Thank you so much to PQube Games for providing a review code
Fanservice is an interesting design choice that many developers use to draw more engagement to their games. While not for everyone, there are many people that enjoy these types of games. Sometimes, however, when a game focuses so much on a specific aspect like fanservice, they lose sight of what’s really important, the gameplay. Gun Gun Pixies is one of those game’s that nails the design it’s going for but unfortunately falters in gameplay. Why is that you may ask? Well, let’s find out.
Gun Gun Pixies follows the adventures of two intergalactic pixies Bee-Tan & Kame-Pon. The twosome has been sent down to earth on a very important secret mission to observe the young woman of the Lilypad dorm. Both pixies possess some special characteristics that make them the only ones suitable for this job. You see the people from their planet have started to sever their bonds and relationships with every person they know. Their planet has become nothing, but a pool of people who want no contact with one another. Bee-Tan is a very affectionate person and care’s about others (in more than one way), while Kame-Pon is a bit more reserved, but still caring. Their mission is to learn about humans empathetic and compassionate nature and figure out why they act the way they do.
At first, there are three girls in the dorm Amayo, Kira, and Misa. As the story progresses more girls will enter the story and if you’re a fan of Compile hearts very popular Hyperdimension Neptunia series, then you may find a little surprise awaiting you. While your mission is to observe the girls, sometimes things go wrong and you have to interfere a bit in their daily lives. These interactions always involve the girls and most often times involve little clothing.
I wouldn’t say Gun Gun Pixies story is bad, but it’s not really good either. Bee-Tan is always very smitten with the ladies and there’s a high amount of sexual tension that comes along with most of the game’s dialogue. There’s no actual sexual content involved, but if Bee-Tan had the option I’m sure she would allow it.
The characters are all pretty averagely designed, and by that, I mean that they’re not overly interesting, but they do have some personality to them. Some of the situations you observe end up being fairly personal situations that don’t feel like jokes, even though this a comedic fanservice style game. There are some serious moments to this lighthearted game that actually makes you think, which I have to praise the developers on. Sadly, I feel like these deep moments end up getting buried under too much monotonous dialogue. Overall, the story has some significant flaws but can be enjoyed by the right type of person.
Gun Gun Pixies is a 3D third-person shooter with platforming elements. You can play as either of the two pixies, Bee-Tan and Kame-Pon. The entire game takes place across the Lilypad dorm in each of the girl’s rooms. When a story mission begins you start at the briefing screen which lets you choose which girl’s room you would like to go into first. Often times you’re going to have to explore each of the girl’s rooms to find what you need to complete your mission.
The missions stay pretty consistent in nature. You’re almost always tasked with retrieving an item or finding clues about what’s going on with one of the girl’s. The dorm rooms act as large 3D levels where you can run around and jump onto different objects. Unless you’re unlocking a new room the other dorm rooms remain relatively the same throughout the course of the game, so you’ll get familiar with them pretty quickly. Every room has it’s own platforms that are usually placed quite high in the air. These platforms can only be accessed through warp gates which are conveniently placed around every room. The warp gates are disguised as plugins inside the walls so that the girls aren’t alerted to what they really are.
As previously mentioned Gun Gun Pixies isn’t all about platforming, and in fact, the shooting mechanics are quite important to the gameplay. To get hints about what you’re trying to find you’ll have to shoot the girls with your happy bullets (yes I really just said that). Your happy bullets cause the girls to.. well get happy and spill the beans on whatever’s on their mind. This is essential to completing your missions, but it doesn’t just end at getting clues.
Eventually, during a mission one of the girl’s will start to get worked up and perform abrupt actions like chanting a demonic ritual (yes I really just said that too). When this happens you’ll have to pacify the girl with your happy bullets. These pacification missions are Gun Gun Pixie’s version of boss fights and they’re very strange, to say the least. To complete these missions you must target each section of a girl’s body and hit it with enough happy bullets until it reaches 100%. The body divides up into many sections including head, upper body, lower body, butt, boobs, crotch and more. Yeah I know it sounds pretty strange and it is, but you gotta do what you gotta do.
