Catherine (video game)
is a horror puzzle-platformer adventure game
Adventure game
An adventure game is a video game in which the player assumes the role of protagonist in an interactive story driven by exploration and puzzle-solving instead of physical challenge. The genre's focus on story allows it to draw heavily from other narrative-based media such as literature and film,...

 developed by Atlus Persona Team and published by Atlus
is a Japanese computer and video game developer, publisher, and distributor based in Tokyo, Japan, best known for developing the console role-playing game franchise Megami Tensei. The first Megami Tensei was a Nintendo Entertainment System video game published by Namco based on a trilogy of...

 for the PlayStation 3
PlayStation 3
The is the third home video game console produced by Sony Computer Entertainment and the successor to the PlayStation 2 as part of the PlayStation series. The PlayStation 3 competes with Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Nintendo's Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles...

 and Xbox 360
Xbox 360
The Xbox 360 is the second video game console produced by Microsoft and the successor to the Xbox. The Xbox 360 competes with Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nintendo's Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles...

. The game is Atlus
is a Japanese computer and video game developer, publisher, and distributor based in Tokyo, Japan, best known for developing the console role-playing game franchise Megami Tensei. The first Megami Tensei was a Nintendo Entertainment System video game published by Namco based on a trilogy of...

' first internally-developed game for seventh-generation consoles
History of video game consoles (seventh generation)
In the history of video games, the seventh generation of consoles is the current generation , and includes consoles released since late by Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony...

 in high definition, and is described as an "adult-oriented
Adult video game
An adult video game is a video game which has significant sexual content , and are therefore intended for an adult audience. Adult games can fall into many genres and have diverse gameplay.-PC and console:...

" title by the game's character designer, Shigenori Soejima. The cinematic portion of the game is handled by Studio 4°C
Studio 4°C
is a Japanese animation studio founded by Eiko Tanaka in 1986. The name comes from the temperature at which water is most dense.-History:STUDIO4°C has produced numerous feature films, OVAs, and shorts. Early film titles include; Memories , Spriggan and Princess Arete...

. The game was released in Japan on February 17, 2011, and in North America on July 26, 2011. Deep Silver will release the game in Europe during February 2012.


Players control a man named Vincent who begins having strange nightmares after his girlfriend, Katherine, begins to talk about marriage and commitment. This matter becomes more complicated for him when he meets a gorgeous girl named Catherine and the nightmares get more and more intense. The main story mode, Golden Playhouse, follows the story between Daytime and Nightmare scenarios. During the daytime, Vincent will converse with his friends as well as try to handle his relationships with Catherine and Katherine. Most of this time takes place in the Stray Sheep bar where Vincent can save and send text messages from his mobile phone, talk to customers, order drinks, play a minigame titled Rapunzel or listen to a jukebox containing tracks from other Atlus games such as the Persona
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona, known in Japan as is a series of role-playing video games developed and published by Atlus. The series is a spin-off of the Megami Tensei series which focuses on demon summoners. However, the Persona series centers around groups of teenagers who have the ability to...


The main gameplay takes place in the Nightmare stages. In a nightmarish dreamworld inhabited by other men, who are represented as sheep, Vincent must climb up giant staircases that are slowly collapsing underneath him and safely reach the top. To accomplish this, Vincent must push, pull and climb blocks as quickly as possible while avoiding various traps such as spikes and ice. Climbing up steps in quick succession increases a score multiplier, and at the end of the level, players are given an award based on their score. Each stage is split up into numerous areas, culminating in a boss stage in which a nightmarish creature also attempts to kill Vincent. Items found throughout the levels include pillows which give extra lives, block items that can be placed anywhere in the level and lightning that can destroy sheep which block Vincent's path. There are also certain attributes Vincent can get depending on what he drinks during the day. Vincent will die if he falls off the bottom of the level, gets caught by a trap or is killed by a boss, with the game ending if Vincent runs out of retry pillows. In between action stages, Vincent can interact with the other sheep, save his game, learn techniques or spend coins on special items. When playing on easy and normal difficulty, players can push the Select/Back button to correct a single block move.

