(PS Mobile) Aqua Kitty: Milk Mine Defender

Discussion in 'Com. Reviews' started by Freelance, Apr 27, 2014.

  1. Freelance

    Freelance PSLS Level: Newbie

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    Being more of a dog fan, my first thought upon hearing this game was "It should be called Aqua Doggies," but little did I know how utterly -cute- this game was going to be.

    Although arcade-y games such as Aqua Kitty really have no need for a plot, I feel like I must mention the plot to this one. Basically what happened is that far in the future, the world's milk supply has ran out. To a cat, it probably amounted to pure torture. Ironically however, real cats can be lactose intolerant. Go fig. At any rate, all was not lost, for the cat scientists (yes, there are cat scientists!) have discovered that the ocean floor is actually bursting with milk. Who would've thunk it, huh? All the cats have to do is overcome their fear of water, swim down to the ocean bottom in scuba suits, and start drilling away for free flowing milk.

    Sound really easy and simple, yes? Well, no. It turns out that the ocean is a very dangerous place, especially for kittehs, and they don't seem to want intruders in their watery domain. What's more, ocean dwelling aliens want to beam these miner kittehs up in their spaceships (that also acts like a sub apparently) and whisk them off to space to put in their intergalatic zoos. Okay, so I lied about the zoos, but at least I didn't say they were beamed up to be skinned alive and eaten. The morality rate for these space kittehs must be abysmally small, but hey, -somebody- has to do it, for THE MILK MUST FLOW!

    So that's pretty much the plot. Isn't it the most weirdest, most inventive story anyone has ever come up with? The plot may be weird, but the gameplay sure isn't.

    You star as the tough, one-eyed patch-wearing cat piloting a submarine as you defend the miner cats from the denizens of the deep. You move left and right in a wrap-around screen, and can switch directions on the fly. Blast everything that moves, but be sure to be on the lookout for special critters that will attempt to capture a poor kitteh and whisk it off to space while you're busy trying to keep yourself alive. If it manages to escape, then the mining station it was attending to explodes. If all the kittehs are captured, or you get blown up, then it's game over.

    If all this sounds awfully familiar to you, then it should. Aqua Kitty is actually an updated version of an old classic arcade game called Defender, which was made by Williams Electronics in 1980, and it was you you in a spaceship protecting the astronauts from aliens.

    In essence, if you loved Defender, I don't see how you could possibly hate Aqua Kitty. The gameplay is the same, but with cats and water. The developers, Tikipod LTD, chose to use a graphical style similar to Amiga games of yore. All of you may be too young to remember the Amiga, but it was a brand of computers by Commodore in the 80's and 90s. I've never owned an Amiga, but man, some of its games sure had really colourful sprites. Aqua Kitty successfully captures the look of a classic Amiga game. Every sprite looks rich with colours and detail. The cats look so adorable as well, especially when blown up, like the below screenshot shows:

    [​IMG]
    Caption: Dawwwwww!!!!

    The backdrops show a remarkable sense of 'alien-ness' when you see the stuff lying there at the ocean bottom. Strange plants dominate the landscape which seem to indicate the game takes place on an alien planet or a seriously mutated Earth. You may also see deserted cities that look like they've been bombarded upon. There's a whole backstory here that will forever remain a mystery.

    The creatures that the submarine tough cat has to face aren't your ordinary ocean critters, oh no. These are mechanical critters. Are they aliens, or normal ocean dwellers? Who knows. All you need to know is that you need to blast them. They come in many shapes and sizes, and most have the ability to shoot back at you from the front and behind, so you need to be careful. They come in waves, and in order to win the level, you must destroy every single one of them. You can see they all are from the convenient map situated at the top. Red dots signify the ones you really need to watch out for, for these jellyfish-type creatures are the ones who want to steal your fellow kittehs away. Make these your top priority. Although you can still win the level without saving all your fellow cats (you need to save at least one), how can you possibly live with yourself, knowing full well that you let your feline friends get abducted to spend the rest of their lives in some hideous intergalatic zoo? For shame!!!

    Your main blaster is what you'll be using most often. You also have a Turbo gun that fires faster and is more powerful. It has its own meter however so if it runs dry, you must wait until it powers up again. As you go through the stages, the meter gets increasingly larger so you can use it more often. It's perfect against the vertical purple enemies which have higher defenses than other enemies. There are three power ups you can acquire to increase your chances for survival. They appear has an enemy that you must shoot to gain them. One gives you a pod of 2 additional cats that lets you shoot more beams. The 2nd powerup drops a bomb. Run into it and it explodes, killing everything in its range. The third is a heart that refills part of your life bar. What powerup you get depends on how high (or low) the enemy is when defeated so plan your shot accordingly.

    There's two modes of play in Aqua Kitty. The main mode is a series of interconnected levels. Make it to the end and defeat the big boss to win. The other mode is more of a survival-type thing called Endless, where it's just you against an ever-increasing horde of enemies. There are no miner cats to save in this mode, which is disappointing because I miss having them around.

    [​IMG]
    Caption: This game makes cartoon cats look adorably cute.

    The music is really nice and full of pumping tunes that keeps you coming back for more.

    There are two cons to this game, however. The first few stages are easy enough, but the further you go, the harder it becomes. By the last few stages, you're literally swamped with enemies and you'd be hard pressed to destroy them all while also keeping track of the jellyfish to save the miners. It's fast, frantic and incredibly difficult to save all the kittehs, but it is not impossible. Whether that is considered a con depends on the individual. Some people love the challenge and old arcade games, like Defender which this game emulates, often are difficult to begin with. Other people may not like the difficulty spike and will consider it a con.

    The other con isn't really a con and it's not the games' fault, but as the Vita version was the first version that the game came out on, it doesn't have all the new features that the later platforms have (PC, 360, etc). The new features included a Gradius-style survival mode but with miner kitties, 2 player co op, more weapons, tweaked graphics, etc. I've played the PC version and the new additions make the game even better. It's a shame the Vita version will never get the updated version.

    [​IMG]
    Caption: Gameplay screen.

    As it stands, Aqua Kitty is a great throwback to the classic arcade games of old, with pleasing music, eye-popping art and good, fast paced gameplay. It is also my favourite PSM game on the Vita. You're doing yourself a disservice if you don't buy it NAO.

    Easy controls
    Successfully captures spirit of classic arcade games
    Wonderful sprite work that resembles an Amiga game
    Great tunes
    Good gameplay
    Imaginative story


    May be too hard for some
    Doesn't have the new additions from other platforms
    No dogs in it
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2014
    BigPete7978 and stolenxnametag like this.
  2. stolenxnametag

    stolenxnametag PSLS Level: Kraken PSLS Ambassador

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    That looks kinda fun! How much is it? I could see me killing time at work with this.
     
  3. Freelance

    Freelance PSLS Level: Newbie

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    It's $3.49 on NA PSN.
     
  4. stolenxnametag

    stolenxnametag PSLS Level: Kraken PSLS Ambassador

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    Thanks, I might give a shot this week if I don't get too lost in playing Blitzball on FFX.
     
  5. Lifewish

    Lifewish 중재자 Staff Member

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    Actually looks like it could be some good fun.
     
  6. Dan Oravasaari

    Dan Oravasaari PSLS Level: Bronze Staff Member

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    Best.Title.Ever.
     
    stolenxnametag likes this.
  7. Jacky

    Jacky PSLS Level: Silver

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    I still find the title for this game funny.
     

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