Published on September 17th, 2018 | by Joseph Saulnier0
Claws of Furry
When I first heard of the concept of Claws of Furry, I was excited. Mostly because I love side-scrollers and who doesn’t love the thought of Ninja Cats. When I first saw it, I thought the art-style was spot on, and it looked like it would be an awesome multiplayer experience as you and a friend, or friends, just stop the living daylights out of your enemies. Unfortunately, this did not play out as I had hoped and what we end up with is gameplay that is majorly unbalanced.
When you first start the game, you go through a brief tutorial to learn what you’re supposed to be doing. The story begins with a giant robot dog capturing the dojo Master. From here there three different modes, or difficulties, in Arcade, Rogue, and Pussycat. Arcade is what you expect, a horde style mode where you try to defeat as many enemies as possible. Rogue is your primary mode that takes you back to the very beginning should you die, whereas Pussycat will let you start at the level you were on.
To get a good feel for the gameplay I started off with Rogue, thinking it wouldn’t be too difficult for an old pro like me. After about 5 minutes, I was met with repetitive combat and baffling level design led me to leave this mode thinking, I can only imagine anyone getting very far in this game is with a friend or three helping them along the way. You would not want to tackle some of these levels on your own more than once in one sitting.
You see a few different rat like creatures on the first level, which is not too difficult, and you get to proceed to the next level upon defeating all the enemies. Pretty typical to this point. On the third level or so, you meet your first boss: a small mouse, controlling what looks to be a much larger, more muscular rat. If you’re a fan of repetition, this game will really shine for you here.
The idea is that you need to jump on top of the big rat to hit the mouse until you defeat him and move on to the second stage of the battle. At this point, the big rat will bust off his shirt and one of three things can happen: he will try to charge you, he will try to punch you, or he will call his little minions to attack you. Despite all the issues to this point, this is where the game starts to lose me.
The only way to beat Giant Rat (as we will call him moving forward) is to charge up your super to use against him. Well, okay. Not the only way. But when your normal hits make such a paltry dent in Giant Rat’s health pool and you don’t want to spend what could be like an hour trying to defeat this guy, you go with what works better. So instead, I focused on the little minions to build up my super, which would be more damage to Giant Rat, but still not much. Rinse and repeat about 10 to 12 times, and you will have defeated your first boss in Claws of Furry. I hope you had fund so far, because this boss battle sets the precedent for the rest of the game.
In addition the frustrating boss battles, enemy placement throughout the levels was irritating at best. At a point in the game you get to a level with crocodiles that will jump straight up out of the water from below to try to hit you. Par for the course for a game like this, but there are also other enemies on the platforms that jump horizontally to try and get you as well. Again, not an issue, except when you jump over the enemies on the platforms the camera will not show the area beneath with the crocs, so you could come landing down right into the jaws of death without ever having been able to see what you were getting into when you took the leap. In a group setting, this can be quite fun, but solo you are looking at a headache trying to navigate through this in one go.
The game lacked any real substance. You enter a level, defeat a bunch of enemies (or a boss), and that all she wrote. Jump and claw, jump and claw. It’s not a very good sign when the main mechanic of the game gets old in the first 5-10 minutes. The only thing that really saves the game, though it may not be enough, is the controls. You feel in prefect control of the character with each move you make, never feeling twitchy or loose. I never felt like the game wouldn’t let me do exactly what I wanted it to do. It’s a shame the quality of the rest of the game didn’t meet the controls.
Ninja Cats beating up their mortal enemies is a great concept, but not executed all that well in Claws of Furry. While I was glad to have finished a level or boss, I never felt any sense of completion or elation I get with other games in the genre. The best experience you will have out of this game is multiplayer, which is unfortunate for those of us who enjoy playing solo as well.
2 stars out of 5
DISCLAIMER: a free copy of Claws of Furry was provided to SKNR for the purpose of this review.