Press release:
ST. CATHARINES, CANADA (February 9, 2021).
The Canada-based indie games developers Devil’s Cider Games (the winners of Jamming the Curve – Game Jam 2020’s prize for the Character Management Category and the LabX Game Development Grant) are today very pleased and proud to announce that their contagious kitty management sim “Cat Colony Crisis” is now available for PC (via Steam) and mobile devices (iOS and Android).

In the game, players command a spaceship full of kitties who begin showing symptoms of a mysterious illness. It’s up to them to enact proper measures to prevent the crew from becoming ill.

Devil’s Cider Games developed Cat Colony Crisis during the collaborative game jam, “Jamming the Curve,” organized by IndieCade, Seattle Indies, Georgia Tech, and LabX, with consultation from the CDC. The game jam brought together scientists and gamers to help combat the spread of COVID-19 by promoting “prosocial pandemic behaviors” using the power and easily digestible format of the video game medium.

As a title that exemplifies the importance of these actions during a global pandemic, Cat Colony Crisis was awarded both the $20,000 LabX Game Development Grant and Best Character Management title.

“Winning the development grant was a massive windfall and helped bring Devil’s Cider Games into the hyper-competitive indie scene,” said Paul Boyko, co-owner, Devil’s Cider Games.

“We think video games are a unique medium in their ability to teach while providing entertainment, and what’s more entertaining than cats? In space?”

“With Jamming the Curve, we worked in close collaboration with industry veterans, health and science experts, and educators to create an event that would offer aspiring game developers a chance to make a real impact,” said Stephanie Barish, CEO and Founder of IndieCade.

“Cat Colony Crisis from Devil’s Cider Games exemplifies the mission of the event and is a great example of what can be accomplished by a passionate and informed group of creatives.”

“Jamming the Curve created the opportunity to make a connection between systems and stories through gaming,“ said Georgia Tech’s Janet Murray, who first approached IndieCade with the idea of bringing covid data together with gaming.

“Cat Colony Crisis is a perfect example of the type of game we wanted to encourage with Jamming the Curve,” said Rick Thomas, Associate Program Officer at LabX.

“It has a simple but effective premise that makes for a fun game while also serving as an educational tool that helps explain epidemiology and social response…but with cute cartoon cats.”

In Cat Colony Crisis, players find themselves monitoring a spaceship full of aptly named and cutely-attired space felines enjoying life in their floating home. Unfortunately, a mysterious illness begins to infect the populace, and the astro-cats start to develop symptoms.

It’s up to the player to keep track of each individual and log their behavior and log any physical changes. Is Boots coughing because the recycled oxygen is too dry? Or is he displaying signs of something more sinister? Isolate potential spreaders and identify the correct symptoms to make sure the virus doesn’t spread. We know cats are cuddly, touchy animals but it’s your job to ensure proper social distancing and protocol is followed.

Key Features of Cat Colony Crisis:

Cats…Lots of Cats: The colony is filled to the brim with cute and cuddly kitties milling about and getting up to feline shenanigans and it’s your job to manage them — luckily cats are known for being obedient, docile creatures who respond well to authority…

Prevent the Outbreak: Keep a close eye on these kitties as they begin to develop symptoms like sneezing, sniffling, and sweating, and use quarantine tactics and testing to discover if these were pre-existing symptoms or the signs of something worse…

Super-Cute Custom Kitties: It wouldn’t be a videogame about cats without an adorable aesthetic, and when you put a cowboy hat on a cartoon kitten everybody wins. Having a giant litter box right in the open in your colony seems like an odd home-decor choice, but who are we humans to judge?

Cat Colony Crisis is available for free on February 9 for PC and Mac on Steam and Itch.io, and for mobile on Android via Google Play. The game will launch on iOS at a later date.

For more information on Cat Colony Crisis and to stay up to date on all things Devil’s Cider Games, follow the team on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and their home on the web at http://devilscider.com/.

About Devil’s Cider Games
Devil’s Cider Games is an independent games studio with members from the Golden Horseshoe region of Ontario, Canada. We’re a small studio with big talent and even bigger ambition, creating games that offer a truly unique experience.

About LabX
LabX is a public engagement program of the National Academy of Sciences. Its mission is to empower young adults to use science and scientific thinking in their daily lives and in their communities.

About Indiecade
Applauded as the “Sundance of the videogame industry,” IndieCade supports independent game development globally through a series of year-round international events highlighting the rich, diverse, artistic, and culturally significant contributions of indie game developers. IndieCade’s programs are designed to bring visibility to and facilitate the production of new works within the emerging independent game community.

IndieCade’s 2021 ongoing programming includes an active Twitch channel and Alumni network, as well as quarterly events such as high profile game jams, topic-specific summits, master classes, and an annual festival each October. For more details, visit: https://www.indiecade.com

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Jonas “O.J” Ek
The Gaming Ground
Twitter: @TheGamingGround

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