Koneko Monogatari: The Adventures of Chatran

Koneko Monogatari: The Adventures of Chatran has the some-what dubious distinction of being the first game on the Disk System based on a licensed film property. Movie or TV parentage almost always make for bad video games. Unsurprisingly, this game does little to disparage that lineage.

Japanese Title: 子猫物語 Koneko Monogatari
English Release: none

Release Date: September 19, 1986
Publisher: Pony Canyon
Developer: Marionette Co., Ltd.
Genre: Action Platformer
Product Code: PNF-KOM
Disk Format: Double-sided
Notable Credits: Based on the Japanese film 子猫物語 Koneko Monogatari, released outside of Japan as ‘The Adventures of Milo and Otis’.

Koneko Monogatari: The Adventures of Chatran is not a good video game. At best the game can described as grating. Koneko borrows an awful lot from games that are much better, most notably Super Mario Bros., but it doesn’t seem to know what to do with the source material it’s thieving.

Koneko Monogatari is based on the 1986 film released in English territories as The Adventures of Milo and Otis, making it the first such film/TV licensed property to appear on Nintendo’s young disk add-on. A dubious distinction, as it turns out. The game does not stray from the classic archetype of bad games based on licensed properties. This is particularly disappointing to me, with the film The Adventures of Milo and Otis being a frequent VHS rental as a kid.

You play as the titular cat, in the Japanese version known as Chatran. You move through repetitive, ugly levels jumping in trees and avoiding enemies, playing through each day and night of a calender week. That’s about it. You have no attack, no special abilities. The levels are long and boring. The music is absolutely grating and horrendous, is among the worst on the Famicom. You can collect apples, and eggs, and letters which spell “HELP”. This triggers Otis, the dog from the film, to fall from the heavens and kill enemies for you, but this special attack will also kill you if you are in its path; a game design decision indicative of the game as a whole- sloppy and without aforethought.