Gato Roboto (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Gabriel Jones 04.06.2019

Review for Gato Roboto on Nintendo Switch

Somewhere, in the furthest reaches of the galaxy, Gary and his pet cat Kiki are on patrol. They receive a distress signal from an abandoned research facility. After receiving the go-ahead from mission control, Gary prepares to land. Unfortunately, his attempt at a smooth landing is thwarted by his mischievous kitty. Stranded on a hostile planet, and trapped in the confines of his own ship, he'll have to rely on Kiki to locate a security Mech and investigate the origin of the distress signal. This is Gato Roboto for the Nintendo Switch... because "Kiki's Security Service" doesn't quite roll off the tongue.

When it comes to videogame criticism, most people aren't too concerned with a title's artistic merit. They don't care to know if the interactive software they're eyeing can accurately explain the human condition, or if it's capable of touching them emotionally. The only thing that matters is that it works. Much like bookshelves or microwaves, a game's value is determined by whether or not it serves its intended purpose. With this somewhat cynical outlook in mind, let's explore Gato Roboto. Here's a perfectly adequate action-adventure title that checks all of the necessary boxes. Anybody who purchases this product is guaranteed two-to-three hours of enjoyment.

Combining elements of both Metroid and Blaster Master, Kiki's tale mostly revolves around piloting a Mech and shooting through anything that gets in the way. A handful of upgrades allow her ride to fire missiles, double-jump, and dash through obstacles. Optional rewards, such as health-extensions, are tucked away in various corners of each area. It's pretty standard stuff, though progress is sometimes halted by passages that are just too narrow for a bulky suit. In other words, the good kitty will have to leave the safety of her Mech to crawl through crevices, scamper up walls, or go for a little swim. These situations can be pretty dangerous, because this cat doesn't have nine lives. A single hit will boot Kiki back to the last save-point. Otherwise, the only real threat tends to be the boss battles.

Screenshot for Gato Roboto on Nintendo Switch

Now bear in mind, the climatic encounters aren't really that tough. They just require the player to memorize patterns, wait for openings, and avoid taking a lot of damage. When dealing with regular minions and the obstacle-filled hallways they inhabit, surprisingly little effort is required. The save points are fairly frequent, and it's not as if baddies fill the screen with projectiles. Exploration is almost entirely stress-free, which creates a slight difficulty imbalance. Since minor foes don't drop currency or healing items, there really isn't much of an incentive to fight. Clearly, the best way to play is to do as little shooting as possible, relying entirely on the suit's ease of movement to zoom past encounters.

In short, the controls are really satisfying. The Mech is fun to move around in, and there are a few clever ideas that are sure to please speed-runners. For example, firing a missile causes recoil, which can be used to give Kiki's jumps a little more distance. During a double-jump, the Mech will spin into a ball. This allows the cat to bounce off of an enemy while doing a bit of damage. Mastering these techniques can help to give any subsequent play-throughs a little more spice. One of the other smart design-decisions this title employs is that missiles are technically unlimited. Firing too many at once will cause the launcher to overheat, but it's only a temporary setback. This feature allows you the opportunity to get creative with your missile usage, rather than saving them for destructible walls or bosses.

Aesthetically, Gato Roboto's most pleasing aspect isn't the cute kitty, nor is it the distinctive 8-bit visuals. In this critic's opinion, it's the soundtrack that really stands out. Each area is filled with atmospheric jams that really know how to catch a hold of one's ear. The boss battles feature tunes that are appropriately intense. Perhaps the reason the OST works so well is that it contrasts heavily with the graphics. There aren't any NES-styled chip-tunes to be heard here. A few pieces will remind many of Karl Flodin's great work in The Aquatic Adventure of the Last Human. All in all, this is really good music. Just be sure to drop the effect volume a few notches, so the near-constant gunfire doesn't drown out everything else.

Screenshot for Gato Roboto on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

Gato Roboto is a bite-sized trek that's sufficiently programmed for the right amount of enjoyment. With enough charm to last a Sunday afternoon, Kiki's escapade is sure to leave behind a pleasant memory or three. Just be sure to keep expectations in check. It's unlikely that hardcore gamers will get the fierce action and stress-inducing scenarios that they crave, while the casual crowd might be a little put off by the short play-time and lack of extra content. Still, there is a bit of depth to uncover. Skilfully navigating the research facility is a reward in itself. All in all, whoever decides to pick this title is bound to get their money's worth, and that's reason enough to check it out.

Developer

Doinksoft

Publisher

Devolver Digital

Genre

2D Platformer

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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