Review: Blade Kitten


When I initially wrote about Blade Kitten by Atari and Krome Studios in my news articles, I just knew that I wanted to play it, so when I was asked by Freeform Communication to review the game for the Xbox 360, well, of course you all know I just had to be the right person to do it. So find a nice quiet corner, and enjoy my Blade Kitten review.

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The game starts off with Kit Ballard, who is a rather cute pink-haired anime cat like character, a bit like my avatar, except she is a half-feline, half-human bounty hunter who is on a mission to find a dangerous criminal called Terra-Li. Now Terra-Li is located in a small planet known as Hollow Wish, but before you head on over to this crazy planet you have to meet Justice Kreel, now Kit isn’t that fond of Justice, not only is he a rival bounty hunter, he also destroyed Kitโ€™s ship and stole the key. Now this key is no ordinary key, this key holds all the information of the bounties, and Kit really wants it back, and she will go to any lengths to get what it is she after.

Now with Kit being half-feline half-human this inevitably means that she boasts the abilities of both species, which brings an exciting and unique twist to this cute 2-D release. But saying that this is definately an old school platform which makes the game that bit more special because it definately isn’t something you seem to see that often these days, which is one of the main reasons I knew I was going to enjoy the game so much.

Now at the beginning stages of the game you’re introduced to the basic concepts of movement, which isn’t really a great deal to take in, especially as far as the controls are concerned. The controls are pretty much what you would expect from a platform game, run left, run right, jump, grab and attack, simple in theory I suppose. And all these controls come quickly into effect too, especially when you are instantly faced with some stiff opposition, the soldiers of Hollow Wish. Believe me too when I tell you that these soldiers mean business, and they go all out to stop you in your tracks. So you must do whatever it takes to battle your way through, and with all the acrobatic skills and weaponry that are on offer, Kit soon learns that the soldiers really aren’t upto that much, especially once you have mastered the cool slide element that she poses, the game really does become alot easier.

The platforms to the game are enormous, and you really do have to stop occasionally and just look around, because there are so many hidden areas to the game, and you do have to find these in order to find the Hex pieces that are generously hidden around. Hex is the games currency, and you will find these scattered all over the game, and some are worth more than others and are quite tricky to get too, you just have to stop and think for a minute. Just remember dont get lazy, these Hex pieces are needed, because you can use these to upgrade Kit’s weapons, costumes and general abilities, which does’nt really help you out i’m afraid to say, they just make the game look better. Now with all these Hex pieces to collect Kit needs someone to help her, mainly because some of them are just in places that simply cant be reached, so thats where Skiffy comes into effect. Now Skiffy is Kit’s sidekick and you can use him to do all the things that Kit simply cant do, like operate switches or collect awkward Hex pieces.

Once you do start getting through the levels, you do tend to get rather bored, and after a few hours of playing Blade Kitten it also does make you sit back and wonder, where is this game actually going, you just seem to be battling all these soldiers, and jumping from here to there, but not actually getting anywhere, and the humour of the game that seemed so bright and fun at the start, did start to become tiresome and slightly annoying. Even the interaction with other characters after a while was pretty pointless.

The game does however break up the boredom slightly with a few vehicle-type levels where you are riding a Chocobo type animal, but where are all the big battles? There are only a couple of major fights and the story does lose its steam about half-way through the campaign, which isn’t exactly epic in length to begin with. There isn’t really much reason to come back either, except to collect money, other than that there is very little to keep gamers coming back for more. Now don’t get me wrong Blade Kitten is a very good game, especially the visuals and the art style of the title, these will keep the game going strong on the Xbox Lve Arcade Marketplace if nothing else will. The colorful levels, characters and overall quirkiness of the world are definitely eye-catching. The frame rate takes a hit here and there, but it doesn’t really interfere with gameplay.

Blade Kitten definatley packs enough charm to make it worthy of a purchase for fans of the series, or action fans that enjoy the eccentric platformer. Kit is not going to become a household name, I doubt and I wouldn’t be surprised if the second episode even becomes available, which is a shame considering the cliffhanger ending, which I’m afraid you will have to discover for yourself, by downloading the game from the Marketplace.

7/10.

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