Shovel Knight: King of Cards
Top Critic Average
Yacht Club Games continues to dig up gold with Shovel Knight: King of Cards, despite a momentum slowing card game.
Shovel Knight: King of Cards repeats some elements from previous entries, but it ultimately delivers one of the largest and more refined expansions in the series yet.
Shovel Knight: King of Cards revisits the formula one last time with new maps and bosses, as well as a brand new card game. It's ambitious, but it's also the least essential of the major Shovel Knight episodes. If you own Treasure Trove, play Shovel of Hope and Specter of Torment first, then circle back to King of Cards if you still want more.
Like each campaign before it, King Knight’s quest is a uniquely thrilling 2D experience that needs no asterisk assigned to any praise. This isn’t a retro throwback or an NES hanger-on, but a masterful platforming action that stands up to any and all contemporaries.
This is a historic moment for Shovel Knight: half a decade later, I can recommend picking up anything and everything Shovel Knight related, which is easy to do with the Treasure Trove compilation. Yacht Club Games has a lot to be proud of and has accomplished a lot in their short run, and I can't wait to see what they come up with next.
King of Cards is, without doubt, the most risky expansion of all of them. It brings brand new elements, as a complete card game (with collectible cards and fully playable) or a main character that plays very different from the previous ones, but as a whole it doesn't astound at the same level that Shovel Knight did up today.
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It's also a strong way to put the Shovel Knight saga to bed, essentially bringing everything full-circle in such a way that it encourages players to go right back to the original Shovel Knight story. King of Cards is aces, in ways I never expected it to be.
Yacht Club Games has delivered once again in the latest expansion for Shovel Knight thanks to exciting gameplay and level design that proves Shovel Knight: King of Cards was well worth the wait.
Shovel Knight: King of Cards is a glorious, flowing, challenging addition to the series. There's more to do, and more to love - and love it you will.