Two fluffy animals claw their way to save a vast open world of fun.
The original Cat Quest provided some of the most fun times I've ever had. Myself and a mate would go through the game without stopping, and the memory of it brings a smile to my face. Cat Quest is a quirky and lovely action RPG that I found myself heavily invested in. We enjoyed the puns, simple combat, and overall intrigue of the product. Now with a sequel on the horizon, did I enjoy it equally as much? Well yes. It was certainly great.
In Cat Quest II, you control both a cat and a dog. These rulers of their respective empires have been flung away with tyranny having taken over. While the ultimate goal is to regain their thrones, there is a lot that goes on in building up to that point. The charm comes from the characters you meet, who deliver their lines with care. Some serve as nothing more than givers of quests, but developer The Gentlebros managed to give everyone a distinct role. Usually, I tend to focus on the action and the task at hand, but the puns would really break me. In a good way, of course.
The meat of the experience, however, is the action RPG gameplay. When it comes to controlling our fluffy friends, not much has changed. The player will roll, walk and attack with the same impact. There’s nothing wrong with that, though, as the original did its job extremely well. You could be fooled into thinking that the game hasn't added many mechanics, which is only sort of true. The brand new weapon types are a godsend, allowing you to use dual-handed weapons and magic wands. The former in particular are fantastic, allowing you to trade speed for power. As I am guy who relies on speed, adjusting to the flow of this style felt refreshing. If you are with a buddy, you can even combine certain strats.
And that is a point I have to make: the game never loses sight of being enjoyable. While your character has health bars and has to deal with enemies of various sizes, your punishment for failure is simply being pushed back a little. When working together, players can easily revive or heal each other, if they have the right tools at hand. When it comes to combat, you have one weapon and then four extra spells that will force you to use mana wisely. You can upgrade every possible option, try out different weapons, and find your own way to play. The only thing that made me feel ho-hum is your AI-based buddy. While it will attack and help you out, I felt I was doing better alone in single-player mode. It made certain bosses that teensy bit harder, which came with some annoyances.
Back to the positives, Cat Quest II just glides at a nice pace. The game now has two distinct worlds to explore, but that never feels like a hindrance. The maps offer densely packed overworlds with towns, characters, and enemies. They are also dungeons to find in which you will have to fight your way out and gather some important loot. Obviously for the dungeons and quests, you will need to keep your character's level in mind, but I found it almost daring to go into them while being underleveled. Most of the time I came out unscathed, due to having a sound strategy coming in. That is, I believe, the beauty of Cat Quest II. It isn't hard to get into, but if you want to dive deeply into its systems, you totally can.
Cat Quest II runs and looks great on Switch. The colorful visuals shine nicely on the system and highlight its continuous world. This isn't a huge surprise as the previous game performed just as nicely. In addition to being visually attractive, Cat Quest II has a nice selection of new music that really meshes well with the feline adventure.
Cat Quest II is a great improvement over the original. The game offers a teensy bit more variety and a bigger world, so it starts trucking almost instantly. I do wish that your AI co-op buddy was a bit more competent, but that’s a minor gripe. All in all, though, the time flew by and the smile stayed on my face through almost the entire playthrough. This action RPG promises a wonderful treat if you're looking for a pretty dense game.