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Blundering Oberlisk

A centipede-like charging creature removed from the game fairly late in development. Its Journal entry would've read This placid herbivore doesn't seem to wish harm on any of the creatures it shares a habitat with. However, its careless nature and bulky weight sometimes leads to messy accidents.

"That millipede thing? Yeah, it never really had its own area."

- Ari Gibson

Blundering Oberlisk

White Knight Duel

"One of Hallownest's five greatest Knights and defender of the Queen’s Glade. She was driven mad by her Queen lost and the garden overrun. Still she retains her honour, offering fair challenge to the Hollow Knight: Nail against nail. A duel to the death. "

Unfortunately, the duel did not make it into the game, but the corpse of the White Knight can be found in front of the hiding place of the White Lady.

For more in-game information see Dryya.

White Knight

Tyrant's Fist

Appears to be an earlier version of Desolate Dive and shares the same functionality. Additionally, Desolate Dive is acquired from defeating Soul Master, whose dream variant is called "Soul Tyrant".

This ancient, royal magic allows you to focus energy into your fist and slam it down into the ground, releasing a shockwave that blows away foes and can even rupture the earth you stand on!

"During your journey through Hallownest, you'll be collecting a whole bunch of powerful equipment, tools and spells. One of those spells is the earth-shattering Tyrant's Fist. This ancient, royal magic allows you to focus energy into your fist and slam it down into the ground, releasing a shockwave that blows away foes and can even rupture the earth you stand on."

Tyrants Fist
Tyrants Fist 2

Backstepping

Additional movement option that did not make it into the game. Resembles the Dash ability but in the opposite direction and with a decreased distance.

Mantis by teamcherry-d8a1dtr

Swimming

Another movement option that allowed the player to swim under acid which was possibly scrapped for Isma's Tear. As well within the game there exists an unused room resembling the room which Unn can be found that has a layout designed for swimming through.

Swimming

Holy Grounds / Temple

"Deep within the Forest of Bones waits the Holy Grounds, once a place of worship, now overtaken."

"There was a locked temple gate at the far-right end. To open it, the Knight would have to find and light two huge torches guarded by lava worm mini bosses. Herrah was originally meant to be in the temple.

It easily would have been the best area of the game, with fifty unique enemies, incredible spine-chilling music and bizarre surprises around every turn."

- William Pellen

Early Screenshot 02

Snail Village

Little is known about the Snail Village other than it made an appearance in the Weird and Wonderful World Trailer. Some of its assets can still be found in game files.

"Snail was too damn big! I guess it just got forgotten along the way? Looking at it now, it's a bit toonier than the final game ended up being. Bardoon, in Kingdom's Edge, is likely the game's final version of the snail."

- Ari Gibson

"The snail village is gone, sadly, we put it into a big pixel-grinding machine and used the mixture to pave over some of the roads in the game." - William Pellen

Snail Town 1
Snail Town 2

Infected Weaver

The Weaver may have been actually an enemy at one point. Currently in-game a Weaver can be found scurrying away from the Knight in the entrance of Weavers' Den. Within game files exists a bestiary image for it as well as an icon.

B Weaver
HJ Weaver

Shrumal NPC

Resembling a Shrumal Warrior holding a staff with a impaled Lightseed, it was probably cut due to a change to fungal creatures making them to only be able to communicate through spores.

Shrumal Warrior NPC

Giant Spider

Unsure whether a Boss or NPC. It's design and location does not indicate that it was affiliated with Deepnest, and it also predates the reveal of Deepnest.

Giant Spider

Dream Diving

By the looks of it, originally the Dream Nail was able to open up the minds of NPCs and allow the player to enter their dreams:

"During your quest through Hallownest, you'll find an ancient, bizarre artefact called the Dream Nail. Using the Dream Nail, you can slice through the conscious layer of a being's mind and access the "Dream Well," a deep space containing a bug's hopes, fears and secrets. Terrible nightmares and unique challenges will test you as you search for the core of the dream, but persevere and you'll uncover startling revelations and claim precious treasures that can't be found anywhere else.

