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Shovel Knight is in For Honor, without a shovel

The man who would call a spade a spade, Oscar Wilde once observed, should be condemned to use one. Yet I find myself drawn to the concrete, the literal, the spade-iness of spades. I have this idea that if a character is called Shovel Knight, then their defining characteristic will be a shovel.

It usually works out, but not this time. As part of Shovel Knight's quest to appear in as many games as possible, Ubisoft is running a crossover event with its rather good third-person brawler For Honor. The trailer's actually something of a winner, with charming pixel effects from the games overlaid on the various Shovel Knight-themed outfits but... where's the shovel?

There is no shovel. Well, there's what might be a shovel emote at the start of the trailer, but it's pretty clear that in-game you'll be using the usual weapons. And that doesn't butter any parsnips for me.

I mean OK, no-one expects the game to add a whole new weapon class for a cameo, but we couldn't make that axe look a bit more like a shovel? It's all very odd, but of a piece with Shovel Knight appearing in any game that'll have him.

The collaboration runs until March 4, and For Honor players can pick up three outfits, emotes and executions. But no gardening equipment. Talk about digging a hole for yourself.

Rich was raised by a Spectrum 48K in the Scottish wilderness, and this early exposure to survival mechanics made him a rooter-out of the finest news truffles, and suspicious of all the soft, civilised Amiga people. These days he mostly plays Counter-Strike and Rocket League, and is good at one of them. He's also the author of a Brief History of Video Games.