If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.

Gordon Feline: Cat-Life

Scientist, soldier, security guard and now silent cat: these are the tales of Half-Life the first. The mod known as Cat-Life was announced some time back, with its concept hitting twin notes of absurdity and "that makes a lot of sense, somehow." It's Half-Life with a cat. I'm pretty sure you weren't able to work that out for yourself from the name, so I thought I'd better explain it for you. It's the first-person-shooting videogame Half-Life, but starring a domestic feline instead of an improbably athletic physics dork. Do you understand? With a cat. Oh, you still don't get it, do you? Well, a demo of the mod's just sprung up. Perhaps that'll explain all.

While the idea evokes an immediate chuckle, the game itself plays it largely straight. I'd have thought the rampantly silly concept needs to be acknowledged as such, rather than pitching moggy adventures as gritty survival horror. But then, perhaps that's all the joke it needs.

It's certainly pulled off a cat's perspective, the low-slung crawl and the natural night vision, but a cat pushing buttons and swiping at Headcrabs doesn't quite ring true. Giving up upon encountering and out of reach ledge and letting out a sustained, desultory yowl or just curling up for a nap in an air vent would feel more authentic. Though a game of sleeping and screaming wouldn't be for everyone, I'll admit.

Essentially, it's still a bit too Freemanesque, at least as far as this limited and very early demo goes - the key difference being the beast's limited offensive powers. Headcrabs: fine. Everything else: runrunrun! This means the challenges are primarily environmental, figuring out ledges and jumps to progress. Which makes it slightly sad that it's using HL1 rather than HL2, as Source's smashy-surfaces and balance trickery would have suited feline frolics that much more. Still, I'm keen to see where this goes, and what new'n'odd challenges it heaps upon poor kitty.

Here's a year old video that gives a good sense of how the demo moves and plays:

Tagged With

About the Author

Alec Meer avatar

Alec Meer


Ancient co-founder of RPS. Long gone. Now mostly writes for rather than about videogames.

Support Rock Paper Shotgun

Subscribe and get access to supporter-only articles, an ad-free reading experience, free gifts, and game discounts. Your support helps us create more great writing about PC games.

See more information



More News

Latest Articles

Rock Paper Shotgun logo

We've been talking, and we think that you should wear clothes

Total coincidence, but we sell some clothes

Rock Paper Shotgun Merch