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On March 3rd, you released Specter of Torment, the new DLC campaign
for Shovel Kinght. What do you think that makes this campaign special?
Specter of Torment is a prequel to Shovel Knight with new gameplay,
story, music, levels, and more. It takes everything we learned on Shovel
Knight and polishes it to a mirror sheen. It’s not a tacked-on DLC, it
really is like a whole new game. And it’s just so fun to be a cool grim
Along with the release of Nintendo Switch, you released both Specter
of Torment and Treasure Trove on launch day. Why did you decide to
release both games first on Switch?
Nintendo helped us a ton with testing and support to make the Switch
launch date. We are a small team, so we can’t release everything
simultaneously anyway. We are working really hard to get Shovel Knight
out on all platforms, so hang in there everyone!
We have heard from other developers how easy it is to port games on
Nintendo Switch. How long did it take to move Shovel Knight on Switch?
We had it up and running in just a couple of days. The Switch port
process was pretty painless.
Treasure Trove includes Body Swap, a special mode which lets the
players freely change the gender of the main characters. How did you
come up with the idea of including this mode?
Well, it was a Kickstarter stretch goal. We really wanted to make
more female designs, and we really liked the episode «Fionna and Cake»
from Adventure Time! Some more inclusiveness never hurts, either!
One of Shovel Knight’s iconic features is that he uses a shovel as a
weapon. We must ask this: why a shovel?
The idea for a Shovel came about from pondering the gameplay we
wanted to make. We wanted to have a down thrust kind of like Zelda II,
and to be able to dig through blocks and flip over enemies. A shovel
just seemed like the right tool for the job! And everything else was
built from that idea.
Shovel Knight will appear as a guest character in Yooka-Laylee,
Playtonic’s new 3D platformer game. How did the blue heroe end up
appearing in this game?
Playtonic and Yacht Club Games both did Kickstarters, and I think
that’s how we met. Kickstarter campaigns are always trying to reach out
to one another for help, or pay it forward if we succeed. I think they
suggested the idea of a crossover, and we were delighted to oblige. We
even created a 3D model for Shovel Knight for this very purpose!
Is it true that the Neon Blue and Neon Red Joy-Cons are based on
Shovel Knight and Shield Knight?
I can confirm that is definitely 100% true.
You have already confirmed that, after Specter of Torment, your next
goal is a DLC campaign based on King Knight. Can you tell us what will
make this campaing different from the others? Will you make use of
Nintendo Switch’s special features, as you will have more time to work
with the hardware?
King Knight is still a secret! And we are also making a 4 player
battle mode! We are working on all of it. Hopefully it doesn’t take as
long as Specter Knight. We would love to use more Switch features, like
the fancy rumble. We tried to get it working for this release, but we
were not satisfied with the result.
After doing the King Knight DLC campaign, are there any
possibilities of seeing «Shovel Knight 2»?
Yes, but it would also be really amazing to work on something fresh
and new. For now, start thinking about what the next 8 knights could be
Some time ago, Yatch Club Games confirmed that, in 2017, you would
work on a completely new project. Can you give us a little «preview» of
what we could expect from it? Will it be completely different from
It will probably be something that is very different than Shovel
Knight, but still retains our distinctive Yacht Club Flavor. Nintendo
made Mario, Zelda, and Metroid, but they are all distinctly Nintendo.
I’d love to make another franchise that people love even more than
Would you consider to use Kickstarter again for your new project?
It’s a lot of work and headache, but maybe! Kickstarter is a great
way to communicate with your audience. But if we don’t use Kickstarter,
we could keep our game a surprise for longer…