Cow against… red?
You are a cow, and you have places to be. With the power of your udder-jet and funky looks on your side, no one can stop you. Well, mostly. Only the plungers and anything red, really. This free-to-play platformer is another title by Serhii Riabtsev in hand with Crescent Moon Games. These two have previously worked together in other quirky games such as Marginalia Hero and Ears and Burgers.
That’s a Cow has you soaring through its 100+ levels, collecting coins and apples while splashing down your lactose-intolerant enemies with your deadly torrent of milk. (They might not be lactose intolerant, but I’d like to think that they are).
The aerophysics of a cow
The gameplay is challenging without being overwhelming. You can use your udder-jet temporarily by tapping the screen and sliding your finger back or forth to control the direction. This way you can avoid obstacles and stop your enemies by drowning them in milk. Although the premise seems easy enough, you will need to develop some technique to clear levels successfully.
To make things more interesting, That’s a Cow also has an in-game gacha claw machine that lets you collect over 20 different cows after obtaining a certain number of stars, which you get by achieving three goals in each level. If you’re a collector like me, this alone will be enough incentive to keep playing, even after clearing everything. Not that you need a particular motive. Watching the cows flop is amusing enough as it is.
The pastel aesthetic and ragdoll animation enhance the funky vibe the game is going for. It makes the cows look adorable when they’re flying, walking or crashing into something. The graphics tie the experience together, rendering the title cute, funny and less enraging when you lose.
Now, what happens after you have completed the 100+ levels. You begin playing on infinite mode, which offers up game levels at random. This allows you to give it another go at trying to get everything, especially after getting familiarized with the dynamic of the flying cow. It also helps to keep it fresh after playing it for a while since you don’t know which set of obstacles you’ll get next. The lone downside I see, which is only important if you are as obsessive as me, is that you can’t keep track of which levels you cleared with 3 stars and which ones you haven’t since the game doesn’t keep a record. This also means that you can’t go to a particular level to play. The best you can do is hope that the next randomized level is the one that you want.
Another teeny tiny issue is that you can’t pause the game. Once the level starts it’s ride or die. Literally. As soon as you clear a level and receive your stars, the next one immediately begins, which is great if you want to keep playing, but not so great if you want to stop procrastinating, or if you don’t want to get caught wasting company time by your boss, or if you have poor self-control. Not that that’s the case with me, of course. I definitely know what self-control looks like, and I would NEVER play on the job, like ever…
Anyways, if you do get caught in an endless stream of cows, you can press the home button and it’ll send you to the home page. You will lose progress on that level, but they’re not long, so restarting from scratch is just a mild inconvenience.
Talking about mild inconveniences, let’s remember this is a free-to-play game, which means that it will spam an ad every other level. They’re not over the top annoying, but you can still get rid of them by making a one-time payment that will also give you unlimited claw machine access and a very special jelly-shooting cow. Or you can apply my secret technique: just stop playing and actually get some work done when it pops up.
A-moo-sing (I’m sorry. I had to)
The game by itself is quite enjoyable. It will keep you entertained for a while, and the claw machine will make any collector’s heart happy. It is perfect for casual gamers and people who like their games whimsical and unconventional, not to mention the funky aesthetic. And if your main goal is to kill some time, this is undoubtedly a game you will want to try. I, for one, would like to start a petition for more cows.
Yes, very much
If the premise “milk-shooting cows with udder jetpacks” didn’t catch your eye, then I suggest you take a step back and meditate about your life choices.