Throughout the game, the choices the player makes during certain sections of the game will affect the development of Vincent's character and the route the story takes place. These can occur in several ways, such as how Vincent types out a text message to one of the girls, or how he responds to certain questions. The game will feature multiple endings
Multiple endings
Multiple endings refer to a case in entertainment where the story could end in different ways, described as an alternate ending.-Literature:...

 based on the route Vincent takes, and has over twenty hours of gameplay. The game also features a non-linear morality system much more subtle than most other games. Instead of choosing Vincent's reaction at major plot points, the morality meter is affected by responses to seemingly insignificant questions posed by non-player character
Non-player character
A non-player character , sometimes known as a non-person character or non-playable character, in a game is any fictional character not controlled by a player. In electronic games, this usually means a character controlled by the computer through artificial intelligence...

s, which in turn dictates how Vincent reacts to unexpected situations. Babel Mode features four large stages playable with up to two players, while Vs Colosseum features two players simultaneously playing a stage in order to reach the top first.


In the neighborhood in which Vincent lives, there have recently been a number of bizarre incidents in which people die in their sleep with a look of anguish upon their faces. Strangely enough, all of the victims are young men. The story quickly spreads throughout the media, attracting widespread attention and theories as to the cause of death. A strange rumor begins to spread that if a person dreams of falling, then they must wake up before they hit the ground or they will be unable to wake at all and will die.

Vincent is at a restaurant contemplating marriage to Katherine, his lover of five years, who starts to pressure him to get married. On that night at the bar, when he is thinking about this new situation right above a glass of Rum and Cola, he meets a beautiful and mysterious woman named Catherine. Although there are many vacant seats, she sits next to Vincent and turns out to be exactly his type. The two end up spending the night together at Vincent's house.

After meeting Catherine, Vincent begins to have nightmares every single night, which he believes may be related to the rumors. In these dreams, he and several other men, who appear to him as sheep, must escape from various horrors trying to kill them, for if they die in their dreams, they will die in reality. As dreams and reality begin to blend together, Vincent must not only fight to survive, but he must choose between Katherine and Catherine.

At the end of the 7th day, Vincent finally breaks his tryst with Catherine (much to her chagrin). The next morning, he awakens without nightmares and without Catherine by his side, but she suddenly appears in his room when Katherine comes to visit. After a heated exchange between the two women, Catherine attempts to stab Katherine with a kitchen knife, but ends up being impaled to death instead. Vincent realizes they are in a nightmare and escapes with Katherine, understanding that she matters the most to him.

When Vincent awakens from the nightmare, he notices that Katherine has no recollection of what had happened, and everything had been a dream. Katherine, who was suspicious of his behavior from the beginning, tricks Vincent into admitting that he had been cheating on her, and reveals that she was not pregnant and had held off telling him to test him. She breaks up with him.

The entire situation is orchestrated by Thomas Mutton, the bartender of the Stray Sheep. "Catherine" is a succubus working with him, who takes the form of each man's fantasy woman, to tempt him into cheating. If the man is tempted, Mutton uses the arcade machine Rapunzel to plant a seed in their memories which can transport them to the nightmare world, in which they climb a tower constructed by Ishtar (actually Trisha). The purpose of doing so is both to punish them for their sins; and also, for the "good of the species", to remove them from the women with whom they will not be bearing or maintaining children. When Vincent climbs the entire tower, he becomes one of the few "Men of Legend" to do so, and can order Mutton to stop orchestrating nightmares.

However, when the final mode of the game is completed, Trisha breaks the fourth wall by revealing that the entire story has been a theatrical production and the true purpose of the nightmares was for her to test the player for fitness to replace Mutton, the last man who successfully climbed the tower, as her consort.


