Cookie Cutter PlayStation 5 Review

Bathe in the Blood in this not-so-simple Metroidvania.

By JustAnotherJake, Posted 23 Dec 2023

Metroidvania titles have been popping up more recently, with games like Hollow Knight, Dead Cells, and even Metroid Dread taking off in popularity. A metroidvania, in essence, is a title that takes similar layouts in terms of gameplay structure from either the Metroid or Castlevania series of games.

These games have players exploring large maps and discovering new parts of said maps with new upgrades or abilities found throughout the adventure. The core of the gameplay evolves by exploiting old areas from the beginning of the game with new abilities found later in the game. It's a catchy style for a game to have, leaving for some great world-building. New to the endless lineup is Cookie Cutter, a game that seems to fit the name quite well.

Cookie Cutter, PS5, Review, Gameplay, Female Robot, Roguelike

Cookie Cutter is an over-the-top and violent title with guts and gore around every corner. It is a game that relies upon the fact that it is downright disgusting and repulsive. Even the harsh artistic style of the game shows off more than what some would like to see. The gameplay wraps this in with quick and snappy combat against a large variety of foes. Wrap that all in with a grim and depressing narrative, and that's what becomes the game, Cookie Cutter.

The overall visual look of Cookie Cutter is bizarre, with cartoony-looking designs mixed in with the harsh and blood-soaked atmosphere. This gives the game a unique look to it, allowing for any screenshots to be uniquely Cookie Cutter. That isn't completely a good thing, however, as it is very easy to see why the overall designs of the world would completely put off a lot of people that the game takes place within. Not to mention that the animations look intentionally janky, leading to an overall off-putting look to the game. That feeling works both for and against the game, but that honestly feels like an overall theme for the game.

Not to mention that a lot of elements don't look amazing put all together. Some characters look overly large or small, depending on where they are located. The game features an art style that feels hand-drawn and intentionally rough at times, further enhancing the game's overall feel. However, the game's camera sometimes works against this design choice.

It is most notable in the earlier sections of Cookie Cutter and seems to become more of a specific design choice later on. This could likely be the case with the character Raz as well, but in that very early section, that character looks like he is slightly too large and just slid up on the screen rather than there being actual depth.

Cookie Cutter, PS5, Review, Gameplay, Female Robot, Roguelike

This can be an issue with 2D titles in general, where things don't look completely right. It was much easier to let slide when the game swerve pixilated with the original Metroids and Castlevanias, but with more artistic ideas, things can look off. In a lot of 3D-modeled games that play on two dimensions, the foreground becomes a void to prevent visual confusion.

Similarly, 2D-designed games usually just have everything on the same plane, with the foreground seemingly looking like a drop-off. Cookie Cutter follows the typical layout of the 2D style but with a bit of depth to the floors and walls. In some areas, that extra depth can work against the visuals. It is all just a matter of perspective, and when in motion, this becomes way less of an issue, hence why that first area of the game with Raz may look a bit strange to some.

Aside from the nitpicks with the visuals, there are quite a lot of things to praise in terms of visuals in Cookie Cutter as well. It is abundantly clear that the design team wanted something colorful, not just to make the gory colors pop but to make everything pop. Bright neon lights, orange backgrounds, and even the typical metal structure have more color to them compared to the more grim-looking titles in the same genre. So not only do the game's levels pop out more, but it also makes it so much easier to see enemies. This becomes a huge thing as the game will throw tons of enemies at the play, and seeing the movements of everyone clearly is something necessary to mastering the overall gameplay loop of Cookie Cutter.

In terms of gameplay, Cookie Cutter follows a more brutal beat-em-up approach to the actual combat rather than something with a bit more range and precision. This allows for some button-mashing goodness against every foe. But makes taking out flying enemies more of a game of strategy and positioning.

Cookie Cutter, PS5, Review, Gameplay, Female Robot, Roguelike

Making things more interesting is the counter system. This allows the player to counter incoming attacks that prevent damage against the player and cause damage to the enemies. Early on in the game, the counter is a bit tricky to get the hang of; however, the further into the game, the more natural it becomes. That isn't to say it feels great all the time, as large hoards of enemies can easily feel overwhelming and can cause unintentional counter-button mashing.

