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Copy Kitty (PC) artwork

Copy Kitty (PC) review

"An unremarkable run and gunner that's equal parts bland and blinding"

I received an advance copy of Copy Kitty and played it and didnít think much of it. But then the person who sourced it for me suggested that the game might still be in the Early Access Stage, I thought to myself, 'well that explains it,' and I was about to have another go with renewed hope and vigour. But then that person messaged me again and said, 'my bad, what youíre playing is the finished product.' And I said, 'seriously?'

Copy Kitty is an indie side-scrolling run and gun game with a quaint old school aesthetic -- kind of. Itís 2D, and might be something that could have been achieved on the Super Nintendo or maybe the PS One, but Iíve seen nothing quite like it, and Iím fairly certain I don't mean that as a compliment. It looks like the developers used bland, flat backdrops, and then erected boxes and girders and dividers in the foreground for you to navigate your way through on your search and destroy mission to put down every enemy in a given stage, which is required for the stage to mercifully end.

A good majority of the layouts remind me of a drafting technicianís house blueprint, and they're about that exciting to behold. The lackluster scenarios and entirely forgettable music collude to do wonders towards pushing this effort into the realm of the disposable; when I took it all in, I initially held out hope that the gameplay would save the day.

You already know that it did not. Copy Kitty is essentially about weapon management; itís not a platform game, so youíll never die because of an ill-timed jump. Death will visit because you're overwhelmed by projectiles rained down upon your position by cutesy-cum-robotic enemy forces, who hem you in, so that you canít slide away, melee through some partition to relative safety, or brute force your way out of a jam with your guns.

The guns are where the appeal is supposed to be -- they are the inspiration for the game's title. You will run and shoot enemies with your basic pea shooter and then claim the guns of fallen foes and mix and match what you find towards interesting and often overwhelmingly psychedelic results. Avoiding an untimely demise is sometimes arrived at through fancy footwork yes, but mostly as a result of figuring out which weapons and which weapon combinations kick ass -- in specific situations and in a general sense -- and bringing to bear those choices as up close and personal as you can before the bad guys can do harm.

Itís not terrible to play at, but I found that for the most part I would simply seek out a personal favourite onboard configuration and spam it as much as possible, usually to devastating effect; there was less of actual strategy than I thought would play a role. The best things I can say about the experience relate to the bosses. Theyíre huge, and take some creativity and dexterity to put down, as you enter each encounter with your pea shooter and have to endure their initial wave of attacks before you can wade into danger, steal a weapon and make your turn to do damage count.

But that's about it. Sure, the premise here is based on being a weapon copycat while simultaneously controlling an actual cat avatar and that's a super cute twist, but Copy Kittyís cuteness canít save it. The only thing that stands out about the project is, sadly, a negative: I realize that the game wants to flaunt its over-the-top fireworks displays that manifest when you put together especially catastrophic weapon combos, but I usually found the effects to be so blindingly distracting as to be offensive. There are so many run and shoot games out there on Steam: You would do well to skip this one.


Masters's avatar
Staff review by Marc Golding (July 02, 2018)

There was a bio here once. It's gone now.

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