Cat + Gamer Volume 1 | Review
Cat + Gamer Volume 1
by Wataru Nadatani
Dark Horse Manga, $11.99
This quiet manga is very relatable. Riko Kozakura is almost 30, a hard worker who gets her tasks done so she can leave the office every day at the stroke of 5 PM. She spends all her spare time playing video games, treating herself to expensive food while finishing up her latest game. Then she adopts a stray cat on a whim.
Riko doesn’t know anything about taking care of a pet, but she’s determined to “level up” with her cat. She starts with the basics: food, litter, and play. The cat tries to play games with her, watching the screen and chasing her controller. Riko needs to find the cat something to play with to prevent interference with her gaming.
The cat also needs a name, and the chapter where Riko tries out possibilities and attempts to figure out the animal’s gender is charming. Cat care is analogized to game quests. There are insert chapters where we see the world from the cat’s perspective, as well.
The art is straightforward, simply styled and focused on the realism of the settings. That makes the tuxedo cat look even more adorable. Chapters revolve around everyday events, and the artist does a terrific job capturing the cat’s movement and poses.
Between the portrait of a happy, well-adjusted gamer and the charming cat, there’s a lot to enjoy about this manga. This is a wonderful read for anyone, particularly for anyone who wants a pet cat but can’t have one. After all, fictional cats are much better behaved.
Johanna Draper Carlson has been reviewing comics for over 20 years. She manages ComicsWorthReading.com, the longest-running independent review site online that covers all genres of comic books, graphic novels, and manga. She has an MA in popular culture, studying online fandom, and was previously, among many other things, webmaster for DC Comics. She lives in Madison, Wisconsin.
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