Cattails has gone through a development cycle and version history like most games have. It started with an early pre-alpha to a full release, and has undergone numerous changes and updates.
Closed Pre-Alpha (v1.2)
The closed pre-alpha was given to a few players (including YouTubers). This very early version of the game was used as promotional material for the game and the 2017 Kickstarter. This version lacked many features and was very different from the Alpha release of the game. It required a product key to be entered before playing the game. The Pre-Alpha content is listed below:
- After selecting “New Game”, the game starts at the customization screen. There is no tutorial, save selection, or opening cut scene. The player cat simply appears in front of their den at the Forest Colony. The game started on Summer 1 instead of Summer 2 because the player cat must rest after Coco takes them to their chosen colony in later versions.
- There was no difficulty level selection in this version.
- There were no other colonies available and the areas where they were located was inaccessible in this version. No battles occurred, but enemy cats could attack the player cat on sight.
- Sarge, from the Forest Colony, was not available in this version because they were a Kickstarter cat and the developers were still creating and implementing them.
- Doc can heal the player cat, but both options (small dose and full heal) costed the same and healed the player cat fully, regardless of what option was selected due to a bug.
- The Map Menu displayed gray blocks with a black X in areas that were unavailable. The Sacred Temple did not exist in this version.
- The Canyon Mine existed, but the mining feature and the Moles were unavailable in this version. The cave was empty except for occasional prey.
- The player cat had a default of 2 skill points in hunting, fighting, swimming, and foraging. The player could still earn XP to upgrade their skills. Active Skills were unavailable in this version.
- The starting inventory had 48 slots available. The inventory could not be expanded in this version.
- Coat color and eye color customization were available, but accessories were not. Custom Kickstarter coat colors were not available in this version.
- Ember was the only shopkeeper available, and their shop inventory was seven pages. Their shop inventory is listed below:
- Prey: Dove, Mouse, and Rabbit.
- Herbs: Goldenseal, Marigold, Valerian, and Raspberries.
- Coat Colors: Black, Sand, Yellow, Cinnamon, Caramel, Brown, Frost, Navy, Pink, Black/White, Gray/White, Sand/White, Cinnamon/White, Frost/White, Pink/White, Orange Tabby, Light Orange Tabby, Brown Tiger, Silver Tabby, Frost Tabby, Gold Tabby, Bee Tabby, Mottled Brown, Tortoise, Ticked Gray, and Calicomania.
- Marriage, kittens, den upgrades, turtles, and other Kickstarter content was unavailable, because they were stretch goals at the time.
Alpha Release (Abyssinian Alpha tier or up) v1.04
The Alpha was released on Steam on July 1, 2017. The Alpha was the first playable demo of the game. This version was more complete, but lacked many features and had several bugs and glitches that ranged from minor errors to game crashes. Major features and changes are listed below:
- After starting the game, the player was allowed to select a save file. After selection, the player could customize and name their cat.
- A simple opening cut scene plays and uses assets directly from the game and simple illustrations. The backstory is similar to the one in the final release.
- The menu included a link to the Cattails Forum.
- Coco appeared in the Alpha. They had a tutorial and took the player cat to a colony afterwards, like in the final release.
- The Mountain Domain was now available on the Map, but the player did not have the option to join them and defaulted to the Forest Colony. The game now started on Summer 2 and Mayor would introduce themselves when the player cat stepped out of their den. Daily battles now occurred in this version.
- Sarge was still unavailable in this version.
- The Map expanded with the Mountain Domain, Beach, and the Sacred Temple, but Festivals. The full map was available, but colony reputation was not.
- Opening the full map displays the Mystic Colony, but it was inaccessible to the player and had unnamed tiles. Mystic Colony cats could now be fought in daily battles.
- Colony tiles were now displayed with the colony's crest by the tile's name, and reputation percentage per tile on the map.
- Active Skills were now available. Coco now shows the Sprint skill during the tutorial.
- Mining, the Canyon Mine, and Mole Cash Shop were now available.
- Custom Kickstarter coat colors were now available.
- Accessories were now available to buy with Mews and Mole Cash. Inventory expansions were now available.
- Ember's inventory decreased by three pages, due to new shopkeepers being available.
- The main quest was unavailable.
- Marriage and the Red Rose were unavailable, but the player could befriend NPCs.
- Power Paws and were unavailable and max health could not be increased.
- Turtles were now available.
Beta Release (Burmese Beta tier or up) v1.0-v1.15
The Beta was released on Steam on September 29, 2017. There was an Alpha update that included new features and bug fixes. Alpha saves could be used with the Beta.
- The intro cut scene was the same as the final release cut scene.
- The player could now select a colony to join from the tutorial.
- The Mystic Colony, Prairie Mine, and unnamed tiles from the Alpha were now accessible.
