Shovel Knight: King of Cards
Top Critic Average
Yacht Club Games has once again created a character that somehow feels familiar to play, yet fresh. The world and characters are enchanting, and the entire package is endlessly charming.
King of Cards is the triumphant end of an era.
Shovel Knight: King of Cards is a successful union of its disparate halves, existing as both a platformer with consistently inventive level design and an engaging collectible card game. Joustus and the platforming offer a well-choreographed sequence of challenges that deliver constant variation.
Shovel Knight: King of Cards is a downright classic that is on par with the other Shovel Knight games. With the inclusion of the new mini-game Joustus, King of Cards has everything you can ask for.
"You just activated my trap card."
Review in Finnish | Read full review
Yacht Club proves yet again with King of Cards that they are masters of their craft, lovingly creating games that boldly mix genres and head in directions you’d never guess a traditional platformer would go. The card game mixes things up nicely, creating breaks of challenging card-based strategy in between action platforming.
Other than my quibbles about the plot and Joustus, I have no huge complaints about King of Cards. The closest I can get is that some of the final stages were truly difficult and frustrating, most especially one that has you constantly warping back and forth. This is a very well made game, and had it not released after Specter of Torment, easily would have been my favorite Shovel Knight game. As it is, I got 5 and a half hours out of it for a mere $9.99, and only saw 34% of what the game had to offer. I skipped a whole 13 stages and probably some truly epic optional bosses. You won’t lack for replay value either, with many difficult achievements that are a hallmark of the series. As a fan, I did very much enjoy my time with King of Cards, even if the ending was a bit disheartening. I’m glad I got to play each part of the Shovel Knight saga, and cannot wait to see what surprises are in store for Yacht Club Games in the future.
It’s my least favourite of the Shovel Knight entries, but with the bar raised so high, that doesn’t mean that King of Cards isn’t worth your time.
Despite my misgivings with our royal protagonist’s moveset, King of Cards is an excellent cap on what’s become a downright amazing collection of games.