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Review Cat Quest Pawsome Pack Spoiler Free Review

Discussion in 'Video Games' started by Neb, May 28, 2024.

  1. Neb

    Neb Cosmog Enthusiast

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    On this site’s Discord server a few weeks ago talk about everyone playing the Cat Quest games before the upcoming third game releases in August was abuzz. Several years ago I watched a now privated YouTube video of the first game that was mostly negative and didn’t think about the game since. My expectations were low because of that, but I was curious since other users said it was actually pretty good. I looked for a physical copy online and found the “Cat Quest Pawsome Pack” for PS4 on sale for $23, several dollars less than buying the games digitally full price online. I ordered it and it came several days later.

    The game is a simple dungeon crawling and quest based western RPG with simple mechanics. Combat is a mix of using swords and magic. All of the magic has its uses, but you are giving yourself a serious disadvantage if you don’t use the one healing spell since it’s the only way to regain HP in battle outside of leveling up. Magic can be upgraded in shops with money, but if you want better weapons and armor you have to find either find better versions of equipment you already have or find new equipment altogether. Some builds favor magic, while others favor defense, HP, or attack. I liked this customization and went with a balanced build.

    Quests are very short and the game’s world is small, but filled with dungeons everywhere. Every dungeon has one of two themes and by the end of the game I was getting a bit sick of seeing both. Also, there aren’t many types of enemies to fight in said dungeons, but they’re all generally fun to fight.

    There is no real fast travel. You have to go to places, even ones you’ve already visited, yourself on foot or by a late game alternative movement option. I didn’t mind this too much though since as you unlock new movement options, new areas of the map and new dungeons become accessible. Exploring every corner of the map felt very rewarding.

    The story is simple, but filled with cute cat puns and has a few genuinely surprising plot twists. The main story is very short. You can beat the game within six hours if you only do the bare minimum amount of quests and dungeons and focus on the main story.

    I wanted to get the most value out of the game so I went for 100% completion. During that time I did a normal, easy late game quest and got a weapon so overpowered that it made the final parts of the main story trivial. Hiding something so broken in such an easy place was strange to me.

    There are only a handful of songs in the game and they are all overplayed. None of them were memorable and I was sick of hearing them by the end of the game to the point where I left the game on mute.

    Despite all the flaws I really enjoyed the game. Combat is simple, but feels nice and the quick pace of quests and the story was really addicting. 100% completing the game was pretty easy. Only one optional dungeon had enemies that I died to more than once and even the grind for the level 99 trophy was relatively short.

    Despite feeling some burnout I continued onto the second game. The first thing I noticed was how much better the game looked. Lighting is more advanced and the water effect is much more dynamic and natural looking. I never really liked how the first game looked much, but I love how the second one looks.

    The game is designed with full co-op in mind. I can’t speak for the quality of the multiplayer since I played alone. If you go single player like I did one character will be controlled by the computer and you can switch between both with the press of the button. The computer character is invincible and will do whatever you do. Most of the time I found it helpful, but during one optional endgame fight where I had to do a lot of running away it was annoying how the computer would quit attacking until I started attacking the enemy again.

    Combat has been changed a lot. There are several new spells, although I only found two really useful, and there are now multiple weapon types. I stuck with the short swords like the first game since I found great swords too slow. Having a balanced build is much harder now, so I went for a physical defense and attack oriented for the cat and a magic build for the computer controlled dog. A lot of equipment can be upgraded by entering a building containing Kit Cat or the character Hotto and paying a fee. Magic is more expensive to upgrade in this game, but gold is also easier to access.

    The game has more dungeon themes and way more enemy types than the first, which I think is the biggest improvement over the first game. Enemies in general are tougher to fight than in the first game and the game sometimes like to throw a lot at you. Whenever this happened the game slowed down a ton for me until I took some of them out. This is was on the PS4 Pro, but from what I’ve heard other versions of the game had no major performance issues.

    The game introduces quick travel, sort of. There are several pillars placed far apart throughout the world that you can walk to that take you to a separate screen that lets you quickly walk to another pillar. The whole process felt really clunky and I would’ve much rather had the option to select places I’ve already visited on a map or at least do it off some kinda list I can open anywhere like other games.

    As cool as having a second continent with dogs is, I think it holds the game back. The dungeon count isn’t much higher than the first game and because of that the world feels much more empty. It doesn’t help that the second continent is much larger than Felingard. The surrounding islands from the first game, some of the coolest areas of the original, have all been replaced with a few less interesting islands. The ocean is a lot more barren in general in favor of the large two continents. At the very least the developers were nice enough to add dashing to the game whenever you walk long enough through an update. I can’t imagine playing the game before that update.

    Quests have been improved in this sequel. Some involve doing new things in established dungeons or have exclusive enemies, and the concepts for the quests are more interesting in general. One particular late game quest was a huge surprise and kinda creepy.

    The story of the second game is just as wacky as the first and is a blast all the through. The next game is the end of the series’ current arc so I look forward to seeing how it goes.

    100% completing the game was much harder than the first. You need to unlock every piece of equipment and 100% complete every dungeon in the game, along with doing all the requirements of the first game. A few of the optional fights in the highest level dungeons required several attempts even with really good equipment. There are still “broken” weapons and armor, but they’re hidden behind the highest level dungeons, meaning you can’t abuse them to kill the final boss almost instantly.

    Both games have Mew Game+, this game’s version of New Game+. These let you carry over your equipment and magic while having optional modifiers to make the game harder. This makes these games way more replayable and I’ll definitely come back to them eventually.

    For whatever reason, despite the second game being an improvement in almost every way, I still had more fun with the first game. I can’t fully say why this is other than I just like the more compact world and simplicity of the first game more. As good as these games are I don’t think they’re worth it full price even with the bundle unless you intend to 100% complete them and/or do Mew Game+. The main story is extremely short. If you do find them on sale though I say go for it. They’re cute and a lot of fun, even if they are flawed.
     
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  2. Wizard

    Wizard Do you feel it? The moon's power!

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    This is a well thought-out and detailed review, Neb. Though I've only played the first Cat Quest, I can validate pretty much everything you said about the first game as fair and accurate. I thought I'd throw in a few of my own thoughts from my own experience with the game:

    It took me about 7 hours to get the Platinum Trophy for Cat Quest. One of the trophies was definitely bugged (in a good way, at least).

    It takes far too long for the game to give the player the improved traversal ability, though the game world is so small that that isn't a massive deal. One thing I didn't like about the traversal ability is it doesn't allow the player to scale over mountains, which would've been a little more convenient.

    The combat was fairly enjoyable, if a little basic. Then again, it's difficult to critique the game for being basic since the game's intentions seem to have been to make everything basic. I almost wonder if I would've liked turn-based combat better for this game, but that's neither here nor there. I'm not usually one to argue with developers' overarching design choices.

    The highlight here is definitely the fast pace players can take between quests and tasks. A player can complete multiple quests easily within 10-15 minutes.

    I may have more critiques for this game than praises, but I ultimately believe Cat Quest's simple premise and execution works well enough. If the game looks fun to you, you'll probably enjoy it. Cat Quest largely accomplishes what it sets out to do, though it's not the type of game that truly appeals to me. I like good video games like Pinobee: Wings of Adventure for the Game Boy Advance.
     
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