Catherine Demo Impressions (PS3/360)

What can a person gleam from a demo of a game like Atlus’ upcoming Catherine actually few tidbits but how was the experience, a big fat meh. A demo should tantalize, give just enough to make the player want more and cater to the strength of the game. If it’s a demo of an MMORPG, give players enough levels to see the world and be immersed, an FPS demo should whore out the graphic engine and controls with something big and flashy and for puzzlers show off the bloody puzzle.

Catherine‘s demo starts off with a quote from Shakespeare and warning bells are already sounding, ‘cinematic, no gameplay and boring. Just marvelous’. I mused to myself. I was right about two of the three, it was cinematic and boring but it did give you gameplay, a whole four minutes worth. The rest of the time, which took me a bit over thirty minutes to finish, was cut scenes. I would have done something in the middle, a piece of the story that would be tantalizing enough to make the player want to find out what happened before and what’s going to happen next, but the demo gave you the beginning and it was sort of dull.

Catherine ScreenshotNow for the mechanics of gameplay. Boy did I have a mountain to work with. Oh yes those four minutes of puzzling sure did feel satisfying and beating them so fast just made feel on top of the world; not. Seriously though, the puzzling is quite solid giving you a trippy visuals and the basics of what you will be climbing in the game. Overall the puzzling reminded me of Crush, which is a PSP title where you manipulate the level to get everything in the shortest amount of time.

If a demo is done right it can open a new game to a player base not familiar with it, done wrong and it might kill the game. Catherine’s demo is a meh. A bit too cut scene intensive for a short demo but the actual gameplay is solid enough and shows something interesting about the game. I may be a bit bias towards demos. I don’t hate them. It’s just I haven’t played one that wasn’t utterly forgettable except for the Final Fantasy VII demo. Personally, I’m still picking up the game just for the sheer concept of the thing: a puzzler with a persona-like social system about infidelity and commitment issues. Yes, please.

Music Credits: Catherine Soundtrack “It’s a Golden Show” – Composed by: Shoji Meguro, Kenichi Tsuchiya, Atsushi Kitajoh, Pablo de Sarasate – Arranged by: Kenichi Tsuchiya – Performed by: L-VOKAL

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