Developer: pixel games
Publisher: pixel games
Genre: Platformer, Action
Platform: Nintendo Switch (Also available on Steam, Xbox and PlayStation)
Age Rating: PEGI 12
Release Date: 03/03/2021
A code was provided for review purposes.
Sir Lovelot is an action platformer following a heroic knight. His quest is simple, to save as many princesses as possible, and swoon them with gifts he finds along the way. In the pursuit of true love, maneuver through over forty levels and gain collectibles along the way.
There is no story in Sir Lovelot. Beginning the game simply thrusts the player into the first level. This is rarely a bad thing if the gameplay can stand on its own. Each level has the knight searching for items, killing enemies, and navigating hazards to impress the princess, with the goal of finding someone he loves. This simple premise allows the story to make sense without spending time fleshing out lore.
While the story itself was not a focus of the game, Sir Lovelot includes subtle story elements. Each level has a title which holds the player’s interest over time. These are cute, and the developer’s passion for the project shines through. Players will not only be excited to see the design of the next level, but how the level name relates to the level. Furthermore, naming the pause screen “ye olde pause screen” was a simple and effective way to add personality to the game without breaking the flow. Simple additions such as these immerse the player in the game world, make the player smile, and show developer passion.
There are four different worlds, with different environments and new enemies. Each new world has its own gimmick. Things such as water, lava, and fans are introduced to vary the gameplay. Level design is fun and running through the levels is enjoyable. The knight in Sir Lovelot is by no means incapable of dealing with these challenges. Equipped with an automatic gun, this knight can jump, dash, and climb through these expansive levels. There was no tutorial, so in the beginning the player may not know about these abilities. Despite this, the options provided for the knight suffice, and are enjoyable to master.
Unfortunately, there were a few disappointments as well. When the knight jumps, he is granted a dash or a double jump. However, when the knight walks off a platform, these abilities are not granted. It would have benefitted the game to keep air mobility consistent regardless of how the player ended up airborne. Additionally, including ground-based movement options would encourage players to rush through stages. Considering Sir Lovelot has an in-game clock, the developers clearly intended for the player to complete the level rapidly. The lack of ground-based movement options detracts from the sense of speed provided by the player. Finally, when the player is firing their weapon, their movement is heavily stunted. While this forces the player to contemplate the importance of killing each enemy, being incapable of rapid movement while shooting degrades the experience considering the game is focused on speed.
Sir Lovelot is not overwhelmingly difficult, but players will most likely die throughout the playthrough of the game. The developers expertly handled death. First, they included fast respawns, meaning the player will be tempted to continue playing after death. The player gets a save point after each room, so while levels may be lengthy, the player does not need to spend extensive time retracing their footsteps. Even with this leniency, enemies do not respawn once the player kills them. The developers made sure all players will be able to complete the levels. There are no lives or continues the player needs to worry about, and there is unlimited time to complete each level.
Despite focusing on inclusivity, the game still offers challenges. The developers include rewards at the end of each level. One reward is earned for completing the level in a designated number of lives. The lack of restrictions on lives coupled with the incentive for talented players to do better ensures the game is not too frustrating for new players, while offering challenges for players with experience.
In addition to the collectible earned for not dying, there are additional collectibles to keep players engaged. Some of the collectible items include hidden geese, rings, and diamonds. Moreover, to complete each level, the player is required to collect a ring of flowers. This puts the player in the mindset of collecting items and will encourage them to spend additional time completing each level fully. Some of the items are hidden inside the walls. While initially, finding these items is overwhelming, after becoming more accustomed to level layouts, finding the hidden items becomes rewarding and engaging. While inclusion of these hidden passageways is exciting, at times, the wall does not function properly after a hidden passageway has been revealed. Sir Lovelot would occasionally enter the wall instead of sliding against it, leading to unfair deaths. While bothersome, this happened infrequently and did not seriously burden my experience.
The music featured in Sir Lovelot is extremely pleasant and fits the theme perfectly. Additionally, the sound effects are impactful and serve their purpose well. Killing enemies has a satisfying squish and dashing in the air makes a satisfying whoosh. The sound design was very good and supplemented the game well.
Moreover, the visuals are excellent. While the recycling of assets throughout worlds is present, the developers changed the colors of items, and kept the visuals fresh. They introduce new enemies frequently, and the enemies never share the sprites of previous enemies. The expertly designed enemies give time for the player to react, and die with a gorgeous splat effect. The visual design is effective and completes the game.
Sir Lovelot is an excellent action platformer with engaging levels, and collectibles to keep players playing. While some of the movement decisions are questionable, and the game is short, Sir Lovelot is an enjoyable experience, especially for fans of action platformers. I thoroughly enjoyed my experience with this game.
Rapid Reviews Rating
4 out of 5
You can purchase Sir Lovelot on Nintendo Switch here.
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.