The earlier sections of Cookie Cutter feel the hardest, as is the case with a large majority of metroidvanias. The player will feel kind of weak in the early sections as there are several abilities to unlock for the player character Cherry. As the game goes on, the boss will feel a bit easier, and so will the sections of the game that force the player to stop and eliminate all of the enemies in the room.

With Cookie Cutter's layout, things are a bit more linear in some sections of the game, leading to sections where it almost feels necessary to get upgrades to beat an area or boss. This isn't too much of a problem but may cause confusion and frustration with some players, especially for those who aren't as familiar with the game's genre.

Upgrades aren't exclusive to combat opportunities in Cookie Cutter, as there are a good amount of upgrades that will enhance movement with things like a dash. Movement is a large part of combat, but it helps enhance the exploration and platforming aspect of the game. This allows for more secrets to be hidden and more alternate paths to be taken.

Cookie Cutter, PS5, Review, Gameplay, Female Robot, Roguelike

Speaking of secrets, there is a ton to find, meaning there are almost always options for the player in terms of goals, whether it's a push for word or exploration. This isn't anything new to the genre, but it feels just as rewarding here as it does in all of those other games that came before. A lot of these secrets are also nods to games like Metroid, just with twists unique to Cookie Cutter's world.

In a lot of metroidvanias that lean closer to the Metroid side of things, the narrative is more discovered through exploration rather than things being laid out right in front of the player. Cookie Cutter does not follow that formula; rather, it follows the more narrative-focused entries with lots of character interactions. This ends up having the run-time sort of bulk up, while the less dialogue-heavy games can feel quite short. This can be a good or bad thing depending on a player's thoughts on the story, and with Cookie Cutter, the story feels at home, but not like it's anything special.

Cookie Cutter's narrative is a sort of damsel in distress sort of story with the main character, Cherry chasing after the kidnappers of her creator and lover. It's not that cut and dry with the brutal and disgusting nature of the game, but it is the basic version of it, at least. The characters that fill that story make things interesting with different outlooks and opinions on the overall setting in which the game takes place.

None of the characters are really that interesting, though. While they build the atmosphere and put depth into the game's lore, their personalities feel basic or predictable. There are also some questionable design choices when it comes to the appearances of the characters. While they do fit within the world of the game, it does feel a little forced, especially when looking at a design like Regina's. Again, these aren't bad things; they're just elements that the game doesn't put effort into making better.

Cookie Cutter, PS5, Review, Gameplay, Female Robot, Roguelike

Cookie Cutter's story features a good amount of voice acting, whereas a lot of the other games in the genre won't have much more than mumblings. For the most part, the performances are pretty solid with most of the opening of the game featuring pretty great performances. There are, however, some that simply don't feel as perfect. There aren't any that super stick out amongst the crowd as bad; there are simply a few that may leave the player thinking if that was the best take they could have used. In terms of sound quality, that is the only negative, as the rest of the game is pretty good with its audio. Punches sound impactful, and explosions sound gorey, just as ordered.

Cookie Cutter sits in a weird spot for its appeal. In terms of difficulty, it isn't super hard; while the game has its moments where it feels rough and tough, it is absolutely on the lower end of the scale when it comes to difficulty when comparing it to other games in the same or similar genres. This would typically make it a good pick for an introduction to the genre of metroidvanias, but in the long run, the visuals and narrative of the game push that away a bit.

While the design is far from bad, it is hyper-focused on being gross and crude, meaning that the fan base is going to be even more closed off. If it just so happens to line up in terms of interest for newcomers, then it may be a perfect starting point, but it isn't going to challenge veterans of the genre.


Cookie Cutter's real downfall comes from its lack of innovations. While a new Metroid game might not need to add much in terms of new ways to interact with things, fresh faces on the scene should be doing something to stand out amongst the others. Cookie Cutter's visual design absolutely helps with that, but it doesn't go much further than that.

But it's all up to taste there, as nothing on technical terms is bad about the game; it just might struggle to find an audience with the way it holds itself. Regardless, Cookie Cutter really does have quite a bit to behold within, and it is a fun time, and that's really what matters. It is a fun time, and while there are some hiccups with things, there isn't too much to be upset about.

Jacob Cowsert (@TweetJAJ)
Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

Cookie Cutter


Platform(s): PC, PS5, XBSX
Publisher(s): Rogue Games, Inc.
Developer(s): Subcult Joint LTD
Genres: 2D Platformer
Themes: Adventure, Fighting
Release Date: 2023-12-14

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