Dreams will fit the personality of each character and may even reveal some surprising secrets they have hidden away.These dreams will often involve unique twists on the Hollow Knight gameplay, such as challenging you to escape a horde of invincible flying nightmares or defeat a group of creatures without your nail. The Dream Nail is a mysterious weapon with hidden uses, and inquisitive players will find dreams hidden in the strangest of places."

We did experiment with a full dream diving system (Dream levels in every NPC's head!), but it ended up feeling really disjointed and distracted from exploring the world. The time we saved making dream levels went into more fully fleshing out Hallownest."

- Ari Gibson

Hollow Knight Dream Nail trailer

Hollow Knight Dream Nail trailer

332d67e368cb790bf0be4507838c1aa9 original
Babybug

Higher Beings Statues

In one of the early gameplay showcase videos, a statue of the White Lady, Pale King and a broken third statue can be seen in the room where the Gruz Mother is fought.

Higher Being Statues

White Crystal Ring

In an early trailer, a white ring of particles can be seen around the Knight before using Vengeful Spirit. Sly also appeared to sell the item or ability for Geo‍600.

White Crystal Ring
Sly's Shop Early Screenshot

The Forest of Bones

The Forest of Bones was originally located in the northeast corner of Hallownest.  In the early stages of the game's development, it was planned that three separate areas would each have a Dreamer boss, with the Forgotten Crossroads connecting them together, as well as being the location for the final boss fight.

The Forest of Bones was later moved to the bottom of the world, apparently because Ari didn't like the idea of a lava area being at the top of the map.  Deepnest was then added to connect to the Forest of Bones in its new location.

"The Bone Forest is further into the game than other areas we've shown so we don't want to spoil too much! But we will say it's a gigantic area of the game, with plenty of routes you can take through it and hidden secrets you can find if you brave the heat and the strange creatures who clad themselves in the bones of dead giants."

"Avoid the scorching waterfalls of burning tar in the Forest of Bones"

"It was at the very bottom of the world, accessed via the bottom-right of Deepnest. Monarch Wings were awarded here after fighting a huge bony creature that would chase the Knight across several scenes. Lava was going to be insta-kill when fallen into (but maybe there was a charm to prevent that)."

- William Pellen

“...Where as Bone Forest was like a big labyrinthian thing where you had to go through, go through, get this power up, get double jump cuz that’s where it used to be, go through, light these torches, open up a gate and all this stuff. And it was the biggest area as well.”

- William Pellen

"It may be expanded on in future, but all we can say for now is it shares some connection with the Pale Beings."

- Ari Gibson

"Ants are cool, and there's lots of interesting stuff you could do with them. They were planned for the Bone Forest area so didn't make it into the base game, but we might see some ant stuff in future updates?"

- William Pellen

The Bone Forest was ultimately removed due to the constraints its size would have on other areas of Hallownest.

"Cutting it was tough at the time. It seemed so cool! But it was totally the right thing to do. William and I were already slammed with all the other enormous areas to build, and they all would have suffered for Boneforest’s inclusion."

Charms

In the reveal of the charms system, an image showing various charms was posted on the developer's website. Some of these charms made it into the game, while a few others didn't, and have so far been left unnamed.

Unending Greed Glass

Unending Greed (Glass)

"Causes much more Geo to drop from enemies, but will break if you’re defeated while it’s equipped! Be careful and don’t let your greed blind you to the dangers ahead."

Possibly an early version of Fragile Greed.

Appears to be a dull version of Unbreakable Greed.

Vengeful Swarm

Vengeful Swarm

"When taking damage, spawn angry hatchlings that attack nearby enemies."

Possibly a very early version of Thorns of Agony/Glowing Womb.

Cut Charm 02
Possibly an early version of one of Lifeblood Heart/Core, or possibly Joni's Blessing.
Cut Charm 03
Possibly an early version of Fragile Heart.

Appears to be a dull version of Unbreakable Heart.

Cut Charm 06
An early, duller version of the Dashmaster Charm.

