Evercade Game of the Month 2023 #4: Magic and Legend – Time Knights
It’s July! As we head into the summer holidays, it’s time for another Game of the Month for Evercade VS and Evercade EXP players!
Game of the Month is a programme for Evercade VS and Evercade EXP owners where you can download a free game every month between April and December of 2023. You can enjoy the full version of each game without limits for a month, at which point it will be replaced with a brand new game. In February 2024, all of the Game of the Month titles from 2023 will be collected together for the Indie Heroes 3 cartridge, together with a few cartridge-exclusive games to sweeten the deal even further, and you’ll be able to add them to your Evercade library permanently!
The fourth Game of the Month title for 2023 is Magic and Legend: Time Knights, a platformer originally designed for 8-bit handheld. It’s another title from publisher The Retro Room, who we’ve previously seen on Evercade with titles such as the foul-mouthed RPG Quest Arrest in Indie Heroes Collection 1, Gelatinous: Humanity Lost in Indie Heroes Collection 2, and, of course, last month’s Game of the Month, Big2Small, developed by MDSteele.
The developer behind Magic and Legend: Time Knights is Legendary Monkey Magic, also known as Giles Hamson. Hamson works as an IT specialist by day and is a keen retro gaming enthusiast in his free time. Magic and Legend: Time Knights is his first game to be commercially released, and at the time of writing he’s hard at work on a follow-up known as Magic and Legend: Star Seekers.
In Magic and Legend: Time Knights, you take on the role of Magic and Legend, two unusually named but otherwise relatively normal children. Normal, that is, until aliens invade Earth not only in the present day, but also throughout human history. And so it is that our two intrepid heroes set off on a quest to give the alien threat a good kicking, wherever and whenever they might be rearing their ugly heads.
The game begins in the present day, and this provides a good opportunity to get to grips with the game’s controls and core concept. You’re free to switch between control of Magic and Legend at any time using the Select button, and each character has their own unique capabilities.
Magic is primarily focused on attacking enemies while up close, and is also able to defeat foes by stomping on their heads. Legend, meanwhile, is able to attack from afar, but will hurt himself if he tries to stomp on an enemy. You’re free to pick and choose which of the two characters you want to use, so you can either stick with one that you particularly enjoy the play style of, or switch back and forth between them according to the situation in which you find yourself.
Controlling Magic or Legend is pretty simple. Use the D-pad to move around and climb ladders, the A button to jump and the B button to attack. A quick tap on the A button will cause Magic or Legend to make a little hop, while a longer press will cause them to jump higher.
To complete each stage in Magic and Legend: Time Knights, you have two objectives to accomplish. Firstly, you must defeat all the enemies in the stage. Secondly, you must jump through the time portal, which is usually at the bottom of the level. If you attempt to jump through the portal but there are still enemies remaining, you’ll have to go back and get them.
Partway through each stage, you may find another portal. Jump into this and you’ll be taken to one of the game’s four bonus stages, each of which has its own distinct mechanics and objectives. The game will explain what you need to do when you get to each of these, so do your best to meet these additional goals along the way — fail and you won’t get a second chance, as the portal will lock!
Each stage is set in a different time period and equips both Magic and Legend with a different costume and set of weapons. Once you’ve fought your way through the various different time periods that the aliens are occupying, you’ll face a final boss — and only upon defeating that will our heroes’ mission be complete!
The various difficulty levels available affect how many lives Magic and Legend have available to them on their quest. If you want to make life a little easier for yourself, there’s a secret cheat menu to discover where you can skip straight to any level or its bonus stage, and give Magic and Legend 99 lives to play with. We won’t give you the full code, but we will say that it’s one of the most famous cheat codes in all of gaming, so you can probably figure it out for yourself!
And that’s Magic and Legend: Time Knights. It’s a short but sweet game with a lot of retro charm to it, and it’s a lot of fun to work your way through. Once you’ve beaten it, why not challenge yourself to make it through again in the fastest time possible, or without taking damage? Best of luck!
To get started with Magic and Legend: Time Knights and the Game of the Month programme for 2023, connect your Evercade VS or EXP to the Internet via the Network option in Settings, then perform a system update to the latest available firmware version.
This update also includes some important fixes and patches for the Evercade system and cartridges, so we recommend all users perform it to keep their Evercade VS and EXP, plus their game collection, in tip-top shape. A full changelog will be available shortly.
When you’re all updated, you’re ready to go — start the game through the VS or EXP logo on the left of the main Evercade menu and get ready to enjoy some time-travelling shenanigans!
Please note that saves from the Game of the Month edition of Magic and Legend: Time Knights will not carry across to the Indie Heroes 3 cartridge when that releases in February of 2024.
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