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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Game Review: Downfall (2009)/ The Cat Lady (2012)

Downfall (2009)
Developed By: Screen 7

Summary: After a terrible storm leaves Joe and his wife, Ivy, stranded in a strange town, they check into a hotel where soon Ivy goes missing. Soon, Joe is left to find out the secrets behind the town they're saying at, the hotel's strange residents and his own all hopes to also find his wife. 

My Thoughts: Downfall was fantastic and as an avid horror fan, I am in love with everything about Downfall because it is a horror fan's epic wish. Although Downfall has it's issues, in the end I was horrified, shocked, satisfied and even a bit disgusted. Downfall has the perfect mixture of story telling and game play as in it knows when to let the player just play and interact with everything in the game and then it knows when to let the player sit and dissect everything that's going on, unlike The Cat Lady. And believe me, there's a LOT going on. 

When starting the game, you first notice the artsy, sketchy, pixel art style and it was absolutely beautiful in my opinion because that's how life is.Although, not as good looking as The Cat Lady, it's not a big deal considering this game was older. Going on in the game, the story picks up immediately and you're just drawn in the game. It's mentally challenging and I don't mean it's hard. I mean it's a toll on your mental health! The story and message that goes along in Downfall is just...Wow! It's madness, in a good way and everything seems simple at first, but everything soon just turns into a giant shit show. From killing cats to full blown murdering people, the whole point of this game, you think that all this is supposed to amount to some sort of fulfilling ending and it did, but not in the way you expected. It was like a punch in the face. 

The main part of the game that makes it work is just the story and the aspect that it's rough and raw with an art style fits along with it. Without any voice acting, unlike The Cat Lady, the game needs something to keep you interested audibly and it does so with the music. It was great and playing at just the right moments, so that was a nice change. 

One thing I did not like, however, was the way the inventory was set up. During timed events, it was very, very hard to maneuver through them because of the way the inventory was, like during the final boss battle where Sophie hits you and the gun flies out of your hand. It was a struggle to get the gun, reload it and then fire again, which was a bit annoying. 

However annoying and frustrating at times, Downfall was a pleasant, horrifying experience. It's not the most visually pleasing game, but it will leave you with a feeling that will last a lifetime. I highly recommend Downfall to anyone out there who's up for something new.
Image result for the cat lady game

The Cat Lady (2012)
Developed By: Screen 7

Summary: After notorious cat lady, Susan Ashworth, commits suicide, she's transported to a strange land where a woman sends her on a mission back to Earth to kill five "parasites" and get her life back. 

My Thoughts: This game was also a journey and like Downfall, The Cat Lady left me feeling stunned because of how great it was. It was raw and takes a toll on your mental health and wasn't that much different from Downfall feeling wise. However, I was a bit more impressed with Downfall. The story was great and I was into the game, but for me, there was something not there. It may be because there was not a lot of explanation about everything going on. There was so much going on and really nothing at all was explained was frustrating for me as in with the man with the flowers or The Maggot Queen or even with the candles, but the developers probably wanted you to tell your own story. It had a point, it just didn't prove it's point to me, but it works.

The Cat Lady, like Downfall, was dark and if you're a horror fan, you'll enjoy this, but it was more psychological than horror based. It takes on themes about depression and loneliness, unlike Downfall which deals with insanity and the depletion of mental health. In The Cat Lady, you're building up your mental health after a suicide attempt. It's strange, but like I said, it works. 

Also, unlike Downfall, the art style is very different and more mature in a way. There are more lines and things are finished, unlike in Downfall, where the scenes and characters are just sketched and scribbled down. Plus, there's voice acting which is a plus, but the talking got to a point where I was skipping it because it was just unnecessary. OVER DONE. 

Therefore, The Cat Lady is more of an adventure than a game. It's fun, but problematic and it got a bit much for me. Dark and depressing, like Downfall, the Cat Lady is a horror lover's dream. And I highly recommend it to anyone out there.

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