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Petz Catz 2 Wii Review

19/01/2009 Family Returning Gamer Review
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Petz Catz 2 Nintendo Wii

Petz Catz 2

Nintendo Wii


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I originally reviewed Petz Dogz 2 Wii around a year or so ago. It was my then four year old daughter's introduction to gaming and she loved it. It was not without it's foibles, but every now and then she still wants to load it up and have a crack at the mini games. With this in mind I decided to shell out on Petz Catz 2. What I didn't realise, and really should have researched more, is that the storyline is exactly the same as Petz Dogz 2.

This title involves the guiding of a customisable cat of your choice through various tribulations. The World needs to be put right again following some hideous wrongdoings by the Evil Wolf Ivlet.

The action consists of the main storyline, along with various mini games along the way. Upon winning a mini game, you can return to play these at any time at several different difficulty levels. As you progress through the storyline, you will assist your cat friends by performing tasks for them, but watch out for snakes, bears and suchlike. The tasks build up to a final battle with Ivlet where the World can be saved. Each of these tasks yields new abilities and also money to spend in the shop, a nice touch is that you can dress other characters in the game along with your own, and also customise their gardens with flowers and insects that you have personally caught.

Unless your child can read you will spend a lot of time narrating the various conversations and dialog so be warned.

A tip I would give at the outset, is to immediately increase the text scrolling speed. Unless your child can read you will spend a lot of time narrating the various conversations and dialog so be warned. I have to concede that this dialogue becomes tiresome and overly lengthy. Towards the beginning of the game, there is one scene in particular where you have to sit through around 15 minutes of dialogue.

The landscape is just the right size for youngsters to remember the key landmarks as needed, and the warp stones provides invaluable assistance. Without the warp stones things would get incredibly tiresome. Most of the action takes place on an island, with a few trips to slightly smaller nearby islands.

I have to say that the controls are just right for a four or five year old. The simple text also encourages reading skills. Our cat (by this time named 'Apple') was successfully being handled by my daughter as she made our canine friend run, walk, sniff, talk, fish, call, bark and all manner of other things. My daughter especially liked to bark at animals minding their own business, and watch them jump in the air.

My daughter thoroughly enjoyed rescuing the animals and laughed away at the various tactical battles.

It turns out that amongst other things, the fundamentally flawed Ivlet had cast a spell on every animal from the island zoo, causing them to disperse around the landscape. In order to put them back in their rightful home you have to beat each animal at its own mini game. It should be noted that the mini games are too difficult for a 4 year old to be sufficiently competitive, but provide a welcome challenge for the accompanying adult. My daughter thoroughly enjoyed rescuing the animals and laughed away at the various tactical battles. As I touched upon earlier, the zoo can be visited at any time, and the mini games can be played once more. They can also be played in a two player capacity from the games main menu.

I did start to wonder how long the novelty of this game would last, and if I would get my 20 quids worth, but I needn't have worried.

Personally I found that the drawn out conversations with characters begin to grate after some time. I also found that the graphics and sound were very ordinary. That aside, you will find yourself being driven to complete the game by your child. This one is a great intro to gaming, and also a good intro into triumph over Evil (or even Ivlet).

Written by Sinan Kubba

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Sinan Kubba writes the Returning Gamer column.

"As an 80s kid I was obsessed with gaming. But university, stress and life relegated my hobby to the backseat. After years in the wilderness, I'm back into video games. I don't just want to play games that remind of a happy youth though. I'm just as excited about games that take things forward, experiences that re-ignite that curiosity and fascination I had years ago."

Here are the games I've been playing recently:

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