The cat is out of the bag, and probably all over your Twitter feed.
“Stray”, a new video game from Sony
playstation and microsoft
Windows allows players to explore an underground cyberpunk city as a tabby cat trying to get back to his family.
The $29.99 third-person platform puzzle-adventure game, from French development studio BlueTwelve and published by Annapurna Interactive, has generated a lot of buzz since it was first revealed during the 2020 PS5 reveal event. newest trailer released on June 2 has already been viewed more than 1.7 million times on PlayStation’s YouTube account).
And now the long-awaited “cat game” is here, and players and their feline friends are already obsessed with it.
Here are some minor spoilers: The gist of the game is that you play as a lost alley cat navigating an underground city populated by robots. The goal is to return to the surface world, where your feline friends live. Your stray soon teams up with a sentient drone named B12 (which can talk to your cat character’s humanoid robots), and the two of them explore the city and solve puzzles to find their way home, discovering what happened to everyone. humans. along the way, while avoiding hungry monsters who want to eat this cute kitty almost as much as the players.
“Stray” trended on Twitter both Monday and Tuesday around the game’s launch, drawing more than 363,000 tweets as of Tuesday afternoon. And perhaps the most adorable early trend was gamers posting videos of their own cats being paralyzed by the nameless, pawed protagonist.
Game developers at BlueTwelve Studio were not immediately available for comment. But they revealed in a PlayStation blog post who took care to make the stray dogs at the center of the game look and feel as close to real cats as possible. (Well, except for showing the cat years, apparently.) And the finished product seems to be resonating with real-life felines and their humans, alike.
Some dogs were getting into it too.
the PlayStation blog post it also introduced the three cats that inspired the game’s main feline. They include an orange tabby cat named Murtaugh, a former stray, who was found under a car in Montpellier, France. He now lives with the co-owners of BlueTwelve Studio. And a hairless Sphynx named Oscar was the muse of the lead cat animator, who reportedly animated the cats by hand, not in a motion-capture suit, to pin down the subtleties of a feline’s movements as it runs, jumps, scratches , “boops”. the mucus” and climbs. Both cats were regular visitors inside the development team’s studio. “Having real cats under our noses throughout development was, of course, extremely helpful in many ways,” the blog post read.
Early reviews of the game have been largely positive: the Washington Post dubbed it a meow-sterpiece, and the Verge called him “One of the best games of the year so far.” But some critics have also said that the game is not always “land on your feet”, so to speak, and its charm can quickly wear off.
Still, much of the biggest praise has been lavished on how well the developers captured the feeling of being a cat, from the way the strays in the game stretch when they get up, rub against each other, scratch trees or throw bottles nonchalantly. they walk by, to the fact that there is a “dedicated meow button”.
Perhaps that’s why “Stray” has been like catnip for gamers to share on social media, home of the cat meme. After all, there are millions of cat videos on YouTube, and a Google search for “cat memes” brings up around 198 million results. (In fact, a cat in Japan named Motimaru broke the Guinness World Record for the most viewed cat on YouTube last August with 619,586,260 views.)
There is even a growing body of YouTube videos aimed at cats (also known as “cat TV”), which features images of birds and squirrels to keep felines occupied while they’re home alone. Maybe now cat owners can also leave the “Stray” loading screen or open the game tutorial for their fur babies.