Looking at A Knight's Quest, I felt a sense of immediate familiarity. As a guy who grew up playing the likes of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, I was certain that I would find something to enjoy in this 3D platformer from Sky 9 Games and Curve Digital. My first impressions were correct... more or less.
A Knight's Quest is a loose follow-up to Sky 9 Games' Flash Game Quest For Milk, an absurd tale where you embark on an epic adventure to get milk. This time around, you find yourself playing a red-headed adventurer named Rusty who is digging around some runes in search of fantastic treasure. Unfortunately, all you manage to do is release an ancient evil.
In The Beginning
The tutorial and opening credits are combined in a sort of cold open. You find yourself in the midst of an epic temple; everything seems so far away, and it indeed takes a good bit of time to get from A to B. The sheer scale of this temple sets the tone for the rest of the game — indoor and outdoor locations alike are spacious.
You'll learn the basics of movement and interaction, including some things not always seen in a 3D platformer like wall-running. A sword and board is soon found in the temple ruins, although it's less of a sword and more of a wooden stick shaped like a sword. This will carry you through the first hour of the game before you get it replaced with a proper weapon.
As you search for amazing treasure, you instead unleash catastrophe — attempting to open up a chest releases a sealed evil in a can, kicking off your journey and reviving many tropes of this style of game — some of which we were better off without.
Fencing off A Knight's Quest
Following a harrowing escape from a collapsing temple, you'll find yourself awakening on a beach. It is here that I thought I would be able to explore the town a bit more and sell some of my collected junk, but alas — a large swathe of the starting area is fenced off. And I don't mean this metaphorically, either — there are literal fences spread all throughout the area with guards posted in front of them.
The fencing off is so bad that I actually got lost in the beginning. I had a vague idea of where I needed to go, but it seemed like it was in a closed-off area. It took me a few minutes to discover that there was actually a path in-between two closed-off areas that took to me onwards to my next objective.
There are definitely some Metroidvania elements in A Knight's Quest. In the two hours I put into the game, I saw metal railings and water fountains that were clearly intended to be used for movement abilities that I had not yet unlocked.
One welcome element of A Knight's Quest is the platforming. It's a good bit of fun, especially to anyone who has grown up playing the likes of Banjo-Kazooie. Collectibles, too, play a part — there are golden keys and various other gubbins floating around the world, challenging you to figure out how to come and get them.
The Rough Edges
I enjoyed the general feel of A Knight's Quest, but that's not to say that I didn't have some problems with this game.
To start, I had exited the first proper dungeon with my inventory nearly full. I would have liked to sell off my junk items and see what cool things I could buy, but I was unable to find the shop. The item tooltips mention that items can be sold and they have a price, so I assume that there is somewhere in the game to do it — I just haven't the foggiest idea where it might be.
Another bugbear of mine was combat. It may have been because I was early in the game, but most of the fights didn't feel terribly challenging. The first true boss battle introduced a mechanic where you had to break shields by using a magical spell, but the vast majority of fights could be won by mashing the attack button and occasionally dodging.
Lastly (but not leastly), there's the backtracking. When trying to reach a desert area, I found myself at the top of a massive canyon with no real idea of how to get to the other side. I easily spent a half hour running around this area, trying to figure out how to make it from one side to the other to reach my objective. Once I did make it over, a quest popped up that immediately sent me back. A shortcut was helpfully provided, but I had the sense that I would be doing a lot of running back and forth in this massive world.
A Knight's Quest is a game with big ambitions and an equally large game world. I'm still not sure if they've managed to adequately populate it with enough interesting things for the player to do, but it feels like it's mostly on the right track.
TechRaptor conducted our A Knight's Quest Coverage Club on PC via the Epic Games Store using a copy provided by the developer. Disclosure: Epic Games Store works with TechRaptor for an affiliate partnership, and TechRaptor earns a small commission off purchases made from some links in this article.