Catmaze Nintendo Switch Review
Catmaze is an action platform similar to Metroid, Castlevania, and Hollow Knight. Based on Slavic mythology, you play as Alesta, who must try and convince Cat Bayn to reconsider and make an exception for her.
The game itself is your standard Metroidvania style game. The world of Yav, where the game takes place, is vast, with different landscapes and areas to explore. This is where the game punishes the players with a lack of fast travel options. Bouncing from one end of the map to another is highly frustrating and time-consuming, especially having to go back and forth for specific tasks.
The need for fast travel is a significant component lacking in Catmaze, especially with how complicated the map is. Having to fight off and travel from one end to another takes the fun out of the experience. The unbalanced map layout and lack of fast travel options create dangerous situations of trying not to die or having to restart from a previous save.
The weapons system is structured to help you advance to the following stages or blocked-off areas. The flaws also tie into how frustrating the lack of fast travel affects the game. The familiars you use as weapons have their unique powers. You have two options use the familiars as long-range, which consumes your magic power, or physical attacks.
Catmaze, biggest flaw is trying to incorporate too much. As fun as the game was, it could have benefited from utilizing the less is more approach. Including Slavic mythology in the game, especially uncommon ones, help build the unique visuals and story, but with so much going on, it gets muddled and sometimes an afterthought.
Overall, Catmaze is a good, enjoyable game. The flaws do not take away from the overall experience, as it is easy to get lost for a few hours exploring the world of Yev. The lack of fast travel and variation for some weapons does not hinder gameplay and just adds more playing time.