Content of the article: "Hollow Knight, a game that broke me. Here’s my review :"
The moment I saw Hollow Knight pitched as a 2D dark souls, I was immediately turned off from playing it. I'm terrible at hard video games.
It was 7 months after release that I thought I'd give it a chance anyway, maybe it wasn't as hard as people made it out to be ? I mean look at all those cutesy visuals!
Yeah, no. No.
This is a game that doesn't hold your hand whatsoever, wait, scratch that. It holds your hand and cuts it off, beats you to death with it, then takes all your hard earned money and turns it into a black ghost thingie (it's weird).
You play as the titular "Knight", well, let's go with that for now. You're this tiny insignificant thing in a world filled to the brim with things much bigger, and much harder to kill than you. Equipped with your trusty nail sword, a few spells, a few charms, and pure determination, you're here to… Well, it's complicated.
The story is extremely convoluted when you're experiencing it in-game, but can really be summed in a few paragraphs if you read it online. I wouldn't want to spoil it for you, but it's pretty fantastic.
On your journey, you meet a huge catalogue of very diverse and interesting characters. They're memorable and each carry their own little contribution to your story. It's one of the things this game did best, in my opinion.
You'll see platforming in this game usually labeled as "parkour" and that's for good reason. Platforming is a very serious part of the challenge, here. In many places you'll find yourself having to bounce off monsters and very strategically dashing and jumping through tight obstacles that would give the hardest levels of "Celeste" a run for their money.
Needless to say, it was brutal. I was only 6 hours in, and getting my ass handed to me by the mini bosses (big guys with clubs), I hadn't even gotten to the actual bosses, yet! I had (finally) managed to kill False Knight But later it became clear that this was just a warm-up.
I eventually found a parkour section where I was stuck, I thought I had messed something up and somehow ruined my save. I was angry, disappointed, and gave up.
Then I came back a year later and decided to play on a new save, I had become completely rusty and had to re-learn everything, I barely managed to get halfway through the game and was already on the average playtime for completion (20 hours) I got burnt out and left it again.
Now, while besting the challenge eventually was very rewarding, this game took it way too far, sometimes. Notable examples would be The path of pain , Soul Tyrant , The watcher knights And on so many more occasions. Those I couldn't beat on my own.
I only picked this game back up a week ago, and installed an invincibility mod just so that I could see the end of it. I was no longer willing to put in the time and just wanted to see it end, and I did, it was genuinely so damn good. Maybe I would've finished it on my own back then, had I not given up on that initial save.
This was a challenge too great for me to complete on my own, and I acknowledge that. This is a game that rewards patience, perseverance, and sheer fucking will. Many people have completed it on their own and relished the unrelenting challenge, I'm not one of those people. But maybe you are.
Apart from the difficulty, this is probably one of the most well-realized video game worlds that I've ever played. It's so full of heart and charm and character, and is a masterpiece no matter how you look at it. Even if unforgiving, it remains fair, and it's worthwhile for those who stick with it. I wholeheartedly recommend this game.
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