They say that curiosity killed the cat, but here it has resulted in a fun and interesting tribute to Metroid, which recovers the spirit with which the video games of yesteryear were made. With a small team, the developers of drink soft surprise us with a more than a remarkable video game. We told you in our analysis of Gato Roboto.
We could ask if Gato Roboto supposes something more than another tribute to the Metroid saga. Within this indie video game, we find its classic labyrinthine design, the obtaining of powers that allow us to reach unexplored places and difficulty that in some cases tends to be quite balanced. Everything seems to respect the original bases, but there are details that can change everything and make you think that what you are playing is not a clone anymore.
The game stands out for a careful monochromatic visual representation and a great sense of humor. But if there’s one thing that makes Doinksoft’s work unique, it’s that almost everything it does, it does well. It is a game that can be overcome in about 4-5 hours, but its game design is well thought out and varied enough to leave a good taste when you finish it. It will not take long to do it. I, at least, could not stop playing. And I did not know if it was because of the retro pixel aesthetic, the magnificent response to the controls, the powerful sense of progression … or maybe because of the combination of all these things.
In particular, I have seen it as a curious visual retrospection towards the era of the microcomputers of the 80s, presented with the fluidity and grace of current movements. That, combined with an intelligent, precise, seamless gameplay scheme, makes it one of the most recommended indies of the year, and an unmissable event for lovers of this particular genre. By the way, for about eight euros, highlighting the relationship-price policy that Devolver Digital has maintained for this particular release.
The cat that was believed Samus Aran
Cat Roboto begins with an absurd pretext, as practically everything we will see in the adventure. Kiki is a nice cat who, like a good cat, is always doing it. While his master travels to a new interstellar mission, he can not think of anything else but to perch on the keyboard and force a landing on an unknown planet. The ship is stuck and the master of Kiki is trapped inside. The solution? Of course, leave everything in the hands of the feline, which we will control to find a way out of this place.
This is where we find one of the best virtues of the game, since we not only control Kiki in his usual way, but on board a mecha, or even a submarine. This establishes different game dynamics, from the most platforming to the most tending to the action. The shots are predominant, but no less important is knowing how to orient yourself through the map or have skill when controlling the jumping of our kitten, with some other traps section that reminded me of the mythical Super Meat Boy.
There are many deputy chiefs, but also final bosses who pay homage to classics such as those in the Megaman saga, basically because they present an invariable behavior pattern, which is also complemented with a certain degree of challenge. Not extraordinary, but enough to make you snort on occasion. And the truth is that I found it pleasant, thanks to frequent save points, which avoid that typical punishment that makes you take your hands to your head. The developers of drink soft have been able to minimize the risk of frustration. It is one of his greatest achievements at the level of game design.
The approach of the underground world that we travel is another of the great successes. It is important to consult the map to orient ourselves in a ramified advance, typical of the Metroidvania, of which the most interesting thing is that it expands horizons as we get new skills. Cannons? Esquivel? Double jump? The interesting thing is how the game poses challenges that require the talented use of these options, giving rise to a well-constructed game flow, which makes you feel a powerful evolution. Even if you are a simple cat, you feel powerful.
Another factor quite well resolved is that of progression. We can improve our life counter, but also find collectibles in the form of new visual styles for the game. By default, it is black and white, but we can make it monochromatic in sepia tone, coffee, grape … A small detail, although curious, within a very particular artistic style, which makes a fusion between eighties graphics and a rate of frames really fluid. It is a bold approach, but that makes sense since, in the end, Gato Roboto recovers the style of making games from another era, with a short duration but competent difficulty.
One of the most recommended indies so far this year
Even the screen format itself tries not to occupy the entire visible frame. It reduces and leaves ample black margins to verify, next to the black and white, his longing for a past time, in which the development teams were based on a handful of programs and a low budget (if it existed).
Note that we have played on Nintendo Switch. The fluid operation, with nothing to emphasize, except that it plays as well in TV mode as a laptop. It is advisable, yes, to use helmets, to appreciate in all its magnitude a soundtrack for nothing despicable, which imitates Metroid in that attempt to put a melody to your solitude in a remote corner of the galaxy. Yes, this time you are with a cat, and your enemies will be frogs, bees, robots … and even a mouse. But what would a video game be without its clichés? Here they are, and the best thing is that they are for something. If you give it a chance to discover it, I think it will not disappoint you.
Gato Roboto is more than a tribute to the classic Metroid. It is an adventure with humor, a powerful variety, a good sense of progression, a very interesting exploration and challenging fights. It lasts a little more than four hours, but you can not leave the console in what takes you to complete one of the most rewarding adventures you will find this year in the indie territory. So do not look three feet for the cat. Play it.
- A tribute to Metroid, but with its own style
- The good sensation of exploration, with a labyrinth map of intelligent design
- Variety of mechanics, with platforms, shots, skills, and bosses
- The sense of humor, simply phenomenal … and very well translated into Spanish
- Its monochromatic visual section gives the game a special aura
- Music adapts very well to the climate of exploration in an unknown world
- Although well designed, the concept could have given more than itself
- The duration can be somewhat limited and does not have just replayability