Neko Atsume is a title that skirts the line of what I’d deem to be a game. It is a simple affair in which you set food and furniture out in your yard and observe which cats come to eat, play, and relax. The name means “Kitty Collection” and was originally a Japanese title, now available in both its original language and English. It is free to play on both Android and iOS. It was created by Hit-Point.
What Is It?
There isn’t a great deal more than what I describe in the introduction. You have a virtual yard in which you place some kind of food and a collection of furniture and toys that cats may fancy. So long as there is food out, cats will come and make themselves at home. Once there, you can take pictures of them for your cat scrapbook. You can also re-name them if you like.
Initial cat toys are free as is the most basic foodstuff “thrifty bits”. To buy fancier food and more furniture, you need to collect silver and gold fish coins. Fortunately, your visiting cats will bring you both. If a cat visits often enough and is satisfied with your offerings, they may give you a special collectible gift you can put in your trophy case.
Each cat has its own appearance and there are a number of “rare cats” who wear cute outfits and are patterned after famous people with names like Lady Meow Meow and Joe Demeowgio. These kitties only show up when specific furniture is in the yard and show more often when fancy food is put out.
You can also spend your fish on expanding your yard so you can host more cats and to unlock yards with different themed decorations such as country western, or candy land. While it is possible to spend real world money to buy fish, it is far from necessary to enjoy and “complete” the game.
Despite not having any kind of appreciable strategy or challenge, I found the charm of the cute kitties sufficient to get me to collect nearly every one of them over the course of a few months. I diligent player could do so much faster. I tended to “play” about once or twice a day for just a few minutes.
There is no denying the graphics design is excellent. Every element oozes charm and cuteness. More than once I took it upon myself to try and create themed yards purely for the aesthetic pleasure of it since this offers no in-game advantage.
The sound design is simple and functional and the UI elements are elegant in their simplicity. All in all it is simply a very well crafted little game and a real pleasure to play with so long as it can hold your interest.
If you like cats and want something cute and relaxing to play with, by all means, try it out. You have nothing to loose and you could fall in love with it as many have done.
- Craftsmanship: 5 of 5 stars
- Production Value: 3 of 5 stars
- Gameplay: 3 of 5 stars
- Innovation: 3 of 5 stars
- Special Category (Cuteness) 5 of 5 stars