PAX East – Not A Hero Hands-On Impressions

I cannot say anything bad about Roll7, or Not A Hero. This entire post is going to be me gushing about the little bit of Not A Hero I played. Plain and simple, It’s good. I mean, what did you expect from the makers of OlliOlli ? They are wizards with mechanics, and have a sense of humor that permeates throughout all of their games. Not A Hero is just the next step in their plan for world domination.

When Not A Hero was announced I was, admittedly, confused. Talks of an anthropomorphic rabbit named, Bunnylord, and a new technology called ISO-Slant to be used in the game dominated the majority of the press release. Well, I’m happy to tell you that Bunnylord is a real thing and a major plot device in the game. However, and this is unfortunate, ISO-Slant technology is not a real thing. I tried it and it’s just a pair of glasses with a mirror that makes you tilt your head diagonally to see forward, nonetheless, I found the gag hilarious.

But anyways, on to how Not A Hero plays. A 2-D cover-based shooter seemed like an absurd idea even for Roll7. The solution to the problem seems like a perspective trick. From what I can ascertain, cover is designated to the character leaning up against a shadow, making him untouchable by enemy bullets. Then the player can pop in and out of cover to eliminate the baddies. A slide, also, provides a zippy way to dash from cover-to-cover, making sure your character is never touched.

There were three characters to choose from in the alpha demo. I can’t for the life of me remember the names of each characters unfortunately, but they ranged from an all-around suit wearing businessman brandishing a pistol, to a red-neck with a shotgun. Naturally, I chose the red-neck. The game plays just as fast as its counterpart OlliOlli, and has the same great rush of trying to beat your high-score.

The enemy AI seemed to be pretty good, they would take notice whenever I blasted into an adjacent room, and would come running to assist their compatriots. I also discovered some strategy while playing, for example, shooting an enemy standing too close to a closed door instead off opening it and alerting him to my presence. In addition, enemies use cover really well. I found myself waiting for them to reload, so I could pop out and wait for them to poke their heads out. They would also rush me while I was in the middle of a reload. It results in some rather dynamic cover based shooting, especially, for a 2-d game.

Not a Hero looks really, really good at this point. It maintains the elements that made OlliOlli so re-playable. At an early alpha stage it has better cover based shooting than most games with twice the budget. Oh, and there is a anthropomorphic rabbit named, Bunnylord running for mayor, and these are the reasons it got one of our Sexy Fun Time Awards.

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