Hollow Knight - convince me to keep playing


I retreated from the White Palace and beat the Hollow Knight. I don’t care if it is the worst ending, I finally made it! Percentage was 93% with around 80 hours (yep I’m bad).

As much as I got frustrated I’m happy I played. It is a good game.



Oh, well done. It’s okay to stop somewhere. The game starts as a cakewalk, but I’m amazed at how hard it becomes.

The “fake” final boss is nowhere near as hard as the real final boss, which is nothing next to the optional Nightmare King Grimm.

The normal path through the White Palace is itself pretty easy compared to its optional super hard detour.

And then you can try the whole game on permadeath mode, if you want.

But that’s nothing compared to the super boss rush mode of 40 bosses, which lasts more than an hour with no break. And if that’s not enough, you can try beating the bosses on one hit death mode individually of redo the whole boss rush crippled in four different ways.

That rabbit hole is very deep.



I saw that and practically started laughing. I can’t imagine playing that.



I mean, credit where credit is due, look at this stuff!

Contains spoilers, obviously.

EDIT: Just to be clear, he’s doing it with all possible handicaps:

Nail Binding\ 50x50 NAIL BINDING

Reduces nail damage to 80% or sets it to 13 if the damage is at 13 or above. Nail Arts damage is calculated based on this damage.
Shell Binding\ 50x50 SHELL BINDING

Limits the Knight’s maximum available masks to four, but does not affect Lifeblood masks or masks granted by Fragile Heart or Unbreakable Heart.
Charms Binding\ 50x50 CHARMS BINDING

Unequips all charms and prevents the player from equipping them again.
Soul Binding\ 50x50 SOUL BINDING

Allows only 33% SOUL to be gathered and disables SOUL vessels, allowing for one Focus to heal or one Spell cast.



I watched some of it. That’s nuts!



In a few days, we’ll get to see Hollow Knight’s first paid DLC, which adds a playable Hornet character.




The rumor is that it’s supposed to be a standalone sub-game, but we’ll see very soon.



A full-blown sequel rather than a dlc, which includes the following:

  • Discover a whole new kingdom! Explore coral forests, mossy grottos, gilded cities and misted moors as you ascend to the shining citadel at the top of the world.
  • Engage in lethal acrobatic action! Wield a whole new suite of nimble moves as you dance between foes in deadly, beautiful combat.
  • Craft powerful tools! Master an ever-expanding arsenal of weapons, traps and mechanisms to confound your enemies and explore new heights.
  • Solve shocking quests! Hunt down rare beasts, unearth ancient mysteries and search for lost treasures to fulfil the wishes of the downtrodden and restore the kingdom’s hope. Prepare for the unexpected!
  • Face over 150 all-new foes! Beasts and hunters, assassins and kings, monsters and knights – defeat them all with bravery and skill!
  • Experience a stunning orchestral score! Hollow Knight’s award-winning composer, Christopher Larkin, returns to bring melancholy melodies, symphonic strings and heart-thumping, soul strumming boss themes to the adventure.
  • Challenge Silk Soul mode! Once you conquer the game, test your skills in an all-new mode that spins the game into a unique, challenging experience.

Team Cherry released a 20 minute video discussing their plans, and a blog post where they reveal that they’ve sold nearly 3 million copies of the first game!



My main gripe with the original (which I loved) was that the combat was pretty flat and didn’t expand too much. This seems to have fixed that in a big way, tying combat and traversal in a more integrated flow.

I’m going to be all over this.



The combat does look more interesting, but the video made me realize I’m not ready for more Hollow Knight. I assume release is a year away so I have time.



My fear is that they captured lighting with the original and it’s going to be hard to keep it fresh. I’m mostly curious to see what the map structure/secret stuff is going to look like. They can’t just rehash the first game and expect it to feel as fresh. I hope they rethink that as they seem to have rethought the combat.



I finally started this, and reading comments that the combat stays pretty same-y throughout is giving me pause. I’m already a little bored with the sameness of the midboss/boss combat (at City of Tears / Soul Sanctum). I feel like I don’t have enough useful combat verbs, and the enemy behaviors aren’t that varied.

Comparing to Dark Souls, it kind of reminds me of the reduction of degrees of freedom from 3D to 2D in, say, X-com to Steamworld Heist. Gravity just changes the mechanics.

Also, I might just be cross because I hate the teleporting mage dudes.



How many charms have you picked up?



There are some interesting bosses, but most of them are samey and combat verbs are indeed limited (charms slightly change some verbs, but do not add). The most interesting bosses add traversal or multiple enemies at the same time. But the best combat happens in the hardest levels of the arena. They were more inventive there (even if using a more limited vocabulary) than in the boss fights.

I think the game shines despite of all this, but combat is the low point imho. It feels great but is has not as much breadth as the other aspects of the game.



4 or 5? The only one I’ve seen so far that seems like it might be combat useful is the Dashmaster, which might make dash-escapes more useful. I haven’t really played with that though.

I’ve found 3 shops in addition to the mapmaker, so maybe I should go back and look over the charms available there again.



I’ve kept plugging away at this, and I appear to be at the end game (ish, I haven’t gotten the void heart, so I’m not at the real end, but I’m at the nominal end). However, I appear to be done with it, since I dont think I’m going to be able to beat it.

According to the wikis, I will need to hit the final boss something like 60 times to kill him. I think I’m just not good enough at this game for that, and it sounds kind of boring to practice until I am. Alternatively, I can laboriously 100% the game to unlock the last nail upgrade, and lower that to around 50.

I don’t actually know how many hp bosses tend to have in metroidvanias (and I’ve played a lot of them), but almost all the bosses in this have felt excessively hp-sponge-y. Either that or the approach to the bosses from the save points feels particularly punitive here.



I’ve had this on the back burner on Switch for a couple of months now, and just “finished” it up with what I assume is the worst ending. I wound up at 77% completion with 27 hours on the clock. Thoroughly enjoyed it overall.

I’ve avoided looking at any guides or spoilers, and don’t want to pull out a checklist or try for 100% completion (no faster way to suck all the joy out of games for me), but is there anything optional but so good that I should absolutely make a point of seeking it out before shelving the game?

Here are the things I know I haven’t done:

  • Four boss fights that I repeatedly died on. Not sure if any of them unlock further areas. (Lost Kin, Hornet rematch in Kingdom’s Edge, third Colosseum fight, and Zote’s dream.)
  • Never found a way to open those black energy barriers.
  • Currently at 1100 dream energy, and the next upgrade is at 1200.
  • Never found a way to do anything with the white knight at the Palace Grounds.
  • A smattering of remaining grubs I could track down, but have held off hoping to find another shop or something to spend extra money on rather than carrying it around indefinitely and possibly losing it. I’ve bought out every shop I’ve found.


You certainly have not done the White Palace, which is a pretty big chunk of gameplay quite unlike anything else in the game. I do think the true ending in this is worth going for.

From your list, you want to beat Hornet and then eventually bring essence to 1800 (which probably requires beating some dream bosses, yes). But the boss I mention is what’s blocking your progress.

Doing those two things should suggest you how to proceed. There are a couple more steps, but doing this and what it unlocks will take quite a while.



Perfect, thanks!



I did eventually beat the Hollow Knight, but I haven’t attempted the dream bosses, because I tried what I assume is the easiest one (False Knight), and didn’t feel any particular compulsion to master the combat system to that degree.