You see lightgun games galore in game centres, obviously, but when Music GunGun! started appeared on the Coming Soon lists it piqued my interest. I’m unhealthily obsessed with rhythm-action, you see, and fairly interested in any lightgun game that doesn’t just involve shooting an endless parade of men in the face (which is a surprisingly high number in Japan). The name conjured awesome images in my head of a game that combined the two. I was not disappointed.
The cabinet itself is drowning in kawaii – the little guns have stars on the sides of them, and one of them’s pink. The characters are woodland animals, the reticule is in the shape of a heart. It’s ace. Actually they look more like hairdryers than guns. Music GunGun tends to be downstairs in the game centre with Taiko Drum Master, UFO machines and games where you hop up and down on a pogo stick to race rabbits and frogs around – in other words, all the stuff For Girls – but don’t worry, this is Japan. Masculinity has no meaning.
The Aim of the Game is to shoot cute puyo things that come flying towards you in time to the music. In the mode of Ouendan, circles fill up to tell you the optimum time to shoot. Each song has accompanying insane background graphics where you’re chasing a boss enemy – in one you’re chasing a truck whilst shooting puyothings in beat to the theme from Evangelion, and a sort of boss leans out of the window and throws squillions of enemies at you. You can always see your reticule on-screen, so it’s more about rhythm than shooting skill.
My favourite thing, though, is that the game tells you to do a pose at the end of each song, firing your gun into the air off-screen. Too few games demand posing. It’s a Taito game though, sadly, so you can’t use your e-Amusement pass and store your achievements with all the other bemani games.
Cheers for the pictures, Gigazine – check out some awesome videos over there too, featuring folk in costumes giving a great demonstration back at AOU 2009.