Mokoko X Gameplay Preview

Developed and published by NAISU – April 6, 2022 (X1/S/X, S, PC)
*MSRP: $9.99 –

Mokoko X runs in the same vein as the many games in the Pretty Girls series that I’ve covered. The developer takes a tried and true arcade game and slaps on a shiny veneer made of kawaii anime girls. Mokoko X is based off of games such as Volfied, where you pilot a tiny ship and draw lines to conquer territory whilst avoiding enemies. In this game, clearing all the territory will reveal a picture of an anime waifu underneath.

The game is actually fun. Playing successfully requires an even mix of strategy and reflex. There are usually many enemies on screen moving in predictable paths as well as some that fire projectiles. Getting hit by anything will result in a life lost. If the path you are drawing gets hit, it will emit a quickly moving pulse that will destroy your ship if you do not finish connecting the lines quickly enough.

You are rewarded points based on how much of the territory you removed, as well as how many lives you have left over by the end. You also score much more points if you can draw a longer line and remove more territories at once.

This creates a risk vs reward incentive where you can risk drawing out a longer path for more territory but the more lines you have out in the playing field, the more you limit your own movement and the more likely it is that either your ship or the line will get hit by an enemy.

The final levels get pretty difficult because the map is very large and contains multiple bosses.

The later levels have a lot of enemies and projectiles emanating out in every direction so it does become quite challenging. I employed a tactic where I strategically removed small territories at a time to effectively block enemy projectiles as well as cordon off a section of enemies before finishing them off to make the map easier to clear.

Managing to clear a question block will grant a random power up, such as an extra life as shown above.

Thankfully the map also provides random power ups in the form of question blocks. Successfully drawing lines around these blocks and clearing the territory will provide a random power up such as slowing down time, gaining an extra life, or gaining an overshield.

One silly enemy is a human unfortunate enough to have been turned into a mosquito.

In addition to the fun game play, the game has a very silly and nonsensical narrative. Outlandish enemies with bizarre motivations are attacking these girls and it’s up to you to save them. For example, one enemy is a demonic headphone. I think that’s enough said there. The lighthearted and nonsensical approach to the narrative is sometimes a hit or a miss. It walks a fine line between being hilarious and cringey half the time.

I have to be honest, the anime waifus are growing on me.

As for the anime waifus, they have this strange aesthetic that is oddly appealing. It looks like a 2D image that is being morphed to give the appearance that the character is moving. It does look odd at first but I found it to be appealing the more I looked at it.

Overall, Mokoko X is a satisfying arcade game with a helping of anime waifus slathered on top.

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