Evil Pussy Simulator - Catlateral Damage Review | GIZORAMA

Evil Pussy Simulator – Catlateral Damage Review

August 30, 2015 by

Quit chasing mice and join the feline frenzy as we review Catlateral Damage!

Developer: Chris Chung, Fire Hose Games
Publisher: Chris Chung
Platform: PC (Steam)
Review Copy Provided By: Chris Chung
Release Date: May 27, 2015

“A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.”

-Mark Twain


There exists no single group of people I despise more than those who self-identify as being random or quirky. All you Penguins of D00m and Lady Gaga’s can crawl down into the deepest, darkest hole you can find and rot in silence, far away from the respectable light of civilized society. Your forced quirkiness is anathema to my ears and eyes, and it pains me to see your obnoxious touch poisoning my videogames. Catlateral Damage, an indie cat-simulator by Chris Chung and Fire Hose Games, caters entirely to this despicable crowd in a colorful blend of pastels and hard edges.

Catlateral Damage tries in earnest to place players into the shoes (paws) of the internet’s favorite animal. With the acceptance that cats only exist to destroy everything we’ve ever loved, the goal of each level is to cause as much damage as possible to your surrounding before the timer runs out. Jump onto the bookshelf, knock over the television, and claw all the toilet paper from the roll in an attempt to wreak mayhem unseen since the great war (they were all great).

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As good an excuse as any, I suppose

 The levels are all procedurally generated, featuring everything from the kitchen to the bedroom. Shelves and tables are lined with vases, books, electronics, and silverware, and almost everything in the world can be interacted with. Relying on floaty gravity and force physics, players must knock over as many items as possible to earn enough points before the timer runs out. Random events, such as catching a mouse or flashing disco lights (which come with a freaking epilepsy warning) spice up each already-hectic level, and the duration of each round is short enough to keep an even pace.

Along with various upgrades such as speed boosts or rapid clawing, players can also unlock over 200 pictures of actual cats (and a poorly drawn cat picture) and different cat skins (hehehe, skinning a cat) for future rounds. Why the hell you’d want even one picture of a cat that isn’t yours is beyond me, but I harbor no doubt that it made at least one person happy.

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EPILEPSY!!! SEIZE THE DAY!

The hard-edged polygons and pastel palette art style is actually very fitting, and there’s just enough detail in the minimalist design to differentiate the various types of items you choose to ruin. The soundtrack, a hybrid mix of discordant Ferris wheel music, can get extremely irritating, but once again meshes nicely with the game’s breakneck pace.

Though the game’s Steam page does warn players about the possibility of epilepsy-triggering events, they fail to mention the inevitable motion sickness you’re bound to experience. Each round’s accelerated duration and unrealistic demands means players are constantly jumping and running around the house, and something about the visual angle of the cat is horribly disconcerting. I had to take a break after a handful of rounds just to right myself (though this could be attributed to my diet of Snickers and cheap liquor).

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I’ve decided I’m more of a dog person…

Though it’s intended crowd is one I’d rather hit with a sharp stick than interact with, and while it does become extremely repetitive after a while, Catlateral Damage is a clever take on today’s simulator games. It’s novel enough to give you a good chuckle, but don’t think for a second that it’s anything deeper than a game about being a bored house cat with an axe to grind.

Review Overview

3.5/5

Catlateral Damage is a fast-paced simulator bent on bringing us closer to our favorite furry companions. The minimalist art style and environmental intractability lend to the game's overall appeal, and it's certainly a nice waste of a couple of hours (over several weeks). However, the game's purposeful quirkiness and the sheer repetitive nature of each round mire it in terms of replayability. It's a great little indie game, but it's far from purrrfect.

About Johnny Ohm

When his nose isn't diligently to the grindstone, Johnny can be found skulking around the dark corners of San Francisco's many pubs. You can contact Johnny via Twitter or ouija board.