Travis Touchdown

The Return of Travis Touchdown On The Nintendo Switch

Last night’s Nintendo Switch event delivered the goods for some fans, but for others, it was slightly mediocre.  Despite the polarizing opinions about how Nintendo presented things, one immediate highlight jumped out — the return of Travis Touchdown.

AN UNEXPECTED SURPRISE

For months Grasshopper Manufacture CEO Suda 51 has said that he hoped to create a new distinctive game for the Switch.  So to see Suda appear on Nintendo’s stage last night wasn’t a huge surprise.  

Ever since the release of No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle on the Wii players have clamored for another entry in this series.  A new NMH game seemed unlikely when Gungho Entertainment acquired GhM — while the IP remained at publisher Marvelous Entertainment. Yet last night, dreams came true courtesy of Suda 51, as Travis Touchdown is coming to the Switch.

A DIFFERENT TYPE OF HERO

Despite communication troubles courtesy of the event translator, it appears this new game isn’t No More Heroes 3.  With the end of Desperate Struggle seeing Travis riding off into the sunset after destroying the United Assassins Association, players may no longer battle against deadly assassins. Instead, players may enter the squared circle of a wrestling ring.

For this new Travis game, Suda appears to be focusing on an influence of pro wrestling. A long time fan of wrestling, Suda himself even worked on Super Fire Pro Wrestling back in 1993.  And of course one can’t forget the luchador-inspired assassin Mask de Smith in Killer 7. Given how the melee moves in No More Heroes featured suplexes, it’s not a huge surprise to see Travis enter a familiar world.

Travis Touchdown
Concept art for the new Travis Touchdown game.

The question still remains just what sort of tone Suda and his team will create for Travis’ next adventure.  Travis initially became an assassin since it was an easy way to pick up women and it looked cool. Maybe his next quest will once again be based on his otaku sensibilities.  So will his new focus be on that of battling outlandish wrestling superstars?

Most interesting of all will be what sort of gameplay this new title will have. Each GhM game has ventured into new territory, whether it be that of the Kinect or most recently the free-to-play genre with Let It Die.  So will Travis’ next journey be that of an old-school brawler, or will Suda change up the formula entirely to one that plays to the strengths of the Switch? Fans will likely hope the new game doesn’t stray too far from the sharp dialog and easy gameplay that made No More Heres such a standout.

WAITING FOR TRAVIS

Based on what Suda said last night, it seems as if this new project is still in early development. The overall lack of major details made it clear that the game certainly won’t arrive in 2017.

Suda’s comments proved to be interesting since he kept mentioning how the Switch offered easy development for indie developers.  The size of GhM may be larger than most indie devs, but Suda’s comments may be indicative of the development style he’s aiming for.  Perhaps players can expect a smaller, and focused, game in which only a small number of the GhM team will contribute to, perhaps keeping the budget low in the process.

Previous GhM games haven’t exactly featured long development periods, so maybe Travis will arrive on the Switch early next year. Until then fans of GhM may simply hope for the best as they await the anticipated return of Travis Touchdown.

Ian Fisher
A Chicago native, I'm a six year veteran of the game press industry with a deep passion for smaller indie games and all things Sony.

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