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Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 180 Ratings

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  • Summary: Shovel Knight is a sweeping classic action adventure game with memorable characters and an 8-bit retro aesthetic created by Yacht Club Games. You play as the eponymous Shovel Knight, a small knight with a huge quest. Shovel Knight has come to this valley with two goals: to defeat the evilShovel Knight is a sweeping classic action adventure game with memorable characters and an 8-bit retro aesthetic created by Yacht Club Games. You play as the eponymous Shovel Knight, a small knight with a huge quest. Shovel Knight has come to this valley with two goals: to defeat the evil Enchantress and save his lost beloved. He wields a ShovelBlade; a multipurpose weapon whose techniques have now been lost to the ages. Always honest and helpful, Shovel Knight is a shining example of the code of Shovelry: Slash Mercilessly and Dig Tirelessly. However, between Shovel Knight and his beloved stands a cadre of villainous knights. These terrible foes, known as The Order of No Quarter, have been dispatched to prevent Shovel Knight from reaching the Enchantress at any cost. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Dec 9, 2014
    100
    One of those games that just blows your mind at how good it actually is.
  2. 100
    But more than anything else, Shovel Knight oozes personality and charm more than any game I’ve played in recent memory.
  3. Jun 26, 2014
    93
    Old school gamers will love Shovel Knight’s retro sensibilities, but they’ll also appreciate its modern touches.
  4. Jun 26, 2014
    90
    Shovel Knight isn't just inspired by 8-bit classics, it is inspired in and of itself.
  5. Nov 10, 2014
    85
    Shovel Knight is a well-made action platformer. Old school gamers will love it.
  6. Nov 20, 2014
    80
    Shovel Knight is a heartfelt homage to the NES days, with tight gameplay, simple but effective 8bit-ish graphics and a killer soundtrack. It could use a couple of levels more and additional game modes.
  7. Jun 26, 2014
    70
    Shovel Knight is a memorable re-imagining of what I grew up with, but doesn't have the longevity or inventiveness to be great in its own right.

See all 24 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. Jul 2, 2014
    10
    This is an incredible game that respects and recreates the fundamentals of gaming's roots. It draws its aspirations from Zelda 2, Megaman,This is an incredible game that respects and recreates the fundamentals of gaming's roots. It draws its aspirations from Zelda 2, Megaman, Mario 3, and Ducktales, but has so many creative concepts to form its own identity.

    The environments and characters have so much detail and personality to them, it's suprising and fresh to see that level of detail in an NES 8-bit styled game. Mostly because it treats its genre (8-bit retro game) with the utmost respect and seriousness. There's no stupid gimmicks or references or winks to remind the player they're playing an 8-bit NES style game: the style is used to deliver a genuine oldschool experience with a straight face and the best of intentions.

    The music is amazing, catchy, and fits each theme very well. Jake Kaufman is a brilliant composer and his experience truly shines here, as it has when creating/remixing music for other games he's worked on (Contra 4, Ducktales Remastered, Shantae, etc).

    The challenge has the perfect gradual shift throughout the entire game. It starts off normal enough, then consistently increases in challenge until the very end. While you can improve Shovel Knight with new upgrades and abilities, as the player you will feel your own skill increase as you become familiar with how Shovel Knight handles ingame and learn to use him and his abilities much more efficiently. It's a magical learning curve that I haven't experienced since having played games from the golden age when I was a kid back in the 90's.

