There’s more than one way to
screw skin a cat, which also applies to the dating game. However, one ancient school technique that still works like a charm is showering your beau with gifts. Least, that’s the method of our hero, Sir Lovelot.
You play the charming knight in this retro platformer with a keen eye for the pixel art aesthetic, but more importantly, how to craft challenging but gratifying gameplay.
From Pixel Games and Sometimes You, Sir Lovelot is available today, which should be the 3rd of March 2021. Available for PS4/5, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and Steam.
Sir Lovelot PS5 Review
While the code provided was for the PS5, it’s unlikely that there will be differences with the other platforms. Sir Lovelot isn’t a groundbreaking game that will give your machine a panic attack; it’s a blocky little blighter that’ll look good whatever you play it on.
The art style is often overused, and viewing the screenshots out of context could mean this title gets overlooked. However, the pixel art graphics are in alignment with the cuteness of it all. Sir Lovelot is a sweet little character, as are the damsels he woos.
At the start of each level, the damsel for that location will have their heartbroken and the only way to cheer them up, and have them drop their Rapunzel-like hair down to let you in for coffee, is to bring them a gift; a flower.
A flower is hardly materialistic, but their appetite increases for jewellery, coins, and golden eggs as you progress. These aren’t essential, however, just the flower. The point of collecting everything else is all about the replay value added to the game, for those seeking 100%, on top of getting the best times.
Good Knight, Sweetheart
That pattern that follows is the heartbreak, tracking down the flower, then returning to the princess. Job done. As can be imagined, it’s not a simple process as you’ll have chasms to jump, levers to pull, switches to hit, and enemies to avoid.
This isn’t the half of it, as Sir Lovelot is a tricky game, but I genuinely can’t recall a moment of frustration. That applies to the swimming sections, which are notably slower moving, so should you die and respawn, you have to do it again. Not ideal, but also not rage-inducing.
What’s so special about this game that makes it so calming? Well, that’s not a term I’d associate with Sir Lovelot, but the feedback from the controls and general experience as absolutely fantastic. Our hero jumps and lands almost perfectly with zero lag and laser precision.
Having such tight controls highlights an absolute belter for the genre, but aside from the handling, the game is encouraging too. There aren’t any lives or continues, but levels are stretched across multiple screens as well, so when you die, you don’t have to repeat the whole stage.
No Time For Difficulty Settings
There are no difficulty settings or levelling up in Sir Lovelot either. It’s a platform game, after all. Once you complete a stage, you move on to the next, concluding with a mad dash escape from a side-scrolling boss à la Super Meat Boy at the end of each world.
To reinforce that the game is so encouraging, if you kill an enemy, it remains dead after you respawn, and this applies to switches too. This is particularly helpful as it means that most people should finish the game without bailing on it.
If an enemy is causing you issues, focus on taking them out, then when you next die, focus on the next. Of course, going this route means that you won’t be able to ace all the challenges in the game, and that’s where the replay value kicks in.
Other than the flower objective, you have to locate hidden geese that lay golden eggs, collect coins, jewellery, complete the stage with minimal deaths, and best of all: in the fastest time possible. A timer appears on screen throughout every stage. While it’s not a countdown, it does add to the urgency.
Suits You, Sir
Sir Lovelot has an abundance of secret areas and shortcuts. You can run up to a wall, and it will automatically reveal a secret entrance that houses a goose. Other times, it’s a bypass to avoid some hazards ahead or to get a faster time when returning with the flower.
I’ve failed to mention that Lovelot can shoot enemies. There aren’t any other weapons or power-ups, but his weapon (ooer) does the job pretty well, though with limited range. There are no tutorials or pointers in the game; you have to find out for yourself about the dash options and how to shoot above and below to break blocks and take out enemies in your path.
That said, there’s almost always a way around an area without combat. If you want to set yourself challenges and unlock all the available trophies, you’re going to need to find all the shortcuts and save yourself the hassle.
Leaderboards are entirely local; there’re no online comparisons, two-player modes or extra features. In fact, Sir Lovelot is quite bare, but the fundamental gameplay is the catnip here. From the brilliant soundtrack through to the witty level names, it’s a game I can wholeheartedly recommend.
Sir Lovelot PS5 Review Summary
I’m not under the illusion that I’ll ever get the platinum for Sir Lovelot, but that’s not going to stop me from playing it. This truly is one of the most enjoyable platform games I’ve played, and I anticipate it will be one of my go-to titles from the genre.