Just Finished Catherine - Very Impressed! - Destructoid

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Full time game-aholic with a necessary IT career for feeding my better habits.

I began my gaming career in my Grandma's attic rocking classics such as Space Invaders and Pitfall on the Atari. Since then I ran through the typical gauntlet of consoles from Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, N64, Sega Dreamcast, Playstation, Playstation 2, Xbox, and now I have a PS3, Wii, and my personal champion the Xbox 360. I have always had a soft spot for PC gaming, but if something comes out for both PC and console I will mostly always roll console.

I'm a big fan of run and gun gaming, especially when it comes to competitive multiplayer. I have always been competitive and love the feeling of defeating other real people rather than overcoming AI. I believe that the human element/emotion brings a 3D aspect and evolution to choices in gaming that AI cannot provide, and the best test of real skill is against other people (Sorry MMO PVE-ers >_<). I do however enjoy most RPGs, strategy gaming, and really any campaign with a good story.

Currently I am Beta testing SWTOR and getting a good fill of Gears of War 3 multiplayer on the side. I am really excited to start playing through Dark Souls as Demon Souls was truly an amazing game. I am also looking forward to playing through Naruto's new game as I have a huge anime obsession as well!
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Catherine was the first game in quite a while that I took out of the wrapping at about 10pm, seemed to blink my eyes, and then looked back at the clock to see that it was 5am. I was completely enthralled with this game, and if not for having to work 3 hours from this end point I would have surely finished it in one sitting.

Catherine takes you through 8 days and nights of the main character Vincent's unraveling existence. He is a 32 year old IT professional who seems to generally spend every night drinking at a local bar with a group of his buddies (and complaining about/bummed out by his long time girlfriend Katherine). Vincent's dull and dreary existence is thrown into chaos with his meeting of the young and beautiful Catherine. After waking up next to this dreamy girl the game begins to rotate between Vincent's hellish nightmares involving his personal life, and his time awake which he typically spends at the bar.

The nightmare game-play in Catherine moves quickly, and unlike many brainless games requires on the ball decisions and reactions. The wrong split second decision in Catherine will more than likely leave you in pieces, splattered at the bottom of the dream, or mangled by some aberation chasing you. Catherine is by no means a simple puzzle game, as i was challenged from start to finish.

The time you spend outside of the nightmare stages were very well done. The interactions between Vincent and other characters are meaningful and very interesting. Reading closely into situations in the bar or at the restaurant will allow you to start putting characters together between the two stages, and will influence in making your choice between Katherine and Catherine.

Overall, Catherine was just a well-designed, polished, and total positive gaming experience. The only thing that I really didnít care for in Catherine was the odd and seemingly unnecessary turn that the game took as it neared completion.

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Living the dream since March 16, 2006

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