Philipp ‘muddasheep’ Lehner is a legend in mod circles, making cerebral games like HalfQuake on Half Life and Quake engines. What he’s not well known for is family-friendly puzzle games, which Catty & Batty: The Spirit Guide very definitely is.
It’s a departure then, but one that originally had us interested. It’s designed from the ground up to be two-player cooperative, for one, as players can take control of Catty or Batty. It’s also sketched in muddasheep’s trademark black and white scrawl, so his personality does shine through. And it’s got an interesting take on Lemmings, a game that we don’t see invoked very often on the Xbox.
Catty & Batty: The Spirit Guide is out now on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, PS5 and Nintendo Switch.
You play Catty or Batty, and they both have the ability to lay boxes with a press of the A button. These boxes can hem in spirits, which pour through a door, much like the lemmings did in the classic 1991 game. By guiding them, you can herd them to the exit door on the other side of the level and complete the puzzle.
Except it’s not always that easy. Various obstacles make this difficult. Portals hoover up wayward spirits; conveyor belts move them in directions that you don’t want; and box-foxes destroy your best-laid cardboard plans. Each level seems to introduce new problems, and then tosses them away immediately afterwards: this is one of the most constantly shifting and changing games that you can buy.
There are thirty levels in total in Catty & Batty, and each level is preceded by a cutscene and heartwarming story of a sleepy cat and his busybody bat, who just want to bring peace to the forest.
We had a mediocre time with Catty & Batty: The Spirit Guide, enjoying its variety, but lamenting the lack of challenge, and an approach to co-operation that often leaves one player with nothing to do. We gave it a 2/5 and you can read the review here.
Catty & Batty: The Spirit Guide is out now on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S and starts at £4.19 from the Xbox Store, with a reduction to £3.35 for launch. It’s also out on PS4, PS5, Switch and PC.
Catty & Batty: The Spirit Guide is a casual couch co-op puzzle game, inspired by Lemmings and Tower Defense! Play as Catty or Batty and build a path to guide spirits home. 🐈🦇 Features: ● Campaign with 30 levels for 1-2 players (local co-op) ● Switch characters on-the-fly when playing solo ● Over 800 hand-drawn sprites ● Over 150 animations ● Over 100 new sounds ● Original soundtrack ● 6 color modes (white, sepia, gray, dark, inverted, gameboy) ● About 2 hours of gameplay