I saw remote mines, proximity mines, nail bombs, and others. More often than not, using the explosive resulted in my own death, but with some practice getting into cover, I could see them being useful for clearing out rooms without putting myself into too much danger.

Not only do the different characters have different weapons, but they also have different abilities. The shotgun can be used to knock doors off hinges and into enemies, or to knock enemies into other enemies. This only stuns the enemy that was hit second; the player still needs to get close and execute. The third character was probably the most fun for me, despite the fact that he seemed to get killed more easily. He slides much further than the others, and can also fire his machine pistol while sliding. Not a lot is more satisfying than sliding into a room while lighting it up with every bullet in the magazine. It was a very John Woo experience, minus the white doves.

For advanced players, there are scoring and combo mechanics in place, which introduce a risk/reward element. Players score more points for close range kills, but put themselves in greater danger to do so. On top of that, the combo system builds up for each kill made without taking damage, which emphasizes the importance of cover and adds more risk into the decision to close in for a kill.

However, it will take some time before players start considering score. Not a Hero was brutally difficult, in part because of the awkward keyboard control shown on the expo floor, but largely because of the unexpected level of strategy required to tackle it. That difficulty, and the emphasis on finesse at high level play, might just give it a lot of staying power. It is fitting that it was being shown alongside Hotline Miami 2, because it has the potential to reach that level of popularity.








Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.






timeline following:
Not A Hero



9:00 PM on 04.16.2014
Not a Hero: Get a rabbit from the future elected mayor with murder

An anthropomorphic purple rabbit from the future wants to become mayor and you're his campaign manager, which means murdering all of the competition and their supporters. "I think that's how politics works." Well, it's close...more



4:30 PM on 03.27.2014
OlliOlli dev reveals Not A Hero as next project

Retro-fabulous OlliOlli developer Roll7 has announced its next project, and if these first couple of screenshots are any indication, it's going to be deliciously, decadently violent. You're looking at Not A Hero, a 2D cover s...more




Indie

11:30 AM on 09.22.2014
Poncho is a cute robot in a lovely open-world platformer

It always hurts my heart a little bit to see what looks like a great game failing to gain traction on Kickstarter. Certainly, the crowdfunding community is more cautious these days than it used to be, and with good reason in...more



10:15 AM on 09.22.2014
A monster squat competition is one thing that happens in 24 Killers

Watching the above video, I thought I had a pretty good handle on what happens in 24 Killers. After finishing it, I felt more confused than before. Upon investigating the Kickstarter campaign, it turns out that 24 Killers fo...more



4:00 PM on 09.19.2014
Doujin brawler Croixleur Sigma coming to PS4

Croixleur Sigma is coming to PlayStation 4, Playism announced this week at Tokyo Game Show.  "We're hoping we can get a western release out as soon as possible," Playism marketing manager and localization editor Nay...more



View all Indie






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more