In Elliot Quest, the retro adventure platform game by Ansimuz Games, you can't die. Well, you can, but you always wake up at the last glowing rock thing you passed. Which is kind of weird when you think about it, and you need some answers. It's an enjoyable 8-bit throwback that doesn't pause the action to engage in any handholding. Elliot Quest will probably make you feel lost, but offers enough cool things to find to make it all worth while.
When a wizard needs a job, the temp agency decides their destiny... and apparently yours is to be a security guard. But it's not as cushy as it sounds, and in this chaotic and creative dungeon-crawling action platforming shooter, you'll need to craft your spells from multiple components to unlock powerful (and weird) effects as you try to save the world.
Tess had a bad day yesterday, and she doesn't really want to talk about it. Her friend Milly has a brazen and dangerous dare for her, but is she ready to face the consequences in this eerie and surreal free indie platform shooter?
Antbassador is a physics platform game by Kevin Zuhn and his team that has been declared the winner of the Ludum Dare 30 72 hour "Connected Worlds" game jam. It stars a giant top hat-wearing finger trying desperately to make a good impression on a colony of ants, and often failing. The QWOP-style comedy of political frustrations may not be for everyone, but it has more than it's fair share of hilarious ant-tics.
It's just one level, but this demo for an upcoming platforming adventure about a lone candle trying to rescue its friends who have been snuffed out by ominous shadows still manages to tantalize.
Bottle Rockets is a sci-fi platform game by James Earl Cox III set to the song "Alberto Balsam" by Aphex Twin. A short artistic work about mothers, daughters, and space, it integrates a glitchy aesthetic quite well into the plot and gameplay, and will generally succeed in making those who play it feel all the feels.
Life as a little green blob becomes a lot more exciting when you encounter a malevolent force out to take over your whimsy-filled cartoon world. But, by gathering up ark seeds, you build a team of doppelgangers who, in a friendlier twist on lemmings-style mechanics, help you solve your way through this puzzle platform adventure.
Ever feel like you're a little too large for the world around you? You know, like when you're crawling through the air ducts of your home pretending to be a spy. Well, Smudged Cat Games, creator of Gateways, thought that feeling of mild claustrophobia would make a good game. And wouldn't you know it, they're right! Growing Pains is an arcade platform game that's all about getting to the exit as fast as you can. It's sort of like a speedy version of N, only instead of being a small ninja, you're a creature that can't stop getting bigger.
Dive through earth and air in The Sun and Moon, a challenging platformer with an original concept and a beautiful, simplistic aesthetic. Fight conflicting gravities to collect all three Shinies and reach the exit in each level!
Chronology is the latest game to take advantage of the sidescrolling invigoration. It packs a lovely time-twisting mechanism on top of a head-warping set of puzzles that force you to think about the world in terms of the past and the future.
Kero Blaster has arrived! The sidescrolling platform shooter by Studio Pixel looks simple and sweet on the surface, but the difficulty is cranked up high enough to give your reflexes an honest workout. As janitor for the teleporter manufacturer Cat & Frog, your job is to venture out into the dangerous world to fix the company's broken machines. No sweeping or actual repairing involved, just shooting and trying to stay alive!
A fantastic art game with an arresting pixel-based art style, this physics-based platformer follows a rebel searching for their lost love in an alien-infested world. But it's not about the aliens. It's about survival, loneliness, and the sacrifices we make for those we love.
There are only two words you need to see before downloading this game: Studio Pixel. The creator of Cave Story has been hard at work on the upcoming sidescrolling platformer Kero Blaster, but in the meantime, we get a free game! Pink Hour serves as a small taster for next month's big release, stuffing plenty of shooting, pixel-perfect jumps, and painfully high level of difficulty into its cute little package.
The best wizard around may not know much actual magic, but he does have a fabulous double jump. Navigate treacherous landscapes and save the princess in this free, highly polished platformer for Windows and Mac.
In most roguelikes, grinding levels is the answer, but in Hopoo Games' brutally difficult action game, the longer you wait, the harder things get. When your cargo ship crashes on a hostile alien planet, you're left with no choice but to fight your way through the local wildlife and massive monsters, unlocking new characters and items along the way, if you want to survive.
In this fast-paced stunning metroidvania indie action adventure, the fight against a demonic army takes you beneath the waves when your ship is sunk and you find yourself in a mysterious underwater world caught between two opposing forces. Though somewhat hard to pick up and not without its flaws, it's still an engaging, gorgeous combat-centric game fans of the genre should check out.
Blink and you'll miss it, but this painfully short action adventure game by a talented indie studio is still worth checking out. Play as a young girl who wakes up in a surreal nightmare realm and must rely only on a strange voice, and a magical camera that can manipulate reality, to see her through to the end.
