Yacht Club Games Continues Publishing 8-Bit Hero Games, Cyber Shadow Is Their Newest Entry That Echoes Shovel Knight Aesthetics

Yacht Club Games Continues Publishing 8-Bit Hero Games, Cyber Shadow Is Their Newest Entry That Echoes Shovel Knight Aesthetics
Credit: Yacht Club Games via Steam

Shovel Knight came shattering records (and indie preconceptions) in its groundbreaking launch of 2014.  The tightly-controlled platformer took the world by storm in all of its 8-bit glory, with authentic chip-tunes and punishing later levels.  Shovel Knight has done so well that not only has it garnered multiple DLC’s & expansions, but the iconic hero has been included in the newest Super Smash Bros Ultimate as an assist character.

This wild popularity of Shovel Knight owed its success to multiple features, and the throwback to a simpler time in videogame history is a big one.  Perhaps that’s why Yacht Club Games is publishing yet another authentic 8-bit 2d platformer, called Cyber Shadow.

Hokey name notwithstanding (it doesn’t get much more nondescript), Cyber Shadow is a labor of love from Aarne Hunziker, and features beautiful chiptunes, reflexive platforming and combat, and a cyber ninja that must save his clan by killing a plethora of robots.  Bet you never saw that last part coming.  Yet perhaps it is Cyber Shadow‘s hokey behavior and reliance on overplayed cliches that offer heaping amounts of early 90’s authenticity and charm that oozes from every cutscene and enemy that appears on the screen.

Cyber Shadow promises plenty of unlockable abilities that will assist Shadow (the cyber ninja) in his quest to free his clan across Mekacity.  We can safely presume from this, along with the ‘Metroidvania’ tag found in the Steam library, that Shadow will use these unlockable abilities to slowly increase his tendrils of exploration across Mekacity, as experienced in Hollow Knight, and Bloodmoon, along with new ways to obliterate his enemies.  The perhaps expected bevy of bosses also appears, boasting ‘more than a dozen’ of them to challenge Shadow in his quest.

While the atmosphere in Cyber Shadow is spot-on for what it looks to recreate, and the chiptunes are noticeably era-worthy, one must wonder what else Cyber Shadow has to offer under the hood to maintain interest.  Arguably, even a perfect 8-bit throwback must offer some form of evolution, or expanding upon preset genres, to offer the players that little hook that will keep them coming back.

The ability to expound upon presets is the diligent hallmark of separation between games that are good, and games that are greatCyber Shadow looks as though it may still be searching for that something special.

Worth noting, however, is that Cyber Shadow is still under active development, and it may experience a rebirth of certain mechanics.  The developer has been active on Twitter, announcing new mechanics as he adds them to the game.  If a 2D action-oriented Metroidvania sounds like an experience you would prefer, I would strongly recommend you keep an eye out for this one.

Cyber Shadow is slated for release ‘relatively soon’, and will be coming to PS4, Switch, Xbox One, and Steam.