The premise of Puddle Knights is simple. The bishops and ladies of the lands need to stay looking presentable as they travel across a terrain plagued with muddy puddles. Luckily, they have their knights with them, who move around each platform to drape their long capes over the mud so the nobility can pass without dirtying their fancy clothes.
As well as muddy puddles, there are other barriers in the way. The paths are skinny, making it difficult to turn around in a long cape. There are also fences, bushes and other obstacles you have to figure your way around. Some knights have capes that can tear, so you can leave part of them over a puddle and carry on to create other crossings elsewhere. Others have shiny capes that won’t rip, meaning you have to think a bit differently about how you’re going to move them around.
The game is split into seven worlds, each of which contains a dozen or so levels. Each world introduces new challenges, from raised platforms and drawbridges to fire pits you have to avoid. This adds a new layer of complexity to the puzzles you have to solve each time.
The gameplay of Puddle Knights is ultimately very simple. You control the noble and however many knights they have with them to allow them to cross safely to the goal at the end of each level. The first few levels are easy enough, offering simple problems to help you get accustomed to the way the different characters move and interact with their surroundings.
Puddle Knights very quickly gets difficult, though. For a light-hearted game that is all bright, primary colours and a cutesy embodiment of chivalry, it can be brutally challenging. It really makes you think about how to do things and it’s very easy to fall into a trap that leaves you with no option than to reset the entire level. This isn’t to the game’s detriment, though. The satisfaction you feel when you finally figure out a puzzle you’ve been stuck on is incredible.
The simplicity of the design overall also adds to this. The way the platforms are constructed are clear. The rules are easy to understand. The bright colours make each character stand out against the mud and ice in your way. All this combines to make for a distinctly cute style that doesn’t distract you when you’re trying to focus on a tricky puzzle.
There isn’t much of an option to replay Puddle Knights, unless you leave each puzzle for long enough that you forget the solution and come back to it relatively fresh. But it’s not at all expensive and, with 129 levels, you still get plenty of game for your money.