Full Bore is a puzzle platform adventure from Whole Hog Games that turns you loose in a world of corrupt boar bosses and a mysterious conspiracy brewing beneath the surface. After a successful crowd funding campaign in late 2012, Full Bore has emerged as a gorgeous metroidvania-style game that's heavy on puzzle solving with just a touch of boar-flavored humor.
Isn't it about time you had a good old fashioned quest? Spud's Quest by Chris Davis is a retro-styled platform adventure that draws inspiration from classic games such as The Legend of Zelda and the Dizzy series. It takes place in a fantasy world complete with items to find that unlock new areas, a sprawling map with non-linear pathways, and plenty of characters to interact with. A metroidvania, if you will, and a frightfully good one at that!
The mad-cap death-defying platforming roguelike action returns to PC in this HD remake of the cult classic by Derek Yu! Descend into an ever-changing labyrinth of tunnels in your search for treasure, with innumerable deadly traps and enemies standing in your way. Featuring new levels, items, and monsters in addition to cosmetic changes like different playable characters, various Damsels, and a whole new look and sound, Spelunky HD is just as addictively fun/frustrating as it was before.
You Still Won't Make It is a high difficulty action game from Vetra Games. It's name and form with this platformer, as each time you start a stage you know you probably won't make it to the exit. Even if you do, it won't be without splattering your insides over a precisely-placed spike trap. With level design by Karoshi veteran Jesse Venbrux, You Still Won't Make It is the kind of indie game you're going to hate while you fall in love with it.
Wanna see a crazy experiment in game design? Experiment 12 is a collaborative game created by twelve developers, with each level building on the story set by the previous ones. You wake up in a testing chamber, but it's hard to tell where you'll be headed from there, as each level chapter introduces a new puzzle or platform element for you to tackle.
Dusty is out for revenge. You can tell because it says so right in the title! Dusty Revenge is a wild west-themed action game from PD Design Studio that effortlessly blends a sidescrolling brawler (think Castle Crashers) with a simple platform game, turning the whole genre mix on its head by dumping in a lot of guns and artwork that would make even Shank blush. It can be a bit over the top on occasion with its cheesy story and quick combat tactics, but the overall tone keeps you interested in beating up enemies until your lengthy bunny ears are soaked in blood.
And now we've reached the portion of the program where we delight you with things perfect and beautiful! Toki Tori 2 is a new metroidvania-style puzzle platform game from Two Tribes. It's a long-awaited follow up to the original Toki Tori released on Game Boy Color back in 2001. Featuring improved puzzles, longer levels, more varied gameplay, much better graphics and many, many other additions, the minute you fire up this game you'll realize it was worth the wait!
Cellar Door Games delivers a challenging roguelike mixed with brutal platforming action in this indie game. Take on an ever-changing castle filled with peril and challenges, and when you're inevitably struck down, your children will take up the cause... and your children might be more than a little unique. Featuring upgradeable classes and powers, equipment, runes, and even traits ranging from simple color-blindness to dwarfism, this is one game that offers both a challenge and a unique look at the ideas of heroism and "disability".
Flowerville is a simple, charming sort of platform game where you play as Goffredo the famous gardener. He has the ability to make flowers come to life just by walking in front of them, which normally isn't that handy of a skill. When all of the flowers in Flowerville start dying, though, the queen summons Goffredo immediately. It's time to put on your gardening gloves and get to work.
Wyv and Keep: The Temple of the Lost Idol is finally here! After almost three years in the oven, A Jolly Corpse has released its fully-baked (and delicious) puzzle platform game to the masses. It's got excitement. It's got adventure. It's got treasure. It's got multiplayer co-op. And it's got enough challenge to keep you scratching your head for a very long time.
Behind a closed door in an abandoned apartment building, a freelance spy is trying on a new pair of pants. Little does he know that those pants would lead to a case full of mystery, danger, and electrical rewiring! Gunpoint is a stealth puzzle platformer where you can use your cool spy gadgets to change how electronics are hooked up, tricking your enemies into their doom. There are many ways to clear each building in this clever noir-style adventure, but when it comes time to choose up sides, who will you support?
Dust awakens, completely amnesiac, only to find himself being hailed by a talking sword that claims to have been summoned by him. And the sword's diminutive, sassy guardian who is none too happy about being dragged into Dust's quest for identity. But in Humble Hearts' stunning indie action RPG adventure, Metroidvania gameplay combine with memorable characters and fast-paced combat to deliver a gripping story of love, hate, friendship, and forgiveness.
