Have you ever wondered how it is to be a cat? You can sleep on the sofa all the time, chase mice, scratch some doors and curtains… or go for an adventure in order to rescue your slav- I mean owner.
The Purring Quest is an adorable platformer made by Valhalla Cats, a Spanish dev studio and it was released on Steam in November 2015. The game has got a pretty good score of 86% of reviews being positive, which doesn’t really surprise me since it is a good game. But what makes it special then? Let’s just get to the details, shall we?
The game tells a story of a cat named Kimchi, who searches for his/her elderly owner. We travel through 5 different locations: a misty graveyard, a sunny town near the forest, a small city with houses made of gray bricks, a large modern city with cranes and tenements to finally reach an office located in a skyscraper. In each level there are a few things to do. You can collect fishbones to get achievements, you can help cats that are locked in a cage, you can collect some additional objects like books or cups. You will jump, you will climb creepers, you will attack pidgeons and rats, you will move objects, you will hide in a box to avoid patrolling dogs, you will also fight bosses at the end of a level… And basically that’s it in terms of gameplay. The lack of variety is slightly discouraging. A few more models of enemies would do. Or maybe some puzzles, more gameplay mechanics? Nevertheless, while the gameplay is rather stale and the locations aren’t diverse or numerous, I must admit that the level design, the artstyle and the humour are good enough to keep me interested.
I mentioned the humour as an asset, because it’s so innocent and light-hearted. Basically, in The Purring Quest you will find some feline celebrities such as Henri, Le Chat Noir or Oskar, the Blind Cat. Each cat has his/her own personality reflected in the dialogues. Henri is full of existential angst, Sheldon talks about his medical treatments… The developers created funny personae that might appeal to the younger audience. It also fits very well with the artstyle which is clean, smooth and pleasantly cartoonish. No surprise though, since one of the employees is a traditional animator who worked in major studios like Disney. The only issue I have is the quality of the cutscenes: I’m not sure if it’s intended but the animation in the cutscenes is not smooth and stands out from the rest of the game. When it comes to the sound, I have no objections. The main tune is catchy, the level themes are atmospheric (especially in the graveyard) and the barks and meows are simply good. Perhaps I’d make a little longer tunes but still, it’s all fine.
Now, moving onto the technical aspects. There were few things that annoyed me. First of all, I had to play with a gamepad, because keyboard was slightly unplayable. I don’t know how about the others, but I would get frustrated every five seconds. Secondly, there is a quite annoying bug related to hiding. At some points, there are special objects like bushes behind which you can hide. The thing is that if you decided to jump over the dog and later on you encounter the creepers, you cannot climb it as you’re immediately teleported to that hiding object. Another bug that happened once was a patrolling dog that noticed me from an absurd distance. Last but not least, the widescreen in cutscenes and main menu was rather annoying but nothing too serious. The game runs purrfectly (sorry, I had to!), you shouldn’t have any problems.
To sum up, The Purring Quest is a pleasant, charming title which I can recommend to all cat-lovers. I need to warn you though, as it took me just 3.5 hours to complete the game (100% completion)! If you don’t mind paying 9,99€ for such a short game, then feel safe to buy it. Oh, and by the way, did I mention that part of the profit goes for various animal wellfare associations? Kudos to Valhalla Cats for doing such thing! I can only hope that we will see the sequel: much longer, more varied and with more cats. For the time being, I’m giving The Purring Quest 6,5/10, for polish, adorableness and humour. It is not a bad game, I had lots of fun with it but it lasted for so little time.
The review copy was provided by Valhalla Cats.