Accolade has announced that its irrepressible 90s mascot Bubsy the Bobcat will, somewhat inexplicably, be returning in a brand-new game next year. But wait, no, come back! It sounds like this one could actually be good?!
Bubsy: Paws on Fire, as next year’s offering will be known, is actually the sixth Bubsy game to be released since the series’ inception in 1993. Bubsy’s debut title, Bubsy in Claws Encounters of the Furred Kind, was pretty well-received, but enthusiasm didn’t last long. Bubsy’s downhill trajectory reached its nadir around the time of his first 3D adventure for PlayStation in 1996, and last year’s baffling Bubsy revival – The Woolies Strike Back – was forgettable at best.
Presumably, however, there are enough people still invested in Bubsy’s plight to warrant this upcoming sixth outing – and, presumably, publisher Accolade wants better for its mascot than an eternity spent languishing in the depths of mediocrity. Because Bubsy’s in good hands for Paws on Fire, with the game being handled by Choice Provisions – the studio responsible for the excellent rhythm-platform series, Bit.Trip Runner.
Paws on Fire is, much like Choice Provisions’ best-known titles, an auto-runner. It will feature 100 levels set across three worlds, with each world introducing its own boss. Elsewhere, there’ll be four playable characters – Bubsy, Virgil Reality, The Woolie, and Arnold – a “unique” combo system, and a set of leaderboards for each character. There’s also a shop where costumes and cosmetics can be acquired through play – Accolade assures there’ll be no in-game purchases.
Somewhat unexpectedly then, Bubsy: Paws on Fire might be a high point for the ageing mascot. We’ll find out for sure when it releases on Switch, PS4 and PC in “Q1” next year.