What would you do if you found out there was more to your world? Like... a LOT more? And then you had to save it? That's what happens to Gomez, a little 2D creature who finds out his world isn't 2D as he always thought, and thanks to a mystical hat unlocks a power that will allow him to see every hidden side of it... something he'll need since he needs to track down fragments of a mystical cube before the world destroys itself! A stunning exploration-based platforming indie adventure that will bring out the wonder in you.
Starseed Pilgrim is a very, very unusual game. Created by droqen, author of Probability 0, it's best described as an abstract puzzle game with some light musical elements and a touch of sandbox-style gameplay. That doesn't do the experience justice, though, as its real value comes from the sense of exploration and wonder you'll get trying to figure out which seeds grow which blocks and what exactly you're trying to accomplish in this bleak world.
While hiding in a closet for a beast that's after him, young Quico tumbles through a mysterious portal into another world where he finds himself befriending a towering, fanged beast named Monster. But though Monster seems gentle and lovable enough to his tiny companion, a dangerous addiction turns him into a mindless, rampaging threat to everything around him, and only Quico can save him... or so he hopes. A painfully beautiful indie platforming adventure with heart.
Barbarium, created by Hypnohustler, is a retro action platformer set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. With your sword and lasergun combo (really, the best combo there is) you set off to rescue babes, drink beer and restore a little order to this crazy world.
Melodisle, a puzzle platformer by Andrew Gleeson, is a pixelated game of music and melodies, using your character's singing to affect the world around him. A unique experimental work and though the puzzles can get a little esoteric, it's has a lot of creativity for its short length.
Run, Commander Video, Run! Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien is the next chapter in the BIT.TRIP series by Gaijin Games. You've got to jump, slide, kick, and glide your way to all of the gold bars while avoiding getting bonked by a ton of enemies. Sporting a wonderfully wacky atmosphere and fantastically catchy soundtrack, Runner2 is definitely a game you'll want to make a dash for.
Rexzilla is a retro-styled platform game created by Orz Laboratory. Starring a kid in a dinosaur costume and featuring space travel, evil aliens, strange environments, and gumballs, it captures a bit of childlike wonder as you jump and stomp your way across 50 levels of action.
If you've ever seen some of M. C. Escher's paintings, you probably know what "impossible" looks like. If you play through Alexander Bruce's Antichamber, you'll know what "impossible" feels like... and also how to beat it! Set in a convoluted world where you can never be too sure which way is up, Antichamber challenges you to cast aside your usual video game logic and face a plethora of mind-bending puzzles that will have you rethinking what "impossible" means.
Surprise! Just a few weeks after Knytt Underground made its appearance, Nifflas has released a brand new game! The Great Work is a platform adventure deeply inspired by the Knytt series that follows the metroidvania outline of interconnected passageways strewn with items that grant new abilities and access to new areas. Featuring an alchemy-infused story, The Great Work was made to help promote Bautafilm's latest film that follows the story of Christer Böke, a man who took a year off from his job to become a full-time alchemist.
What's inside the Cave, DoubleFine's latest platforming puzzle adventure? For seven very unusual and very different heroes, that answer is quite personal indeed. But no matter which three you set off to solve the mysteries of the depths with, you can be sure you'll encounter hilarity, challenging puzzles, memorable characters, stunning visuals, and more than a few secrets of the bizarre and personal sort.
With a name like F.O.L.D. - Fantastic Olfactory Latrine Discoverer, you know something interesting has to be going on. This puzzle platform game by Cosine relies on just two mechanics to fuel its levels: picking up blocks, and folding the screen. By combining those in some seriously head-splitting ways, you get to figure out how to get from one side of the screen to the other, all in the name of making it to a single pristine bathroom fixture!
They say it's all in how you look at things... and they might be right! Perspective, by the fine students of Digipen, is a unique game that combines two-dimensional platforming with three-dimensional worlds to explore. As you switch back and forth between the two modes, you'll see that there's more to this well-crafted challenge than first meets the eye.
Potatoman is looking for something. What that is he isn't entirely sure, but he'll know it when he finds it. But one thing is certain: every living thing he encounters seems to have an opinion. Also, they're trying to kill him. Potatoman Seeks the Troof is a short "potatosophical" action adventure game from the retro masters at Pixeljam. Trot and hop your way across several landscapes as you take in the wisdom from the animals, avoiding things like bouncing/growing cacti, flying bird eggs, and a host of more creative obstacles. If you're lucky, you might even learn something along the way!
It's been a few years, but the Knytt series has finally returned! Knytt Underground pulls in design elements from several of Nifflas' other games, including Within a Deep Forest, NightSky, and Saira, and creates a beautifully atmospheric game of exploration. There's a big world to run, climb and bounce through, packed with secrets that can only be found by mastering some unique character switching moves.
