You know what politics really needs? Politicians that actually follow up on their promises. Every election we hear some candidate promising a reduction in crime and every time we’re disappointed. Well, NO MORE! Vote Bunnylord, because Bunnylord is tough on crime. So tough, he has mercenaries shooting crime in the face until crime gives up in a bloody pile on the floor.
The plot for Not a Hero can be summed up rather simply: you play as an assassin, aiding mayor-to-be Bunnylord. You aid him by improving his approval rating. You achieve approval by killing criminals in fancy ways – i.e. completing challenges as you blaze through the levels with your guns firing. The higher your overall approval rating, the more mercenaries you unlock which in turn allows you to replay said levels and unlock more challenges. Rinse and repeat until perforated.
Not a Hero bolsters simple 8-bit style graphics, with 2D levels and a lot of vertical floors. There are elevators and staircases to get around, as well as windows you can shatter and jump or slide through. A simple cover mechanic is in place but you’ll rarely use it, outside of reloading or taking a breather to reassess the situation. Although the game is styled to look 8-bit, everything feels quite well-done. The 8-bit decapitations and headshots, with the relevant bloody bits and pieces shooting all over the place, look especially spectacular. The game maintains the “Arcade Machine” feel that younger me, as well as older me, approve of. It’s a treat.
Gameplay is fast and furious – taking more than a couple minutes to beat a level is a rare occurrence, with some levels having a speed-completion challenge of 90 seconds or less. Not a Hero doesn’t hold you back and encourages you to just keep firing by providing infinite ammo (although a finite magazine) as well as various collectibles to make things die even more. There’s also finisher moves, sliding, critical hitss and all sorts of other staples of the genre to keep you plowing through enemies as fast as possible. The overall feel is akin to playing an incredibly high-speed Whack-a-Mole with guns and mole pieces flying as high as the ceiling.
Unfortunately, the flame that burns twice as bright burns half as long – and Not a Hero burns brighter than a point-blank shotgun blast. Rampaging through its 21 levels with no regard to the challenges can see you beating the game in an hour or two at most. Adding a second replay layer to complete all the challenges (some easier to complete with late-game characters) will at most double the play time, but even then we’re looking at 100% completion within 4-5 hours – which might be too short for some.
It’s a rare treat to have a game as simple as Not a Hero and enjoy it thoroughly – in an era of massive open-world games and epic RPGs, Not a Hero is a breeze of fresh muzzle blast. Its deceptively simple bare-bones design will still provide you with just enough hectic action to keep you satisfied but not so much as to be dull or repetitive. It takes the one thing it set out to do, does it well, and sends you off on your merry way with a smile. Vote Bunnylord!Some of our posts include links to online retail stores. We get a small cut if you buy something through one of our links. Don't worry, it doesn't cost you anything extra.