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Never Grave from the Palworld developer looks a lot like Hollow Knight

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Pocketpair formed another studio called Frontside 180 that are working on Never Grave: The Witch and The Curse, which looks a whole lot like Hollow Knight. This might ease the wait for Silksong huh?

While it may look a lot like Hollow Knight for the style it's actually quite a different game overall. Plenty of elements of it feel like Dead Cells, but there's a hint of Skul: The Hero Slayer with a possession mechanic too and there's even a whole village-building element to it. There's also going to be online co-op support for up to 4 players. Overall it does actually look quite good:

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Game Features:

  • Metroidvania x Roguelite with an emphasis on exploration.
  • Sophisticated and tactilely designed player character controls.
  • Possession system where hats can possess enemies and use their unique abilities.
  • Traditional Japanese hand-drawn limited animation is used for character 2D animation.
  • Thickly painted backgrounds with depth, as if you are travelling through a world of picture books and cut-out pictures.
  • Learn actions such as double-jump from artefacts to explore new areas.
  • Constantly changing play style depending on the synergy of "traits" associated with magic and items.
  • Intense battles with tough bosses. It will take more than just memorizing boss patterns to defeat them without taking damage...
  • Rebuild your village. Strengthen yourself through building and production to prepare for the next adventure.
  • Explore different terrain each time you play through procedurally generated dungeons.
  • Multiplayer support. Up to four players can delve into the dungeon together!

Due to enter Early Access sometime in Q1 2024. This will make Pocketpair's 4th game to be in Early Access following Craftopia, AI: Art Impostor and Palworld that are all currently in development.

There's a demo available now which in my testing seemed to work quite well on Desktop Linux with Proton 8.0-5.

Check it out on Steam.

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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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dpanter Jan 29
Is this what the gaming industry has become? 'Developers' rip off well known projects, rename, repackage and push out the door in a not-terrible-asset-flip way, trying to be clever enough to dodge the inevitable lawsuits and DMCA takedowns.

We'll need a new name for it...

Nezchan Jan 29
This developer specializes in "looks a lot like". Their previous effort, Craftworld, was marketed using "looks a lot like" Breath of the Wild, even though the mechanics were very different, and we all know about Palworld. They've learned that "looks a lot like" sells, so they've been leaning into it.

Expect more, for sure.
Liam Dawe Jan 29
They're not the first though, remember Crowsworn.

Last edited by Liam Dawe on 29 January 2024 at 2:17 pm UTC
The game looks cool, but I'm not a big fan of people trying to make art like another art. The signs in the trailer look so similar to the signs in hollow knight that it could very easily be the same asset.
TheSHEEEP Jan 29
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So what... an artstyle can only be used in one game now before people scream "clone!"?

Want me to tell you about Doom "clones"?
Ehvis Jan 29
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I don't really see a lot of the Hollow Knight specific art style in this game. This looks more like a traditional cartoony style. And while some of the mechanics look similar to Hollow Knight, the gameplay as a whole looks quite different. I mean, ladders? :) Crownsworn definitely looks closer.
jams3223 Jan 29
So inspiration is a crime now, so maybe we should make our own unique food recipes, our own unique clothing style, or our own unique musical genre.
Drakker Jan 29
Hollow Knight had a lot of qualities, but the bland monochromatic look of the environment was not one of its strengths... Its far from the grandiose colorful areas of other metroid style games.
mindedie Jan 29
Quoting: jams3223So inspiration is a crime now, so maybe we should make our own unique food recipes, our own unique clothing style, or our own unique musical genre.
According to corporations and fan(atics) of specific (media) products - YES
Pecisk Jan 29
It is not criminal offense, but this feels too much on nose. Yes, there are tons of clones of very popular games. But this developer has very clearly stated that it's goal is to profit from estabilished formulas, and is very ignorant about effects overall. Yes, it is legal, but it is just not cool.
Fact that corporations try to do verified formulas is one thing, but openly stating that is your goal kinda invalidates me ever checking your games.
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