Street Fighter X Mega Man is exactly the game you'd expect it to be: Street Fighter mixed with Mega Man. A free release created by Seow Zong Hui with support from Capcom, this love letter to both franchises stays true to the source material while shuffling things around enough to make it something new. Expect a nice and challenging experience, complete with a new chiptune soundtrack and plenty of inside references for fans of each series.
Available in action-RPG or classic turn-based flavour, this moody roguelike from Aaron Steed and music maestro Nathan Gallardo is deliberately mysterious. Descend into a dungeon searching for an amulet with your undead minion, figuring everything from the backstory to the deeper gameplay mechanics as you go. Oh, and tearing off the faces of your enemies and wearing them for bonuses and enchantments. Hooray!
Want a simple game with simple graphics that will twist your head in a dozen different directions? Try Vertigo, a tough puzzle platformer from Ketone Games that utilizes just about every gravity and screen-altering element you can think of to bend your brain out of shape. You're limited to walking and jumping in this minimalist game, and your only goal is to make it to the exclamation mark exit. And how do you get there, seeing as it's glued to the ceiling far higher than you could ever hope to jump? Easy, you just mess with physics and screen scrolling!
A Man's Quest is an HTML5 action platformer by The Drunk Devs that hearkens to yesteryear, both in terms of its retro graphics and the bouncy spirit of childhood. Help Ty show up his rival Kevin by swiping his place as Chosen One and being the first to make it to the top of Ominous Power. A compressed burst of fun, if one with somewhat loose jump physics.
Scribblenauts Unlimited is a new and improved release in the Scribblenauts line from 5th Cell Media. Giving you the power to create objects at will, you embark on a quest to bring happiness to the world, helping people in need by granting them objects from your magic notebook. That's all fine and good and such, but the fact of the matter is you can create just about anything you want, so while that pedestrian is in dire need of a glass of water, wouldn't it be so much more fun to give her a gigantic angry flying shark instead?
Have you ever stopped to think about the little cubes of sugar you put in your tea? Like, maybe they don't really appreciate being dropped into scalding hot liquid? Sugar Cube: Bittersweet Factory is a creative puzzle platform game from TurtleCream that tells the story of one little sugar cube that wasn't too keen on the idea of being put into baked goods. Eyeing a method of escaping the factory, he hops from the conveyor belt and begins his escape, one stage at a time.
Pid is a unique and heavily atmospheric platform game from Might and Delight, a team of developers who obviously know some secrets about portable stone-based gravity control the rest of us aren't privy to. Set in a hazy otherworld and starring a lost little kid, you'll learn to control small cones of gravity as you work your way through bizarre landscapes. Sometimes Pid feels like A Boy and His Blob, sometimes a stealth game, and sometimes even Portal. But really, Pid is Pid, and it stands strongly enough on its own to be something unique.
Whenever it gets close to Halloween, most of us are ready for a good scare. Zombies tunneling from below the soil, mummies leaping out from behind tombstones. Slenderman staring at us from off in the distance. Lionsoft, creator of the previously featured Sprint - King of the Jungle, knows the feeling well, not to mention a handful of retro games that fit the scary setting just as snugly. And so comes 8-bit Halloween, an arcade platform game that borrows from some of the most popular sidescrolling games of old to create a challenging, holiday appropriate release to get you in the mood.
Inspired by a retro game? Check! Precision platforming tactics? Check! Melt-your-eyes gorgeous visuals? That's a check! It looks like we have another heavy-hitting indie game on our hands! Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams began life as a spiritual sequel to the original Commodore 64 platform game The Great Giana Sisters. What emerged from that Kickstarter project is something cleverly old school, supremely challenging, and more gorgeous than still images could possibly convey. You're going to have a great time yelling at the screen because you died at the same place for the 18th time in a row!
It's adventure time and ape time! Adventure Apes and the Mayan Mystery is a retro-inspired platform adventure from ScaryPotato that shares a few genre points with games like La-Mulana, Cave Story, and many other metroidvania games. As you quest about through the jungle, opening up new areas to explore as you find new tools and power-ups, you'll need to keep an eye out for coins, keys, treasure chests, and relics, all while dispatching common enemies and squaring off against more formidable boss foes. It's all action and adventure, and it's all good fun, from beginning to end!
Probability 0 is a procedurally-generated arcade platform game created by Droqen that's all about working your way down. Most games make it pretty easy to move in that direction, as we tend to think of up as the win direction (just ask any tall person) and down as, well, not-win. With this moody little game, though, you'll have to fight your way to the bottom of the screen, squeezing through blocks, punching holes in the terrain, dealing with evil enemies, and upgrading your abilities at every opportunity you get.
