Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment MastheadShovel Knight: Specter of Torment Masthead

Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment

Rating Summary

Based on 32 critic reviews
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Based on 32 critic reviews
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General Information

Available on:Nintendo SwitchMar 3, 2017
Nintendo 3DSApril 2017
PlayStation 4April 2017
Xbox OneApril 2017
Wii UApril 2017
PCApril 2017
PlayStation VitaApril 2017
Xbox Series X/SNov 10, 2020
PlayStation 5Nov 12, 2020

Developer: Yacht Club Games

Genres: Action, Platformer

Summon your scythe in the prequel to Shovel Knight! Take control of Specter Knight to dash through completely redesigned levels by climbing walls, mastering a new arsenal of weapons, and slashing your foes to ribbons. Become the reaper, discover your melancholy past, and recruit the Order of No Quarter!

Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment Critic Reviews

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Specter of Torment is a focused and satisfyingly challenging 2D platformer which retains Shovel Knight's strong aesthetic and sense of charm.

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Spectre of Torment stands up well next to the previous Shovel Knight and Plague of Shadows campaigns. It's a bit on the short side and the bosses are a bit easier, but Yacht Club Games has kicked out some excellent new stages this time around. This prequel still offers precise platforming and a unique, more aggressive style of play to the series.

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Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is worth picking up on its own, but you should really just get the total package and play through all three campaigns. They each offer something unique like a Vegas buffet, and coincidentally enough the new price point of the Treasure Trove edition matches up.

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For my tastes, Specter himself features the least compelling of the three games’ platforming styles, but it’s not due to a mechanical or half-baked implementation: I just love the original Shovel Knight. As a timed Switch exclusive on a console with what is currently a modest number of games, there’s little reason not to play Specter of Torment unless you’re revisiting Shovel Knight proper via Treasure Trove first (which includes them all). My recommendation? Go for that. These games are worth it.

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