Top Critic Average
It occurs to me after playing the game that although each version of the game was different, they each dealt with the concepts of love and loss. While Shovel Knight focused on his hunt to save Shield Knight and Plague of Shadows dealt with Plague Knight’s secret feelings for a certain someone, Specter of Torment’s story is not about romantic passion, but camaraderie. However, even then, there is a romance in the campaign between the skeleton Red and his lady love, Scarlet. More than anything though, Specter of Torment is a game about duty and the price of holding on to our humanity. I truly enjoyed my time with it, and spent a little more than 4 hours beating the game, with 85% item completion. The Nintendo Switch is truly fortunate to have Specter of Torment as an exclusive, and for those of you waiting, rest easy knowing it will be truly worth the wait. Specter Knight’s tale is a dark and epic one, and it makes me all the more excited for the next DLC Yacht Club Games has up their voluminous sleeves.
Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is everything you could want in a 2D platformer, featuring mechanics from classic games brought forward in clever ways. Specter improves upon the original Shovel Knight in most regards and continues Yacht Club Games' tradition of excellence effortlessly.
Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is an excellent action platformer with a lot of content to enjoy and plenty of bonus challenges to endure and feats to complete. It raises the bar for the Shovel Knight series and makes me look forward to seeing what Yacht Club Games manages to do for King Knight’s campaign. Nintendo Switch owners get to enjoy Specter of Torment as a timed exclusive, so if you want to give this excellent game a try before it makes its way to other consoles, now is the time to do so!
I had a lot of fun with Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment, and I’d rate it as high if not even higher than Shovel Knight: Shovel of Truth. The level design suits the dark feel of this new campaign, and the added gameplay features make the whole experience feel very fresh. As always, Virt’s (Jake Kaufman) soundtrack is top notch and perfectly fits the action. I highly recommend that you play Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment today – for the best value be sure to grab Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove on Nintendo Switch!
Overall, Specter of Torment is a fabulous addition to the Shovel Knight title and further proves that Yacht Club Games are masters of their craft. Gameplay is fast and brimming with action, while adding hints of challenge. Specter Knight is an interesting character and a joy to play, while having an interesting story to boot. There's more than enough meat to justify your purchase, and it is a succulent dish indeed to experience.
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.
What Yacht Club Games managed to achieve with Shovel Knight was extremely impressive, and they’ve continued their streak with Spectre of Torment. This latest expansion has overshadowed Shovel of Hope as being the best Shovel Knight game. Spectre of Torment demonstrations that with time, Yacht Club Games can create an expansion that outclasses Plague of Shadows with ease. Featuring a remixed soundtrack, a new look to each level and the coolest character in the Shovel Knight series, Spectre of Torment is better than I could’ve ever imagined. Considering what is available on the Switch right now, there is absolutely no reason for you not to own this game.
Specter of Torment is the latest in a fantastic series of games; it further cements Yacht Club Games's reputation as a developer capable of crafting experiences that are not only on par with, but often surpass the efforts of some of the largest studios in the world.The game's excellent level design, charming art style and top-notch soundtrack hold up as well in 2017 as they did three years ago in the original Shovel Knight. If you haven't played a Shovel Knight game before, we would highly recommend you pick up Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove for your Switch instead of this, as it contains Specter of Torment as well, but if you'd rather save some cash you can't go wrong with Specter of Torment.
Ultimately, there is very little bad to say about SoT. It's an excellent 2D action platformer with some good RPG elements, and its balanced difficulty lets genre hacks like me struggle through while more seasoned players can still expect a good, but not overly difficult challenge.
If you bought Shovel Knight when it came out and loved every minute of it, Specter of Torment is a fantastic reason to return to this world and its characters. Sharp gameplay, taut worldbuilding, and brimming with personality, this is a trip to the dark side that is worth taking.
That is really my only criticism. You’ll be doing things in Specter of Torment that literally make you say “wow” out loud. It’s a smooth, expertly-crafted platformer filled with heart. Again, it’s a free update to your Wii U and 3DS versions so there’s no reason not to play it. For Switch users, it’s absolutely worth experiencing, as is the rest of the Treasure Trove.
Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is exceptional. It's always incredible to see what new ways Yacht Club Games is able to reimagine the same universe, and without fail, it does it in a way that makes the experience feel completely fresh. While the setting may be similar, Specter of Torment is so completely unlike the previous two games, both in setting and gameplay. Everything about it is absolutely addictive and impossible to put down, making it a perfect launch title for the Nintendo Switch.
Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is an expansion to live up to the original game that will allow to enjoy the essence of Shovel Knight in a different and challenging way. If you have played Shovel Knight and you have Nintendo Switch, you can´t miss this great additional content.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
True to its promises, Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment strives to deliver a Jump'n'Run experience that truly lives up to the base game. While keeping the core elements intact, some simple, but meaningful changes to gameplay and atmosphere allow it to stand off at its own entity.
Specter of Torment puts cool new twists on Shovel Knight's action platformer gameplay and has a fascinating story to boot. It's challenging but very fair, and I thoroughly enjoyed the entire game. Those who already have Shovel Knight should look forward to this excellent free expansion, and those who don't have the base game needn't think twice about spending $9.99 for this masterfully crafted experience.
Despite some relatively minor blemishes, Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment is an innovative and satisfying experience I would recommend to any fan of 2D platformers or retro games.
The Specter of Torment expansion really added to the game series with a better story and more fluid gameplay. Its not particularly long, but the fun, challenging, old-school platforming makes this a game worth playing. I would recommend buying the Treasure Trove edition with the original game and the two expansions and playing them in the order of release. It's a great package and Specter of Torment is the strongest of the set.
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.
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.
Specter of Torment feels like a new mode more than a sequel or an expansion, and it benefits from this. With a new story, completely new move set, and a much darker tone, it's a must-play for fans of the original release. Make sure to grab a controller, because the keyboard isn't ideal for everything Specter Knight is capable of. Congratulations, Specter Knight; you're too good for a keyboard.
If you’re in the mood for some old-school platforming, Specter Of Torment is well worth putting the few hours needed, especially if you’ve yet to play Shovel Knight at all and buy it as part of the new Treasure Trove collection.