Of Light & Shadow is a puzzle platform hybrid from 12 Angry Devs that focuses on two characters, each with different abilities as well as environmental weaknesses. It takes place in a crumbling world of chaos, with giant frogs, chomping machine monsters, flying platforms and bubbling pools of lava all waiting to take a piece of you with them to oblivion. But, since you're such a talented player, you can survive the surreal stages and work your way to safety at the end!
Gateways, an exploration-based platform game from Smudget Cat Games, can be quickly summarized by saying it's like Portal, but in 2D. That's leaving a lot out of the equation, though, as Gateways goes to great lengths to provide a different kind of experience, one more akin to a metroidvania-type game than that other portal-making adventure. You'll realize that as soon as you start to explore the chunky pixel laboratory, smashing the glass domes over monkey's heads and wondering how on Earth you're supposed to climb over the next ledge.
Your life was just a simple one. But this morning, you've found this sparking mechanical creature in your front yard. Is it friendly? Is it hostile? Or, perhaps scariest of all... are you teaching it what to do? A Ludum Dare 24 entry by Paul Greasley, Soul Jar is adventure platformer that tasks you with directing the evolution of a robot companion, for good or for bad. Visually stunning, with a killer premise, Soul Jar is hampered by clunky controls, but demonstrates the creativity the Ludum Dare format can inspire.
Three different people, three different worlds, and one very strange common thread. Tyler Glaiel, now part of Eyebrow Interactive, brings us one drop-dead gorgeous dark puzzle platformer in the form of this upgrade to his 2009 classic browser game full of ingenious levels and stunning design. Manipulate light to change your surroundings, using shadows to wipe away obstacles, and, ultimately, find your way back home.
In the year 20XX, Dr. Wily has been defeated by Mega Man (again). He escaped capture and life returned to normal, his eight robot masters returning to storage until the day their circuits may be modified to aid society. As it turns out, that day is today! Dr. Wily wasted no time attacking once again, unleashing a super virus that has disrupted Mega Man's systems and turned computers across the globe into enemies of humanity. With no other options at his disposal, Dr. Light releases the eight robot masters, hoping their virus-free circuits can defeat Wily once and for all. So begins Mega Man: Day in the Limelight 2 by Fusion Team, a retro platforming action adventure that's sure to bring a twinkle to the eye of any child of the 8-bit generation.
I Wanna Be The Guy was a small indie platform game released way back in 2007, and if you're wondering what took it so long to get a sequel, you obviously never played the original. A quick refresher: you could be killed by falling apples. You could be killed by apples that fall upwards. If you avoided the apples, a cloud could drop out of the background... and kill you. And that would be how you got past one screen. The sequel ups the insanity and makes you wonder if you really do want to be the guy.
Back in 2005, Takumi Naramura released a retro-styled exploration game called La-Mulana. Starring an archaeologist professor named Lemeza, it introduced modern players to an aesthetic not seen since the days of the MSX home computer, bringing with it all the convoluted puzzles, items, and high level of difficulty retro gamers love. Fast forward to 2012 for the worldwide release of a graphically enhanced update to La-Mulana that carefully reworks the look and feel of the old game to spruce it up for a new audience. Nigoro has done a fantastic job with the new La-Mulana, and the translation to the slightly-less-retro modern version is almost flawless!
Created in 72 hours for a recent game jam, Disillusion by True Valhalla is a short, somewhat abstract platform adventure that focuses heavily on atmosphere and exploration. You begin with a sword and a vague goal in the back of your mind: go to the end of the world and find the Holy Artifact. If you don't, your people won't survive. Sounds like motivation to us! You quickly head out into the hazy world, ready to tread down branching non-linear paths, defeat enemies both small and gargantuan, and pull off some tricky jumps with the greatest of ease.
Michael Molinari uses basketball and surreal, dreamlike imagery to explore love and family in this stunning indie title. Go one on one against nightmare creatures in your quest to find your sister, or solve platform puzzles in strange dimensions. It's a swanky, gorgeous, strange journey that overcomes somewhat clunky controls to deliver a beautiful and unique experience you don't have to love sports to enjoy.
On the surface, it's easy to put Thomas Was Alone in the puzzle platform genre, citing games like The Lost Vikings when you discuss the gameplay mechanics and mentioning VVVVVV as another possible source of lo-fi indie inspiration. But after you've spent some time with the game, you suddenly realize it's much more than just a platformer. Thomas Was Alone is an interactive, character-driven puzzle experience with a beautiful audio visual presentation and gameplay controls/physics that were no doubt fine-tuned with fastidious precision.