Unknown Charms

(A couple of these charms appear in the Hollow Knight Press Kit, but only one (First on the bottom, Charm_Wall_Reveal) has a name that could mean something. (The others being named under the convention of Generic_Charm)

Cut Charm 07
Cut Charm 05
Cut Charm 04
Cut Charn 07
Cut Charm 01
Cut Charm 08

Miscellaneous Unused Assets

Early Maps

Ari's Sketchbook

Unused Rooms

Unused Dialogue and Developer Notes

Greenpath Tablet 6

"Hidden Unn, we need you now. We grow tired away from you. Our leaves are falling."


City of Tears Tablet 2

"Missing monarch, we need you now. The madness spreads. The Vessel fails. You must return to us. (Similar dialogue to this can be found in the final game by dream nailing the corpses resting at the base of the fountain in the Ancient Basin)."


Soul Sanctum Tablet 2

"Record Bela

To manipulate a soul, reformation of the mind must first occur.

Few can bear such change.

The path to true progress is littered with mistakes."


Moss Prophet Dialogue

"To change ones form is a blasphemy against the light! To steal the soul of weaker creatures is a blasphemy against the light! And most of all... most of all! To DIE is a blasphemy against the light! Live forever, brother and sisters, or be cursed for all eternity!"

"(someone else says this)For a God, there is only one crime: To die. (OR) For a God, there is only one crime: To die. Emptiness is a hateful thing! A vile thing! Kill the empty ones! Tear them to pieces! Suffer them not to bask in the light of this world!"


The Hollow Knight Dream Nail Dialogue

"...Kill..."

"...Shall blaze free..."

"...This Vessel, broken...fails..."

"...Dawn...Shall break..."

"...No mind, the usurper...Only strength..."

"...Kill the usurper...Our light it would suffocate..."

"...Father?..."


Pure Vessel Dream Nail Dialogue

"Do not think…"

"Do not speak…"

"Do not hope…"

"Do not…"

"..."


Hornet

"Do it! Make your choice. My thread will only hold so long.

Prolong our world's stasis or face the heart of its infection."


The Dreamers

"Go no further, little shadow."

"This little shadow… Must return to its darkness."

"Fade away, little shadow. Fade away, and allow us sleep in peace."

"What compels you to claw your way out of the darkness? What compels your return to this sacred kingdom?"

"What calls it from beyond the Seal? The Vessel, or that captive light?"

"It matters not. Our Seals remain. This shadow seeks to defy us... It must be cast away."

"As you say... we made a promise. Let it be done."

"How long has passed? How long have we slept?"

"It would break the Seals. They cannot be undone. They must be undone. An empty vessel to bring hope. A strong vessel to bring stagnation. An enlightened vessel to bring an end."


Monomon the Teacher

"For diversity. For variance. For evolution. I become bond upon the Vessel."

"We sealed that plague, and thought we’d found an answer, but we were wrong. Our sacrifices... what did they win us? A world sealed in stasis."

"Only one path I see. The Seals must break. Will it bring destruction? Of course. It will bring change, too. Let it. To live forever in an unchanging world... Death, I would fear less."

"To sleep eternal, what difference from death?"

“Open your minds, brother and sister. Our vow was to protect...but do we? The Vessel weakens."

"My mind is seal upon that tragic being. But who shall teach them now? Who shall open their minds, where I cannot?"

"So... we found each other after all. Can you see me, here in this forgotten dream? I can see only light."

"Our sacred Hallownest... It was so old. An eternal, undying kingdom... unchanging. They called me 'Teacher', but what did I have left to teach? What did I have left to learn?"

"When the light came, we feared it. Of course we did! So we fought to keep things as they were. Our sacrifices... what did they win us? Simply another kind of stasis."

"We fought against you, too. Struggling against our fate. The light we caged away... it is alive, and we are not. Is that what draws you to it?"

"Will it bring destruction? Of course. It will bring change, too. Let it. To live forever in an unchanging world... that is the only death I fear."


Lurien the Watcher

"For this city and for King beloved, I become bond upon the Vessel."

"That black choice made, but not by me. Our King claimed that burden. My lot is easier, only to sleep and to serve."

"My city. Do you sustain without me? Do you thrive? I would see your streets again..."