Depending on the way certain questions and text messages are answered, Catherine has a total of eight endings based on three central narratives. The alignment endings (i.e. Catherine and Katherine) feature a good, bad, and an extended true version while a neutral "Freedom" ending only has two versions. "Bad" endings are obtained if the player's explicit choices do not correspond to the alignment meter position, calculated based on the player's other actions. "Good" and "True" endings are obtained if the player's explicit choices do match the meter; the choice of which of these appears is based on which of these choices were made.
  • Katherine, Bad: Katherine leaves Vincent due to his cheating with Catherine.
  • Katherine, Good: Mutton and Vincent's other friends are able to prove to Katherine that Catherine is not real, and thus Vincent has not cheated. Vincent and Katherine get back together and resume planning their wedding.
  • Katherine, True: Same As the corresponding Good ending, except Katherine and Vincent actually do marry.
  • Catherine, Bad: Vincent proposes marriage to the succubus, Catherine, but she turns him down.
  • Catherine, Good: Vincent proposes marriage to the succubus, Catherine, and she considers it. Her true father, the demon Nergal, appears and objects, but Vincent insists, and Catherine agrees. Catherine transports Vincent into the Underworld where the two live together.
  • Catherine, True: Same As the corresponding Good ending, but Vincent is later able to seduce an entire harem of succubi and overthrow Nergal, becoming the King of the Underworld.
  • Freedom, Good: Vincent turns down both women, saying neither is truly what he desires, and he has his life ahead of him to find what he wants. Mutton is shocked at this turn of events and apologizes for pulling Vincent into the nightmare world. Vincent borrows some money from Mutton to place a bet on a wrestling match, but loses.
  • Freedom, True: Same As the corresponding Good ending, but Vincent wins his bet and uses the money to buy a seat on a tourist space shuttle - his true childhood dream.


Vincent is the game's main protagonist. He is a 32-year-old office worker at the point in life between independence from one's parents and marriage. He has no ambitions in terms of love and romance. He is under pressure to marry Katherine, but wants to continue his carefree ways of living alone. His life changes when he unexpectedly meets a mysterious beauty named Catherine at his local bar, the Stray Sheep. Dreams and reality begin to blur together, and he seemingly becomes trapped in a different world within his nightmares.

Catherine is a mysterious 22-year-old woman who has a charming face and a "well-proportioned" body, which makes men turn and stare. She also has a "Koakuma (Gyaru
is a Japanese transliteration of the English word gal, that of girl being . The name originated from a 1970s brand of jeans called "gals", with the advertising slogan: "I can't live without men", and was applied to fashion- and peer-conscious girls in their teens and early twenties. Its usage...

) air" about her, which happens to be Vincent's type, and the two end up spending the night together after she seduces him. Her carefree behaviour begins to disturb Vincent's life. It is after meeting Catherine that Vincent begins to have nightmares. Catherine is featured on the PS3 version's cover art.

Katherine is a 32-year-old mid-management level employee at an apparel maker. She and Vincent are from the same town and were classmates at school, and after a chance meeting at a school reunion they strike up a relationship. Katherine suggests marriage to Vincent, which he is not ready for. Katherine is featured on the Xbox 360 version's cover art.

Orlando is a divorced 32-year-old software engineer, a long time friend of Vincent, and also a regular at the Stray Sheep bar. He also frequents the Kappa Heaven sushi bar during the day. Orlando is carefree in both his words and actions, has become disenchanted with the idea of marriage and advises a worried Vincent against it. He suffered a lot when he and his former wife split over financial problems, and still feels betrayed because of it. He later appears in the nightmares as "Sheep with red hat", guilty over his pride being the cause of why he refuses to start anew with his ex-wife.

Jonny is a 32-year-old used car salesman. He's Vincent and Orlando's old friend, a bachelor, and also a regular at the Stray Sheep bar. He works at his father's used car lot and plans on continuing the family business. He has high ideals regarding marriage, stating that he believes marriage should be with one's destined partner. Despite that he has a girlfriend, he is not interested in marrying her because of his long-time feelings for Katherine. He later appears in the nightmares as "Smoking Sheep" due to his guilt of refusing to progress with his girlfriend and betraying Vincent for loving Katherine.

