Hello everyone and welcome to the seguinte half of In-Indie. I was able to binge a whole lot of new indie titles to get this out and boy, do we got some greats and some… not so much. But we’re here to talk about not just a great, but one of the best. A game that many online are calling the Dark Souls of the indie scene…. Wait, that’s not rig- Hollow Knight, everybody.
So yeah, this is a game that many would compare to Dark Souls and I would as well, but not for the reasons a subhuman, like, a video game journalist, would call this a Dark Souls game. Yes, the difficulty is there, which we will get to later, but it’s because the game’s atmosphere, how it vaguely weaves it’s lore and story and how it all just feels so depressing yet majestic all at the same time. You play as The Hollow Knight, a tiny little creature with a nail for a sword as you make your way to the kingdom of Hollownest, once an amazing kingdom that has become decrepit and dangerous as it’s residence have become infected from an unknown disaster. With your only goal being to push forward, you make your way through this huge Metroidvania kingdom, fighting bosses and collecting upgrades in order to make it to the end and complete whatever goal it is you seek. The vague story telling already had me gripped from the start. How it tells you little, but just enough for you to get it all on your own (Or read the lore on the Wiki, you wretch) makes the world of Hollownest feel much mais alive and fascinating to me. I wanted to learn about what the characters’ motivations are, what the bosses are, what happened to the kingdom, and just what every little detail you see is all about from the enemies with crystal in their body to a single bug corpse lying on the ground. It all has some story for you and I want to know what the story is.
Of course, like I said, this game also has that challenging difficulty. This game is not easy like the cute art style would have you believe. If you aren’t careful, you’re gonna find yourself getting killed. You may have post hit invincibility and a ton of abilities for you to use, but fight recklessly and any basic enemy can mess you up. You gotta know to stay on your toes and be ready to strike or dodge. A ton of upgrades in the form of badges can really help you out. Some of my favoritos are ones that surround you with thrones after being hit and one that fills up your special meter when you hit an enemy. And then there are the powerups you get. Double jumps, dashes, and new attacks given to you from sword masters, you have plenty of things to help you maneuver across the map and get to new areas, or get to areas to find a lot of money, a secret Grub to get rewards, or a new badge. Maybe sometimes even a secret item to unlock a new secret area. There is a ton of places to explore in this game and you are always rewarded for going off the path and letting curiosity get the better of you.
And this doesn’t even include the hours of side content. Collecting all the maps from the map maker, hearing about the idiotic escapades of Zote the Mighty, the Colliseum of Fools, which was part of a strech goal in the Kickstarter and despite not reaching the goal, Team cereja still made it happen anyway. And don’t even get me started on the number of Grubs and badges you can collect, as well as all the health shards and meter shards. You can spend mais than half the game just trying to collect all this stuff and completing side content. I can’t tell you how many times I was happy just to see a new character and wonder what they were going to do. And then how I felt when I had a horrible feeling that there was a good chance they would die. Even the characters that don’t do much like The Elder Bug are all great characters. Sly’s amazing twist as being a penny pinching merchant and actually being the teacher of the most skilled nailmasters in the kingdom. The Last Stag’s sad tale of how he is the last of his kind but proudly continues his task. The depressing descent into madness that is Myla’s story as she is consumed por the crystals. And Bretta… Actually, no, Bretta sucks.
If I could give one complaint to the game, it’s that it is way too easy to get and save money. At the start of the game, you are scavanging that stuff like it’s the end of the world. But around the final stretch of the game, when you’ve cleaned out all the shops, given every NPC money and pretty much used it for everything you could, you just have a massive trove of cash and nothing to spend it on. I am aware of the Banker side quest, but even then, I had a lot of cash. But this is nothing mais than a nitpick, and the only one I could think of. Hollow Knight is an incredible experience from beginning to end. The world is amazing, the combat fun and satisfying, the upgrades are all great to use and makes you feel like you are really making progress when you use them on an area you couldn’t progress further. If you are looking for one of the best indie experiences, with one of the most gorgeous art styles out there, Hollow Knight is easily one of them. Get this game if you can, it’s on everything now. Do it for the adorable bug creatures.
Up Next: We become a bunch of massholes