Finally finished up Hollow Knight. Or at least I got an ending in the game.
Overall, I love it to death, but definitely have some nitpicks, mainly I think the game is too long, I think there are too many side activities that only pay off with achievements or trophies rather than tangible in-game rewards, and the lore-based story telling just isn't for me (same with the Souls games and the like, I just can't even comprehend a story that's told in this way). The first 3/4 of the game though are golden. There's so much the game does right in terms of presenting the world gradually, letting you explore, and making that exploration feel rewarding and challenging. Every area is alive in different ways, and are easily identifiable. I love the combat with the use of pins to find your own way you like to play as you go along, and the healing by collecting essence and putting yourself at risk to do it.
I think overall, I don't have many complaints other than what I've stated earlier, as well as the last section of the game just not having that satisfaction I would have liked from other games in the genre I just prefer for various reasons. Extra bosses and replaying bosses isn't a plus for me. Getting achievements doesn't do anything for me. But exploring the world and meeting the various characters and getting to know Hollownest and Dirtmouth was definitely the highlight for me. I love how expressive every character is, and I love seeing their various small arcs play out.
It's a beautifully animated, tough game that has a vast and incredibly well constructed and realized world to explore with a little too much to do and not enough plot explaining for me. This was the second time I played through it after starting over (first time completing it), and I still burnt out near the end when you're primarily backtracking through places either for side activities or to test areas for small progressions. Money had no meaning when I was done because I'd purchased everything from the stores, and had no need for small collectibles that I could sell.
All that aside, I'm still stoked for Silksong. I'll probably give it some time before jumping in when it comes out though. Especially if it's as meaty a game as Hollow Knight, and as lengthy. This is clearly just such a talented and dedicated team, I'm very excited if anything to see what sorts of ideas they bring to the sequel and how they can improve some of those nitpicks from this first game.