Help a time-traveling bunny’s political campaign.
Much like Roll7’s OlliOlli2, Not A Hero has taken a while to make an appearance on the Xbox One, although not nearly as much time as the skating sequel. And once again, Roll7 seem to be making up for this delay by offering Not A Hero as a “Super Snazzy Edition”. With both OlliOlli2: XL Edition and Not A Hero: Super Snazzy Edition landing for Xbox One on the same day, it is a good time to be an Xbox One owning Roll7 fan.
The premise behind Not A Hero is a simple, if slightly bizarre, one. A purple time-traveling bunny, known as BunnyLord, has come from the future to save the planet, and doing so will require him becoming Mayor. To improve his approval ratings and increase his chances of reaching office, he has gathered together a task force of mighty strange characters who, with the players help, will be tasked with reducing crime in the city in the most brutal of ways – basically by shooting all of the criminals. See, it makes perfect sense…
Gameplay is a 2D side-scrolling shooter affair, with a cover mechanic allowing the character to drop slightly into background objects. The player will move their character through each of the reasonably short levels, ducking in and out of cover to dodge a hail of bullets, while providing their own bullet storm in retaliation. The character is able to slide along the ground and knock over enemies if they wish, and can find ample pick ups through the levels which can turn the tide, from different ammunition types to some really fun grenades.
As BunnyLord’s approval rating increases, new characters are unlocked to play as. This cast of quirky characters each offer a different style to the gameplay, with both advantages and disadvantages. For example, one character may wield a powerful shotgun, but have to reload (which is manually done by the player) after every couple of shots. Another may be able to reload quickly, but not be very accurate. One thing that carries through each of the playable characters, they are all very odd.
Starting a level will begin with a briefing from BunnyLord, in his incomprehensible squeaky voice. The player will then take on the level, with a primary objective to complete. Once successful, the player will be treated to an after scene involving BunnyLord. These scenes are packed with an often edgy and random humour which personally I found enjoyable, although I can understand that it may be a bit hit or miss.
So for each level, the player is given a primary objective, such as destroying explosives or turning on the power to one of BunnyLord’s campaign billboards. But there are also three optional objectives presented that the player can attempt to complete for additional points. The optional objectives can be quite difficult, such as completing a level in a minimal time limit or achieve killstreaks, and completionists will certainly have their work cut out in trying to complete them all. Not A Hero can be a tricky game without these additional objectives, so going for 100% completion will be a mighty task indeed.
Despite the variety of different objectives that the player can work towards, and the different characters that they can control who each have a slightly different playstyle, things in Not A Hero can get repetitive. There are different enemies introduced that change things up a bit, but it can still feel that the player is just doing the same thing over and over again, especially when they hit a tricky level and have to replay it multiple times to complete.
Despite the involvement of a big purple rabbit, Not A Hero is in no way a kids game. The pixelated art style does a lot to minimise the impact of blood in the game, but there is still an awful lot of it, and there is ofter questionable use of language. A lot of this compliments the style of humour in Not A Hero, and players will either be able to get it or not.
But what makes the Xbox One version of Not A Hero super snazzy? A playable BunnyLord of course! The Super Snazzy Edition includes “Me, Myself and BunnyLord” – an additional three levels in which the player can actually control the mighty purple rabbit. BunnyLord is not your usual politician – he has a machine gun and is not afraid to get his hands dirty. While these additional three levels don’t offer much difference in the gameplay, it is a nice little extra for the players who enjoy the game.
The gameplay can be repetitive and doesn’t quite hit the same compelling mark as Roll7’s OlliOlli2, but Not A Hero is is still a lot of fun. The shooting is tough but enjoyable, and the humour is great for those that enjoy random strangeness. The additional levels added in the Super Snazzy Edition on Xbox One are a nice touch and make this version of the game the most value for money.