Cats, possibly the most disinterested animals on the planet, are getting into gaming.

“Stray,” a new game from BlueTwelve Studio and Annapurna Interactive publishing for PlayStations 4 and 5, allows you to play as a cat living in a dystopian world. Turns out, it’s so realistic looking, housecats have been caught staring at it and mimicking it for hours on end.
Players are rewarded by existing as a cat in the game. You can do all the things that make cats, well, cats. Gamers can meow, wander around outside, clean themselves, sleep a lot, scratch furniture, knock things off tables, eat.
“Stray” players have been posting their own cats watching the game on social media, copying the cats in the game, staring at screens.
There’s even a Cats Watching Stray Twiiter account now, with gamers posting their cats reacting to the game.
One woman posted a video of her cat blocking the screen, writing, “My cat wont let me play this game.”

Fans of cats and platformers alike have likely been looking forward to the release of “Stray.” A truly unique experience, the game sees players taking the role of a cat, lost in a dystopian cyberpunk world, trying to get back to its family. Over the course of the game, players will explore the world, fend off robots, and solve puzzles to make it back home. Annapurna Interactive and BlueTwelve Studio just released the game and it’s already getting a great reception from critics. It’s received praise not just for its gameplay and its exploration of the human condition, but also for its ability to accurately capture the behavior of a cat.

And when it comes to the accurate depiction of cats in “Stray,” it seems the developers had plenty of inspiration to draw on. Ahead of the game’s release, the official PlayStation blog ran a post from the game’s producer, Swann Martin-Raget. In the post, Martin-Raget discussed the development of the game’s protagonist and revealed the digital feline’s real world counterpart.

The cat in “Stray,” as it turns out, was inspired by a pet belonging to Koola and Viv, BlueTwelve’s co-founders. This lovable little guy goes by the name Murtaugh, although he’s also known as “The Boss” by those who love him. Found as an actual stray in Montpellier, France, Murtaugh experienced a true rags-to-riches story when he was rescued from the streets. Now he has a home, a family, and a place in gaming history.


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