The last time we strutted through a school targeting ladies with our love shots, Interpol got involved. In fact, we're not sure whether penning this review is a violation of our parole conditions – we try not to let legal proceedings get in the way of our quest to bring you the best PlayStation coverage available, after all.
Gal*Gun: Double Peace can be best described as House of the Dead for sex pests; it's a shallow rails-shooter with a kitsch theme – the kind of game that initially catches the eye, only to disappoint once it's laid bare. You play as a boy who winds up accidentally enchanted by an archetypal anime angel, and suddenly finds himself the most desirable scally in school.
This comes at a cost, however: you have 24 hours to find your true love, otherwise you'll be cast aside like the living embodiment of the Forever Alone meme. Thus, you must course through cel-shaded college classrooms, filling fangirls full of your pheromones. Each girl has a weak point which acts as a kind of ecstasy-inducing headshot, and finding it swiftly will earn you bonus points – the only place where a premature pot-shot is considered a positive by the opposite sex.
Designed first and foremost with the PlayStation Vita in mind, the game looks like it's a decade old – and it plays like Time Crisis is still the MVP of the console world. A sluggish reticule makes targeting particularly imprecise, while touchpad-based minigames frustrate even more; there's no greater mood killer than tracing a circle on a young girl's panties, only to find that poor detection has left her drier than a flip-flop in the Sahara desert.
To be fair, there's plenty of content here; Score Attack mode allows you to run previously completed stages as you compete for the best score, while multiple story paths offer an incentive to replay. But like a hot coffee that quickly turns cold, it's unlikely that your unspeakables will be gasping for another cup.
The obligatory Doki-Doki Mode – which whisks you away to a dream-like world where females deem it acceptable for you to pet them like feral farmyard animals – adds the slenderest of depth to stages, enabling you to unleash a love explosion if (and only if) you touch them in the right places. Different camera angles can be unlocked to ensure that you find the right spot.
Your engagement with this mechanic also alters your stats, though we'll profess our expertise in biochemistry before we understand exactly how the system works. Various other items can be purchased to improve your potency in the pheromone flinging department, while each stage has tons of hidden secrets and unlockables to collect.
Some of these can be used to re-write the school dress code, by enabling you to replace the classic shirt and skirt combos with, say, ribbons – or something increasingly more revealing. To be fair, there are literally dozens of different girls in the game, each with unique voices and measurements, but the overall artistic direction makes it hard to notice; it's a bit like being harassed by a cosplaying Joe Pasquale for eternity.
And a word of warning if you're planning on picking up the Vita version: it runs like a sumo wrestler and looks twice as ugly. The touch minigames do fare better, but the sporadic framerate makes targeting harder than a teenage hacker with access to Jennifer Lawrence's iCloud account. It's much more stable on Sony's new-gen system, of course.
Shameless like a boob tube but about a billion times less interesting, Gal*Gun: Double Peace is a bad rails-shooter that tries tirelessly to get a raise, only to leave you feeling limp and agitated. If firing pheromones in the faces of overly appreciative schoolgirls is the kind of thing that turns you on, then consider giving Net Nanny her marching orders instead.