This week, finishing off our run of cats exclusive to Nintendo platforms, I turn to Tokyo Mirage Sessions ♯FE (Atlus, 2015). It’s a game about J-Pop stars using the powers of the performing arts to battle monsters and shake the residents of Tokyo out of their collective ennui, thereby saving them from certain doom. Obviously, it goes without saying that it is one of the most delightful games I have ever played. The cherry on top is that it has a great scene with a great cat, Little Devil.
In the sidequest “Open Your Heart”—technically billed not as a “sidequest” but as a “devilish-comedy” (god I love this game)—the game’s requisite awkward ingénue pop star Tsubasa has been asked by a commercial director to more fully exploit her “devilish charms.” Other characters attempt to explain human seductiveness to her, but she won’t hear any of it, instead going directly to the source, and studying cats. Specifically, a stray cat residing in Shibuya by the name of Little Devil, renowned for his ability to attract people’s attention while denying them affection.
Once the player has located Little Devil, Tsubasa has an extended conversation with him, studying the finer points of cat-like charms.
After mastering transpecies communication, Tsubasa announces that she has gleaned the essence of cat-dom: “Understanding what the other wants, yet not giving it completely … all while not leaving them in the dark…” Well done, Tsubasa, well done. That’s spot-on.
Welp, that’s it for the Nintendo run, but I’m still going to try and keep some connective tissue flowing between each entry from here on in. So, up next week, we’ll draw parallels between Tokyo Mirage Sessions ♯FE and Persona 5, the two Atlus-developed games released thus far on eighth generation home consoles. Both are set in Tokyo, with Shibuya featuring prominently. Both find Atlus pushing their dungeon-design skills further, into more satisfying, puzzle-ier directions. And, most importantly for this series, both feature cats.