After a body part reaches 100% fulfillment the endorphins will start to secrete from the girl’s body. Once every body part is at 100% the target will be pacified and the battle will be complete. To make things easier the game gives you the ability to zoom in with your gun and fire your gun. It doesn’t sound overly difficult, but there are obstacles put in place to stop you from completing your mission. While you’re trying to shoot the girls they will release emotions out of their body that are will actively try to hurt you. The deadly emotions can come in the form of flying heart projectiles, and dark rolling balls of doom. When you are hit by one of these attacks your clothing will rip. Your clothing ripping acts as your health bar and once you’re reduced to nothing, but bare skin you can only withstand one more attack until it’s game over. If you fail a mission, you will restart back at the beginning or where your last save point was.
If you find yourself with low health you can recover health, by finding a glowing circular area somewhere’s in the dorm. Finding one of these areas will not only recover your health, but they will power you up as well. When you stand inside the circle and shoot your bullets they will be supercharged and fill a body parts endorphins meter way faster.
So if the game wasn’t weird enough all ready for you, then get ready, because it gets weirder. After the first chapter, the game introduces these alien squid monsters that are invading the dorm. Some missions will require you to run all around a room and kill these pesky things. There are a few different types of them, but they can all be taken out usually with a few bullets. I’m not entirely sure, how the developers came up with the idea to add them in, but honestly, at this point, I’m not surprised by anything.
Once your missions complete you’ll be sent back to the menu where you can choose if you want to jump back into the story or customize your pixies. In each dorm, you can find hordes of Picoins that are scattered around waiting to be picked up. Picoins can be used to buy new guns, upgrade your maximum ammo capacity and buy new lingerie… So if you’re not satisfied with the default lingerie, then don’t worry, because you have options.
Gun Gun Pixies is definitely one of the strangest game’s I’ve ever played, but that’s not what made it such a frustrating experience. Every main aspect of the gameplay feels unpolished and left me constantly disappointed.
The platforming is clunky and I never felt like my jump was going where I needed it to. It feels very stiff and it’s even worse because many of the platforms are already difficult to reach. Trying to climb up stepladders or any platform with multiple parts will have you constantly colliding with them when you try to jump up. You have to try and maneuver yourself to get into the right position which is really frustrating
There are also major camera issues that plague the gameplay as a whole. Trying to walk through tight areas in a level or really anywhere that’s not completely open is a nightmare. The camera does not position itself correctly and becomes a real annoyance. The number of times I fell off platforms because of the camera was too many.
The third-person shooting mechanics weren’t frustrating like the platforming, but they lacked creativity. There’s not enough variety in the customization of your weapons and in the gameplay itself. After the first few chapters, I grew bored of shooting out happy bullets and wished there was more to the combat then such basic mechanics.
Should you want to playthrough Gun Gun Pixies again you can by starting a NG+. This will let you keep all of your previous unlocks intact while you replay the story. As mentioned earlier there’s also a variety of different items to unlock, mainly in the form of lingerie.
Something else I also didn’t talk about, because I thought I should mention it here are the bath scenes. At the end of every chapter, you get to watch one of the girls bathe and shoot them with happy bullets while they do. This acts as an extra minigame to earn some extra Pixicoins before the chapter is complete. These scenes aren’t overly interesting, but I guess the fanservice is pretty good.
Gun Gun Pixies actually has a really nice art style. The dialogue scenes are well animated and each of the girls perfectly fit the anime-style design. Furthermore, the dorm rooms look great and use bright and vivid colors to make everything pop out. One aspect of the presentation that did disappoint me was the level designs. The rooms got very repetitive after a while and even the new rooms you unlock don’t add in enough unique elements. The soundtrack’s fine, but it’s nothing to write home about.
During my playthrough of Gun Gun Pixies I did not encounter any significant technical issues.
While not for me I think game’s like Gun Gun Pixies are unfairly treated, because of their fanservice elements. Every game deserves a proper review based on every aspect of the game, not a select few. With that being said Gun Gun Pixies is really not a great game. Both the game’s platforming and shooting mechanics have flaws especially the platforming which is clunky and only further ruined by the constant camera issues. The story could have been the game’s redeeming quality, but unfortunately, it ended up being bogged down by so much boring dialogue. The fanservice is pretty good here for those who enjoy that, and there’s a nice amount of “costumes” to customize your pixies with. If you’re looking for a new Compile Hearts game to enjoy I suggest waiting for Mary Skelter 2.