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Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker Deluxe review for Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One


Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also on: PS4, PC, Xbox One
Publisher: Magic Notion
Developer: Magic Notion
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: T

Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker Deluxe may not be everybody’s cup of tea. After all, it’s a Switch port of a 2014 dating sim mobile game, and it’s based on Kitty Powers, the drag queen alter ego of one of the founders of game developer Magic Notion. Needless to say, you’ve got to have a healthy appetite for camp if you’re going to enjoy it. I didn’t think I did — and yet, I can’t stop playing it.

The game is built around your management of a dating agency, with the eponymous Kitty stopping by every so often to give you advice. You’re given clients and a black book of potential love interests, and it’s up to you to match them together based on their interests and their personality types. They then go on a date, where you have to help your clients navigate through the evening’s conversations, while also dealing with whatever unforeseen issues may arise.

The matching aspect of the game is pretty fun. Sure, the interests start getting a little repetitive, and there’s probably something bad about how the game rewards you for changing your clients’ appearances to meet the preferences of their potential matches, but, at the end of the day, it was always fun to look beyond physical preferences and figure out who was really compatible.

The dates were also fun, but a little more hit or miss. While the conversations were generally enjoyable, the unforeseen issues led to minigames that usually relied way too much on luck. For example, your date would show you a movie poster, and you’d have to guess their favourite actor, with nothing obvious to guide you. Likewise, at one point after eating you have to hold in some gas, but you do so by playing a card game where you have to guess whether the next card would be higher or lower. Maybe I just had a horrific run of luck, but the number of times in which I drew a 5, guessed lower, and wound up with a 2 or a 3 seemed highly improbable. I understand that the developers wanted to mix things up a little beyond the basics of a date, but it all felt oddly tacked-on.

Given its mobile origins, you won’t be shocked to learn that it’s pretty obvious where Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker Deluxe originally featured microtransactions. Coins are a huge part of this game, in everything from buying new restaurants and salon treatments for your clients, to giving your luck a little nudge in all those minigames. Thankfully, however, the game isn’t stingy with doling out coins, so it’s never a huge deal — though I imagine it was a much bigger part of the original mobile game.

That doesn’t take anything away from the Switch version of Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker Deluxe, though. As I said, it’s highly addictive thanks to how quickly those dates breeze along, and even if it’s all done with a wink, the game never seems like it’s looking down on the genre (which, I’ll admit, I may have been doing going into it). It all makes for a fun way to pass the time, and if you’re looking for something a little different on the Switch, you’ll find it right here.

Magic Notion provided us with a Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker Deluxe Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: B+