Game Info:

Knight Squad
Developed by: Chainsawesome Games
Published by: Chainsawesome Games
Release Date: November 16, 2015
Available on: PC, Xbox One
Genre: Action
Number of Players: Up to eight
ESRB Rating: Teen for violence
Price: $14.99

Thank you Chainsawesome Games for sending us this game to review!

Chainsawesome Games has been around since 2012 and before Knight Squad, they released BeatBlasters III which I have not played.  Knight Squad was released for PC and Xbox One in November 2015 and was available for free for Xbox Live Gold members.  For everyone else, this indie title sells for $14.99 with plenty of game modes to enjoy and the option of unlocking even more with a DLC pack available for $4.99.

Knight Squad is described as a Bomberman meets Gauntlet game.  Sadly, I have not played either of those games so this was a new experience for me.  The arena style gameplay reminded me of Unreal Tournament from a top down perspective with simpler graphics and one hit kills (unless you have a shield equipped).  Besides shields, there are many power-ups available including horses, boomerangs, bows, bombs, laser guns, speed boots, long swords, rippers, and more.  


Knight Squad

Strong Points: Fun and fast paced action with a plethora of game modes to enjoy; up to seven players or bots can join you in battle
Weak Points: A little bit of a learning curve; only a few people online to play against
Moral Warnings: Cartoon violence and skeletons left behind after defeating an opponent 

Besides the wide variety of ways to kill your opponents, there are many game modes to do it in. Here’s a quick break down of each mode:

*  Capture the Grail – This is a free for all game where you have to capture the grail (which slows you down afterward) and bring it back to your goal.
*  Capture the Flag – In this team-based game you have to capture the flag (which slows you down afterward) and bring it back to your team’s base. 
*  Soccer – Just like the sport but the ball is bigger than you and you can kill your opponents.
*  Gladiator – You earn points while you’re in the ring, but you can kill people outside of it too.
*  Last Man Standing – Free for all death match but the last knight alive gets a point towards the customizable goal amount.
*  Team Death Match – Only kill knights on the opposite team.
*  Juggernaught – Your goal is to acquire and use the minigun against your opponents. Domination – Take control of various check points to score for your team.
*  Crystal Rush – Protect your crystals from enemy drillers while grabbing a drill (that has a delayed respawn rate) and mining theirs.

As you can see there’s quite a variety of game modes available.  I enjoyed most of them and it’s hard for me to pick a favorite.  It took me a little while to figure out how to actually mine the crystals in Crystal Rush.  I didn’t realize that a drill was required beforehand.  Other than that issue, this game has been relatively easy to learn.  

Knight Squad
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 78%
Gameplay - 17/20
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - 7/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 4/5

Morality Score - 94%
Violence - 7/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

The controls are very simple with the left joystick to move and any of the buttons to swing or fire you weapon.  The toughest part is staying alive with the one hit kill system.   Some game types have you respawning in a different location each time so you’ll have to pay attention to your knight’s banner location.  While there’s a fair amount of color variety, some of them are a tricky to tell apart.

The top down perspective took a little getting used to as well.  The simple graphics get the job done, but they won’t blow you away.  Violence is a given, but it isn’t very gory.  When a knight is killed you’ll see their spirit leave their body and a skeleton is left behind.

Despite the different visuals, I was still reminded of Unreal Tournament while hearing the announcer mention double, triple, and quad kills, and when the red or blue team was in the lead.  The background music is decent, but forgettable.

Both online and local play is possible.  I was able to play online against a few people but a few bots had to join in to max it out to eight players.  It’s a shame that bots were needed.  However, in their defense the bots are pretty good and available in easy, medium, and hard difficulties.   

If you don’t mind playing against bots or have friends to play with, Knight Squad is a solid buy and worth picking up in its PC or console format.  It’s best enjoyed with friends, but the bots on medium difficulty kept me on my toes.  I look forward to playing this game at future LAN games or with my kids.

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