Toby is a 23-year-old used car salesman and a colleague of Jonny's. He is also a regular at the Stray Sheep bar. Toby is very young and inexperienced, and professes a strong desire to get married, saying that the moment he gets a girlfriend he will marry her. He has a thing for older women and has a crush on the Stray Sheep's waitress, Erica.

Erica is the Stray Sheep's 32-year-old bar waitress and Vincent's childhood friend. She has a bright personality and is up to date on town gossip. Toby has a crush on her and loses his virginity to her. It is revealed during the Lovers' true ending that she is transsexual
Transsexualism is an individual's identification with a gender inconsistent or not culturally associated with their biological sex. Simply put, it defines a person whose biological birth sex conflicts with their psychological gender...

, something that was alluded to throughout the game, and was previously known as Eric.

Thomas "Boss" Mutton
Boss (known as "Master" in the Japanese version) is Stray Sheep's owner and barkeep. The player will go through him to make friends with new customers. Though he references past wives and a somewhat sordid history, Very little is known about him and he is seldom seen without his sunglasses. Later in the game, he reveals himself to be an incarnation of Dumuzid the Shepherd as well as the architect behind the nightmares.

A strange voice that talks to Vincent from a window of a confession booth, making cryptic remarks and judgmental observations as Vincent endures the nightmares. It can talk to Vincent outside of the Nightmares too, mostly informing him of what is to come in the next Nightmare while Vincent is washing his face in Stray Sheep's bathroom, or remarking on Vincent's drinking at the Stray Sheep.

Trisha, the "Midnight Venus" is the host of Golden Playhouse mode who sports a large red afro. She provides an introduction to the game's modes and will text Vincent concerning his achievements in the Nightmare stages and to provide him with hints. She reveals herself prior to the final stage of the game's "Babel" challenge mode to in fact be Ishtar
Ishtar is the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility, love, war, and sex. She is the counterpart to the Sumerian Inanna and to the cognate north-west Semitic goddess Astarte.-Characteristics:...

 and the true identity of Astaroth, and breaks the fourth wall
Fourth wall
The fourth wall is the imaginary "wall" at the front of the stage in a traditional three-walled box set in a proscenium theatre, through which the audience sees the action in the world of the play...

 by telling the player she was waiting for them to show exceptional climbing skills via Vincent so as to find a replacement for her consort, Dumuzid, of whom she had grown tired due to his cheating.

Catherine's father, appearing in two of the game's alternate endings. Himself being a powerful demon, he doesn't agree with Catherine's and Vincent's relationship but quickly bends to Catherine's will. After the one of the ending's credits he's seen again, as a being inferior to Vincent.


The game's existence was first hinted at in the PSP
PlayStation Portable
The is a handheld game console manufactured and marketed by Sony Corporation Development of the console was announced during E3 2003, and it was unveiled on , 2004, at a Sony press conference before E3 2004...

 game Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 Portable. In this game, Vincent appears at Club Escapade on certain days, though in the game he never reveals his name and is simply referred to as "Man Drinking Alone" in his dialogue boxes. However, on a certain day, if you put in the right choices in the pop-up, a picture will appear and will speak more about his relationships in the game. In conversing with the player character, he reveals hints related to his problems, though also states specifically that they are "nothing that [the player character] needs to worry about." It is unclear what, if any, connection Catherine has with the Megami Tensei universe.

The game was also mentioned at Konami
is a Japanese leading developer and publisher of numerous popular and strong-selling toys, trading cards, anime, tokusatsu, slot machines, arcade cabinets and video games...

's TGS
Tokyo Game Show
The , commonly known as TGS, is a video game expo / convention held annually in the Makuhari Messe, in Chiba, Japan. It is presented by the Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association and the Nikkei Business Publications, Inc...

