STRAY game review (2) (age rating 8+)
A purrfect game to relax and play! (Yes I couldn’t resist!) A snapshot review!
*all photos used are screenshots I’ve taken on my PS5.
First off, the visuals and the music are gorgeous in this game. The little tecno changes in the beat when you’re solving a mystery and the calming rhythm of the music as you explore, there’s a lot to love about Stray.
It’s a relatively short game by BlueTwelve Studios and Annapurna Interactive with about 8 hours of gameplay, so this review will be a short snapshot review, but one thing I can say for sure is that this game is ace!
What is Stray?
Stray is a third person adventure game about a cat who gets lost from their little friends, and ends up stranded in a gorgeous yet sad and forgotten ancient city filled with intelligent robotic inhabitants, and creepy little enemies known as the Zurks.
It doesn’t take long to warm to the characters in this game. Obviously the main hero of the game, our little cat, is lovable from the start, but what’s interesting are the residents of the forgotten city and the story behind them.
All of the characters you meet along the way are definitely interesting to say the least. Despite the shortness of the game, players are introduced to a brilliant group of characters and one little bot may soon become your favourite tag along buddy.
Without going into spoilers, I felt the different character arcs were very touching and powerful, and not what you may expect in a cat game, but in such a short space of time, there are sweet stories about hope and sad ones of despair along the way!
The controls in Stray are pretty straightforward and uncomplicated, which is what you expect and appreciate from such a cute cat game.
You only really need to run, jump, and have what I like to call the “mischievous” button, where you scratch posts, carpets, and cheekily push things off desks and counters. Later on in the game there are fun little challenge segments too.
One thing I particular love about Stray is the ability to pretty much climb any building in town and explore cool hidden places. You can also tip a stack of books over by jumping on them and just cause mischief in your wake.
Oh! And naturally the dedicated meow button was a must have and well appreciated button. (PS. Make sure to meow 100 times! You’ll thank me later haha!)
In my opinion, Stray is the kind of game you only need to play once, but that one time is such an amazing experience. I’d only play it again if I just wanted to mess about and explore the city and learn more secrets about the stories of the inhabitants.
This is the type of game that anyone can play and enjoy. Even those who aren’t usually gamers can find joy in scratching various tree posts and carpets, or mischievously pushing paint off a counter or ledge. What Stray does so well is taking a simple idea and making it work in such an elegant and gorgeous way, with the added plus of incorporating a beautiful compact story into it.
It’s a cute story about being a cat, trying to find your way back home with a surprisingly emotional end and I hope you give it a go!