Bright Paw
Gameplay 8
Graphics 8
Sound 9

Bright Paw is a great puzzle adventure starring an adorable feline protagonist. The card-based movement mechanics make for interesting puzzles especially when special abilities are thrown into the mix. While not the most difficult puzzle game available, it’s very enjoyable and has a very polished look and feel.

Gameplay: Not very difficult, but quite fun.

Graphics: Lots of imaginative levels.

Sound: The soundtrack is beautiful and the standard of the voice acting very high

Summary 8.3 Outstanding
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Bright Paw

Developer: Radical Forge | Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc | Release Date: 2020 | Genre: Strategy / Adventure / Indie | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

Bright Paw is the story of Theo, a cat that wakes up one evening to discover that its owners have been murdered. Prodded onward by the voice of a mysterious narrator, Theo follows the trail of destruction that the murderer left in their wake. However, it quickly becomes apparent that Theo’s home is anything but ordinary. Instead, it’s connected to a sprawling complex called Bright Paw Industries where all kinds of mysterious research appear to have taken place. Players must help Theo navigate the perils of the complex while finding out more about its owners along the way.

Despite the numerous hazards standing between Theo and the exit for each room Bright Paw is actually a rather relaxing game. Everything is turn-based, so there are no time limits to worry about and thanks to a rewind feature it’s possible to undo every mistake. Levels can also be restarted instantly if you feel like you’ve messed things up too badly and the inclusion of an “assist” mode means that the game is suitable for players of all skill levels.

Bright Paw is split into nine acts with more than 70 levels that see Theo traveling deeper and deeper into the underbelly of the facility. Each level opens with the narrator commenting on the particular room and pointing out some of the hazards. Players must navigate Theo through these hazards to reach the exit. While this sounds easy, the task of maneuvering Theo around is made slightly more complicated by the fact that it can only be done via cards. Players have access to up to five cards that are shown at the bottom of the screen and must use the right combinations to get Theo to the exit. Initially, this is as simple as can be with cards for going left, right, or forward, but more complicated patterns are soon introduced along with some very cool abilities. However, the difficulty curve of the game remains very gentle throughout and we very rarely found ourselves getting stuck.

Most of the challenge in Bright Paw doesn’t just come from the environmental hazards such as flames, lasers, and electricity, but also the security robots roaming about. Some of them move around on set paths, while others will try and chase Theo down. Fortunately, the available path nodes on each level are displayed at all times, and selecting a card shows you exactly where Theo will land up. The nodes where enemies will move to are also displayed, so you can plan accordingly and don’t have to worry about any nasty surprises.

Visually Bright Paw is a good looking game and it’s clear that a lot of care has gone into the design of each level. Players can rotate the view as well as zoom in or out for a better view. Also, it’s possible to switch to a top-down view of the action instead of the default isometric perspective if preferred. As an added bonus each scene has several “hidden” objects that can be clicked on to reveal more about the storyline. There’s even a total of 27 different skins to unlock for Theo with many of them being very unique. One minor issue that we encountered is that the game appeared to forget our graphical settings each time we quit and came back. The quality can be set from Low all the way to Epic quality, but we had to make this change each time we started the game. We also had to cap the frame rate and enable V-sync to prevent the fans of our RTX 2060 from going into overdrive while playing. However, it’s nice to see that the game has plenty of accessibility options, such as being able to set the size and color of subtitles as well as toggle color blind mode on or off.

The soothing soundtrack for Bright Paw is a great match for the laid back style of the game and we never grew bored or annoyed with any of the tunes. The voice acting by the narrator is very good too and when excited he sounded a bit like John Cleese, which is amusing, to say the least. The quips that he makes if you take too long to move Theo around are also quite funny, but we can see how some players might find them annoying. Bright Paw can be played using either a controller or mouse, but we found the latter to be the most comfortable. In total, it took us about six hours to complete all the levels and then go back to find all the collectibles to earn 100% of the achievements in the game. The game remained enjoyable throughout and never got bogged down with illogical puzzles or unfair situations.

If you are a fan fo felines and puzzle games then Bright Paw is a must-have for your library. It offers a charming adventure through imaginative levels filled with puzzles that are satisfying to solve. Puzzle veterans might find the overall experience a little too easy, but younger players will appreciate the inclusion of an assist mode. The game is also very reasonably priced for what you get and comes highly recommended.

System Requirements

  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: 10
  • Processor: x64 architecture with SSE2 instruction set support
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GeForce 240 GT or Radeon HD 6570 – 1024 MB (1 gig)
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Storage: 5 GB available space
  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: 10.15
  • Processor: x64 architecture with SSE2 instruction set support
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Metal capable Intel and AMD GPUs
  • Storage: 5 GB available space
  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system

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