 2010 booth.

Producer Hashino stated less than two weeks after its announcement that Catherine has actually been in development for quite a while, saying: "the Persona 4
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4, originally released in Japan as simply , is a role-playing video game developed and published by Atlus for Sony's PlayStation 2, and chronologically the fifth installment in the Shin Megami Tensei: Persona series. Persona 4 was released in Japan in July 2008, North...

development team would switch back and forth between developing Catherines first stages and polishing up Persona 4
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4, originally released in Japan as simply , is a role-playing video game developed and published by Atlus for Sony's PlayStation 2, and chronologically the fifth installment in the Shin Megami Tensei: Persona series. Persona 4 was released in Japan in July 2008, North...


A playable demo was released on January 27, 2011, in Japan, but was later removed from PSN. It has since been put back up. To prevent gamers from posting spoiler videos, specifically those after Night 8 of the game, or hosting live streams of the game before its intended street date, Atlus posted a humorous public service announcement picture of an in-game sheep, warning gamers who post spoilers on video sharing sites, such as YouTube
YouTube is a video-sharing website, created by three former PayPal employees in February 2005, on which users can upload, view and share videos....

 and Nico Nico Douga
Nico Nico Douga
is a popular video sharing website in Japan managed by Niwango, a subsidiary of Dwango. Its nickname is "Niconico" or "Nico-dō", where "nikoniko" is the Japanese ideophone for smiling. Nico Nico Douga is the thirteenth most visited website in Japan...

, run the risk of having their accounts banned. In response to players' complaint on the game difficulty, Atlus released a patch with a new difficulty mode called Super Easy mode for the PS3 in March 2011. The patch for the Xbox 360 version was released on March 31.

To promote the game, Tokyo restaurant Collabo Dining offered a Catherine-themed drinks and meal menu between February 17, 2011 and March 31, 2011.

Atlus made an announcement on March 1, 2011, and confirmed the game would be released in North America in summer 2011. Prior to the official announcement, GameStop
GameStop Corporation is an American video game and entertainment software retailer. The company, whose headquarters is in Grapevine, Texas, United States, operates 6,500 retail stores throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, New...

 accidentally made the game available for pre-order on their website, revealing a more definitive release date of July 26, 2011, which was later officially confirmed. In North America, due to the game's somewhat risqué cover art, an edited version was used on a "small percentage" of launch copies at select retailers in consideration of more "sensitive" shoppers.

Deluxe Edition

On May 2, 2011, Atlus announced that Catherine would receive a "Love is Over" deluxe edition in North America. In addition to either the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 version of the game, it includes a pair of boxer shorts
Boxer shorts
Boxer shorts are a type of undergarment worn by men. The term has been used in English since 1944 for all-around-elastic shorts, so named after the shorts worn by boxers, for whom unhindered leg movement is very important.Reasons for a preference for boxers can be attributed to their variety of...

 identical to those worn by Vincent; Vincent's T-shirt, worn by Catherine, featuring four heart containers reminiscent of those found in The Legend of Zelda
The Legend of Zelda
The Legend of Zelda, originally released as in Japan, is a video game developed and published by Nintendo, and designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka. Set in the fantasy land of Hyrule, the plot centers on a boy named Link, the playable protagonist, who aims to collect the eight fragments...

 series, one-and-a-half of which are full, with the word "Empty" beneath them; a pillowcase featuring artwork of Catherine and the game logo; and a replica of a pizza box from the game's "Stray Sheep" restaurant, which serves as the external packaging. The cover art of the game included with the deluxe edition is the original, unedited version. Atlus had said that the deluxe edition would be available only in "very limited quantities," with stock built according to pre-order demand.

