Title: Gato Roboto
Publisher: Devolver Digital
Genre: Adventure, Action, Platformer, Arcade
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Audience: PEGI 3
Release Date: 30/05/2019
Price: £7.19 – Rapid Reviews UK were very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
What the Developers Say
Pounce inside of your cozy armored mech and set off on a dangerous trek through an alien underworld full of irritable creatures and treacherous obstacles in a valiant effort to save your stranded captain and his crashed spaceship. Tiptoe outside the friendly confines of your technological marvel and follow your feline instincts through tight tunnels and mysterious waterways to scavenge for new weapons and gear. Adventure awaits the most curious of cats in Gato Roboto!
Gato Roboto is a Metroidvania style side-scrolling action game with striking black and white visuals. The game casts you as a mech-piloting cat attempting to save yourself and your master after crash-landing on a world with a long-abandoned research facility. Does this game live up to its unique premise? Find out in this Rapid Review!
Gato Roboto begins with your starship crashing on an alien planet, which is the site of a former research facility. In the crash, the pilot, Gary, is pinned to his seat. He sends you, his faithful Kitty, in search of help. You’re able to find a security mech quite quickly, which gives you a weapon and increased resilience. From there, the real game begins.
Your mech is equipped with a standard ranged weapon as well as a suit of upgradable weapons and tools as you progress. This will be familiar to anyone who’s played a game in the Metroidvania genre, and Gato does little to shift this paradigm. While this game features the power growth that the genre is known for, there is very little of the backtracking you might expect. This works in Gato’s favour, as it is always propelling you forward. Each area is small enough that you can enjoy exploring its nooks and crannies rather than being exhausted by them.
While the game only offers 4-5 hours of gameplay, it is fun throughout. This isn’t an especially hard game through its majority, though I did find that the boss battles sometimes felt a little long and tedious. That said, my biggest complaint about Gato Roboto is the difficulty spike it throws your way in its final area. The game features a drawn-out sequence that requires more proficiency with its mechanics than needed to that point. It only took me a few tries, but it felt frustrating in a way that the rest of the game did not.
The story is also quite barebones. While not bad, it is simple, and the ending left me scratching my head. This is a minor gripe though, Gato Roboto is about its gameplay, and it truly delivers on that front. By the end of the game, you wield an impressive arsenal, and bringing all of it to bear in unison is satisfying. Even more, the game features sequences in other vehicles, and also as the cat outside of the suit to add variety.
Audio & Visuals
As noted, Gato Roboto uses a two-colour palette to delivery (initially) stark black and white visuals. This gives the game a well-earned retro-aesthetic that manages to impress without feeling like a gimmick. This is impressive in a sea of pixel art games, and the character that comes across in the UI and animation sells the look. Beyond this, the game also offers unlockable colour palettes that you can switch through throughout the game. This means that you can swap the black and white colours for a look more reminiscent of a Gameboy or Virtual Boy. There are 15 different palettes in all, and being able to swap between them allows you to spice up the already appealing visuals at your leisure.
In terms of audio, Gato leaves something to be desired. The soundtrack is in no way terrible, but after being spoiled by games like Celeste, I was hoping for a more memorable score. Instead, the game provides some decent, if forgettable chiptunes and passable sounds effects. Thankfully, the game’s shortcomings in sound are made up for and more in Gato’s gameplay.
When it comes to replayability, Gato constantly displays a game timer when in your suit to track playtime. This is the perfect speed running tool, and the game even features an achievement for completing it in under an hour. Other than this, there is little reason to revisit the game. Given Gato’s low price, I found this acceptable.
Gato Roboto is a delightful Metroidvania despite some tedious boss battles and a frustrating difficulty spike near the end. This is a game that fans of Metroidvanias will love. Even lovers of action games should give Gato Roboto a look.
Rapid Reviews UK Rating
You can purchase Gato Roboto from the Nintendo eShop at the following link: https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Gato-Roboto-1567687.html