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Review: The Knight Witch [PC]

Developed by Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team and published by Team17 is an adventure of vexatious valor. Fly, float, and flit through hazardous lands and fight against mindless machines. A blend of Deathsmiles and Dead Cells, prepare for a wild ride.

Ready your blade and prepare your hexes, for this is The Knight Witch.

Everything Changed with the Machine Nation Attacked

14 years ago, when industrialization has consumed the world, only the Children of Gaia stand in defiance of the ruling family Daigadai. When all hope seems lost, the Knight Witches stormed the evil mechanical nation of Daigadai. Having overthrown their leader and ending the war, they were hailed as heroes. But the earth has suffered greatly, and the remaining survivors of the war fled to the underground kingdom of Dungeonidas. From there they rebuilt, and peace returned to the people.

You are Rayne, the 5th Knight Witch who never saw battle. On the anniversary of the Knight Witches victory, the golems of Daigadai attacked. With the Knight Witches scattered, it’s up to you to defend the people, and fight back against the evil once again.

Magical and Mighty

First and foremost, the art style in this game is absolutely charming. The characters are well designed, the environments are detailed and vibrant. Also, hats off to the writing team. The characters all feel fleshed out and like they have their own personalities. Banter between characters are bouncy and fun, the puns in the game are top notch, and you can tell someone who would ask questions helped make the script. There were times when the characters would say or do something, and I find myself go “oh yeah, I was just thinking that too”. The OST is a banger as well, and should be checked out.

Beyond anti-platforming, The Knight Witch has various mechanics that you must learn in order to progress. Auto-targeting and direction-based combat are pretty easy to figure out. Protecting and rescuing NPCs will strengthen you and allow you to level up over time. You can pick up magic cards that you then cast as spells, which show up in a randomized deck. You can get more cards through beating certain bosses, or as rewards from the end of puzzling challenge rooms.

Beautifully Frustrating

I’ll be up front and honest when I say that bullet-hells aren’t really my thing. Enjoyable but easily tiring if I keep getting overwhelmed. The Knight Witch isn’t really a bullet-hell in the traditional manner, being profile 2D instead of top-down 2D, but the roots are still there. And it’s from this format that a lot of issues show up. In a top-down bullet-hell, the majority of games are open areas with maneuverability in mind. Arenas are rarely cramped close, to allow for survivability. The Knight Witch takes metroidvania level design with the intent of platforming and keeps you zoomed in to your character. Layer bullet-hell enemy mechanics on top of all this and you have a very pretty but very frustrating gameplay loop. One that has you dying in corners or clipping damage randomly in the middle of a fight.

The level design, while very interesting, is sadly only half the problem. Rayne moves slow compared to the rest of the world, meaning any damage coming your way has to be dealt with split-second reaction time. I have died multiple times in every boss or challenge stage due to how slow the movement feels, on top of the rain of damage in closed quarters. I know that you are able to gain power ups later on that will allow you to mitigate some of this damage, but to face this so early in that game feels like a weird design choice. Add terrain hazards on top of that and you got a heck of a hot potato to deal with.

Concluding Thoughts

One of, if not the most important thing when it comes to a bullet-hell is solid controls. While the format is simple, you need to be able to survive the onslaught of damage, and being able to move and dodge is essential for that. The Knight Witch feels like a bullet-hell trying to be a metroidvania, much like a square peg in a triangle hole. It’s almost there, but short of brute force, it isn’t going to naturally fit.

The Knight Witch is available for Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4/5, Nintendo Switch, and on PC through Steam and

Review key provided by Team 17.




The Knight Witch feels like a bullet-hell trying to be a metroidvania, much like a square peg in a triangle hole. It’s almost there, but short of brute force it isn’t going to naturally fit.

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