Black Knight Sword Reviews

  • Danny Dubs 86Danny Dubs 862,039,763
    23 Dec 2012 10 Jan 2013
    20 5 7
    I’m a big fan of Suda 51 (the CEO of Grasshopper Manufacture and director/creative director of some of their most well-known games). Killer7 blew me away, and I’ve loved every game he’s touched since. When I saw that his name was attached to Black Knight Sword, I downloaded it without hesitation. What I got was unfortunately my least favorite Suda 51 game. Here’s why:

    The basic premise is solid. Take Suda 51’s bizarre quirkiness and stuff it into an action-platformer. And the basic mechanics are definitely there. The platforming is solid. The combat is decent. It has the template for building a deep, satisfying gaming experience. But it doesn’t...

    My biggest gripe is that the game doesn’t offer anything really compelling or exciting. Sure, it’s entertaining, but it doesn’t present anything beyond the bare basics, so there’s virtually no incentive for replaying the game after you’ve gone through it once, aside from just doing it faster or on harder difficulty settings.

    And that’s the most damning problem. It’s kinda fun, but nothing about it stands out. The story is also pretty short (it took me about 3 hours to run through it once I knew what I was doing), and the mundane mechanics make the extra game modes totally unappealing.

    Sadly, there are a couple other noticeable flaws. First, the game’s difficulty curve seems totally screwy. I found the final boss to be exponentially harder than anything else the game had to offer (which is definitely not to say that the rest of the game is easy, because it's not - particularly on higher difficulty settings). You might be into that kind of thing, but I found it terribly off-putting.

    Second, the story is nearly unintelligibly schizophrenic. Suda 51’s games usually have convoluted plots, but there are normally complex threads that you can follow with some attention and thought. I may just be thinking about the game in all the wrong ways, but this one feels like a string of disjointed cutscenes with no real purpose.

    With that said, there are a few things that Black Knight Sword does really well. The overall atmosphere is fantastic. Gorgeously detailed backdrops and delightfully creepy enemies lead to a wonderful visual presentation, and the music and sound effects accentuate that atmosphere beautifully.

    Also, for all my complaints about the game’s story, it does have one surprisingly visceral scene. It’s not quite enough to make up for the disconnected craziness, but it is pretty sweet.

    When the dust settles, you’re left with an acceptable action-platformer. It’s nothing too exciting, and the storyline seems weird for weird’s sake, but it’s a beautiful game, and it’s fun, at least the first time around.
    Showing all 7 comments.
    I haven't played the game so I have no opinion on your review (also didn't vote) except that it's confusing when people repeatedly mention "Suda 51" without explaining who or what that is. I had to Bing it (if you use Google, shame on you) to find out what it meant. I now know that it's just a stupid nickname for a person. People make it seem like "Suda 51" is the name of the studio that made the game or something. I also think it's annoying that when anyone talks about him they act like he's a god, but that's not the point.

    Sorry if I offended some fanboys (I hate that word but I don't know what else to call them). I just think the review would make a lot more sense if you clarify what "Suda 51" means or change it to the guy's real name or the name of the studio.
    Posted on 24 Dec 12 at 04:53
    Danny Dubs 86It certainly sounds like you have an opinion on my review. Agreeing/Disagreeing with the conclusion shouldn't be the basis of your opinion of a review...

    Confusing as it may be, take a look at the official Xbox Marketplace listing for the game. The overview begins: "From the twisted and brilliant mind of Suda 51 comes Black Knight Sword..."

    While I appreciate the complaint that there may be some references or terms that some people won't understand without a little bit of probing, it's certainly unreasonable to expect that one could explain everything in detail. As an example, I used the term "action-platformer" several times, and some people may be at a loss on that one. You have to make assumptions that the audience knows something, and given that Suda 51 is mentioned prominently in the Xbox Marketplace description, it seems reasonable to use his name without a citation (plus the fact that he has been attached to a number of high-profile games in recent years - No More Heroes, Shadows of the Damned, and Lollipop Chainsaw). I think it's a bit like mentioning a film director in a movie review.

    I also think I did a decent job explaining the relevant details. I mention his "bizarre quirkines" and describe a feature that his games generally tend to have. I use "he" when discussing "Suda 51," which I think makes it clear that it's a person and not a studio. You may not know who Suda 51 is, but I still feel like the review takes care of describing the game.

    Regardless, I made a modification to the beginning of the review. Does that help?

    I'd be interested to hear other people's thoughts on the subject, though - does the context of my use of "Suda 51" give enough information for people to get the gist, or should I explain it in more detail? Should I elaborate on any of the other things (like killer7)?
    Posted by Danny Dubs 86 On 24 Dec 12 at 05:46
    KJer25No man, your review is completely fine. There is always someone that wants to complain about something. And I think you found one of those someones in MotoX Champ88.
    Posted by KJer25 On 03 Jan 13 at 02:05
    RobertOrriIt's not really difficult to do a simple search for Suda 51 and immediately see who it is. Dumb complaint.

    Thumbs up for the review!
    Posted by RobertOrri On 17 Jan 13 at 20:02
    MaxForce357No kidding. There should never be questions about anything when you are ON THE INTERNET! Search it, Bing it, Google it, Wikipedia it... whatever.
    Posted by MaxForce357 On 16 Apr 13 at 21:20
    Limelight1979"I had to Bing it (if you use Google, shame on you..." -youre an idiot.

    Review is fine. Im on the last level now and while I havent been to the last boss fight yet, Ive read from numerous people that its super tough. Although Ill have to disagree on the re-playability...this game encourages multiple playthroughs to get most of the achievements and that being said since its an achievement tracking website and all...
    Posted by Limelight1979 On 26 Apr 13 at 00:48
    ThePaleHorsemanI'm commenting on here for those who may be on the fence about this game. The review does a good job of describing the game, so props on that danny.

    While I won't deny its a fun game and does indeed stick to that odd style of suda51 (which drew me to it), for those of you who are interested in obtaining all the achievements for your games, (I'm sure there's a few others out there, being TA and all) prepare to pull some hair out. The difficulty of this game can be absurd at times. It is hands down the most difficult platformer I've ever played. And it definitely ranks up there with one of the most difficult games overall, and I've played some infamously tough ones.
    The game punishes mistakes with large amounts of health, which it's downright frugal in returning to you, or death. Sure that's fine when u have continues and the like, but when it comes to the challenges (damn mission 25 to hell) and arcade mode it means lots of effort and time wasted.
    Basically, if you don't care to complete it, or are eager for a challenge, then if what Danny described appeals to you I'd say go for it. But if you don't want to do battle with a game that should include a free replacement controller with every purchase in order to 100% it, steer clear my friends. The TA stats on the game says it all.
    Posted by ThePaleHorseman On 24 Oct 13 at 20:11