- Reputation could be viewed from the map and earning reputation to gain access to a colony was now available.
- Sarge is now the Forest Colony's guard and all custom cats have been implemented.
- Festivals were now available, with Coco as host and shopkeeper.
- Pets were unavailable until v1.15.
- Coco now shows the player cat the Red Rose and Shiny Trinket. Dating and marriage were now available.
- The Black Rose was now available.
- Power Paws were now available, and max health could be increased.
- Molby now offered den expansions, and festivals now had decor to purchase.
- Kittens were now available with the nursery upgrade.
- The main quest was still unavailable.
- As of v1.15+, Coco now speaks to the player about the main quest.
- The Power Paw totems were now available.
- Elli was implemented in v1.15 and can now change the player's name for 25 Mews. Elli appears on the 3rd of each season at the Sacred Temple.
Full Release (v1.01)
The game was released on Steam on December 1, 2017. This is the final version of the game that is available for purchase. Two editions are available: the basic game and a “Deluxe” version that includes the OST, PDF art book, and the Orange Bengal coat color. This version did not include the Custom Colony feature as a stretch goal from the Kickstarter. Falcon Development stated there would be a custom colony update in early 2018, that is now available.
Custom Colony Update (v.1.1 - 1.12)
The Custom Colony update was released on March 16, 2018. It allows the player to create a Custom Colony.
- The Forest Guardian grants the player the Token of Authority after finishing the main quest, allowing them to create a custom colony.
- Three new non-marriageable NPCs (Doctor, Shopkeeper, and Guard) and three new marriageable NPCs. (Claw, Sunshine, and Mango)
- Twelve new den styles to customize colony structures.
- 14 new coat colors.
- Glitch that had allowed multiple litters of kittens was fixed.
- The player can now load, delete, or copy save files from the start menu.
- Increased den storage and an Item Limit toggle to reduce game lag.
- New items added to colony shops. (Tiger Butterfly sold at Ember's Shop.)
- Item price adjustments.
- Alisa's rival festival game dialogue was changed from “I don't think this will be very hard.” to “I'll make quick work of you.”
Technical Update (v1.2)
The technical update was released on October 23, 2018. Falcon Development announced that Cattails would be ported to the Nintendo Switch, and was released on November 29, 2018.
- A host of bug fixes, including a major fix for random enemy cat spawning.
- Four new coat colors available at colony shops.
- Overhauled entire code base to help Cattails run smoother on older machines.
- Two different start screen arts are shown when booting the game.
- Quality of life and balancing changes.
- In the tutorial, Coco now has a new line of dialogue when the player misses catching their prey. “Oh, so close! That was perfect form, (Name), but the mouse still got away. Sometimes they can be tricky. / Keep trying! I'm sure you'll catch the next one.”
- Item price adjustments.
- Mine level messages now display the levels left until the next rest stop.
- If the player has renamed a custom colony cat, their new name will correctly be displayed in the bottom right corner before pressing E to talk to them. In previous versions, their original name was displayed instead.
The v1.3 update was released on December 28, 2018 for PC/Mac, and on January 31, 2019 for the Nintendo Switch.
- All four doctors (Doc, Galen, Krampy, and Luna) are now marriageable cats.
- A new Task system was added to allow the player to complete a new task from the Task Board daily, with a deadline until midnight to complete. The player will receive Task Tokens for completing tasks, that can be exchanged for rewards using the Task Board. Each colony has their own task board, but the player can only use their colony's task board. The Custom Colony task board can be placed using the Build Menu.
- Three new Active Skills added; Shield (makes the player invulnerable for a few seconds), Pinecone Toss (hurls a pinecone at an enemy to deal damage) and Bug Bait (summons a swarm of in-season bugs). These skills can be bought with Task Tokens, earned by completing tasks.
- Shopkeepers and doctors now give discounts depending on the player’s friendship level with them. Having 5 friendship stars with a shopkeeper will grant the player a 15% discount on all of their items, while having 5 friendship stars with a doctor will grant the player a 50% discount on their healing services.
Smaller additions include:
- Added a 'skip tutorial' option if the player makes a new file on a computer that already has at least one other file.
- Elli will now allow the player to change their kittens' names for 25 Mews.
- Added unique wedding dialogue for marriageable cats.
- Reduced size of collision box on custom colony dens to allow for flexible placement options.
- 7 new coat colors
- PC/Mac: Added ability to paste text directly into the promo code box using (Ctrl + V).
- Various bug and typo fixes.
The patch notes can be found here.
- A beta of v0.8 and v0.9 were shown on the developer's live stream, before they were publicly available.
- Falcon Development accidentally deleted Alisa's festival dialogue in coding. He did not remember the previous dialogue, causing it to be rewritten in the v1.1 release.
- In a livestream, the developers showed early versions of Cattails as a behind-the-scenes look for the game's first anniversary.