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Hidden Cats in Paris Review

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Even though there have been a couple of previous entries in the ‘Hidden Cats’ series, I’m a newbie to the feline hunter. But after spending a relaxing hour with Hidden Cats in Paris, I was off to hunt down more cats in both London and New York. Is that because it’s the best game I’ve played this year? No, far from it. But for a Gamerscore-rich hour of chill, it ticks pretty much all the boxes. 

Helped along by a stupidly cheap price point, Hidden Cats in Paris does very much what it says on the tin. That tin is slapped with a simple statement – scour the cityscape put before you, clicking on any cat you may find. Job done. 

Hidden Cats in Paris review 1
Reckon you can find the Hidden Cats in Paris?

But Hidden Cats in Paris does things with aplomb, providing you with a single monochrome city – in this case a take on Paris with some gorgeous Parisian vibes – as you zoom your camera up, down, left, right, in and out, hunting down the cute and cuddly cats in the process. Each cat you find gets coloured upon your click, filling out specific sections of the world as you go, infusing colour and allowing you to get a handle on areas still worth focusing on. It’s a brilliant little mechanic, and the addition of colour, as well as some basic audio snippets – mostly meows and a jazzy backing track – helps you hone in on your targets. 

And whilst the vast majority of the landscape of Paris is static, non-moving, there are elements which shift along; most notably the road complete with vehicles, and the sky, as hot air balloons pass by the Eiffel Tower. With Parisians going about their daily business, dressed to the nines in French clobber, the aura and atmosphere are rich. 

A couple of different game modes allow you access to Paris too. A Normal mode will be your starting point, as you look to tick off 100 cats, utilising limited hints if required. We’d be surprised if you ever do need to fall back on the helpful ‘huge arrow’ that denotes hidden cats as you reach a conclusion, but it’s a nice option to have. There’s also the slightly-more-tricky-but-still-easily-doable Advanced mode. This randomly places 150 cats, ditches off the hints until you manage to accumulate enough, and also tasks you with ticking off specific characters. 

Hidden Cats in Paris review 2
Going advanced?

This Advanced mode also integrates eight superstar cats, each of which brings up a cute cat fact, with a real-world photo accompanying its uncovering. Again, this is a nice addition that chucks in a touch of real-world charm and personality to the game. 

Those special cats are also the key to a series of side missions and scenarios in the form of six Hidden Kittens Bonus levels. Going further into French culture and history, these are one-off scenes that take us to the Catacombs, the Patisserie, the Cabaret, Versailles, the Louvre and the Boulangerie; each with a theme to suit. The difference in each, at least from the main stages, are that the hidden cats are smaller, more insignificant in the grand scheme of things. And as only the cats themselves are coloured upon their uncovering, it makes each side hustle a more strained affair – so much so that we found ourselves needing to occasionally rely on the hints as we went for a full 100% completion. There’s still fun to be had in these bonus levels, but on a personal level we’d have preferred a few extra full Parisian scenes instead. 

You see, for all the relaxing notions that come to the fore with Hidden Cats in Paris, and for the stupidly low price that is asked for entry, it’s a game that will be over well within an hour, 1000 Gamerscore in the bag, levels coloured in with zest. There’s not even the option to go back and reply a level, as once you’ve found all those little feline friends, they stay put, ready to pounce. We guess you could go in and delete your save…

Hidden Cats in Paris review 3
Side hustles aren’t quite as interesting

It means that whilst Hidden Cats in Paris is a super tempting proposition, it does fall a teeny bit short in what it could well be. A few more main levels would be preferred, possibly replacing some of the Bonus stages. But then it’s hard to be tough on a game that is incredibly affordable, especially one that is oh-so vibrant.

SUMMARY

Pros:
  • A colourful cityscape
  • Easy Gamerscore
  • Uber relaxing
Cons:
  • Not much more than an hour of play
  • Additional levels would be great
Info:
  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, TXH
  • Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One
  • Release date and price - 12 June 2024 | £2.49
Neil Watton
Neil Wattonhttps://www.thexboxhub.com/
An Xbox gamer since 2002, I bought the big black box just to play Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee. I have since loved every second of the 360's life and am now just as obsessed with the Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S - mostly with the brilliant indie scene that has come to the fore. Gamertag is neil363, feel free to add me to your list.
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<b>Pros:</b> <ul> <li>A colourful cityscape</li> <li>Easy Gamerscore</li> <li>Uber relaxing</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>Not much more than an hour of play</li> <li>Additional levels would be great</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, TXH</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One <li>Release date and price - 12 June 2024 | £2.49</li> </ul>Hidden Cats in Paris Review
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