Catastronauts! - Review
Catastronauts is a (inter)stellar game which combines the fast packed and incredibly enjoyable and addictive game play with the out of this world theme, of well, being out of this world. So it's time to sprint around your star touching space ship and fight back against the evils of the galaxy. Grab a buddy, cause this is one for the co-op sofa kings.
Let me pre-face this by stating Overcooked was my Game of the Year for 2016. The cute-imagery (tones of Animal Crossing blended with goofiness), frantic gameplay (I actually can't draw comparisons) and soundtrack (squeaky soundeffects with gorgeously created backing) tied together into a perfect little package to play with others on the same screen. In a world where most 'multiplayer' is online based, it was amazingly crafted into an empty void of 'couch co-op'. So frankly, if you haven't played it, go play Overcooked (1 and 2).
So when the news hit that a space-esc game was being created in the same vein, but with overtones of FTL mixed in (a rougelike which every PC gamer probably should have in their Steam catalog), my heart skipped a beat. When my review code hit and I was away from my PS4, every second was agony waiting to play. So after a (very brief) download, I booted straight into the story with my Star Travelling partner; my wife; at my side on the couch.
The similar looking asthetic rang true from the opening screen, with the cartoony-silly looking characters and bright colours. The story line revolving around the capture of your general and the fight to retrieve the data he was carr- I mean save his life. Yep, as the AI reminds you this is not about saving the corps data, of course not, human life is the upmost important! I have a slight gripe that the story is shown in a sketched limited moving cut scenes, but I could just be missing the voice effects of the Onion King.
After a typical tutorial, you're beamed into the overworld, a linear space ship split into sections of 5 levels, 4 to pick from and a final one. As my second in command (my words, not hers) put it, very 'Crash Bandicoot 3-esc'. The levels start off simply, teaching each way to use the ship weaponary, how to repair and remove threats and the complexity begins to ramp up slowly as it all combines ogether. At no point, as per the predessecors, did it feel too tough or difficult. There were a few stages where it took multiple (ok, a lot) of a attempts to three star it, but at no point did I want to throw my controller at a wall.
The love of this game comes from the 'coach play' in my eyes. Laughing, panicking, frustrating together is key to the enjoyment of this high paced game. Another star of a game, one to instantly pick up if you enjoyed Overcooked and to pick up if you havent. 8/10