Review: Battlecats #1-3 (Mad Cave Studios)

battlecatsFantasy action, full spread battles and a host of incredible, heroic chracters, it’s the Battlecats and they’re here to win you over. Set in the fantastical world of Valderia Battlecats invokes nostalgic feelings of Saturday morning cartoons, but will these new creations live up to thire name as fearsome felines or will they just end up as timid tabby cats?

battlecatsPublisher: Mad Cave Studios
Writer: Mark London
Artist: Andy King (Pencils) Alejandro Giraldo (Colors)
Price: £2.49 on ComiXology

Our rating: [star rating=”4″]

Around 550 years before the Battlecats series begins the world of Valderia was unified by the Eramad Dynasty and the Battlecats since them have enjoyed a privileged position as an elite military force bound to the King of Valderia and defend the realm at all costs. A new threat stalks the land now however and the Battlecats have been summoned once again, the ex-leader of the elite group has betrayed the Kingdom and raised armies to challenge the rule of King Eramd III. The King has been injured in battle and retreated to the fortress city of Stormholt, whilst at rest the King dispatches his Battlecats on a mission into the mysterious region of La Marque

The artwork is beautiful, a vibrant colour palette and soft lines lend to the TV animation feel of everything and this is consistent throughout. The character design is also impressive and in the opening scenes of the first issue we are introduced to the group of Battlecats as they sit around their camp on a dark night awaiting a member of their party to return from a recon mission. The mission’s overall goal is revealed to us shortly afterwards and we learn that they are due to bring back the head of a Dire Beast by venturing deep into the haunted La Marque region.

The books all contain some superb splash pages, large paneled pages and well paced fight scenes all executed really well. This is where Battlecats lives up to it’s name, there are large scale, violent battles with waves of ambushing enemies that display each member of the party’s abilities in battle and these flow nicely and take up a good number of pages with just sheer action. These leads into a villain reveal in the final pages of the first issue which contains dialogue that helps the reader understand who the group is dealing with. We end on this face off and bring the first issue to a close, a strong first issue with lots going on, great introductions to interesting characters and a vibrant world.

Now we are up and running and know what we are dealing with the next two issue let loose with the action, more battles, more fighting and more glimpses into the incredible warriors all these characters are. The battle with the villain Eltoreq takes centre stage in the second issue and he puts up one hell of a fight. Not content on just one large scale battle the team throw a second one our way which transitions into the set up for the third issue and it’s within this issue that we see the puppet master behind the villain, a powerful figure I will leave for you to discover. It is also here that we learn that La Marque has it’s own tricks in store the group too as they face increasing woeful odds of fulfilling their mission as the Dire Beast closes in and unleashes hell upon the cast.

Overall there is a great deal of places this series could expand out into and we’re very excited to see where this goes. An interesting property with unique and original characters and an old school fantasy feel, it’s never too late to get involved yourself and pick this one up.