I don’t know where to start. Gal*Gun: Double Peace is a game that a lot of people thought simply would never get a Western release. The first title in the series never made it outside of Japan, and the concept seems incredibly risque at first glance. Shooting girls with “Pheromone Bullets” to give them “Euphoria”? That just sounds like something out of an obscure Hentai! Nonetheless, the game has been translated and will be officially released this month by PQube Games in both the UK and the US (initially the game was delayed until very late July for the UK and early August for the US but don’t think too hard about it).
First things first; Gal*Gun: Double Peace is an on-rails shooter mixed with a Visual Novel, releasing on both PlayStation 4 and Vita. The object of the game is to complete a series of stages, dodging hordes of high school girls that have fallen for your artificially enhanced charms, and swatting them away with the prior-mentioned “Pheromone Bullets”. Shooting them enough times – or hitting them in their weak spot once, in most cases – will cause the girls to succumb to “Euphoria” and collapse the ground exhausted.
Once your heart gauge is filled up at least once, pressing the Triangle button allows you to choose one girl per the number of times the gauge has been filled to bring into “Doki-Doki mode.” During this mode, the goal is to rub/tap each girl in parts of their body that they like, so that you can fill up their meter. Once all the meters are full or time runs out, you’ll be treated to a scene of the girls totally tripping out (usually while flashing two peace signs). A blast of Euphoric Energy will then explode from each girl, knocking out any girl within range, and your attributes will change depending on the girls you interacted with.
Naturally, Gal*Gun doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Stages play out a lot like House of the Dead, except with high school girls instead of zombies. As you progress through each stage, you’re tasked with taking out these girls with as much efficiency as possible. To make this easier, each girl has a certain part of their body that is especially susceptible to your bullets. For some girls it’s their heads, for some, it’s their chest, etc. Hitting a girl’s weak point will give you a score bonus as well as take out the girls in one shot. Past a certain moment in the story – usually the first level – you’ll start running into girls possessed by Sadomasochism demons, requiring you to search the area around their bodies with your cursor to find the demon and defeat it before you can give them Euphoria.
For the most part, enemies are fairly straightforward. Possessed girls will try and stomp on your face (among other body parts) if you let them get too close, and girls that stand far off might attack with their shouts (characterized by the Japanese characters making out what they’re saying.) Some stages are punctuated with a boss fight, and these tend to have some more depth to them. Although simple, it’s all fast-paced fun – and the addition of some minigames now and then and some sidequests you can accomplish by looking for specific icons to shoot in the environment. Although enemies are simple, most of the games’ enjoyment comes from trying to find everything in the environment before the game pulls you forward. It’s great, hectic fun.
I tried the PlayStation 4 release at AnimeExpo, and I’d heartedly recommend playing that version if you can, but bar some small framerate issues and long loading times the Vita version is fine as well. Remember those attributes I mentioned before? Your choices depend on how high each of your attributes are. If an attribute isn’t strong enough, you might not be able to choose some responses during these portions. I spent about seven hours playing through one route, which includes playing through stages (you have the option for which stage to choose during some parts of the story) and answering questions in the Visual Novel portions of the game’s branching story.
Gal*Gun: Double Peace releases sometime this month. Stay tuned to TechRaptor for a full review!
Gal*Gun: Double Peace was previewed on PlayStation Vita with a code provided by the publisher. It is also available on PlayStation 4.