After a few delays from its initial June 2015 release window back when it was funded via Kickstarter, the creepy-crawly Metroidvania Hollow Knight is set to launch on Steam at the end of the month. Tasking you as the titular Hollow Knight, players must delve into the kingdom of Hallownest to discover why villagers and explorers from your home have suddenly gone missing when exploring the remains of this once great civilization.
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Hollow Knight’s aesthetic is instantly striking, by succeeding to be both moody and charming. The bug companions you meet are cute and friendly, while the enemies and the actual world of Hallownest vary from the bizarre to the threatening. You have to battle with gladiator flies, fencing mantises and dutiful dung beetles as you travel through the various environs found within the world of Hallownest.
Taking obvious cues from the genre’s namesakes, Hollow Knight has tons of collectibles and power ups to acquire, over 30 bosses to defeat, tons of secrets to find and a huge map to explore. Just from the trailer, the minute to minute platforming looks super precise and fun, with the Hollow Knight wall jumping, air dashing and bouncing his way over obstacles and past enemies. Expect this to quickly become a speedrunner’s dream when it launches.
As the world of Hallownest is so big, Hollow Knight’s map system gives you tons of ways to mark up your in-game map to point out potential grinding spots, locations of future collectibles as well as areas to return to once you unlock a new power up. You’ll also have to upgrade the Hollow Knight’s Dream Nail weapon, which involves you returning to visit the ancient Nailsmith to bolster the strength of your tiny weapon. With stag bettles and minscule trains acting as ways of fast travel, there are ways to quickly get around the twisting tunnels of Hallownest.