Sony Computer Interactive’s (SIE) Japan Studio made the surprise debut of a western version of No Heroes Allowed! VR back at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), Los Angeles, in June. Confirming the western release of No Heroes Allowed! VR complete with an English language build, the team representing the videogame were very enthusiastic about putting the videogame in the hands of American and European industry representatives, despite the fact that a busy show floor is not the ideal venue for a first hands-on with a real-time strategy (RTS) videogame.
However, given the value of virtual reality’s (VR) added level of immersion, No Heroes Allowed! VR didn’t fail to remove the player from the event and instead through them into a mythical world of monster baiting. This, in the short demonstration version that VRFocus experienced, is the long-and-short of No Heroes Allowed! VR’s unique take on RTS gameplay.
Beginning with a capital in the lower left corner of the map, the player had to plot a path to the enemy base in the upper right corner. Doing so requires careful strategising to ensure that your monster minions are not overstretched; while taking the offensive you must also ensure that your lines are not broken, and your own base remains defended.
To begin with a small amount of monster food is available in the environment, and the most basic of units will eat this food as they prepare for battle. You must always keep your monsters fed in order to keep them in play, however the trick of No Heroes Allowed! VR is that more powerful monsters feed on lesser monsters. This leads to a slow evolution of the beasts in your command as you move your way across the battlefield.
Small slug like creatures soon make way for slimes, flying insects, and eventually dragons. The player can build hives to expand their territory and must do so strategically to allow their units free movement whilst blocking the enemy. Ensuring even the most basic creatures have enough food to survive through placement of these hives is essential for attaining greater monsters; simply diving straight into big beasts will leave you without defences should they fall.
The player has indirect control of their army through banner placement which commands specific units to move and automatically engage in combat with enemies they get in range of. A number of special abilities and more direct control of larger units complete a range of opportunities for aggression as you attempt to eliminate the enemy base.
No Heroes Allowed! VR’s story, as may be assumed from the title, sees the player cast as the bad guy. However the aesthetic of the videogame is perfectly designed for family-friendly gameplay; whether or not No Heroes Allowed! VR will include a player-versus-player (PvP) mode remains to be seen, but arguably could provide the videogame with a much longer lifespan than a single-player campaign.
Recently confirmed for a 2017 release, No Heroes Allowed! VR will be part of the PlayStation VR’s second holiday period software line-up. There’s a chance then, that it may be overshadowed by bigger titles. This would be a real shame as even in its current form, on a crowded show floor, No Heroes Allowed! VR provides a compelling RTS experience unique to VR.