No damsel in distress

Shovel Knight is the debut game from Yacht Club Games, a studio founded by ex-employees of WayForward and with a goal of producing retro-styled games that live up to modern standards. Its pixel-based 2D action platformer — coming to the Wii U and 3DS eShop platforms — has enjoyed rave previews, while a few members of the Nintendo Life staff count themselves among those that funded the project back in its successful crowdfunding days.

We've been gradually introduced to new characters as development has progressed, and the latest to be revealed is Shield Knight, above. Below is the official description from the most recent update sent to backers.

Sometimes the best offense is a good defense, and Shield Knight knows it. Wielding a pair of Asymmetrical Shields, she deflects both melee and projectile attacks easily before getting into range and crushing her foes! For years, Shield Knight and Shovel Knight were inseparable partners in adventuring; with their expert use of unconventional weapons, they worked as one. Now, Shield Knight’s fate is unknown, but Shovel Knight’s goal is clear: he must journey to find Shield Knight, his lost beloved.

Pros: Confident, Powerful, and Tenacious
Cons: Occasional Recklessness

It's clear that Shield Knight ain't no Princess Peach, which is good to see, though she's still missing. As a key character, however, it'll be interesting to see whether Shield Knight will be playable as the lead character instead of Shovel Knight, similar to the option to rescue Clive as Ms. Johnson in Gunman Clive. One of the promised features in the many smashed stretch goals was a gender swap mode, and though it isn't explicitly stated that Shield Knight will be that female hero, it seems logical.

We'll see how that pans out, but in the meantime we look forward to giving this a whirl when it's released; it's targeted for a September arrival. Below are two new screens from Lost City - Mole Knight’s domain too; those pixels...

Shovel Knight Screen
Shovel Knight Screen2