HarmoKnight Review
HarmoKnight Box Art
System: 3DS
Dev: Game Freak
Pub: Nintendo
Release: March 28, 2013
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: N/A Comic Mischief, Mild Comic Violence

While those charming visuals may give one the idea that HarmoKnight is a children's game, players should be warned that it's not very forgiving. Players must keep very strictly to the beat when jumping and clobbering enemies. A button press that most rhythm games would rate as “good” won't cut it here. You'll have to be at “great” level to lamely bat enemies away, and at “perfect” to get a solid hit on them and to make any necessary jump. This means that most players will spend a fair bit of time dying to monsters and falling into pits while learning the more difficult levels.

HarmoKnight Screenshot

Worse, the game's visuals can sometimes get in the way of pressing buttons to the beat. I had to close my eyes during a few boss fights because the onscreen action was causing me to press buttons too soon or too late. Anybody who isn't excellent at keeping a beat will have difficulty with this game, and this fact combined with the minor control issues means that HarmoKnight probably isn't a good choice for younger kids, or even older kids who aren't patient and/or musically inclined.


While it's not for everyone, HarmoKnight is a great choice for many rhythm game fans. The music is enjoyable and the gameplay carries an appealing challenge. It's a blast for anybody who can get into the groove of the levels, and for those who crave extra challenge, all the main platforming levels can be played in “fast mode.” Players are encouraged to check out the game's demo, which is now available on the eShop. Anybody who enjoys the music and action but hopes to see a steadily increasing damage curve through the game should definitely pick it up. Anybody who finds that the action doesn't quite click with them should probably give it a pass, because the game's basic flow and strict rhythmic requirements remain consistent throughout.

Becky Cunningham
Contributing Writer
Date: March 26, 2013

Crisp and colorful, with inventive world design.
Good at the start, but a few control issues cause some frustration, especially on the more difficult levels.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
A solid and diverse collection of music, though it doesn't compare with the best rhythm games out there.
Play Value
Over fifty songs and an optional “fast mode” give HarmoKnight good replay value for a digital game.
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • A new rhythm-based action game from the makers of Pokémon!
  • Jump, hit, and groove your way through 8 huge worlds.
  • More than 50 replayable levels in a digital package.
  • Bob your head to original music.

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