Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties Review

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Graphics: 7.0
Sound : 5.0
Gameplay : 6.0
Multiplayer : N/A
Overall : 6.0
Review by Niles Doubleday
This well-meaning platformer might just claw and scratch its way into your heart. Wait, never mind. In the tale of two kitties Garfield hasn’t yet learned the most basic of feline skills. Our furry friend finds himself only able to jump and meow. This game brings platforming games to their most basic level, with no means to dispatch the few baddies in the game; they are reduced to nothing more than moving obstacles to be jumped over. The simple game mechanics might turn many of you off, and for good reason. On the flip side if you’re looking to purchase a gift for some budding young gamer in your life then this may be just what you’re looking for.

Graphics and Sound

The graphics are nothing to write home about but I feel they are not poor enough to detract from the gameplay. They are done in a somewhat unique way, in that the levels are all 3-D but you’re forced along a 2-D path. You only need to press the left or right buttons on the game pad even though you will see Garfield take corners and the camera sweep through the areas following Garfield’s sometimes very twisty path. The textures are all pretty generic and the polygon counts are low. Granted it is on the DS but I still feel they could have pushed the envelope a bit farther.

The sound is not very good and rather generic. I usually ended up turning the sound off because the tunes add very little to the gameplay and I’d rather listen to something a bit less repetitive than the music and effects coming from the game.

Gameplay

While the game mechanics are very simple, the level design is overall pretty good. Each level has food strewn about it which you can collect as you go. Many of the food items are placed in easy to get locations along the main path of the levels. Some however are in hard to reach locations providing a bit of a challenge to those interested in mastering each of the levels. There are the standard platformer staples such as springboards to make you jump higher and rolling boulders to force you to run a bit quicker through sections of the game. There are certain levels which require you to use the touchpad to locate something of interest in a static image, for example a hole in a fence or the letter at the beginning that gets the whole “story” going. These levels I found to be uncalled for as they do nothing but detract from the platforming experience. It seemed like the developers felt the need to include something that used the stylus and tacked these portions on at the end.

The game's story line loosely follows the similarly named movie. The goal of the game is to get to the castle to eat dinner with the prince. It’s a shame there isn’t a bit more replay value because the game is over very quickly and with nine lives to complete each level, they seem to fly right by. The only reason to play this game over is the aforementioned food collecting and also a timed mode in which you’re timed as you dash through each level. Unfortunately, I find it unlikely that players will feel the urge to play through these levels again to master them.

Conclusion

Young gamers may really enjoy this game, but I didn’t. The gameplay is too simple making the game downright easy and, in my opinion, not worth the price of admission. That being said, if you’re on a long ride and you’re tired of everything else in your collection (and this game happens to be in the car), give it a try. It has good level design and its low difficulty is great for making yourself feel awesome at games.