Shovel Knight (2014) Review

One Knight, One Shovel, One chance of success

Was Shovel Knight an epic masterpiece or were Yaught Club Games digging them selves a very deep hole?
Cover Shovel Knight and Shield Knight are two adventurers who formed a strong relationship with each other, together they would adventure across many lands and discovering many treasures on their travels, one day they tackle the tower of fate seeking a magical amulet, unfortunately the amulet is cursed and upon its discovery Shovel Knight  blacks out and awakens outside only to notice that the tower has been sealed and Shield Knight was no where to be seen.

shield knight sadGrieving the loss of his beloved, Shovel Knight gave up his life of being an adventurer and went on to live in solitude, with Shovel Knight gone an evil sorceress called The Enchantress gathered the Knights of the Order of the no Quarter and they started to wreak havoc on the land, Shovel Knight discovers that The Enchantress had unsealed the Tower of Fate and is using it as her new castle, Shovel Knight decides that the only way to save the land is too defeat The Enchantress in the Tower of Fate and to hopefully reunite with Shield Knight.

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Shovel Knight plays and feels very similar to three very popular old school Nintendo classics, Duck tales on NES, Mega man and Super Mario Bros 3.

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The game is a 2D action plat-former, players will need fight there way through each world using their shovels to their advantage, unlike a traditional Mario game players can not defeat enemies by simply jumping on them as this will cause Shovel Knight to take damage, instead you will need to use your Shovels to bounce off of your enemies you can also hit enemies with your shovel similar to using a sword.

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Of course your shovel isn’t the only weapon Shovel Knight can use as there are also items called relics which can prove to be quite useful in the more tougher areas of the game, you can either buy these items from a merchant in town and some items can only be bought by secret merchants hidden each knight level.

My three favourite relics are

Flare Wand: A magic wand which allows Shovel Knight to shoot balls of fire

Dust Knuckles: This item allows Shovel Knight to punch through blocks of dirt and enemies quickly and effectively

Propeller Dagger:  Allows Shovel Knight to temporarily dart through the air for a short distance

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Shovel Knight uses a map system which draws inspiration from Mario 3, this doesn’t surprise me as Mario 3 perfected the formula for over world maps in video games and in turn many developers choose this style due to that games success, with that in mind it should be no shock that Shovel Knight follows this formula having the player needing to defeat certain levels to unlock new paths, bumping into other adventurers who want to duel and entering towns to stock up on items.

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There are eight knights that  you will need to defeat before you can gain access to the Tower of Fate Spectre Knight, King Knight, Treasure Knight, Plague Knight, Mole Knight, Polar Knight, Tinker Knight and Propeller Knight, every time you defeat of one of these knights a new path on the overall map will open allowing you inch closer and closer to the Tower of Fate each time.

You may also bump into wandering travelers on your journey, these travelers will fight you if you cross paths so be wary of which path you take.

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Towns will prove to be very important pit stops on your quest as they will allow Shovel Knight to buy new weapons and armour as well as to increase his maximum health and magic, it is also a good idea to speak to the town bard as he will buy any music sheets that you have found while adventuring.

Troupple-King

Meet the Troupple King this cross between a trout and an apple will surely prove to be the most useful stop in the entire game, the Troupple King has the ability to create ichors which Shovel Knight can drink.

These ichors come in three colours.

Red: replenishes full health and magic

Blue: become temporarily invincible

Yellow: Absorb all near by treasure

Make sure you choose your ichors wisely as you can only hold two at a time, also in order to use ichors you must buy a Troupple Chalice or two from the apple man in town.

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Visually Shovel Knight is stunning it has a similar art style to the Nintendo Entertainment System using what appears to be 8 bit visuals, of course there is no way Shovel Knight could run on the NES due to how fast the game runs as well as its large color palette.

The soundtrack is absolutely perfect for this style of game, its beautifully composed and there is not a single track in this game that I do not love, its not just the composition of the soundtrack but its also the direction that really helps create such a wonderful game play experience, each section of the game has what I consider to be the perfect choice of music for example when the game is intense the music is intense, when shovel knight is dreaming the music is still a lot of fun but its much slower and when your in towns the music is cheerful and a little silly which suits the towns superbly as the towns people are wacky and unusual.

Shovel Knight is a fantastic game and for a project that was only possible due to crowd funding it’s absolutely amazing, make sure to visit the hall of heroes to see paintings of all of the crowd funder’s as well as a secret boss fight.

I don’t what to say apart from that the game is perfect and as an extra treat when you beat the game you will unlock extra challenges that you can complete and in a more recent update a brand new game called Shovel Knight: Plague of Shadows has been added for free and is also available upon completion of Shovel Knight.

but I will get to that adventure some other day

FOR SHOVELRY !! 10/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Shovel Knight

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

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Kings Quest 2: Romancing the Throne Review

After being a little disappointed with the original Kings Quest, I jumped straight into Kings Quest 2 hoping to find a more interesting and satisfying experience. I have beaten the game and here are my thoughts.

