Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes (Switch) Season Pass Review
When I first reviewed Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes, I had a number of mixed feelings about it. It was definitely a Suda 51 game through and through, but the promise of Travis being a part of different games was met with each level having essentially the same gameplay, just from different perspectives to make it look like a wider variety of games. I did find it to be very well-written and self-aware, provided that the player can get past the bland gameplay.
The Season Pass, is for better or worse, basically more of the same. The Season Pass is broken up into two different parts. The first DLC being Black Dandelion, and the second being Bubblegum Fatale. Each of the DLC packs offer a new character, a number of new skills and a new text adventure each.
For Black Dandelion, you get Shinobu Jacobs as a playable character. Shinobu will be instantly recognisable to anyone familiar with the series, as she was a boss character in the first two games and has a complicated history with Travis. She has her own set of skills, though she does start at level one, meaning that those that have completed the game need to grind in order to increase her levels to be useful in the game. It’s a bit of a pain but new characters starting at level one certainly isn’t new. It helps that there’s a New Game+ mode, so using the new characters in this mode would be the best way to play.
The only other part of the Black Dandelion DLC is a text adventure for Badman named Badman Strikes Back. Like the base game, it’s set out in a classic Apple II art style, with only green and black colours being shown on the screen. Badman Strikes Back is just as well written as the rest of the game, but even acting as a visual novel, there’s no opportunity to interact with it at all which is disappointing.
Overall, the Black Dandelion DLC is very light on additional content. Even as well written as the adventure is, the only “game” aspect of the DLC is an additional character. Thankfully, the second batch of DLC has some actual playable aspects to it.
Bubblegum Fatale, much like Black Dandelion, comes with Bad Girl as a playable character. In the base game, Badman had wished his daughter back to life by using the six Death Balls. As one of the Death Balls was fake, she came back in dog form. Thankfully, the DLC comes with another text adventure for Travis that explains how he gathers the real final Death Ball for the Death Drive Mk II for the additional level in the DLC, and brings back Bad Girl.
The additional level, titled Killer Marathon, takes place in a pinball machine. As it stands, the opportunity to throw Travis into this setting could make for a variety of neat ideas. Unfortunately, much like the six original levels, Travis plays exactly the same, and there’s no real benefit to having him in a pinball machine at all. The level could have been in a bank and it would have been the same experience. The only real acknowledgement of the environment comes with talking to NPCs throughout the level. It’s a race against the clock level as well, and was over in less than half an hour.
There are also some additions to the range of T-Shirts wearable in the game now, and the ability to unlock them all without purchasing them. There are now shirts available based on more Indie titles, as well as some of Nintendo’s Zelda titles. Running around as Travis in a Wind Waker T-Shirt was pretty cool. It’s unfortunate to note that neither Shinobu nor Bad Girl are not allowed to wear any of the custom outfits, which is a shame.
To summarise the contents of the DLC together, there are two new characters with their own skills, two text-based adventures, some shirts and one quick level. For those that purchased the game physically, this DLC is an included bonus. The eShop version isn’t as generous, so I would leave it up to you if you believe the $15 asking price is worth it to you or not.
+ Great writing throughout
+ Zelda shirts!
- Very light on extras
- New level doesn’t meet potential