- Hollow Knight: Silksong has been highly anticipated, and its delays have created demand for Metroidvanias.
- Constance from self-publisher btf could fill that void with its charming and colorful art style and innovative gameplay.
- Constance offers a personal narrative that explores mental health and the relationship between art and creation, setting it apart from other epic Metroidvania games.
Fans of the 2016 original have been anxiously awaiting the release of Hollow Knight: Silksong, as the long-anticipated title has been subjected to numerous delays and has yet to be stamped with a firm release date. Luckily, the gaming market is awash with impressive games like the recent Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown that can satisfy players’ hunger for Metroidvanias. The charming, colorful Constance from self-publisher btf could be the genre’s next indie darling.
Hollow Knight, inspired by iconic side-scrolling adventure games of the past, was part of a significant Metroidvania boom in the mid-2010s. While similar games of the time like Axiom Verge, Dead Cells, and Ori and the Blind Forest enjoyed a good deal of success, something about Hollow Knight set it apart from the rest of the pack, making it the de facto modern Metroidvania, one which other games in the genre are inevitably measured against. During the long wait for Hollow Knight: Silksong, a number of other Metroidvanias with a focus on hand-drawn art and snappy combat have come out of the woodwork, many of which draw clear inspiration from Team Cherry’s 2017 hit.
Hollow Knight: Silksong Should Take a Page Out of the Original’s Post-Launch Plans
Hollow Knight: Silksong has been in the oven long enough that it could potentially be following in its predecessor’s footsteps with post-launch DLC.
Constance Looks Like a Fluid, Stunning Game Reminiscent of Hollow Knight
Recapturing Hollow Knight’s Magic
Though Hollow Knight: Silksong aims to expand upon the foundations laid by its predecessor, the beauty of the first Hollow Knight lies in foundational elements, like its emotive hand-drawn art style, music, atmosphere, and hands-off exploration and progression systems. It may be remarkably different in terms of premise, design, and tone, but Constance seems to share many of these same core strengths.
The art of Constance, from its character models to its painstakingly detailed backgrounds, displays the same clear attention to detail as Hollow Knight‘s, each frame brimming with personality. This level of quality extends to the animations and music as well. On top of this, Constance features smooth and inventive movement and combat mechanics, all based around the theme of painting. It’s these innovative and creative features that make Constance different from Hollow Knight and other seminal Metroidvanias, and these distinctions are ultimately what make it a game to follow.
Constance Features a Personal Narrative
Hollow Knight is rich in lore but rather lean when it comes to its plot, especially with regard to the protagonist, who serves as more of a blank (or hollow) canvas for the player to project themselves onto. Constance takes a decidedly different approach to storytelling, with the narrative delving into the main character’s struggles with mental health and how her relationship with art and creation relates to her challenges. This approach to story sets Constance apart from the more epic Metroidvania games, whose narratives have a tendency towards large-scale, potentially world-threatening conflicts.
The intimate nature of Constance‘s story is one of the most interesting and endearing aspects of the game. The theme of art, specifically the medium of painting, bleeds through the greater narrative and seemingly into every aspect of the gameplay, filling Constance with unique potential with respect to elements such as level design, combat, and traversal. Ideally, these aspects of the narrative theme and gameplay will come together in a satisfying and emotionally rewarding way in the final product.
Constance may be a good choice for those looking to whet their appetite for Metroidvanias while waiting for Silksong to release, but it also promises to be so much more. The hand-drawn animation, level design, and combat fundamentals are certainly reminiscent of Hollow Knight, but Constance‘s distinct approach to combat, movement, tone, and story make it a must-watch for any fan of the Metroidvania genre, not just those champing at the bit for Hollow Knight: Silksong.
Hollow Knight: Silksong
- Team Cherry
- Team Cherry