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‘Cat Cafe Manager’ Is The Purrfect Cosy Nintendo Switch Game

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‘Cat Cafe Manager’ Is The Purrfect Cosy Nintendo Switch Game

There are some games which just scream ‘Nintendo Switch’. I don’t know about you, but I think it’s a wonderful device. Despite giving you the ability to go from a nice big TV screen to playing something on the train, my favourite way to play is engulfed in blankets, in bed, in portable mode, on some cute game that doesn’t require the use of too many of my brain cells. I don’t even know why portable mode feels better - I can just as easily play with the console docked and be as comfortable, but there’s such a charm to having the screen way too close to my face, just like the good old ‘DS under the covers after bedtime’ days. Immaculate chill vibes.

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If the thought of any of that also makes you feel a bit warm and fuzzy inside, I’m here to report that the perfect snuggly Switch game may be upon us. Enter Cat Cafe Manager - an adorable management sim in which, you guessed it, you get to build, decorate, and run your own cat café in a town of charming characters. If you’re not sold already, I don’t know what to tell you. 

Take a look at the trailer for Cat Cafe Manager right here.

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Except I do, because that’s the entire point of this article. This indie darling, developed by Roost Games, is a definite example of simple, good fun. You start off your cat escapades (catscapades?) when you move to the quiet village of Caterwaul Way, with the aim of taking over your grandma’s cat café. Except, there isn’t really a café to take over - minus a few mouldy chairs, a table, and a single, lonely sink, there’s absolutely nothing here to see. You’ve got to construct your own cafe, Sims building-style - dragging out the floor, adding wallpaper, doors, windows… you know the drill. 

At first, you predictably don’t have a lot of resources to do this - eventually, you’ll be able to expand it to be bigger and have much nicer furniture and decorations inside, as well as all the practical equipment like milkshake and coffee machines. Earning resources is simple - all of them can be racked up simply by pleasing your customers. Caterwaul Way is home to all sorts of folks, including witches, punks, businesspeople and fishermen - all of them have different preferences when it comes to the food and drinks they enjoy, and also the resources they’ll give you as payment. You’ll need plenty of all of these if you want to make your café the best it can be. 

Fulfil your customers orders successfully to be rewarded with useful resources. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games
Fulfil your customers orders successfully to be rewarded with useful resources. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games
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Once things get going (which doesn’t take long at all), the gameplay loop is incredibly addictive. Each in-game day speeds by super quickly - customers pour in and out really fast, and you and your staff won’t stop going back and forth between your kitchen area and the tables in an effort to serve them all before closing time. That fast pace makes it so easy to just keep going in for “one more day” - seeing those resources rack up and being able to kit out the café with a slew of new decorations is oh-so-satisfying, it becomes really hard to put the game down.

All these words in, and I’ve just realised that I’ve not even properly spoken about the stars of the show yet - my apologies. The cats are absolutely adorable. You start out with just the one, and are able to adopt more strays by luring them with food and earning their trust. Each of them have their own personal traits (generally relating to which kind of customers will like them most, or how much food they need), and I’d die for any and all of them. 

Befriend the stray cats and they'll come to live in your café. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games
Befriend the stray cats and they'll come to live in your café. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games
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You unfortunately have a limited amount of space for them, though, so you can’t endlessly fill your café with more kitties. What you can do though, is find them forever homes that are perfect for them - townsfolk will leave messages on the notice board describing what kind of cat they’d like to adopt, and you can play matchmaker. You sadly won’t actually see anything happen here other than the cat disappear from your café and your reward appear, but it’s nice to think they’re off to a good place. Not gonna lie though, I only did this once, because I’m way too attached to the cats and didn’t realise they’d essentially just disappear into a void. Heed my warning if you want to avoid your own meeting the same fate.

There is also a story of sorts to follow along with - on your first in-game day, you’re visited by a very spooky looking talking cat, who brings with him some words of warning, and sets you off with restoring a mysterious cat shrine in the outskirts of town. You’ll do this with the “delight” earned from happy customers (basically another resource used for this specifically), and the restorations will earn you a whole host of upgrades, from having more space for cats, to expanding your menu further. 

The story is very much a background thing, though, so don’t go in expecting greatness. That said, the NPC dialogue is incredible - there’s a handful of regular customers who you can invite over to the café and grow closer to, and they’re all very endearing. Some of the conversations with them had me fully smiling at my Switch - Bonner, for example, is a loveable old man who delights in telling stories about his husband (and appreciates a good cat pun, so bonus points there).

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Your regular customers are super charming, and have some great dialogue. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games
Your regular customers are super charming, and have some great dialogue. / Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games

Unfortunately, the game isn’t without its issues - in my time with it, I’ve encountered a recurring minor visual glitch (some customers keep appearing with an odd green outline), and at the time of writing, my cats seem to be stuck saying they’re hungry, despite the many, many full bowls of food dotted around for them to eat. Some real-life cat owners would probably tell you that’s lifelike. Also, if you happen upon a new recipe that you don’t have all the ingredients for, you’ll have a notification telling you as such in the corner until you do, which isn’t a glitch, but it’s just a bit annoying having a pop up yelling “Ham Sandwich requires Ham” at you constantly (I speak from experience). 

Overall though, Cat Cafe Manager is just a delight. I haven’t been able to put a massive amount of time into the game yet, but I have absolutely no plans of stopping - it’s so easy to snuggle up and just relax with, and I feel obligated to flag it to my fellow wholesome game enjoyers. It’s also going to be available on PC, but if you have a Switch, I wholeheartedly recommend getting it on there - it’s just one of those quintessential cute games that’s perfectly at home on the console, and if literally any of what I’ve just said appeals to you, I promise you’ll have a great time. 

Cat Cafe Manager code was provided by the publisher, and tested on Nintendo Switch. The game releases on 14 April for PC and Nintendo Switch.

Featured Image Credit: Roost Games / Freedom Games

Topics: Indie Games, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo

Catherine Lewis
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