We’ve all been there, exploring a crystal cave, flip a couple of switches, accidentally unleash an ancient evil hell-bent on destroying the world. It happens. For our clumsy hero Rusty, it literally did just happen. Luckily, with the help of legendary Spirit Heroes and some clockwork magic, he may just have a chance to stop the approaching evil, save the day, and maybe make some friends in the process.
A Knight’s Quest is an open-world love letter to the classic adventure games of old, specifically the Zelda series. While I don’t like to compare games when I review them, it’s almost unavoidable when talking about this game. You’ll find yourself exploring a massive world full of platforming, combat, puzzles and loot. The quirky cartoon visuals pop with an array of bright colors and interesting designs. It’s a fresh take on the fantasy world that seems to be filled with dreary palettes as of late.
Your main goal in A Night’s Quest is to recruit the fabled Spirit Heroes in order to band together and stop the impending doom. Along the way, you’ll level up your magic, weapons, and skills, while solving puzzles, grinding rails and wall-running around temples. Each of these temples is of course guarded by a boss fight that tests all your unlocked skills and abilities. The format feels very much like Zelda, and it’s not at all a bad thing.
The game is filled to the brim with charm and humor. I rarely laugh out loud while playing a game, but A Knight’s Quest had me chuckling to myself on numerous occasions. It does well to not take itself so seriously, and I love that approach. It constantly jabs at video game logic and fantasy tropes, all without feeling cynical or negative. It takes a very basic story and mixes it with humor that kept me interested when I would otherwise not have been.
Combat is simple, yet it retains some depth. The standard lock-on, block, attack, roll formula is all there, but with the added parry ability and power-increasing combo system, it allows both button mashers and strategic players to perform adequately. Combine that with the various elemental upgrades such as fire or even time manipulation, and the combat can actually become quite deep and rewarding. I’m not talking Dark Souls or Sekiro level of complexity, but when compared to other games similar to A Knight’s Quest, including Zelda itself, the combat is refreshingly fleshed out.
The controls are a little hit and miss. While nothing is blatantly broken or ‘bad’ per-se, some things just feel clunky and unpolished. Jumping feels floaty and it can take a bit of time to adapt your movement to how the game handles the momentum. Rolling feels particularly delayed and I found myself just not preforming the roll move after it failed to really work during combat. The animations fall into this trap as well. While some look wonderful, others are extremely clunky and robotic. It’s not a deal-breaker, but it does disappoint when compared to how great other animations look. It just feels inconsistent.
In typical RPG games such as this, I never find the music all that interesting. I don’t even care for the music in the Elder Scrolls series. (Please direct all hateful comments to my Twitter account). But this title surprised me in that aspect. The game’s intro is a perfect example of how well the music is handled. Orchestral strings and tempo changes are tied to actions that happen during the introduction level, and it feels great. The music during the rest of the game is nice as well. Boss fight themes really shine overall. I was genuinely amazed at how much I enjoyed the score to this game. It was completely unexpected.
All in all, A Knight’s Quest is an incredibly charming take on the Zelda formula that brings its own flavor with it. While the controls aren’t perfect, they don’t detract enough to hinder the overall experience. If you’re a fan of adventure games, funny dialogue, and skeletons that taunt you with a booty shake, then A Knight’s Quest is a game you’ll want to check out.