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Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 22 Ratings

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  • Summary: Somewhere between heaven and the underworld -- in the center of a quiet lake -- stood an ancient castle known as Aventheim. One night, without warning, denizens of the netherworld emerged and slaughtered the kingdom; nary a soul was left alive. Within an abandoned, long-forgotten church deep in the woods, a wisp is set free. Bereft of memory, it is drawn toward the monster-infested castle and re-awakens the souls of the vanquished knights, leading them back towards the fallen stronghold to confront the very forces of evil that took their lives. An experience unlike any before it -- Incorporating strategy RPG, real-time strategy, and shooter elements, you've never experienced a game like this. Control a Wisp with your stylus and activate the souls of deceased knights to aid you in destroying foes on the map. Enemies fire bullets in multiple directions, making it vital for players to master the unique touch controls. Over 100 playable characters -- Find and recruit the ghosts of seven different classes of knights from your kingdom, and learn of their pasts, hopes, dreams, and untimely deaths. Sacrifice their souls to one another to balance their skills and create your ultimate party. A tale from two perspectives -- This twice-told legend entangles you in a dark and brooding tale that is simultaneously examined through events both past and present. Complete the adventure to unlock the ability to play through the game with a new narrative twist, placing the antagonist in the starring role. [Atlus USA] Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 25
  2. Negative: 1 out of 25
  1. There's just so much content here and so much complexity that once you get a handle on how the game works, it's going to be difficult to stop playing.
  2. 90
    Knights is something completely unique and as such has a learning curve. But, once the game is understood, it only gets better and better.
  3. Knights in the Nightmare isn’t a game that everybody will love simply because it’s one of the most complex games ever to be released. There is no game to really compare it to, except for maybe Ikaruga, and that’s not even an RPG.
  4. Knights in the Nightmare, while complicated, is an excellent game worthy of players' time and effort.
  5. Those of you willing to take the challenge will find a beautiful, genre-bending game with near-endless amounts of strategy, customisation and content. Truly, Knights In The Nightmare is a game worthy of the title "hardcore".
  6. Knights in the Nightmare isn't a bad game; the combat system is addictive as hell, and though the various elements of the game that might seem like an odd mix, together they make a lot of sense. It just tries to do too much, so instead of a historic must-play that changes the genre forever, we get a quirky, worthwhile oddity.
  7. It fails in the most fundamental aspect: the gameplay. It’s generally dull. Despite a high initial learning curve – usually the sign of a game with depth and complexity – Knights in the Nightmare is shallow and simple.

