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access_time July 5, 2020 at 6:00 AM in Reviews by Kristin Mitra

Review | A Fresh Look at Catherine: Full Body on Switch

With Atlus’ Catherine: Full Body releasing on the Nintendo Switch, Switch owners will soon be in for a treat. I wanted to review Catherine from the perspective of someone with zero experience with the original game or other iterations.

Full disclosure: I didn’t know about Catherine: Full Body until the announcement that it was coming to Switch. It previously released on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita in 2019 as a remaster of the 2011 game Catherine. For our thoughts on that version, see David’s original review of Catherine: Full Body here.

Catherine: Full Body follows the story of Vincent Brooks, an engineer. One night, after a mysterious dream, he wakes up next to a woman he has never seen before, without any recollection of the night before. Amidst his confusion, he realizes he’s cheated on his long-time girlfriend, Katherine. The following night, he grills his friends, trying to figure out what happened the night before. In the evenings, a series of nightmares plague Vincent with a singular motive: just keep climbing to survive.

The gameplay mechanics make a point of summiting a mountain of blocks by moving them one at a time to form a path. Think old-school Q*Bert but absolutely terrifying, not straightforward, and with the additional risk of a violent, terrifying death. At the end of each stage, Vincent makes his way into a confessional to answer a question, before taking off (no, literally, like a spaceship) into the next stage of the night.

Outside of block-climbing gameplay, the experience of Catherine: Full Body is absolutely phenomenal. With an M rating, this puzzle and story combo is not for those looking for a lighthearted adventure. In reality, it’s for someone ready to delve deep into a mature and almost haunting plot line coupled with a little bit of nightmare fuel. The dialogue beautifully draws out the story, creating an engaging narrative that compliments the darker themes. In addition to beautiful graphics and a captivating soundtrack, the experience of Catherine: Full Body is like no other. Visually, the game just looks beautiful. The slightly hazy graphics give the game a dreamy feel as you progress, making nights at the Stray Sheep feel familiar. On the other hand, the crispness in animation illustrates an evolving and emotional story.

Overall, Catherine: Full Body is a unique experience for someone new to the franchise. It’s easily worthy enough to add some variety to your Switch library. Engaging dialogue, the feeling of your choices mattering, and the “oh sh*t” that comes with every dark twist this game takes will bring players to a whole new level of gameplay. With several endings and tons of replayability, don’t let this one slip by.

Final Score: 9.5 out of 10

GotGame is on OpenCritic, check out our reviews here.

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