Publisher: Neilo / Sold Out
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Version Reviewed: Physical release
Category: Simulation, Lifestyle
No. of Players: 1 player
Release Date: December 06, 2018 (JP) / May 28, 2019 (EU & NA)
Price: $49.99 USD
UK Publisher Sold Out is no slouch when it comes to Switch releases. They have previously released physical and eShop titles such as: Yoku’s Island Express, Overcooked 1 & 2, My Time at Portia, the recently released Sniper Elite V2, and now Little Friends: Dogs & Cats.
Little Friends: Dogs & Cats is a life simulator game and doesn’t necessarily have a story per se. The story in the game is something you make. You get to name your dog or cat, and as you level up and gain money you can spend it on hats, outfits, sunglasses, and more to make your pet your uniquely owned pet.
You can also spend money on decorating your house, placing items in your living room, and buying toys for your pets.
In Little Friends: Dogs & Cats you can keep up to three pets in your house at one time and own up to twelve pets altogether. The ability to own more than one dog or cat opens up after level 15. Leveling up happens when you get awarded for your actions.
You fill your pets hearts by petting them, brushing their fur, playing with them, taking them for walks, feeding them, cleaning their toilet as well as other tasks. Each pet you own has a unique taste for food and temperament which leads to greater rewards and faster leveling up when you feed them their favorite foods or win competitions like frisbee throwing.
When you take your pet for a walk there are certain goals that you try to meet like walking a set distance, marking territory spots (which are small patches of grass with signposts where your dog or cat will pee at), and finding treasures. The treasures can be toys, outfits, or tickets which can be used to purchase new items in the shops.
CONTENT & FEATURES:
If you have ever wanted to dress up your dog or cat, Little Friends has so many options. The game’s website says there are over 600 items to dress your pet. These items range from hats, sunglasses, shirts, hoodies, skirts, and many more.
Along with clothes for your pets, you have a variety of toys from bouncy rubber balls, to squeaky bones, feathered cat toys, and more. Your house is another area with which you can customize with items for your beds like beds and climbing areas for cats.
You can also change the paint style of your room, carpet, and add some furniture and photo frames. Most of these cosmetic changes serve no purpose, though your dog and cat will interact with some of the items you place around your room.
The pets in Little Friends: Dogs and Cats do bark and meow, but for the most part they are actually pretty quiet. They will let you know when they like, or don’t like, to be petted by either cooing or growling at you.
Whenever you do something for your pet you get a chime as hearts surround them. These little audio cues are good reminders that the time spent loving on your pet is rewarded, though the sound effects for money and hearts adding to your account, does get repetitive.
VISUALS & PERFORMANCE:
Your cats and dogs look very realistic as far as their animations, hair and fur, even their puppy dog eyes as they look at you. The mouth animations and design tends to be slightly creepy looking.
Personally, I feel like the teeth on the cats look a bit odd and off-putting. Overall though the aesthetics of your animal companions are well done and look on par with the Nintendogs + Cats pets.
Little Friends: Dogs & Cats takes a lot of cues from Nintendo’s own pet simulation series, Nintendogs. From the lifelike dogs and cats which seem to have a mind of their own to the tasks which you are completing throughout the game.
It’s easy to compare Nintendogs to Little Friends, as they do share a lot of similarities, the main thing missing in Little Friends: Dogs & Cats is the usefulness of the microphone from the DS series which was used to call your pet and used to perform tricks.
If you are looking for a game with realistic furry friends, Little Friends: Dogs and Cats will suffice. The level of interaction you have with your pet friend though gets boring and repetitive quickly as there are not many tasks to complete or things to do, but for now, it’s the closest game to Nintendogs + Cats that we have on the Switch.
THE VERDICT: 7/10
*A retail copy was provided by the Publisher for the purposes of this review
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This post was written by jonathanober