Review: Aqua Kitty: Milk Mine Defender
A sudden shortage of milk has hit the world as cats the world over are forced to overcome their fear of water. Milk mining kittens are sent into the depths of the oceans to mine reserves of naturally forming milk. Mining milk is dangerous though and you’ll need to be prepared to destroy any oncoming threats to ensure the safety of the milk mining kittens. Aqua Kitty’s backstory is great enough as it is but it’s the addition of fantastic music, art style and gameplay that make this not only one of the best of the initial PlayStation Mobile games but also a must own for Vita owners.
Aqua Kitty feels a lot like Defender. You’ll pilot a submarine as you scroll from left to right firing at a wealth of oncoming enemies. The levels wrap around so that moving towards the right or left will end up with you eventually right back at the center of the stage. Each stage is setup with a set number of enemy waves to survive as well as a number of milk mining kittens to protect. A special enemy type will swoop in and attempt to carry the kittens out of the ocean, you’ll be notified with a small blinking red dot on the map, and it’ll be up to you to destroy that enemy before the kitten is carried away. Aside from surviving every wave of enemy the ultimate goal of each stage is to ensure the survival of as many kittens as possible. Aqua Kitty features four separate continents each featuring four or more stages ultimately adding up to twenty one stages. While things certainly start out fairly easy I found Aqua Kitty’s final stages to be very difficult. It’s easy to find yourself heavily out numbered if you’re not paying attention to what’s going on. That said I love that it’s not a walk in the park. There’s a really good challenge as you progress through Aqua Kitty and overcoming it feels rewarding.
Aqua Kitty’s controls feel spot on. You switch directions with the L and R buttons while firing with X and O for your turbo fire. Movement is responsive and makes maneuvering through large groups of enemies simple enough. Personally I think it speaks highly of a game when you can’t imagine it controlling any better than it already does and that’s exactly how I feel about Aqua Kitty.
New enemy types are consistently introduced until the end of the game. There’s a decent amount of variety among each enemy and one particular even drops one of three power-ups depending on how deep it is when you kill it. This particular enemy is highlighted specific colors to coordinate with its current position as well as what power-up will be dropped at that moment.
Aqua Kitty also features an endless mode called “Infinite Expresso” in which you simply try to survive as long as possible. (No need to worry about saving kittens here.) Though I think I’d see myself going back to the main levels to try and perfect them by saving all of the kittens first. Which, considering how tough the final levels can be, might take quite a bit of skill to accomplish.
I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love everything about Aqua Kitty. The gameplay, music, backstory and of course the art are all fantastic. It’s perfect for picking up and playing in short bursts or even for longer periods of time. If I absolutely had to pick at something it would be that, at this point in time, Aqua Kitty doesn’t have any form of leaderboards. Though to be honest it feels like such a minor thing considering how great the rest of the game is. At $3.49/£2.79 Aqua Kitty should be occupying space on everyone’s Vita. There’s no reason not to have it.
A copy of this game was purchased for review purposes. For more info on our review policy click here. This review is for the PlayStation Vita version of the game.
What I Like:
- Amazing setup for a game
- Controls feel great
- Looks fantastic
- Amazing music
- High level of challenge towards the end
- Infinite Expresso
What I Dislike:
- Some kind of leaderboards would be cool