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The VR Version of Cat Collecting Game 'Neko Atsume' Is the Only Reality I Need

Virtual reality version of 'Neko Atsume' will come to PSVR next year.

Leif Johnson

Leif Johnson

Image: Sony

A popular game about putting food out for stray cats is coming to PlayStation VR, and it's one of the biggest bit of news surrounding virtual reality that we've heard in weeks.

The game in question has been a hit on mobile since 2014. It's Neko Atsume, which means "cat collection" because that's precisely what you do in it. Unfortunately we don't know much of what will happen in its virtual reality incarnation, as today publisher Sony merely showed off a logo and dropped a vague 2018 release date at the Tokyo Game Show.

But the mobile version might provide some clues. There, you put some food out on a patio on your iPhone or Android device, and dozens of cartoony stray cats wander up and hang around. Sometimes they'll wear outfits. And, well, that's about it. Even developer Yutaka Takasaki told CNN in 2015 he wasn't sure why it was so popular.

The existence of millions of cat-related memes on the internet should provide some clues. It doesn't hurt that Neko Atsume practically drips adorable charm, as we discovered shortly after its English-language release. The premise proved so endearing, in fact, that the game got the live-action film treatment in Japan earlier this year, which gave theatergoers a glimpse into the life of a writer who takes in stray cats as a way of dealing with stress and writer's block.

It's not hard to find threads on Reddit talking about how Neko Atsume is "better than therapy," and last year Polygon's Allegra Frank wrote a moving essay about how Neko Atsume served as her "bridge to a better life."