Cannon Cat: Kitty Flinging Fun

Physics games seem like a dime a dozen on the iPhone, and anything that can put a new spin on the “fling an animal at another animal” Angry Birds motif is a welcome addition to the iOS platform. Developer Loqheart’s new iOS offering, Cannon Cat, is just that game.

The Evil Emu has imprisoned the skyfish, because he and the other flightless birds are jealous of their natural ability to soar amongst the clouds. Enter Meo the Cannon Cat, hero here to save the day, rescue the trapped skyfish, and defeat Evil Emu and his army of hovering penguins.

The Cat Inside the Cannon

There’s a story here, if you want to look for it. But really, this game is about flinging a cat through the air, bouncing him off of obstacles, and occasionally hearing his plaintive meows as he plunges to temporary doom. The story is admittedly thin — I never could figure out why Cannon Cat was ricocheting off of hovering puffer fish — but we’re in it to zoom a cat across the sky, right?

Cannon Cat is all in to save the day!

Cannon Cat is all in to save the day!

When you first open the app and move past the title screen, there’s a brief intro to the plight of the trapped skyfish and the mechanics of the game. Line up Meo with each cannon to collect all the skyfish. Do it quickly enough and you’ll collect a nice time bonus to boot.

How to Shoot a Cat from a Cannon

Gameplay is simple — tapping anywhere propels you forward — and the first couple of levels serve as a tutorial. Things get tough quick, however, as the cannons begin to move in subsequent puzzles, the difficulty level increases and the route to the skyfish becomes less direct. Hovering penguins block your path and attempt to prevent you collecting all the skyfish, too. And you really want to collect all the skyfish, because if you don’t, Meo will cry at the end of the level and make a promise to return for all of them.

Cannon Cat ran into the wrong side of a blowfish and won't be saving anyone today.

Cannon Cat ran into the wrong side of a blowfish and won't be saving anyone today.

After a few levels, you’ll start unlocking all of Cannon Cat’s power-ups. Cannon Time slows everything down, great for cannons flicking back and forth in front of the exit portal or swiftly spinning penguins separating Meo and the skyfish. It’s hard hitting a small target, and Big Boost makes that a bit easier by making the skyfish a little larger. Auto-save is another upgrade, and a useful one, as every time Meo blasts off into oblivion, you have to restart from the beginning of the level. The Shield does just what it sounds like — protects Meo from the bumps and bruises of penguin collisions

Cannon Cat saved all the skyfish like a boss and gained some sparks currency.

Cannon Cat saved all the skyfish like a boss and gained some sparks currency.

The power-ups don’t come cheap, though. The game currency is Sparks, collected at the end of every level, but you can buy more through in-app purchases. While I always encourage supporting developers through in-app purchases if you love the game, Cannon Cat really is one where the power-ups seem extraneous. You can 100% enjoy this one without the power-ups, even if there is the occasional penguin-induced rage quit.

Pros and Pros

After playing for what felt like forever, I backed out to see how many puzzles I had left in the first level, Kapalua Islands. It seemed like just a handful until I realized there was an entire second screen. That makes it forty puzzles per level, a solid offering for a freemium game. After you’ve played a few puzzles in Kapalua, you unlock Cedaria Reef, a world of skies populated by bouncy-bellied blowfish. A third level, Stratos, is coming soon.

A fourth level is promised if fans rate the game in the App Store, so the sky’s the limit, really, when it comes to puzzle content in Cannon Cat. While I’ve only managed to play through the whole game once, I do envision myself getting bored of the same blowfish bouncing really quickly and hope Loqheart release the promised added content soon.

One of the early puzzles from the Cedara Reef.

One of the early puzzles from the Cedara Reef.

The graphics are adorable and spot-on for a game called Cannon Cat. Chubby penguins float prone in the sky supported by single propellers while an indignant brown tabby in a red rocket suit proclaims he’ll save the bubble encased goldfish. All of this is happening on a blue sky background filled with floating islands covered in cat ruins and futuristic cities.

Cannon Cat happily soars through the sky!

Cannon Cat happily soars through the sky!

The exception to my glowing assessment of Cannon Cat is the music. It’s peppy and happy, but more-or-less generic. With so many smaller developers releasing games with truly amazing soundtracks, the music is something I always look forward to in a new download. The rest of the game is so entertaining and nigh addicting, though, I can easily overlook a lackluster soundtrack.

Conclusion

Overall, Cannon Cat is an incredibly fun game. The puzzles start you off pretty easy but get satisfyingly difficult quickly, and the challenge only builds, forcing the player to use the cannons in new ways with each subsequent puzzle. The in-app power ups for purchase are helpful if you get into a tight spot, but they’re unnecessary for really fun, continuous gameplay. Cannon Cat is a great looking app with a cartoonish sense of humor that doesn’t get old soon.


Summary

A fun time shooting a cat from a cannon.

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