Osyaberi! Horijyo! Gehihor: Anna Holinski Saves The Universe, Alright?! (Switch) Review

With a title that looks like a cat stepped on the keyboard, this 2D horizontal shooter has a bright art style, a ton of action, and a constantly leveling system. There is a lot to like although it isn’t perfect.

Playing as an anime astronaut trying to retrieve stolen gems from aliens, it is your job to blast the crap out of incoming enemies like in any shmup but it isn’t score based. Instead, each defeated enemy drops ore, currency used to upgrade your abilities. At times, batches of dirt will fly by carrying precious ore which can be mined by shooting it. I wasn’t away of mega dirt patches in space, especially ones held together so tightly that it can produce expensive stones, but I’m no astrophysicist.

It is entertaining because it provides a worthwhile excuse to kill everything. However, this is easier said than done because more often than not, the screen is packed with enemies, bullets, ore, dirt, and incoming messages. Keeping track of all of it is a challenge unto itself. If you are prone to seizures or get headaches when gaming, this is undoubtedly a game to avoid.

Unlike most shooters, there is a lot of grinding involved. For example, I got stuck on the Stage 3 because the end watermelon cyclops boss (yes, the enemies are ridiculous) has attacks in which you must take damage. The only way to defeat it is to play well, something that takes practice, but also upgraded armor and firepower is needed. The only way to get these upgrades is to grind the same stage repeatedly until a few power-ups are unlocked. This early hurdle required a solid half hour of grinding, the same amount of time it took to reach that point. Once I finally bested this unfair boss, I ran into the same problem in the subsequent stages and repeats throughout the entire campaign.  There are some balancing issues.

The energy system is also unique because it is all related to fuel. The fuel gauge constantly decreases and taking damages drastically depletes this meter. Once you hit zero fuel, it is game over. Or, more accurately, the playable anime girl gives up and retreats so no actual death is involved. 

Each stage is littered with hundreds of enemies but most are fodder you can blast through in an instant. Unfortunately, the player must face the same repetitive mini bosses each stage, like the face with the open mouth, or the robot thing with the drill. The repetition with these bosses is so bad, I thought I ran into a glitch in the game.  But nope, you just need to fight the same bosses each stage, avoiding the same attacks, and using the same strategy. The presentation isn’t all bad though as everything is super colorful and has hand drawn detail. Also, the UI stands out because all the menu tiles are on steep angle, providing a weird 3D effect that almost makes navigating the menu hard to read. But I give it credit for trying so different. The anime voices also will not shut up and constantly yell at the player. I had to turn them off entirely from the main menu to avoid shooting myself in the face.

Osyaberi! Horijyo! Gehihor is an enjoyable shooter, just not a perfect one. Props must be given for releasing such a fluid, action packed game on Switch with zero frame drop. It is just a bummer that repetition sets in so quickly and so much grinding is required to make an inch’s worth of progress.

SCORE: 7/10

Also Try: Astro Flame Starfighter

Not Quite As Grindy As: I, AI

Wait For It: the next Cotton re-release

By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief

Twitter: @ZackGaz

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