Shovel Knight uses 3DS StreetPass for five-second battles

Shovel Knight fully embraces its retro aesthetic, but the upcoming platformer from Yacht Club Games will also feature a number of modern elements, notably taking advantage of Nintendo systems' exclusive features. The Wii U will give Miiverse users a chance to help other Shovel Knight players other out, while 3DS players can duke it out using StreetPass for five-second duels against other chivalrous knights.

Shovel Knights on 3DS can take to the competitive realm with the tentatively-titled 'StreetPass Arena.' This feature sees knights pre-record five-second clips to either collect gems or take on an opposing Shovel Knight, with winners receiving gold.

"There are some goals that you're all going for, but you don't know what the other player is doing," Yacht Club's Sean Velasco told Polygon. "You don't know which gem they're going to go for first. You don't know if they're going to use a weapon ... It's just craziness because you do it in these little five-second rounds, and you do three rounds over and over. And then it's just done."

As for Wii U owners, they can help other Shovel Knight players with a feature tentatively called 'The Digger's Diary,' an idea that Velasco has fleshed out since he last spoke to Shacknews at IndieCade. The Digger's Diary allows players to leave hints to other players through the GamePad.

"Every time there's a room where you don't know what to do, or if you just want some more information, you can tap on this diary," Velasco explained. "[Maybe you'll] leave a message for other players or get a message yourself, or maybe learn a little more the same way you would trade secrets on the school ground."

Shovel Knight is set to dig into PC, Wii U, and 3DS on March 31.