Developer: Star Vault AB
Publisher: Star Vault AB
Genre: Casual, Simulation, VR
Audience: PEGI 3
Release Date: 20/06/2019
Price: £11.39 – Rapid Reviews UK was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
I live in a house with four cats. My partner and I are destined to be crazy cat people at this point, so when I saw that a VR game involving kittens had just released, I pounced at the opportunity. Kitten’d pits you against progressively harder levels where you must appease the feline overlords so that your house can remain untarnished.
In other words, look after the kittens, or they’ll destroy everything – not far off reality, then! As the levels grow harder, new breeds of kittens will be introduced. There are 8 in total, usually with unique traits and associated challenges. Ragdolls like to sleep so you have to continually wind alarm clocks to stop them going off, while American Shorthair kittens are super hungry and will eat cupcakes hidden around the level if their food bowl isn’t full.
You also have the usual tasks to perform such as filling up a bowl to feed them, cleaning and refilling a litter tray, and generally keeping them away from fragile knickknacks peppered about the place. You can also get points by petting them, but this doesn’t feel as good as you’d expect for reasons I’ll touch on later.
You’re scored on your ability to keep all these plates spinning simultaneously, with greater scores resulting in more coins, which are used to upgrade your equipment. This can transform your regular poop scoop into a litter-cleaning machine! You can also use your currency to buy hats and accessories to add some unique flair to your feline friends.
The art style has a very stylistic approach, but the different breeds are very recognisable if you’re a feline fanatic. There’s some very believable animation coded into Kitten’d, too, which does a good job of making the kittens feel real and less like robotic AI quadrupeds. It would have been nice to have hands, though, especially when it comes to petting the little cuties. Instead, I just had floating VR controller outlines, which broke the immersion somewhat – though I have seen footage from Oculus users with hands, so this seems to be a brand-specific issue.
The content does start to feel a little repetitive after a while, but there’s a built-in cheat code to help you advance. Typing ‘IDKFA’ anywhere in the game will unlock all of the levels, letting you access some of the tougher, more interesting levels later into the game. There are 28 in total, which provides a decent couple of hours of playtime if it can keep your interest.
I did find my enthusiasm waning after an hour or so, but it’s plain to see that a younger audience would lap this up. A popular mode will be the sandbox mode, which lets you take care of your kittens without the mayhem of a timer. This feels a lot like a virtual reality Nintendogs and increases the replay value significantly.
Kitten’d didn’t keep my attention for long – perhaps because I have an endless supply of cat cuddles in real life – but this is a nice use of VR, especially for someone that maybe isn’t allowed a kitten for allergy or accommodation reasons. There’s some good progression and a reasonable challenge level here, but the bright lights and vivid colours make this a game better suited to a younger crowd.
Rapid Reviews UK Rating
You can purchase Kitten’d from Steam via the following link:
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.