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Screenshot

Don’t look down, time to climb to the top in Catherine: Full Body

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Catherine was an interesting and freaky hybrid when it first arrived on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. Nearly 8 years later, we’re given a new look into the title as it releases as Catherine: Full Body. Just like a classic bottle of wine, Catherine: Full Body provides an interesting time and new experiences if you let it take you. Not settling for a simple port or remaster, Catherine: Full Body aims to bring new experiences even if you’re familiar with the story.

Story

(This section will be as spoiler free as possible!)

Catherine: Full Body mostly follows the original story of Catherine: Vincent Brooks is an early 30s guy that is in a long-term relationship with Katherine. When Katherine brings up marriage and settling down a bit, Vincent doesn’t exactly take it well. He then meets Catherine, a younger and fun-seeking girl and the story goes from there.

The difference this time around is the new character, a third party to the mix. Rin is a mysterious pink haired girl that throws a whole new mix to the game, as well as offering support in the game’s puzzle levels. As you play through the game, you’ll help Rin remember how she got to where she is, as well as the love triangle (or would it be a square?) with Catherine, Katherine, and Rin. Make sure not to overlook Vincent’s friends and the rest of the gang at Stray Sheep bar though, as there are often very interesting stories to be told (as well as an arcade game in the same style as the puzzle sections!).

Gameplay

Catherine: Full Body is separated into two parts for its main gameplay, the “Puzzle” part and the “Story” part. Though the two interact and have effects on each other.

The story sections of the game take place during the day, while Vincent is up and moving around. These parts play similar to a visual novel, yet slightly more stylized. You’ll watch cutscenes, interact with options, meet and talk to characters, and make choices as you receive messages and photos. These photos can be viewed later via your gallery. These sections will often end with Vincent in the Stray Sheep bar, meeting and talking with its various patrons. The various choices you make will change the story’s outcome, leading to a possible 13 different endings.

The puzzles sections however, take place during the night while Vincent is fast asleep. These sections have you scaling blocks in a nightmare, running as they fall underneath your feet. As you progress through the game, you’ll be introduced to new block types as well as enemies that will stand in your way. If you’d like to avoid these sections, you can always turn on the game’s “Safety Mode” that will complete the puzzles for you allowing you to focus on the game’s story. I found this particularly helpful for working on second and third runs to complete different endings. As you climb the tower though, you’ll be asked questions that will add more possible endings to the game. It’s also worth noting the game’s Babel mode for a true challenge!

Conclusion

Catherine: Full Body is a wonderful way to relive a classic game or experience it for the first time. The characters all have their own story and lives that Vincent is a part of, and it really feels like you get to know them and be their friend. Though Katherine and Catherine are a bit of a trope character, they still have a lot of great personality. I personally really liked the new character, Rin, although their ending was the most difficult for me to obtain for some reason.

I’d suggest Catherine: Full Body if you’re a fan of Atlus’ other works, or just a puzzle game fan. I do hope that we see more in this universe one day though, because the concept is truly something unique and the feeling is rarely met.

Disclaimer

Code was provided by SEGA of America for purpose of review/content creation.

New characters breathe life into a cult-classic game.
Babel mode provides a good challenge.
"Safety Mode" is perfect for completing puzzles on runs past the first.
The huge amount of music available for the Stray Sheep Jukebox.