Title Screen

Yet again you take control of Sir Graham who is now the king of Daventry, Graham is lonely and wants to find a fair maiden to become his Queen who will help him rule the kingdom.

after many failures of trying to find a bride to satisfy him Graham consults the magic mirror to help him find his one true love, The mirror shows him a mysterious tower located somewhere in the Kingdom of Kolyma which holds a beautiful girl waiting to be rescued, Graham now sets off to rescue his future bride.

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Again we are given a simple to follow plot, and again I really appreciate this as the game does not need an in depth story line to be interesting and a simple to follow plot is going to benefit younger players of the game. Of course if you want a more in depth look into the games story consult the manual because Sierra did expand on the plot within the manual.

Kings Quest 2 has much better controls than its predecessor, this time around you cant use the mouse at all within the game, but using just the keyboard works really well. I complained that the first game had clunky controls when you tried to move but luckily this time around not once did I have that issue. The controls were smooth and it was easy for me to walk around and communicate with the games environments without stress.

instead of three treasures this time you need to find three keys, that will unlock three doors allowing you to travel through a portal to where the Princess awaits.

You have to ride a seahorse to Atlantis to find King Triton who will give you a key

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One key you can only reach by flying high in the sky on a magic carpet

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And the final key is inside of Dracula’s castle

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Reaching these keys is not easy because as you might expect there are a lot of puzzles to solve within the game and your not just dealing with these three NPC’s.

You also need to steal from a gnome, rescue a woman’s pet bird from a witch, help heal red riding hoods sick grandmother and so much more.

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Sadly just like the original Kings Quest, Kings Quest two also lacks in the audio department with very few audio samples within the game.

Overall I am still to find a kings quest game that I will truly love, Kings Quest two was an enjoyable experience, It was more interesting than the original and in my opinion it had more enjoyable characters and puzzles.

Again it lacked in audio but on the bright side it was full of detail and it looks fantastic considering it was released in 1984. Also the game is full of really cool Easter eggs and secrets to look out for.

In my opinion Kings Quest 2 was slightly better than the first game but not by much.

I give kings Quest 2 a 6.9/10.

and with that I say, Bring on the Third game.

I hope you enjoyed this Review of Kings Quest 2

If you respect my opinion I will respect yours

By Padawan

King’s Quest 1: Quest for the Crown (1990 Edition) Review

A few weeks ago a friend of mine begged me to play through and review a series of games called Kings Quest, I had heard about the games many times growing up, but I always skipped them because at the time I was more interested in my Sega so I tended to stay away from PC gaming.

I remember playing a Kings Quest game when I was in Primary school but at the Time I was way to young to be able to understand the puzzles and the complexity of the game.

It’s been over 15 years but I have finally finished Kings Quest 1: Quest for the Crown

Title Screen

in the game you play as Sir Graham the most heroic Knight in all of Daventry

Sir Graeme

The kingdom of Daventry is suffering from many hardships which can only be put to rest if a hero finds three legendary treasures that are hidden through out the kingdom, the treasures are a Mirror guarded by a ferocious dragon, a chest guarded by a towering giant and a shield guarded by the mischievous leprechaun king. During these hardships King Edward is dying and has called upon Sir Graham to find the three treasures and as a reward he will be crowned king of Daventry.

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I like that the game has a simple to follow plot as this is a children’s game, a lot of critics complain that the plot isn’t very immersive and in depth compared to other fantasy series such as The Elder Scrolls. I don’t personally agree with this theory but if you really want a more in depth plot take a look at the games manual because there is an entire section expanding on the games story.

The most important aspect is the game play and for the most part its really great, for those who don’t know kings quest is a typing adventure game, you have the ability to move Sir Graham around the kingdom by either moving with the arrow keys or clicking with the mouse.

You can then communicate with the in game NPC’s and enviroments by typing an action such as look, talk, move, give, take, jump and duck

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I really enjoyed the gameplay in some ways it reminded me of old Zelda games with its vast world and complex puzzles, but thats not to say that the gameplay didn’t suffer from some major issues such as its controls. Long time fans may dissagree but to me the controls felt really clunky. If I wanted to use the arrow keys to move Sir Graham I couldnt stop moving in that direction and this often led to my death but I also found that if I used the mouse to move I no longer had this issue but instead I would get stuck behind in game objects such as trees.

The controls did not help in certain areas which required fast or careful movements such as climbing a beanstalk or walking across a tree branch.

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the puzzles and the layout of the map is perfect nothing really feels out of place and the map isn’t so big that the game gets too complicated but I do feel that younger players really struggle to figure out some of the games puzzles as their isn’t many clues and the player is left to figure things out by them self, I feel that the game could have benefited from a couple of difficulty options.

The game looks fantastic, I must say that for a game that came out in 1990 I am very impressed, the in game environments and NPC’s are absolutely full of detail and the game really benefits from a great mix of colours

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My biggest issue is the lack of audio in the game, there is very few audio tracks in the game and the majority of the game has hardly any sound at all. I would be more forgiving if this was the original and not the remake as this is an issue they could have fixed for the re-release

I really enjoyed kings Quest 1, it was not as good as I expected it as it suffered a lot of major issues but when it shined it really shined. I had a great time and I cant wait to play the sequel 6.7/10

I hope you enjoyed this Review of Kings Quest 1
If you respect my opinion I will respect yours
By Padawan