Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash

OK, LET’S SOAK THIS THING UP!

I’ll try and make as little puns on this one as I can, but no promises.

Yeap, you read that title correctly. The Senran Kagura franchise is back with another spin off title that involves a lot of nonsense plot, new gameplay gimmicks, a multiplayer scene and of course fan service. Developed by Tamsoft, and published Marvelous Inc, as well as published in North American by XSEED Games, Peach Beach Splash has made its way to the PS4 with the PlayStation®Store exclusive “Sexy Soaker” limited edition available for $59.99 and the standard edition available for $49.99. The limited edition “No Shirt, No Shoes, All Service” physical release has a suggested retail price of $69.99 for PS4™ at participating retailers.

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WHY DO THE FAMOUS SHINOBI GIRLS HAVE SUPER SOAKERS NOW?!

Each of the shinobi groups were minding their own business when suddenly they were summoned by a mysterious power to participate in the Peach Beach Splash event. This “sport” involves the girls to use soakers in different battle arenas to defeat opposing teams or AI. They can’t use their special ninja abilities and if they rank up to the top of the tournament, they will receive a special prize.

You can choose to play as any team you want, each offering up to 10 missions which have their own specific objectives such as soaking up burning targets, raining upon robots or simply overwhelm the other ninja team. In between these missions you get the regular cutscenes portraying the shinobi in bikinis (because that’s just how this genre has evolved I suppose), and having small plot points for specific characters around the themes of bond strengthening, overcoming fears and the power of friendship. However these plot scenes are fairly weak and don’t really pick up and get a bit tiring after watching your characters do the same recycled animations.

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BUT, WHY EXACTLY DO THEY HAVE TO BE DRESSED LIKE THIS?

Trust me, plot wise, they will reveal it once you’re in the last chapters for each team story. It really isn’t much of a surprise as the whole idea of the game surround ninjas and magic, it felt quite lacking in terms of twists so you might as well say that the story wasn’t much of the center of attention this title received. The game also offers side gameplay mechanics out side of the story, which allow you to dress your characters, however you like, posing them likewise and also a very inappropriate intimacy game mode.

The sense of progression in the game is more on the side of unlocking perks and collectables (there’s a lot), and you also get the usual 2D art unlocked when you progress certain story missions. Players who are completionists should not worry about the amount of content and will enjoy collecting them all if they are into that.

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WAIT, BUT MULTIPLAYER?

Here’s where the game was most likely aiming for. You get a Senran Kagura game in which you can team up with friends and play with water soakers. Choose between your favorite shinobi, equip them with the water gun of your preference (either being an assault rifle, shotgun, missile launcher, dual pistols, grenade launcher, etc…) and equip them with card loadouts which grant different active abilities to refresh up your play style, (these you can get by finishing missions and opening card packs) not to mention you can use other cards to level up either these abilities, your weapon of the shinobi herself. The whole idea of building up a great loadout, while also customizing your character’s appearance however you like brings a lot of uniqueness in gameplay specially when multiplayer can be a 5v5. This allows for a lot of water havoc that can prove to be quite fun and exhilarating.

Having each character have up to 3 hearts until they are beaten forces the players to work around different tactics and not just rush in and hold R2 to shoot water randomly. You can maneuver the battlefield by water jumping, dashing and flanking while using your card abilities to aid your team, protect your self or do burst damage.

In terms of actual gameplay though, since there’s a lot going on screen there are a few frame rate drops here and there, also with auto aim controls and a lot of reticule snapping it can prove to be a bit of a struggle to play, but usually if you plan what you’re going to do it becomes much smoother.

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VISUALS AND OST

Senran Kagura Peach Beach Splash, like its predecessors, has always looked polished in its own art style. 3D models will look great in their environments and scenarios as well as over the top action animations and particles (except for cutscenes, those animations really get tiring).

Sound and music cues are fantastic and very well mixed in the OST, they rank up and are very subtle so you can enjoy the gameplay as it is intended. As voice acting, it’s the same as in any other Senran Kagura game, it’s simply well recorded, clear and each character is portrayed in his or her own personality.

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IMPRESSIONS: COME ON IN; THE WATER IS GREAT!

While I do miss playing an all out brawler against a lot of AI and doing insane high count combos with special shinobi abilities, this water gun tournament feels like a nice side step to the franchise. It’s different and fun in its own way, as well as very clever with the whole loadouts style and how different each gun works in convergence with card abilities.

Peach Beach Splash, besides Bon Appétit, might be what the franchise needs in terms of spreading out and trying something different, which usually is something games require to stay healthy and fresh. With this you can expect a lot of new stuff brewing up for the shinobi girls.

Thanks to XSEED and One PR Studio for providing a review version of the game

4

In Short

  • + Fun gameplay mechanics
    + Many ways to customize your loadout and visual appearance
    + Multiplayer is awesome and a lot of havoc
    + Visually stunning and great OST

  • - Plot is fairly weak, even for a spin off

Comments


Posted at 3:41pm on Monday 25th September 2017

Yagy

Don't forget, this is a multiplayer based game, it isn't made for single player


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