Cookie Cutter was provided by Rogue Games for review. Thank you!
Metroidvanias on the Steam Deck are probably some of the best games to play that won't kill the battery of your device. Taking place on complex 2D platforms with simple yet elegant visuals and an addicting gameplay loop makes it the perfect genre to play on the go in any situation. There are some pretty great options already released that encapsulate this, but ever since its announcement, Cookie Cutter's visual style and theme felt extraordinary, and this was on full display throughout the game.
Cookie Cutter uses a very impressive hand-drawn style with very neon/cyberpunk themes. The color reverberates through every scene and effects on screen, and it looks marvelous. This, along with the fluid animations, make this one of the nicest-looking Metroidvania I have played in a long time. The more mature and comic book-esque effects lend themselves especially well to this style, which just emphasizes how unique it all is.
Then, we have the gameplay. As is standard for Metroidvania, you will run across 2D maps and fight enemies and mini-bosses. Cookie Cutter has multiple worlds to run across with intricate designs. As you progress, you will unlock new components to augment your fighting in different ways, new weapons to use, and new abilities that you can use to open up the map. Backtracking is always a big deal in these types of games, and this is no exception. Going back and checking out the old pathways that were blocked off could mean more energy to upgrade or even new weapons.
For the most part, combat is pretty standard. You can use a basic attack that will regenerate "Void," which is used to attack with your equipped weapon of choice. Finding a balance between these two will help crush any enemy in your way. Every enemy also has a distinct finisher animation, and each one is wonderfully and gruesomely animated. You can also dodge and parry attacks to take enemies down. While dodging is especially useful, parrying is something I felt was lacking. I could never get the timing down, and the visual queue for it felt a bit off. Combat could feel a little repetitive here and there in the beginning as well, but I felt like this got significantly better once more weapons were introduced.
And thankfully, Cookie Cutter is perfectly playable on the Steam Deck without any changes to settings.
While there aren't many settings that could be changed, there isn't any necessity to change them. Out of the box, Cookie Cutter runs flawlessly with a minimal battery drain that all depends on the framerate you run it at. At 90 FPS, the game will sit around 10W - 11W battery drain for around 4.5 - 5 hours of life on the OLED. At 60 FPS, it sticks around 7.5W - 8W for around 6.5 - 7 hours of life on the OLED and around 5 hours of battery on the LCD.
Due to the battery life difference, I would recommend going for 60 FPS over 90 since there is relatively no difference in how it feels, yet can add on almost 2 hours of battery.
There are some issues on the default/stable Proton layer currently that won't play any tutorial videos. Since this doesn't affect general gameplay, I would still consider the game to be near flawless without any changes. However, if you want the videos to play, you must use Proton GE 8-25 and force compatibility.
There aren't any settings to change in Cookie Cutter other than language and two sound volume bars. You can remap keys, but otherwise, there are no other settings.
The game doesn't support 16:10 resolutions, so there will be black bars at the top and bottom of the screen, but it does have full controller and cloud save support.
Cookie Cutter is a gorgeously dystopian Metroidvania that is filled to the brim with wonderful animations, bright neon colors, and a fair share of gore. The outrageous weapons and style blend together well, making it one of the more enjoyable games to look at, especially on the vibrant OLED screen of the Steam Deck. And, with how well it runs, there's no reason to not play this game on the go! It is easily a Best on Deck game, and I am so glad it turned out to be.
Our review is based on the PC version of this game.
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Cookie Cutter is a gorgeous metroidvania that excels on the Steam Deck without changing any settings!