Deep within the spaceship, a lowly garbage worker tosses clumps of trash into the incinerator. Outside, asteroids begin pelting the hull, eventually causing the ship to crash on an uncharted planet filled with strange creatures. And now you, lone survivor, must explore and fight your way through an intricate maze-like world as you gather power-ups, fight bosses, and collect every little green square you see. In Wade McGillis's downloadable and mobile game Astronot, you get a good strong dose of pure retro metroidvania-style platform adventuring, and you'll love every minute of stranded torture it brings you.
What could be worse than some cretin named Big (who also happens to be your brother) stealing the pair of mystical underpants left by your departed grandfather? Nothing, as far as the folks at Black Pants Studio are concerned. With the team's first release, the sandbox-oriented action and physics game Tiny and Big: Grandpa's Leftovers, we get to see just what happens when you give a guy a raygun, a grapple-device, and unlimited rockets, then turn him loose in a sun-parched ruined desert world to find his pants-thieving brother. To put if briefly: a whole lotta rocks will get sliced, tossed, juggled, and destroyed.
While chunky pixel goats are nothing new to the indie gaming scene (see Llamasoft's iOS release GoatUp), MagicalTimeBean has done something special with Escape Goat, a retro-inspired puzzle platform game that recently made the leap from Xbox Live Indie Games to Windows-based PCs. And you're going to be glad it did, as Escape Goat is an exceptionally entertaining game that strikes a perfect balance between challenge and frustration, reflexes and puzzle solving, and, well, goats and sheep.
Red Riding Hood was once a normal girl baking sweets, skipping through enchanted forests, wanting to visit her grandma without any ulterior motives. Little did she know that she was about to be thrust into a nightmare when her poor Granny was taken by some rude wolf. Now it's up to you, as Red, to brave 96 levels of puzzles to save Granny and show that wolf it's never good to mess with a girl who can master gravity.
In a city where the wicked never sleep a brave hero shall rise. Jeff the Sanitation Worker has come to save the day. Er...well, he's come to clean things up so that people can at least walk around without catching the plague from the rats that seem to be everywhere. That's heroic right? Still, prepare yourself for the high energy thrill ride of cleaning the streets as Jeff.
Recluse is a short, cute, and creative metroidvania-style platform adventure game from chambers that tied for eighth place in the most recent Ludum Dare compo. Centered around the "tiny world" theme, you play a snail who has never left its shell and is now ready to emerge into the world. While much of the gameplay is standard platform fare, there is a unique mechanic that makes Recluse worth experiencing: screen shoving!
Ever wanted to do something, found out how unbelievably overwhelming the task would be, then decided it'd be a better idea to stay home and have a sandwich? Our hapless knightly protagonist in Climb to the Top of the Castle knows that feeling all too well, only in his case, sandwiches probably haven't been invented yet, and he's got a king breathing down his neck pretty much forcing him to haul his armored rear to the top of the castle and save the princess. Did we say "castle"? Because really, it's pretty much a mountain!
It is up to a green cosmic wanderer with a chain grapple arm to rescue some grounded birds from certain destruction in this retro adventure grapple game. Ladd Spencer (think classic grapple game...) may have had it rough, but the Chain Champ here has to swing over boiling lava pits, dodge pitfalls, and focus on collapsing grapple surfaces. A quick casual game packed with loads of gameplay, chiptune sound effects, and helpless birds to keep you swinging during a lazy afternoon.
If you grew up in an age where dithering was a a common graphical trick to get around color limitations and were excited when CGA was succeeded by EGA which gave way to VGA, just seeing a screenshot of You Have to Win the Game will turn you mad with nostalgia. The exploration platformer from Pirate Hearts shares a lot of design elements with Terry Cavanagh's VVVVVV, Lyle in Cube Sector, and Celestial Mechanica, though its main trick is emulating the computing environment of a decades-old PC. But even if you don't get excited by 16-color CRT monitors, You Have to Win the Game is a thoroughly enjoyable ride!
And Then There Were None... an old English detective book that has been adapted for the stage, silver screen, and radio has given inspiration to an indie platformer game. As you quest through the blanketing snow and eerie white noise, the game follows a man known only as Hughes as he tries to defend himself from a roaming serial killer. Tensions rise and fear sets in as danger lurks around every corner, tunnel, and platform. Your only glimmer of solace is the voice emanating from a radio, leading you along and aiding you in your struggle until... it's too late.
We are not alone. Life has been discovered on Mars, but it's nothing like we ever expected to encounter. In this gorgeous, one-of-a-kind moody action adventure game for iOS, you'll journey deep into the red planet and uncover the secrets buried within its soil. Discover new life forms and challenging puzzles that force you to use the environment to your advantage as you help the planet grow... and ultimately decide its fate.
