[Review] Gun Gun Pixies – Nintendo Switch

Developer: Idea Factory, COMPILE HEART, Shade Inc.
Publisher: Pqube Limited
Release Date: 06/09/2019
Price: £44.99 / $49.99
Review code provided by PQube Limited

Disclaimer

With a game like this, I need to deviate from our normal review format. There has to be a disclaimer before the real review starts. Please don’t skip this, but read on.

Gun Gun Pixies is, technically, a 3rd person shooter. That is, in case you have never played one before, a game in which you look over your character’s shoulder and shoot at other characters. This is a genre which has been around for some time. Why the need for this disclaimer then, you ask? Well, Gun Gun Pixies belongs to a sub-genre of games that centre around so called “fan service”. In this genre, women are scantily clad and objectified. These depictions and interactions–you are expected to shoot “happy bullets” at various body parts to progress in the game–are considered normal. Gun Gun Pixies is a game that sells itself as an erotic game first and a shooter last. This review however, will not take the erotic part of the game into consideration. This review will focus on the shooter part and leave the appraisal or damnation of visual presentation and gameplay representation of women to you, the reader. You’re old enough to decide if you want to play games like these. My only job here is to find out if the gameplay and game mechanics are worth of your time and money.

Does this game spark joy?

Gun Gun Pixies originally saw the light of day on the Playstation Vita in 2017. The Switch version of this year is a direct port of the Vita version and is intended to bring joy and happiness to the player. We will see if this is an empty promise or not.

A team of two tiny aliens, Bee-tan and Kame-pon, are sent to earth on a mission to understand the earthlings’ way of life in order to use the acquired knowledge to save their own planet: Pandemo. To understand human relationships, the aliens infiltrate a girls’ dormitory, because apparently earthlings prefer living in dormitories together with their same sex. You get to control both of the female aliens to help them achieve their goals.

What are you up to?

The game itself is straight forward. In story-mode you progress through individual missions after selecting the character and her loadout. Between missions you can visit the in game store to exchange your hard-earned in game currency, Picoins, for more weapons, scopes or costumes. The individual missions are a mixture of shooting game where you have to hit various body parts of the respective girls to force them to give up the secret you are supposed to uncover. To do that you have to traverse their rooms by climbing and/or jumping to or from furniture or other objects. This feels like a platformer, because there are Picoins littered throughout which you need to collect. Also, you can find girls’ panties in the rooms which will then unlock more costume options for you to purchase in the shop. While you do all that, you have to stay hidden from the girls. Once you are discovered, you fail the mission. Luckily you can stand still and strike a pose to make it look like you are a figurine in case you get into a girl’s view.

Before and after the missions, you are subjected to the sexual banter between Bee-tan and Kame-pon as well as the banter between the dormitory girls. In case you were expecting clever writing here, I’ve got bad news for you. There is no delicate wordplay. Each and every sexual “innuendo” is driven home by a blunt 10 ton hammer. The writing is cliché and stereotypical.

But that’s not even the worst aspect. Gun Gun Pixies fails at the most important part: gameplay. You want to have tight and responsive controls for both a shooter and a platformer. Playing on the Switch, you probably want gyro controls for the camera as well. With Gun Gun Pixies, you get neither. The game controls are clunky and sometimes unresponsive. I’ve missed a jump more than once in the missions and I can’t even count how many times the camera got stuck making me miss even more jumps or getting me discovered because I couldn’t react quickly enough. That is a real shame.

Look and feel?

Gun Gun Pixies utilises an anime art style. It’s detailed enough to get an USK18 rating in Germany and we’re not usually prude over here. So, if you come for the visuals, no problems on this front. The game is well animated as well and does not disappoint in this regard. Please remember that I’m talking about how the game is displayed and not about what the game displays.

The music however, is bland. I can’t remember a tune for the life of me. The sound effects are ok. The guns have a nice sound and the crashing worries of the earthen girls sound, well, crashing, too. Turning our attention to the Japanese voice acting, it is a little on the shrieky side. Fortunately, there is no English voice acting in the game.

What about other nasties?

Gun Gun Pixies performs well both handheld and docked and apart of the stuck camera I encountered no bugs nor glitches. The only nasties turning up in the game are the squid aliens your team encounters during the missions. They tend to always get in your way. Sadly there is no multiplayer option in the game, it is single player only. On the other hand, would you really want to play a game with these clunky controls in a multiplayer setting?

Conclusion

Gun Gun Pixies promises a lot, but delivers little. Turning the attention only to the game’s mechanics, it fails. Taking into account the story, it only gets slightly better. There is not much here that warrants a playthrough.

Pros

  • It exists, even if only as a bad example of its genre

Cons

  • No gyro controls
  • Writing is rather cliché
  • Clunky controls

Verdict
If you really want to play a sexy shooter, there are better options around. Gun Gun Pixies fails in the controls department making the game not worthy of your time.
2/5

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