My most-anticipated Metroidvania embraces the best thing about Shovel Knight and has an incredible demo endorsed by Hollow Knight Silksong devs

(Image credit: Pond Games PTY)

Still waiting for Hollow Knight Silksong? Of course you are. What else would you be doing? But while we all agonize over a Silksong-less existence, let me introduce you to the next best thing: an incredibly promising Metroidvania that stars a cute mouse, has an amazing demo, and just received endorsement from Hollow Knight's own developers.

Pipsqueak! is the game that's threatening to grab Silksong's long-held crown and become my most anticipated Metroidvania. On Kickstarter, more than 1,200 backers have pledged over AUS$67,000 ($45,000), which means the game is now fully crowdfunded with 18 days still to go. The community have already unlocked one stretch goal that promises to add Taylor The Tailor - a character that'll dye our main mouse's outfit, while additional stretch goals look to add the Coral Cove area at $75,000 and unique trials at $85,000.

Pipsqueak! Announcement Trailer - YouTube Pipsqueak! Announcement Trailer - YouTube
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The trailer above gives us a brief look at what to expect, with main mouse Tofu effortlessly slashing across a world colorful enough to fit on a GBA. A free demo is also available on Steam, and what immediately jumped out at me was how it borrowed Shovel Knight's best move. You see, Tofu can use a downward strike to hop on/over enemies and obstacles that would usually hurt the pipsqueak - a move that always recontextualizes a platformer's relationship with the jump and the, uhh, platform. I love the trick wherever it pops up and Pipsqueak! remixes it with flying colors.

I'm not the only one smitten with the demo, however. Team Cherry, the indie team behind Hollow Knight and its still upcoming sequel, also backed the fellow Metroidvania before leaving a comment under the Kickstarter page. "So cool, Daniel," Team Cherry's comment reads. "Mouse is cute! Demo is fab! All the best with the campaign."

The wait for Pipsqueak! hopefully won't be as arduous as it has been for Silksong, though. Director James Freer writes that the "tiny team working on an ambitious game" is aiming to release Pipsqueak! by the end of 2026 on PC. "While release on consoles is definitely a goal, we can't guarantee it just yet," developer Pond Games comments on YouTube. "Nintendo's next console will almost definitely be available when Pipsqueak launches, so we would target that platform as well as the Switch assuming it is still supported."

Hollow Knight: Silksong is "not in dev hell," says tester who finds fan cynicism "disheartening" but agrees developer Team Cherry "should be better" at communicating.

Freelance contributor

Kaan freelances for various websites including Rock Paper Shotgun, Eurogamer, and this one, Gamesradar. He particularly enjoys writing about spooky indies, throwback RPGs, and anything that's vaguely silly. Also has an English Literature and Film Studies degree that he'll soon forget.