You are Vincent Brooks, 32 years old, in Catherine: Full Body. You’re relationship with Katherine McBride, someone you knew from high school, now reconnected. People are asking if you’re going to settle down. You’re not sure, so you confide with your friends at your favourite hangout, the Stray Sheep Bar. The night of drinking segues into a nightmare, a dream of a crumbling tower. Some voice asks you about philosophical topics. You wake up in bed, with not-Katherine. Welcome to the start of the game.
While you process that, Catherine: Full Body is “technically” actually a puzzle game! You need to climb a tower that’s steadily falling apart, shifting blocks to reach the top. Later stages will feature traps that kill Vincent, among other challenges, so it’s not going to be a smooth climb. You can talk to the sheep you meet, these being other men also trapped in the nightmare. There’ll be choices you can make along the way, which will influence the ending you get. If you’re not a big fan of the tower climbing, Full Body has an Auto mode which takes the shortest route up, and leave you free to continue the story.
Should you wish to train your climbing prowess, you can challenge the other modes. Puzzle Mode gives only a set number of moves. Babel Mode sees you climb a randomized towers with various gimmick blocks. There’s both online and local multiplayer, so this is something for the perhaps surreal competitive Catherine scene to take advantage of.
Much of the narrative takes place in the Stray Sheep Bar. Vincent can hang out with his friends here, maybe drink the night away. Answer texts to progress, or possibly stall your relationships with Katherine, Catherine (the other woman), and Rin, Full Body‘s additional romantic option. The story has naturally expanded to fit Rin, with her own route endings among other touches like cutscenes.
Newer fans can experience Full Body if they had missed out on the original Catherine, as it keeps much of the original charm intact. Rin helps bring out a side of Vincent not seen much in the original, and it gives the principal character more depth. Rin’s story isn’t simply tacked on either, and has been woven seamlessly into the original storyline. After being rescued by Vincent, she finds her place in the Stray Sheep Bar as its piano player, and she’ll be making appearances throughout the story.
Older fans may find the game treading too much of the same ground. With the addition of Rin’s story and layers to the puzzle towers, they may find value yet. The story could hold several surprises for you, with layers of human drama to it. If you enjoy a mature storytelling style mixed with a challenging puzzler, then give Catherine: Full Body a try.
Catherine: Full Body
The game is an acquired taste, much like a full-bodied wine, for those seeking a mature storyline stacked with a challenging puzzle.
- New puzzle options to challenge new and old players alike
- Additional story with Rin
- May be too familiar to fans of the original
- Story is not necessarily to everyone's liking
Full-bodied enough for those who missed Catherine in 2011.