The most talked-about game release of the summer has been the post-apocalyptic cat-simulator Stray. Seeing all of the chatter about it, not to mention all of the videos of cats watching their slaves play the game, I felt like I couldn’t not pick it up. Here are my thoughts:
- Game: Stray
- Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
- Platform: Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Windows
- Genre: Adventure
Stray is a post-apocalyptic adventure game. You play a cat, navigating the slums and sewers of the world, trying to get back to the surface. Your companion is B-12, a flying android that helps you communicate with the denizens of the world. These denizens are not, in fact, human, but rather robots.
The robots, once they learn that you are a cat, are quite friendly to you. However, there are certainly also enemies in the game. The Zurks are creepy-crawlies that eat anything and everything. Prepare to perform some outstanding feats of Zurk avoidance to get through the game.
In addition to your main objective – to return to the world above from the slums – there are a number of other objectives in the game, such as collecting sheet music to hand to a robot musician in the slums. You can also rest, scratch posts, and rub up against robot legs.
The game is generally quite intuitive, although there is a fair amount of searching through the environment involved in playing it. The titular character you play is both very cute and convincingly a cat – despite being an animated character in a video game.
I have found Stray to be a highly enjoyable experience. It has a good mix of dystopic thriller and chill exploration, and both the playable character and the NPCs are excellent.
TL;DR: Stray is a dystopic sci-fi cat simulator that lets you interact with environment and NPCs alike in an effort to return to the world above. A solid game with stretches of chill exploration mixed with stretches of thriller. 8/10.