Pre-order bonuses

Pre-orders of the game in Japan and North America, either standard or deluxe (North America only), included a "sound disc" (soundtrack CD) and art book. For the soundtrack, composer Shoji Meguro
Shoji Meguro
is a Japanese video game composer and director who joined Atlus in 1996 and has composed music for many of their games, mainly those in the Megami Tensei series.-Biography:...

 chose to remix classical music in order to emphasize the game's horror aspects, and to make it more "Persona
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona, known in Japan as is a series of role-playing video games developed and published by Atlus. The series is a spin-off of the Megami Tensei series which focuses on demon summoners. However, the Persona series centers around groups of teenagers who have the ability to...


Track listing


Catherine received a positive reception, with average aggregate scores of 81% and 83% for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, respectively, on GameRankings; 80 and 83 out of 100 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, respectively, on Metacritic
Metacritic is a website that collates reviews of music albums, games, movies, TV shows and DVDs. For each product, a numerical score from each review is obtained and the total is averaged. An excerpt of each review is provided along with a hyperlink to the source. Three colour codes of Green,...

; and an average press score of 8.1 out of 10 on GameStats. Famitsu
is a line of Japanese video game magazines published by Enterbrain, Inc. and Tokuma. Currently, there are five Famitsū magazines: Shūkan Famitsū, Famitsū PS3 + PSP, Famitsū Xbox 360, Famitsū Wii+DS, and Famitsū Wave DVD...

gave the game a score of 35/40 based on four scores of 9, 9, 8 and 9. In an import review, GamesRadar
GamesRadar is a multi-format video game website featuring regular news, previews, reviews, videos, and guides. It is owned and operated simultaneously in the UK and US by worldwide publisher Future Publishing...

 gave the game a 5/10, praising the story but criticizing the game's difficulty due to random enemy AI, though they later gave the English release 8/10, citing crucial changes had removed most of the game's annoyances. Some Japanese gamers have complained that the game is too difficult, even on the easy setting. Atlus has since released a patch that includes a Super Easy mode, which is included in the English version. PSM3
PSM3 is a video game magazine specialising in all Sony video game consoles and handheld gaming platforms. PSM3 is published by Future Publishing, a UK-based publishing company....

gave the Japanese version a score of 8.0, praising its challenge and presentation, while criticizing its basic online play. IGN gave the North American version of Catherine an overall score of 9.0. Game Informer
Game Informer
Game Informer is an American-based monthly magazine featuring articles, news, strategy, and reviews of popular video games and associated consoles. It was formed in August 1991, when FuncoLand started publishing a six-page magazine, free in all its retail locations...

gave the North American version of Catherine a 7.0, praising its overall story, but criticizing the game's difficulty. Tom Bissell of, the sports and pop culture website owned by ESPN and run by Bill Simmons
Bill Simmons
William J. "Bill" Simmons III is a sports columnist, author, and podcaster. He currently writes columns and hosts podcasts for, which is affiliated with He is a former writer for ESPN The Magazine and Jimmy Kimmel Live!...

, was pleasantly surprised by the game and gave it a very positive review, which included a listing of its eerie qualities. GamesTM
GamesTM is a UK-based, multi-format video games magazine, covering many video game platforms including PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, GameCube, Xbox, PlayStation 2, PC games, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS and Arcade machines...

magazine scored it 5/10, criticising the unintuitive controls, restrictive camera, and high degree of randomisation (especially on later levels), stating that success was based more on luck than skill. While they admitted that easier difficulties negated the randomisation problem to a degree, it did not correct what was inherently bad design. They were also critical of the fact that the multiplayer modes needed to be unlocked before being accessible.

The PlayStation 3 version topped the Japanese charts in its opening week with over 140,000 copies sold while the 360 version came in 7th with over 21,000, and was able to outsell Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds
Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds
is a crossover fighting game developed by Capcom. It features Capcom's own characters and characters from American comic book company Marvel Comics. It is the fifth installment of the Marvel vs...

, which was released on the same day, by a margin of two-to-one. The game has also been commercially successful in America, selling 78,000 copies across both systems to consumers in its first six days, making it Atlus' biggest launch yet for a game. The game has currently sold around 500,000 copies, being a huge success for the company.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.