SENRAN KAGURA PEACH BALL / DEVELOPER: MARVELOUS, HONEY PARADE GAMES / PUBLISHER: XSEED ENTERTAINMENT / PLATFORM: PC, SWITCH (REVIEWED) / RELEASE DATE: 9TH JULY
The Senran Kagura series debuted in 2011 and now boasts ten games to its name, all of which feature groups of female ninjas in various states of undress. With "enhanced breast physics" being a much-hyped feature of each successive release, a "Happy Boobs" special edition for one particular 2015 release, and one entry being a "water gun shooter," it should come as no surprise that Peach Ball, the latest title in the series, occupies a similar niche.
The story mode consists of three tables across five stages, with unlockable “prizes” earned by repeat playthroughs with each individual character. The girls have all been "turned into animals," which is the game's way of saying "they're all dressed in skimpy animal suits." In order to turn them back into humans, you must play pinball while each girl perches on the far end of the table. The usual pinball rules are in effect - hit various objectives to score high points, basically - but there's a slight twist. Hit the girl enough times, and she'll eventually give access to a "sexy challenge" where you have the opportunity to strip a little bit of her outfit off. Win two challenges, and a third Super sexy challenge becomes available - emerge victorious here, by repeatedly and rapidly bouncing your balls off her bum or boobs, and she'll finally be back to normal. Nude, but normal.
The tables themselves aren't much to write home about. There are only three of them, so you'd think each one would be quite different, but they're all very similar. We suspect that's because many members of the game's target audience won't actually be playing this one for the pinball side of things.
Rather, they'll be playing to win points and earn money which is spent in the game's shop. Here, you can buy new outfits and accessories to customise your ladies before heading over to the Dressing Room to equip your new purchases. This is also where you'll find the Diorama, where you can create a scene then place and pose your characters, and the really rather sinister Intimacy mode, where players are able to get up close and personal by stroking, poking, and squirting water over their chosen lady...
We're not quite sure who to recommend this to (other than pinball and anime-loving furries), as there are way better pinball games on the market and there are surely plenty of “other things” you could look at for a bit of titillation. Having said that, in all honesty, it's sort of difficult not to at least have half a grin on your face while playing. Let's pretend Intimacy mode doesn't exist, though. That's maybe just a bit too weird.