The best games are ones that make you believe you are a part of one story, while another story plays out quietly behind the scenes. In The Ultimate Celebration, a poignant indie platformer from Brian Soulliard, you play a jolly little Party Dude who's only desire is to throw a party for all 20 of his friends. In the real world, you would just call them up on their cell phones and invite them, but where's the fun in that?!
A lonely, lost robot wakes up to find itself floating towards a strange island. It has no memory of where it came from or what it's doing, but as the little raft touches stable ground, it does what any amnesiac creature might do: runs forward to see what's out there. Gear World may not be the most original concept this side of Cave Story, but the hyper-difficult platforming action and carefully designed levels more than make up for the conventional setting.
Bam! Caught ya! Being stealthy is something we all do when creeping around the kitchen at night, going for that last piece of cake before anyone else in the house gets a crack at it. In Stealth Bastard, a stealth platform game from Curve Studios, moving around unseen is what it's all about. Instead of getting busted and forfeiting half a slice of cake, though, you get blasted to pieces by a robot laser the size of your torso. Ouch!
Yahtzee is back, and this time he's offering his take on Metroidvania in Poacher, an action-adventure platformer. Join wabbit-hunter Derek Badger as he stumbles into an ancient conflict far below the Earth's surface. Expect some killer difficulty in this effective combo of humor and horror.
A puzzle platform game where your goal is to carry a heavy key to the keyhole by jumping and tossing it across the stage. Thrown keys travel in a horizontal line until hitting a solid object, then they fall straight down. Unburdened by the key, you can jump a little higher, allowing you to work your way through each stage using a combination of platforming and careful key tossing. A very well-designed game with some great levels to complete! (Note: You need to click the link marked 'Keylugger' after visiting the link above to download the game.)
Offspring Fling is a poignant game about the dedication of family, the scary beauty of nature, and the lengths to which a parent will go to protect their kids. Of course, it's also a game about throwing children, so don't think that it gets too sappy. Developed by Kyle Pulver, maker of Depict1 and Verge, Offspring Fling's central puzzle platforming mechanic of carrying and throwing bouncy offspring is so clever and fun, it's surprising no one else thought of it first.
An early-release demo of a game that's been in production for several years and is still a work in progress, Vertex is on track to be the next massive-hit metroidvania. Inspired by the likes of Cave Story, Chrono Trigger, Spelunky and Super Metroid, Vertex drops you in a world that encourages exploration with multiple branching non-linear paths, upgrades, an RPG-like equipment menu, item shop, and much more. The game already looks and sounds fantastic, and the demo is nice and meaty, so you won't feel sleighted when it ends. You will, however, want more, and with any luck, that dream will come true soon enough!
The latest in the "absolutely amazing" sub-category of platform adventures, Out There Somewhere from MiniBoss puts you in a world of not-so-intelligent aliens (well, there are a few smart ones), falling blocks, massive pits of lava, mysterious sky-facing beams of light, and seemingly impassable corridors, all standing between you and the pieces you need to fix your ship. Explore a non-linear world filled with puzzles and passageways, using your teleportation gun in some very crafty ways.
Science has proven that water physics are some of the most entertaining gameplay mechanisms ever created. Forget things like realistic friction models, voxels, endlessly generating worlds, and being able to rewind time. Capturing, deploying, and just messing around with gooey water is where it's at. Vessel, a new steampunk puzzle platformer from Strange Loop Games, builds most of its gameplay around liquids, using them as both mindlessly flowing matter and as something you probably never expected water to do: become semi-intelligent!
What happens when you give Mario a portal gun? A mish-mash of two extraordinarily recognizable games — Super Mario Bros. and Portal — with a whole lot of extras. Mari0 puts you in control of our favorite pixellated plumber as he goes on his famous adventure from the mid-1980s, only this time, he's got the power of portals on his side!
The Lost Vikings is a great game; one of the best puzzle platformers ever. But haven't you ever wished that it had more... zombies? Well good thing for you Gentleman Squid has come along and developed just that. In Three Dead Zed, you play as a zombie who has three forms, each with its own abilities. Your job is to jump, climb and attack your way to the end of the level to rescue some defenseless beings.
Arche is worried about fitting in. Her family has just moved to the little hamlet of Tonkiness to open an item shop, and it turns out her dreams of learning magic may be short lived once she discovers she needs an expensive elemental stone to even practice at her new school. But a simple rumour might lead her on to a much bigger adventure than she ever imagined in this beautiful but difficult action platforming RPG.
Originally released in mid-2011 by indie game creator E. Hashimoto (Buster), Hydra Castle Labyrinth is an old school-styled platform adventure that was previously only available in Japanese. A brave soul recently translated the game to English, and now the cute metroidvania title is available for a much wider audience to enjoy. And enjoy it ye shall!
