HarmoKnight (Available exclusively on Nintendo eShop)
ESRB Rating: E
Number of Players: 1
Developer: Game Freak
Release Date: March 28, 2013
Download Size: 1,872 Blocks
Addicting yet simple gameplay. HarmoKnight is an on-rails platformer. All you have to do is jump and attack enemies, while following a rhythm. It takes a bit of time to get used too, as you need to follow your ears more than your eyes. It goes against our platforming instincts. The game eases you in by making you gradually learn the gameplay mechanics before introducing new ones. It doesn’t waste your time with useless tutorials either, and even introduces some new characters to spice things up as you go. The tunes are quite catchy too making the game that much more fun.
+ Short portable levels. Most levels don’t last more than a minute meaning you can always make progress here and there or play to your heart’s content depending on how much time you have.
+ Extremely challenging boss battles! The game throws you a curve ball really early on with its first boss fight. HarmoKnight is relatively easy until that point. It took me quite a while to defeat that level, but I can’t follow a beat to save my life. Musicians will probably have an easier time with the game. Still, the challenge is greatly appreciated. The final fight is epic!
+ Perfect price, perfect length. For $15, you get five to seven solid hours of gameplay, which you can’t say about half of most fully priced retail games today.
+ Awesome Pokémon levels! Gamefreak added five bonus stages just for us die-hard Pokéfans. No need to mention these are some of the best levels in the entire game.
+ There’s an entire world available for you to unlock after you’ve completed the game, if you’re able to find all the secrets. It’s very well worth it but be warned, the true final level shows no mercy whatsoever.
+ Extremely charming visuals! I fell in love with the game’s art and design the second I started playing. This is a fantastic looking game, some of the best hybrid 2D/3D game I’ve played yet on the 3DS. This is one of those games that needs to be played with the 3D effect set to max.
– HarmoKnight could have used the extra characters a bit more. They make very few appearances.
I might be a bit biased when it comes to Gamefreak, but you have to wonder why they don’t make many games besides Pokémon after playing HarmoKnight. It’s simply a joy from start to finish, a game you’ll play every second you have free until you beat it. I’d like Nintendo to give this game a retail release, if just to give it more visibility. HarmoKnight is currently one of the best games available on the eShop. Get it!
Final Score: 9.5/10