Blade Kitten Review

Written by Joe Martin

October 10, 2010 | 10:38

Tags: #platformer

Companies: #atari

Blade Kitten PC

Once you step away from the story and get stuck in to the actual action though, things get an awful lot simpler for Blade Kitten. Away from the cutscenes and the character designs which so desperately want to be cool, Blade Kitten is basically just an action platformer.

You run, you jump, you defeat baddies by mashing a few simple buttons. There are inconveniently placed fires in pits and the switch to open the door you need to get past is always on the other side of the level. It's just an action platformer, though one built with modern standards and technology – something which brings a lot more to Blade Kitten than you might expect. The levels are vast and roaming, with lots of variety built into them and too many hidden areas and collectibles to even contemplate collecting in your first run through the adventure.

The sheer size of Blade Kitten might even be enough, perhaps, to balance out the annoying Hundert Tonne – a Jar-Jar Binks style character who sells you items via your 'Breaker Menu'. It doesn't excuse the oddly erratic tutorial system though, which requires you to go through a tedious 36 pages of 'How to Play' before you learn everything – only some of which is repeated in the tutorial sequences.

*Blade Kitten Review Blade Kitten PC
The platforming is fun, fast and headache-inducing

Blade Kitten's cast grows with each level, Kit often getting a new ability or accomplice in the process, some of whom are as bizarre as the game would lead you to expect. For rescuing some sausages, for example, Hundert Tonne gives Kit a rideable animal than can charge through walls, as well as a tiny critter called Skiff who can break most machinery she comes across.

Whether you're riding on the back of your strange, alien horse or cat-crawling through the levels on foot though, Blade Kitten's biggest single problem is its ability to induce nausea and headaches in players. That was our experience anyway as, even though we're regular gamers who can withstand most titles without any more than the occasional RSI flare-up, Blade Kitten was quick to cause headaches and motion sickness. It's just too bright, too fast and too squeaky to be tolerable for long stretches – a fact which may increase the longevity of the game, but not the quality.

Kit's cel-shaded, neon world and preference for yelling her dialog in as squeaky and over-cute a way as possible is an unfortunate blight on a game which is, when you strip away the confusion, actually pretty fun. It's not a top-quality game and, even aside from the rambling nonsense of a premise, there are all sorts of bugs and issues to contend with. Control is a big gripe, for example, as Kit is obviously not meant to be handled with a keyboard and mouse – you'll need a gamepad to play it right. It's possible to cope with a keyboard, but it's an awful lot fiddlier than it needs to be.

*Blade Kitten Review Blade Kitten PC
Your floating sword makes controlling combat occasionally difficult

When you've got the right conditions in play though, Blade Kitten can be quite an entertaining little romp. All you have to do is grab a gamepad, turn off the sound and be *Blade Kitten Review Blade Kitten PCcontent to ignore the cutscenes to find a blisteringly fast and very colourful little game inside. Of course, we could only keep that up for a twenty minutes or so before the headaches started...

Even then though, while Blade Kitten has a certain kitsch and retro appeal, through its premise and gameplay respectively, it's still not breaking any new ground. The fact of the matter is that platformers aren't really in short supply for the PC these days – there are plenty of slicker, faster ones available for free on the Internet.

Blade Kitten is fun, in its way, but it doesn't contain anything new or exciting enough to justify parting with cash for. It's not the next Trine, in other words. That shouldn't totally dissuade you from buying it, but it should make you think twice unless you've got a specific reason to do so.

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October 14 2021 | 15:04