Dark Souls-inspired Metroidvania: Hollow Knight (the thread)


To trigger it you’ll need to gain access to one of the end game areas which is pretty smart since the fight requires a lot of the skills you gain up till the end. Basically, you can start it at any time.


So what I thought would be a brief respite before tackling my big unfinished GotY games ends up sucking me in. I’m about 9 hours into Hollow Knight and have become obsessed with it. It even got me to dust off my old Dual Shock 3 so I can get a precise and easily accessible dpad to match the game’s exacting timing. This is definitely ranking high on my end of year list (although I’ve been saying that about a lot of games this year).


Yes! I haven’t started putting my list together yet, but this will surely be somewhere on it. Even if the concept is relatively simple/straightforward, the execution of it is unlike anything else I’ve played this year. Truly a world to lose yourself in.


I’ve been playing this on the Switch and am blown away by the visuals and the sound design. Glad I didn’t watch more than a few minutes of someone streaming this during the long wait for the Switch port.

If memory serves, this was one of the first indy games announced for the Switch. It certainly factored into my desision to buy one because I saw it as an indication that Nintendo was going to get serious about putting indy games on its new system.

Anyway, such a gorgeous game. I find myself stopping to take screenshots all the time (sometimes with painful results).

Not sure how I feel about the retrieving your shadow (ghost? soul?) mechanic. On one hand, it gives dying consequence and the trek to get it is often a cool down period from a hard boss fight. On the other, it gets real tedious in some situations and adds to the tiresome “it’s like dark souls” trope.

One realization I’ve come to is a real stumbling block I have with games is panic. There’s that moment where everything is going good and I’m in a rhythm and then bam! something unexpected slams me and I panic and my brain kind of shuts down for a few seconds. That few seconds is enough to die in games like this.

Between the vibration on the control and the audio/visual cues you really feel getting hit in this game, almost like a slap in the face, which makes it worse.


This is the best vibration implementation I’ve ever seen.

Top notch game in every way. Loving playing this on the go.


It’s definitely rough going for the first couple of hours, which seems to be an unpleasant mainstay of the soulslike genre, but I will say that HK is less punishing than it first appears. Spend your currency as often as you can, and don’t worry too much about saving up for the “big” upgrades. You’ll have enough to get you through the game, and as you progress you’ll begin to understand “safe” areas where you can farm if you need to. Head into unknown or difficult areas with as little currency on you as possible, and you can head off much of the stress before it gets overwhelming. Hope that helps!


Without spoiling too much there is a way to get to your shade back much more quickly (the game does not communicate this at all of course and if you’d rather figure it out yourself I get that) but to do it you can Bring a rancid egg to Confessor Jiji, who sits behind the locked door in Dirtmouth. She will summon your shade for you. This can be v helpful if it gets stuck in a rough spot or tough platforming section.

Navster’s tips above are all great too! I highly recommend charms that increase the swing speed of your nail and speed up your healing time if you’re struggling with a boss who’s super quick. Some offer barely any window to heal at all, so just be patient and never get greedy trying to get too many hits in at a time. It’s an incredibly charming and well-designed game that I found much more accessible and fun than your average souls-like, glad more people are getting into it!


@Navster @Foxtrot
Thanks for the advice!

continuing to admire the visuals in this game.


I’ve spent the week since the Switch release replaying pretty much the entirety of the game (100%ed the PC version pre-DLC last summer, and am close to doing so again now), and gah I’m at a loss with the words necessary to describe how much I love it. Even the Path of Pain, in all it’s Celeste-C-Side glory. I’m just so glad y’all are getting to experience it for the first time, because there are so many moments—the Mantis Lords and Watcher Knights fights, falling out of Crystal Peak and finding the Dreamers, seeing that statue in the City of Tears—that I’d love to experience as new ones again.

Navster and Foxtrot gave some great advice already, so I’ll just say like… don’t rush through it. There are so many little things in this game to enjoy, so many pieces of flavor text or dialogue after a boss fight or little symbols or marks in the world or pieces of hidden lore. Even just the atmosphere and the music, it’s good to stop and bask in it sometimes.


The part where you can actually listen to all 57 precepts of Zote was where I fully realized how much of an attention to detail and commitment to these characters the devs had. It really shows. Also having all the Mantis enemies stand down and bow to you after defeating the Mantis Lords is such a cool touch. You’re completely right, everywhere you look in that game there’s something that makes you more and more invested in that world


Not reading any spoilers but loving this game. When I played Dark Souls 1, I read too much and learned a lot about the game without discovering it myself. Delighted to have Hollow Knight be my chance to slowly poke my way through the world.


Got to an ending today, and I’m still feeling very positive about this game. One of my favorites of 2018 for sure.

Loved some of the bosses (Hornet), hated others (Guardian Knights)

Maybe I’ll write more later when I’ve processed it more. It’s one of those games where I knew I was experiencing something extraordinary. Entirely subjective to me, of course.
hmm I thought that screenshot would be spoiler blurred, oh well I’ll delete it.


I’m really excited to play this. A Dark Souls style metroidvania sounds like it’s basically tailored for me, so I’ve almost bought it a few times over the past year but was holding out for the Switch release. I’m in the middle of a couple games right now, but once with them I’m done I’m gonna give this a go. I’ve got pretty high expectations, but I’m pretty starved for this type of game so I’m pretty sure I’ll enjoy it, since I loved Samus Returns last year despite it’s flaws.


I’m about 6 hours in on Switch (have been waiting to play it since the first rumblings it might come to the Switch) and completely blown away by this. I’m not sure what else to say about it. The art. The movement and mechanics. The sense of exploration, physically and of the story.

Boy howdy I’m smitten by this game.


So great to see this new surge of interest with the Switch release. I’m really curious how Hollow Knight plays on that system versus my PC and crappy Logitech controller. I could see having much better/snappier controls serving this game very well once the super tough parts pop up.


lost 600 coins and threw my switch out da window


I played this game on PC, almost beat it but never did. Glad to give it another go on the switch, which is a great platform for it.


The port runs incredibly smoothly on Switch. Consistently 60 fps even when a lot of attacks or projectiles are popping off, no input lag that I could feel, and it looks as beautiful as ever. As someone who originally played with a PS4 controller on PC both the handheld controls and the pro controller feel as good if not better (pro controller a bit more so, but I’ve taken care of most bosses in handheld mode and those controls are more than serviceable). It really feels like the Switch version is the definitive version of the game.


I’ll add that I noticed a few slowdowns in handheld mode on my playthrough, but they were not common and (at least for me) not a big deal at all – it looks and plays awesome. Absolutely loved the game and glad that it finally got a Switch release, because I was holding out for it.


I also held off on HK until the Switch version and I’m so happy I did. It’s such a great handheld experience, especially with headphones.

How do people find the joy cons for this game? I gotta say for extended play or tricky boss fights my pro controller has been key.