While playing Knight Squad, I couldn't help but make comparisons to old classics such as Bomberman from back in the SNES days. That's a compliment to developer Chainsawesome Games. Knight Squad does a good job of delivering some pretty memorable moments reminiscence of those older classics in more than one way.
The majority of the game success comes from its simplicity. You and up to 7 other players are thrown into an arena where you must fight to the death in a variety of diverse game modes. Controls are incredibly simple. You move and aim your knight with the analog stick and press X to attack. That's about as complex as it gets.
What stood out most to me in Knight Squad was how entertaining the games modes were. Soccer being one of my favorite modes, consist of 4v4 teams killing each other while trying to score a goal on the opposing team's goal. It's absolute chaos from beginning to end especially in those precious last seconds. Other game modes, like Gladiator, are free for alls in which players must fight to stay in a certain section of the map to score points. Capture the Flag, Team Deathmatch, Juggernaut, and four more modes round out a pretty sizable list of nine game modes (not including DLC).
During matches there are pickups scattered around the arena that can be used to gain the upper-hand on your opponents. Shields allow you to take one extra hit before death, laser guns and bows help dispose of knights from a distance. Combined with other pickups, the already hectic matches become that much more intense.
Knight Squad can be played locally with up to 8 players. I found the game to be more enjoyable when playing with friends locally rather than strangers online, making it a perfect game to pick up and play during parties. Online matches proved more of an issue. Searching for an online match took upwards of five to ten minutes each time. I suspect the online community isn't strong right now as reason for the long wait times. That's another fine example of why the game shines most when played locally or online with friends. If you prefer to play solo, matches will populate with enemy A.I. bots instead.
There are also single player challenges that pits one knight against multiple different enemies. The goal is to survive and clear the map. These scenarios are admittedly tough and provided a challenge that kept me intrigued. One glaring annoyance with the challenges is the lack of a quick restart option. After each of my numerous deaths I had to suffer through a loading screen just to retry the level.
Knight Squad isn't perfect by any stretch of the imagination but the diverse set of game modes, simplistic controls, and frenzied gameplay makes this an enjoyable game to play especially with friends.
Writer for Darkstation since 2014. I've been playing games my whole life and starting writing about them in 2010. Outside of gaming I enjoy anime and watching my Philadelphia Eagles let me down every Sunday. Follow me on Twitter @jsparis09