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 12
  2. Negative: 1 out of 12
  1. BrynJ.
    Jan 27, 2010
    A complex, difficult, innovative strategy game that maximizes the potential of the DS hardware. The visuals, audio, and gameplay are more polished than most games. Give it some time, maybe read a FAQ towards the beginning of the game to figure out what you need to do, and don't project your ideas of what a strategy game should be onto this game. Expand
  2. CarmeM
    Jun 28, 2009
    Knights in the Nightmare is an amazing game. I was iffy about buying it, and wondered if it was worth it in the first few hours of gameplay. It took a bit of time getting used to it, the games complexity is astonishing, but that hour spent in the tutorials is well worth it. The game is lacking in the plot category in the beginning of the game, but it intensifies as you go along. I'm a plot FANATIC, I need a good plot in a game to make it good. Knights in the Nightmare gives you two views of the plot. It has a current plot before a battle, and a flashback after a battle. The flashback has more to do with character backrounds. Little bits of information that give each character soul. Knights in the Nightmare gives you many options as well. You could complete any level a MILLION ways, each play through can be different. The variety and quality of the game is great. The mixture of genres is smooth, almost creating a genre all by itself. The graphics are fantastic as well in my opinion. Many if not all the characters are hand drawn. This was not cut and paste. There are SO MANY CHARACTERS. I mean A LOT. I was surprised how many, and each is unique in it's own way. Knights in the Nightmare is by far my favorite DS title. It is a must buy for hardcore gamers. Lighter players may find it too confusing, or just plain old boring due to all the preparations needed to go into the battle. But I love it, LOVE it. A 10/10 in my books. Expand
  3. TrevorG.
    Jan 26, 2010
    So I picked up this game when it first came out because it looked absolutely amazing. And then I let it sit for months because I just didn't want to take the time for the tutorials(I heard it took an hour or so). I kept playing games I could just pick up and play. Then one day decided I would just start doing the tutorials.... they really fly by... not very long at all. And it was totally worth it! The story is interesting and has a nice progression. It let's you know just a piece of the puzzle at a time. The settings are very immersive... especially for a hand-held game. And the battles are a lot of fun. If you like strategy games like Age of Empires on the DS and you like RPG's than this game should be up your alley. While it's true you don't get too attached to all your characters.... you do get pretty attached too the knights you've been fighting with for a while. Especially after upgrading them(and you get a little glimpse into what they were like when they were alive).... but the story isn't about your knights ... it's about the wisp and his connection to everything that is going on. It's really a intimate look into the kingdom of Aventheim... both it's past and present. The art style is really unique and very well done. There's just so many good things to say about this game. Probably my favorite game on the DS. Expand
  4. AM
    Jun 5, 2009
    Don't be intimated by this genre defying masterpiece. The graphics are gorgeous and the sound amazing with typical Atlus/Sting high quality storyline and characters. The game looks confusing but is actually quite simple. The interactive "first steps" tutorial is a must and reading the other tutorial and tips sections are worth it. As for game play, A lot of the stuff on the screen is just info overload and you don't have to pay attention to it other than it looks real pretty. As a first time player the hardest thing to get used to is the pacing and that you really have a lot more time than it seems. Don't panic! The most important thing is to get used to looking at the top screen and not the bottom one so much. The bottom is there for reference, but the top is all the visual cues so you need to get comfortable syncing your hand movements on the bottom with the dodging and skill activation on the top. Skill activation also takes some getting used to as it won't happen if you do it too fast. You need to get the wisp cursor on the weapon, make sure it becomes floating, and then drag it over your character to activate the attack, then drag the wisp in the direction you want to attack. The last part is most important as the characters will rotate and you'll be able to hit more targets all at once. Collecting gems and medium material after attacks provides you the means to upgrade weapons. Weapons can also be fused together to make them more durable and powerful and clean up your inventory. You beat enemies to fill up a tic-tac-toe grid to progress to the next level. In between battles you have a slot machine reel that must be timed correctly to make sure you keep fighting the same enemy and kill them within a certain number of turns. This is a unique mechanic and makes you plan which row you want to fill based on the enemies and order of the grid and reels. It's a little complicated but you get used to it after a few tries. The ability to level up your characters by replaying a scenario is good as you don't necessarily have to try and advance the story if you characters are week and in need of grinding. I wish you could save more often as you can only do it between levels, but you can always put the system to sleep. I really like this game a lot and it's super deep with a lot of varied strategy. The tic-tac-toe reels are a quirky but cool addition to the strategy - bullet dodge mechanic. If you take the time to learn about the game you'll be well rewarded with awesome visuals, music, and an engaging storyline. This game may be tough to find, but it's going to be a rare instant classic! Expand
  5. JayS.
    Jun 10, 2009
    I'll try not to include things in my review that have already been mentioned in some of the linked reviews... here goes: So far I've found this game to be different and enjoyable, but there is one major flaw, in my opinion: This is a portable strategy game, but you can't save mid-battle. I know i can close the lid, but what if I need to power down? I don't want to have to replay these long levels over. Also, people keep calling this an SRPG-RTS-Shmup hybrid. It's not. It's definitely bullet hell, cuz you have a lot of top-down 2D mayhem going on, but it's not a shmup- the wisp can't fire back. It's in real-time. but it's nothing like an RTS. At all. It might help if you didn't come into this game thinking that. I mean most of your units can't even move, so that RTS comparison is really strange. As far as turn-based strategy goes... well the "turns" a weird. They're very long and there are a LOT of them. I haven't been playing for long, so I've decided to just "go with the flow" and not disrupt the game's user rating (9 at the time i reviewed it), but I have a feeling that I'm not going to dig this game as much as the other reviewer. Definitely a game you want to try before you buy, no matter how much you like SRPGs. My last couple of games were FF Tactics A2, FFIV, Luminous Arc 2, Disgaea DS, and I'm currently playing Valkyrie Profile - Covenant of the Plume, but this game feels less strategic than any of those games. More confusing and probably more challenging, but less strategic (if that makes any sense). Expand
  6. Brandon
    Jun 28, 2009
    This game is really interesting but the story is a little hard to pick up, and the easy is too easy and the medium is just tedious. It has rough edges but it certainly provides a good amount of entertainment value. Expand
  7. JM
    Jun 6, 2009
    There isn't much I like about this game. I think the battle system is boring. After a few battles I felt absolutely no reason to continue playing this game. Expand

See all 12 User Reviews