Catherine: Full Body Switch Review | A fine wine on the go

Michael Leri
Catherine: Full Body Info

genre

  • Puzzle

players

  • 1 - 2

Publisher

  • Atlus

Developer

  • Atlus

Release Date

  • 09/03/2019
  • Out Now

Platform

  • Nintendo Switch
  • PS Vita
  • PS4

rating

Catherine: Full Body was a relatively hefty extended version of the 2011 original. While the marketing leaned into the horny nature of the game for this re-release, it did deserve its “Full Body” moniker with its new character, story sections, slight gameplay modifications, and overall solid translation. Now Atlus is bringing all of that to the Switch, a platform that is as portable as it is sexy. And even though the Nintendo console can make some titles decidedly less appealing, the Catherine: Full Body Switch port is as attractive as ever.

Making the Switch

Catherine: Full Body Switch Review | A fine wine on the go

This translates to most of the game, especially its visuals. The cel-shaded style that originated on the PS3 and Xbox 360 held up even better on the PS4 and its additional power because of the timeless strength inherent to that sort of art direction. The Switch, despite its lower horsepower and resolution, seemingly hasn’t sacrificed any significant details in the jump.

Characters and environments can lean a little on the simple side, but are faithfully recreated with no obvious evidence of downsizing, even during the animated cutscenes. Of course, Catherine: Full Body isn’t a taxing, state-of-the-art powerhouse, but the aforementioned clean and effective art means it can it survive a port to the Switch without going through the shredder first. Load times are also swift and the frame rate never wavers, which both align it even closer with its other iterations.

Full console ports to the Switch do often suffer with control issues as the system’s inferior D-pad and less accurate analog sticks aren’t as exact as control methods on other systems. But those problems are essentially nonexistent since the social parts of the game don’t require pinpoint precision and the grid-like nature of the puzzles mean that its other half isn’t too strenuous on the less-than-ideal D-pad. It’s one Switch game that isn’t hampered by the system’s limited control pads.

Faithful to its core unlike Vincent

Catherine: Full Body Switch Review | A fine wine on the go

But that’s not to say the game is easy because it is the same exact experience as the PS4 original that came out in 2019 (and you can get a more detailed breakdown in our original review). The puzzle mechanics may sometimes screw you for a move you made two minutes ago, but the block moving is still exceptionally well done as it balances careful planning and sheer adrenaline-fueled decision making. Not many in the genre balance those two disparate styles as well as Catherine, especially in its remixed and classic modes that thankfully have multiple difficulties attached to both.

The story holds up similarly well but with a few more caveats. Its mature take on infidelity and relationships is still a novel subject for video games, especially when paired with its bizarre premise. But since this port doesn’t add any new narrative or change existing bits, those high points also come with a few low points concerning its portrayal of certain types of people. These sections are painfully archaic and put a damper on its otherwise thoughtful story.

And even though the Full Body edition did add in Qatherine and a few other bonuses, this Switch version can’t boast nearly as robust of a new feature set. It has all of the overpriced (and, frankly, horny) DLC from the original Full Body release, but also contains three new Japanese voices for Catherine that are all aimed at Persona fans. None of the additional or bundled features are particularly exciting especially since they’re hardly noticeable cosmetic changes only for those who want to hear some new Japanese voices or use magical glasses to see everyone in their underwear.

Final verdict

Catherine: Full Body Switch Review | A fine wine on the go

While some more important platform-specific content would have been ideal, the Catherine: Full Body Switch version is one of the few ports that can stand right with its peers on other systems. The modesty of the original benefits this rendition in a handful of ways since the anime-inspired art style looks fantastic on the smaller console and its humble systems don’t push the Switch past its technical breaking point. Imperfect controls don’t hamper the rewarding puzzles and the story, while still engrossing, is only inhibited by its sometimes dubious and dated depictions of certain groups of people. And because of those reasons, Catherine: Full Body is one of those rare full-bodied ports that’s just as enjoyable when poured into a to-go cup.


GameRevolution reviewed Catherine: Full Body on Nintendo Switch. Code provided by the publisher.

REVOLUTION REPORT CARD

4
Rating
Box art - Catherine: Full Body
Vibrant visuals hold up with little to compromise.
More or less technically on par with other versions.
Puzzle gameplay remains engaging and works well on Switch controllers.
Narrative still has a surprisingly nuanced take on mature topics...
...But also retains its troubling threads and depictions.
Contains all the superfluous and overpriced DLC with three equally superfluous new voice tracks.