App Reviewed on: iPad Air 2
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If you love cats so much that you might consider marrying one, then Purrfect Date has got you covered. Well… at least it does in theory. This dating simulator places you on a mysterious island full of cats, who you can then date, all while trying to figure out why this island somehow lets you talk to these feline companions. It’s definitely kind of silly at times, but Purrfect Date’s charms ultimately don’t last.
In Purrfect Date, you play as a brand new assistant to Dr. Pawpur, a cat scientist, who operates on a remote and mysterious island. The game begins with you landing on the island and meeting all of the game’s main characters, including the cats that live there too.
From here, let’s just say that something happens which sets you off on a journey where you are free to pursue your research, learn more about the island, and—of course—date your new feline friends. The only problem is, you have a limited amount of time to conduct your research, so you have to make tough decisions about how you should best use your time.
Read into situations
As a dating sim, Purrfect Date involves a lot of reading. Nearly all of the game takes place against a static background with a text box in the bottom of the screen that tells you exactly what is happening at any given time. No matter whether you’re on a date with a cat or deciding to scope out what the island security guard is up to, everything plays out in front of you in prose.
It isn’t exactly unexpected for a dating sim to be filled with text, but it is surprising that most of Purrfect Date’s writing is actually quite good. For a game with such an absurd premise, the game creates characters and situations that feel unique and interesting, which help drive you further and further into the game.
Not so purrfect
As great as Purrfect Date’s writing may be though, the overarching of the design can create some problems that make the game feel a bit tedious. I want to be careful about not going into spoiler territory here, so I’ll just say that Purrfect Date has some parts where it drags in comparison to the rest of the game.
In addition to this, some of Purrfect Date’s characters, while certainly detailed and well realized, are just plain unlikable. For a game about courtship, there are entire characters that have few—if any—redeeming qualities. There are also some relationships that you can push forward that don’t feel remotely romantic (much less amicable) yet the game allows you to turn them into love stories if you play your cards right nonetheless. So, while it may be fun to play though Purrfect Date to see all of its endings and characters, there are times where the pieces don’t really feel like they fit, and it happens with enough frequency that it can hamper your enjoyment.
The bottom line
In a lot of ways Purrfect Date doesn’t really feel like a dating sim. The crazy thing about that is, it’s not even because the game is having you date cats. Purrfect Date ultimately falls apart because its characters and relationship storylines can be off-putting and incoherent. Despite the fact that Purrfect Date has a lot of fun mystery under its wacky exterior, digging deep into it doesn’t feel as fun as a game about dating cats should.