Videogames and cats are not words videogame enthusiasts tend to throw in a sentence together, unless it includes a .gif file of some sort.
The idea of playing as a cat, or even with a cat, is an entirely unappealing idea. It’s the type of idea that sends self-proclaimed, “hardcore gamers” running in the opposite direction. In fact, it probably sends them to the closest EB Games to purchase the least cat oriented game they can find; something like Call of Duty.
The truth is many video games, including some triple A titles, have all included cats in their games at some point. Capcom’s Mega Man V used cats as one of the oddest allies to appear in a game. The character, Tango, would turn into a buzz saw and attack enemies which would appear in his path. In Sega’s masterpiece gem, Sonic the Hedgehog, Big the Cat plays as an aid to the loveable spiky hero on his adventures. He first appeared in the original Sonic Adventure which was released on December 23, 1998 for the Sega Dreamcast. Even in the gory Wii game No More Heroes, protagonist Travis Touchdown takes a break from his bloody, murderous, assassin’s rampage to indulge in spending time at home and playing with his cat, Jeane.
It’s not just older games where cats make an appearance either. In the highly praised Playstation Vita release, Gravity Rush, the heroine players control, Kat, actually encounters a black feline. The black cat she encounters gives her the power to control gravity, and manipulate the force throughout the game.
What’s with all these mentions of cats in games? Why, a lead up to the top ten cats in videogame history of course:
10. Meowth – While he may be a Pokemon, he is still one of the greatest cats in both a videogame and a television show. This cunning cat will earn a place in your heart, and maybe, in your collection as well.
9. Myau – In the original Phantasy Star, protagonist Alis Landale meets the adorable cat along her journey. Myau becomes her first companion in the game.
8. Saber Cats – In the massively popular online role playing game, World of Warcraft, players who choose Night Elves as their character class can hop on the backs of Saber Cats. Not only are they loyal, but the colours they wear are interchangeable!
7. Rajan – In Insomniac’s beloved game, Sly 2: Band of Thieves, players encounter the sharp tongued, lovingly arrogant, Rajan. Rajan is a tiger from Calcutta who sells some of his spices through the Black Market.
6. Blanca – Animal Crossing has become one of the most popular games today, and for such a simple concept, the addition of cats only makes it that much more enjoyable. Blanca is a white cat who asks the player to draw her face every time they meet because she keeps washing it off.
5. Lynx – On August 15, 2000 a game was released for the original PlayStation by the name of Chrono Cross. In the game, players played as a teenager named Serge who tried to uncover his past, without being caught by the sly Lynx, a shady cat trying to apprehend him.
4. Kay – In the Playstation 2 game, Legend of Kay, a young cat warrior (Kay) must fight the band of evil gorillas to save his fellow feline clan. Really, who doesn’t love a cat who can use a samurai sword?
3. Jeane – Travis Touchdown’s adorable cat in No More Heroes, Jeane, may not help him in any possible, but watching that cat get stuck on top of the ceiling fan never gets old.
2. Red XIII – Also known as Nanaki, the powerful red lion with the fiery tale proves to be an asset in the Final Fantasy series. Although, fans will probably remember him most as part of the integral clan who helped Cloud in Final Fantasy VII.
1. Mao – Perhaps the greatest cat ever in a video game, Mao belongs to the Shadow Hearts world. She appears in Shadow Hearts: From the New World and through her love (and even abuse) of alcohol, she unleashed her Drunk Fist style of fighting. It’s adorable.