"Our King appears as bug, and I shall take him as so. But his are traits that transcend our kind. His is a mind beyond ours. Deity given form. In sleep, I shall not look upon his like again."

"Remember our promise, sister! We three vowed to protect the seal with all of our devotion."

"Remember our bond... our sacrifice. For the kingdom’s sake... for the one we must protect."

"More detached than the other dreamers? Maybe ponders how the Hollow Knight (vessel) feels after all this time. Would he make the same choice again? First few dialogues are very taciturn."


Herrah the Beast

"For my daughter and my kind, I become bond upon the Vessel."

"Wyrm, your attempt may prove futile, but your offer I could not refuse."

"My child...For you, I would give it all."

"For her, I would give it all."

"Talks about her history: As part of the agreement for her alliance and her role as a dreamer, King gave her a child (Hornet). Was she allowed to keep this child or was she taken away?"


White Lady

"Two halves of a whole. You found your way... back to me? We were so unfair, weren’t we? To cast you out. Please, you must not hate him. He did what he thought was right. The Kingdom had to live..."


Pale King

"False one… you can not… reach me… here"


Gorb

"Greetings pale thing. Do you seek my knowledge? That I cannot give. Only an end."

"Would you accept the end I offer?"

"Alas. It destroys..."


Miscellaneous

"That plague, it calls to something within. But that union it offers is a lie, the cost, a mind regressed."

"Do you truly wish to break it...? Do you have the strength, or the will...?"

Trivia

  • Several of the cut charms seem to appear on each of the Charm Achievements.
  • The ability to "Glorify" charms was scheduled to appear on the Godmaster DLC, when it was still named Gods and Glory.
  • White Palace was supposed to have two bosses, King's Golem and Dusk Knight.
"White Palace, i can't remember what happened to its second boss? I know Kingsmold/Golem was one." - Ari Gibson
"They kinda got combined into the Kingsmould I think." - William Pellen
  • Hornet's original backstory involved Vespa, the Queen of the Hive:
"Vespa to Hornet was intentional. There was an old concept here that may still apply: Hornet was the 'Child of Three Queens,' one birthed, one raised, one trained. It is from the third queen that Hornet took her name. Whether that notion still applies however, I can't confirm, though it was definitely the basis for the names." - Ari Gibson
  • The Colosseum was a stretch goal that was not funded but Team Cherry still implemented it in a late stage in development:
Colosseum squeaked in there late in development. We were talking about potentially releasing it as a free DLC (this is before we had the idea of content packs) but after discussion we decided that having a place to really test your combat skills was important to have. Also, removing it would have left a weird empty gap at the top of Kingdom's Edge! - William Pellen
"The Colosseum does hide a secret, and there's a chance we'll explore it in the future. I'm trying to remember how many extra bosses we did put in the colosseum. Zote was one. Those Fat bees [Oblobble] were another... Two of the Colosseum warriors were originally bosses, but we liked them so much we transformed them into regular foes. It's all a bit of a blur!" -Ari Gibson
  • Colosseum of Fools was originally meant to be in Fungal Wastes.
  • The Abyss was meant to be a "massive expansion for only the hardiest of adventurers" with 4 bosses. While in the game, it has no bosses.
"The Abyss was a stretch goal we never did reach, though we'd really love to explore it! What you see in the game is actually just the Abyss Shore. The expansion would've taken players down into the lake of void, to explore the twisted space within." - Ari Gibson
  • In an early gameplay video, Sly can be seen selling Glow Bug Lamp for Geo‍1200, White Crystal Ring for Geo‍600, Greed Charm for Geo‍4000, Mysterious Key for Geo‍600 and Grey Mask Shard for Geo‍600.
  • Herrah's name was Hegemol originally.
  • As seen in an early map sketch, Dryya and the White Lady were to be found near the White Palace and the White Knight would have guarded the entrance to the Queen's Glade.
  • Queen's Gardens was originally going to be named Royal Garden.
  • The Zote Charm was an idea thought up by William Pellen that did not make it into the final game. It would have made the Knight die in one hit.