The Let's Play Archive

Hollow Knight

by Highwang

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Original Thread: It's a bug's life- Let's Play Hollow Knight!



Also knowns as: I don't know how to title a thread to save my life!

What is this game?
Hollow Knight is a metroidvania made in February 2017 from Team Cherry, an Australia-based dev team. With a kickstarter goal of $35k and a final budget of $50k, Team Cherry worked for roughly 3 years on this game with relatively no fanfare or even basic advertising. Now out on Steam and planned for the Nintendo Switch and maybe the WiiU, this game made its debut with critical acclaim so far.

And rightfully so too, because this game is damn gorgeous and incredibly designed from a gameplay standard.

Hollow Knight chronicles the tale of Hallownest, a once-sprawling and advanced city network for bug civilizations up until it all mysteriously went to ruin. While the metropolis slumbers below, something within it rouses with an overwhelming anger. You play as a small beetle-like bug with no name, wandering through life until he finds his way to the town of Dirtmouth, which lays above the ruins of Hallownest. Spurned on by the drive for adventure and the general emptiness of Dirtmouth, our protagonist dives into the well that leads to the mysterious lands of Hallownest, seeking some goal that we are entirely unaware of.

Gameplay-wise, Hollow Knight draws a lot of inspiration from classic metroidvanias such as Symphony of the Night and Super Metroid, but doesn't directly rip from them. You will spend most of your time exploring areas, collecting various powerups and fighting bosses to advance the plot. Naturally there will be all the tropes such as Double Jumps, Air Dashes, Charge Attacks, and even a psuedo-Shine Spark later on. Combat is very basic action platformy hack & slashy, with more of an emphasis put on reacting to whatever enemies throw at you rather than stringing sick combos together. You also have a "Focus Gauge" that you build up from attacking enemies and spend on either healing or other abilities to help keep the pace of exploration going while you're within the ruins.

So. What sets this game apart from the pile of every other indie game ever?
Hollow Knight is one of those games where it doesn't really innovate but rather polishes the design model to a mirror shine. This game is so huge and engaging that when I first picked it up I didn't put it down for the longest time. Exploration is fast with no real breaks in pace for resupplying, and each zone has its own unique flair to it that makes it stand out. Combat starts out simple but evolves with the game as you get mandatory unlocks and optional badges that wholly change the dynamic of the game system. Level design is probably the biggest thing that impressed me about this game, with several levels providing a decent challenge without ever breaking the atmosphere and world-building from the game's art direction.

Finally, the game is gorgeous. This game only had two animators and a salaryman's budget, but it art direction and animation quality rivals that of most popular animated series' nowadays.

Plans for this LP:
Joining me for this LP is BigTUnit1 providing blind commentary and really good inquiries about the game. This is also my first-ever LP at 1080p/60fps. The LP itself has two goals:

-100% the game. While this sounds like a simple thing, my first blind playthrough ran about 40 hours long. This LP will not last nearly as long, but the game's got content pouring out of its eyesockets.

-While this may sound insanely petty, I'm really hoping this LP will convince people to buy the game. Now I won't be obnoxious about this at all and plug its purchase at every opportunity, but these devs are entirely dependent on viral marketing from online superstars and I'm hoping this LP will help get the word out about the game and how fantastic it is.

-Though this isn't really a goal, this game is sprawling and doesn't gate you out of areas. While I've already kinda missed the first chance, I will try to find points to poll the audience on where to go next. This should make for a more dynamic exploration of the game that's outside of my comfort zone.

Table of Contents

Episode 1: The Forgotten Crossroads
Episode 2: False Knight
Episode 3: Greenpath & Hornets
Episode 4: Exploring Greenpath & Beyond
Episode 5: The Fungal Wastes
Episode 6: Highwang Dies in Acid
Episode 7: The City of Tears
Episode 8: The Soul Sanctum
Episode 9: The Royal Waterways
Episode 10: The Resting Grounds
Episode 11: The Crystal Caverns
Episode 12: Isma's Tear
Episode 13: The Ancient Basin
Episode 14: The Kingdom's Edge
Episode 15: The Infected Crossroads
Episode 16: Deepnest
Episode 17: The Hive
Episode 18: The Queen's Garden
Episode 19: The Tower of Love & Colosseum of Fools
Episode 20: The Howling Cliffs
Episode 21: The King's Brand
Episode 22: The Abyss
Episode 23: The 1800 Brain Knife
Episode 24: The White Palace
Episode 25: The Cleanup, pt 1
Episode 26: The Dreamers
Episode 27: The Escort Quest
Episode 28: The Radiance
Episode 29: The Grimm Troupe
Episode 30: ??????????

Appendix A: Zote's Precepts
Appendix B: Colosseum of Fools
Appendix C: Grubfly Cleanup
Appendix D: Dream Trees


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