    Regardless of what console you purchase this on, it is a fantastic game in its own right, and provides an incredibly genuine experience and challenge that so many games are lacking nowadays. Perfect 10 out of 10.
    Expand
  2. Jun 26, 2014
    10
    YES YES YES just YES this is indie gamming prime. thanks to all the backers who made this possible, even tough it got delayed it now deliversYES YES YES just YES this is indie gamming prime. thanks to all the backers who made this possible, even tough it got delayed it now delivers a full, rich experience with 8+ hours on the first playtrough. Expand
  3. Oct 31, 2014
    10
    This game is a platforming masterpiece of this generation. It perfectly throws back to our fond nostalgia for classic games such as megaman,This game is a platforming masterpiece of this generation. It perfectly throws back to our fond nostalgia for classic games such as megaman, duck tales, and the like, but then adds in its own flavor and sets itself apart from riding on nostalgia alone. It has a colorful interesting world, and each level and area has its own personality. It is challenging, but rewarding. Its controls are near perfection, and I won't be forgetting about this amazing game anytime soon. Expand
  4. Apr 30, 2015
    10
    Shovel Knight
    A must Play For all
    Shovel Knight is a beautifully charming action platforming game. Shovel Knights art style screams
    Shovel Knight
    A must Play For all
    Shovel Knight is a beautifully charming action platforming game.
    Shovel Knights art style screams nostalgia sale, but I was happy to find that this game isn’t just here to pull money out of your pockets with heart strings, Shovel Knight is it’s own game, an instant classic.
    Shovel knight consists of 12 main levels all with their own boss battles, each level and stage getting progressively more challenging.
    The pacing is really some of the best ive ever seen in gaming.
    Every level has checkpoints, this may annoy the hardcore gamers at first, but you really come to appreciate them, platforming can get really trick for those of us that are impatient.
    These type of gamers are who the checkpoints are for, they are essentially training wheels.
    Shovel Knight is really more than just a flat forming game, it truly is an experience, and im happy these checkpoints exist so all can experience and guess what… checkpoints are COMPLETELY optional.
    Don’t like them?
    Break them, they drop cash so now you have nothing to complain about.
    I wouldn’t recommend doing such a thing your first time through as again, shovel knight gets increasingly challenging.
    Enemies will start throwing projectiles, youll have to dodge lava and spikes and look out for enemies while you seek out secrets.
    There are tons of secrets to be found in shovel knight that I wont spoil, but they add such a great deal of wonder to the game, you never know what youre going to find in a room you just uncovered from an exploding rat.
    It could be a music page for you to sell in the villiage, or a new relic waiting for you to grab to help you out through the rest of the game.
    I wasn’t expecting relics, but im so happy they exist, these relics all cost magic to use so cant really be spammed, but they are all varied and make you look at levels for better, more efficient ways to traverse them.
    You can also save your gold for armour and shovel upgrades, maybe increased magic or meal tickets to increase your health, the choice is yours, but unless youre completely confident in your skills walking into an unknown area you better make that choice before going back out, because every time you die you drop 3 pouches of gold much like in the souls series.
    If you want that gold back youre going to have to go grab it, if you die on your way back then its gone forever..
    The risk reward makes traversing these gorgeous levels even more enjoyable.
    Not only did this development team due a great job with level design and enemies, but also with bosses.
    Each boss has its own attack style, so no 2 relics will be equally handy in these encounters, gratefully though, they all die the same way, hit them an x amount of times.
    Games can get in the habit of making bosses a little too unique, what shovel knight does so great is make the encounters similar enough to give you a sense of pride and feeling like you used skill to defeat a new enemy rather than you just got completely lucky.
    It isn’t common to die during your first encounter with a new boss and that is so refreshing.
    I wont get into story all too much, but I will say that it is there, there is reason to the madness and it, at least to me is beautiful.
    After you’ve completed the game and have picked every level apart for its secrets and treasures, you have the option to start a new game +.
    New game plus lets you start from the beginning with everything you collected in your previous play through, but this time levels are a little tougher as youll notice some checkpoints are missing, enemies do double damage, and there are no health pick ups.
    There are tons of challenging feats to accomplish in shovel knight.
    Totally worth the playthrough just to experience, a highly recommended game title to both casual and hardcore gamers alike.
    I truly believe that everyone can find something to love about shovel knight.
    For what it is
    Action platformer 10/10
    and as an overall game my first ever 10/10
    Expand
  5. Jul 26, 2014
    10
    An absolutely incredible tribute to what made retro games so great. It does so many things well on top of that and I still find it hard toAn absolutely incredible tribute to what made retro games so great. It does so many things well on top of that and I still find it hard to describe what exactly makes it so great. A lot of the mechanics are derived from classic NES titles- magic items are a play on castlevania's item system(a few are direct copies) the level design is certainly megaman inspired, down to the league of robot bosses-er knights... the shovel bounce is the same as the ducktales cane bounce... I could go on, but the point is that the game is a masterful blend of the best retro games have to offer. The art I could talk about for days alone. It certainly is 8-bit, but has a wider color palette and just massages your eyeballs. Sound design is also fantastic. There are a whopping 48(!) tracks to make your adventure more diverse. Jake Kaufman's work is masterful and certainly left his mark on this brilliant game. As a masterful chip artist, Kaufman's work on the track is 100% playable on the NES, an amazing feat, I must say. Even the composer of the original Meg a Man, Manami Matsumae made a track for the game, which is just another fantastic fan service. The game itself didn't take me too long to complete, around 6 hours is all it took. I won't say this detracts from the game at all though, it felt like a complete experience to me and I couldn't be happier with my purchase. If you have the opportunity to pick this game up, do yourself a favor and relive the past! Expand
  6. Nov 12, 2014
    9
    This game is amazing! If your a fan of megaman,ducktales or mario then you will love this game! Its very well rounded and offers greatThis game is amazing! If your a fan of megaman,ducktales or mario then you will love this game! Its very well rounded and offers great challenge! Highly recommended! My only complaint is that its a little too short. Expand
  7. Aug 6, 2014
    0
    While there is some value I'm certain many of those reading this can find I cannot this is due to a) me being a new gamer and not having anWhile there is some value I'm certain many of those reading this can find I cannot this is due to a) me being a new gamer and not having an idea of what this is based off if making it seem like either a total rip off to something heavily inspired I can't connect to b) graphics like these tend to make me nauseous this is something of an issue I have and can take me out of the game a lot c) this was overhyped and for reasons I've mentioned above did not deliver c) the difficulty is inconsistent making a lot of the already rather awkward controls and level design feel more well awkward I would go on but this short game isn't really worth my time and please note my actual score would be a 3 now please note I have played the 3ds and PC versions of the game (all PC but only tried 3ds) the reason I'm putting this on the wii u is because this game is extremely overhyped and needs to be taken back by quite a bit Expand

See all 41 User Reviews

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