Initial release date: May 20, 2022
Genre: Shooter game
Publishers: United Games Entertainment GmbH, Success
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows
"Review Copy Provided By ININ Games"
The Cotton franchise has been on a massive resurgence over the last year with so many titles that have been released that are remakes of the older titles along with modern ports of the classics coming over to here to the west were the series has never really had a presence. With Success Corporation deciding to make the franchise fully available the world over, this has created a ton of new fans and also has helped bring more awareness to the cute ‘em up genre of shmups/bullet hell shooters. With the release of Cotton Fantasy, fans of the franchise that have had to wait nearly 20 years are now able to experience the first new entry in the series on the PS4 and Nintendo Switch. Is Cotton Fantasy an excellent new entry in the franchise? Let’s find out!
When it comes to the gameplay, Cotton Fantasy plays a lot like Cotton Reboot in many ways with it being a side scrolling shoot ‘em up with you moving about the screen shooting and avoiding enemies that will come at you from all angles while collecting power ups and points although compared to Reboot and its Crystal Refraction system that dictated your powerups; Fantasy utilizes a more traditional power up progression system. Another area where Fantasy differs from Reboot and other entries is in how it has a level select which allows you to select your path in how you approach the game and upon completing the game and clearing various criteria, you can unlock new levels which can seriously add additional replay value.
Cotton Fantasy brings in a new feature that allows you to select from several characters outside of just cotton from the get-go and while all the characters have similarities in how they play in relation to Cotton herself, each one of the new characters has mechanics and abilities that are wholly unique to them.
The game isn’t long as it can be completed within an hour, however, with their being multiple characters to play as and various playthrough pathways given the level select feature and unlockable levels gives Cotton Fantasy some tremendous replayability.
If you played Cotton Reboot, then you will find a lot of that games influence on this one with how it takes the sound and look of the classic games and redresses them in a modern flair that looks good on modern platforms. The characters all look amazing when you see them in the cutscenes which are highly detailed (not to mention funny), when it comes to the levels; they all look very vivid and while the characters all standout from the backgrounds. I do wish the game would’ve utilized some of the 3D mechanics that we saw in Panaroma Cotton although we only get some unique mechanics in the bonus stages.
So, is Cotton Fantasy worth the $40? With a large roster of unique characters to choose from along with multiple level pathways for each playthrough and unlockables make this a game you most definitely want to dive into even if it is on the short side. You can’t go wrong with this entry in this long running franchise so pick this up as soon as you can.