Dustforce is a speed-centric acrobatic platform game from Hitbox Team. A demo first appeared back in 2010, showing off the concept and basic design. Since then, the game has undergone some silent but effective changes, improving upon the controls and adding loads of content to sweep through. It's a fast, combo-centric arcade experience that emphasizes speed and perfection, and thanks to the online highscore boards and per-level badges, you'll be strangely compelled to keep playing until everything is just right.
A crazy, multiplayer romp through a visually lush game featuring three moderately-mad fantasy characters with their own unique abilities? Show us where to sign and we'll be there! Actually, now that you mention it, Trine 2 happens to be all of the things described above, plus a whole lot more. It's got action, it's got physics puzzles, it's got both single- and online multiplayer modes, and it's got a sense of humor that will probably remind you of Magicka. It's a modern-day version of The Lost Vikings, and any gamer will be proud to experience the world Trine 2 has to offer!
The original freeware platform adventure game Cave Story was released by Daisuke Amaya (Pixel) back in 2004. An English translation from Aeon Genesis followed just two months later, opening the game up to a much wider audience and allowing to vault to the top of the indie gaming world. Featuring amazing music, a well-written story, power-ups, upgrades, and a big world to explore, saying Cave Story was a hit is a gross understatement. Several years later, the game has been ported to half a dozen other systems and re-released with remastered music and updated HD graphics. Now, Cave Story+ is here, upgrading the freeware experience to something your eyes and ears can more fully appreciate!
Think open world platform adventure games like Knytt Stories are falling out of favor? Treasure Adventure Game is happy to prove you wrong. With its massive open world stocked from end to end with treasures, secrets, characters, quests, puzzles, and more, this old school throwback manages to combine adventure, RPG, and platforming genres into the kind of game you'll only have the honor of experiencing a few times in your life. Also: it's free!
Celestial Mechanica is a quietly impressive platform adventure (a.k.a. "metroidvania") game along the lines of Knytt Stories and the Robot Wants series of games. Created by Roger Hicks (author of rComplex) and Paul Veer (animator of Super Crate Box), it's the sort of game that sits quietly off to the side, never begging you to play it, but once you do, you'll be hooked 'til the end.
Blocks That Matter, an indie game from Swing Swing Submarine, likes to do things a little bit differently. It likes to break the rules, mix up genres, tear down that fourth wall, and borrow the best from some of the most popular games ever released and turn it into something new. Blocks That Matter is part Tetris, part Minecraft, part Dig Dug, part platformer all wrapped into one, with a cute main character leading the whole thing up that serves as the perfect gateway to a game you won't be able to get enough of.
Several years in the making, the darkly atmospheric (and strangely realistic) platform game LIMBO has finally migrated from console download to the PC ecosphere.Crafted by Danish studio Playdead, LIMBO drops you in a shadowy world filled with dangers, immensely difficult puzzles, and more ways to die than you would really want to count. It's an incredibly stylistic and engaging game, one that just about any player can pick up and enjoy from beginning to end.
From the study halls of Digipen, whose alum include parts of the teams behind Portal and Portal 2, comes an epic tale of digging, rigging, and more digging. Sounds as exciting as bathwater, right? But I'll bet you a load of rare minerals that once you get started in Dig-N-Rig, you'll lose your evening. Maybe more!
Robots, man. They're the worst. Always pulling you out of your workplace and forcing you to battle them in a series of psychedelic levels, blowing you up, killing your cows. It's ridiculous. Luckily, we have Deepak, representing the everyman in the daily struggle against robo-baddies. Deepak Fights Robots, from Run-Man: Race Around the World creator Tom Sennett, is loaded with mind-bending levels, quick arcade action, more colors than a rainbow drowning in a crayon factory.
A space ship. An explosion. An escape pod. A crash. It's just you and an alien planet replete with jungle creatures who aggressively attack you, lone guy in a well-equipped spacesuit. Capsized drops you in an unfamiliar world and gives you just a few tools to survive. Fortunately, a grappling hook and a number of guns happens to be amongst these tools, the former of which is handy not only for swinging around and pulling yourself up ledges, but for grabbing and moving obstacles. Other than that, you really have to rely on your wits in this gorgeously-illustrated but challenging physics/action game.
The first time I saw my velociraptor avatar trying desperately to outrun the scary wall of doom, I was completely sold. Three years have passed since the release of that Pixeljam racing platformer, and I find myself returning to its charms again and again. However, with time comes change, modification, upgrading, evolution. So is the potent rationale for the release of Dino Run: SE... And from what I've seen so far, it won't be going extinct from my hard drive any time soon.
In spite of my overwhelming lack of talent for the platform genre, I'm completely smitten with Nyxquest: Kindred Spirits, a side-scrolling platformer by Over the Top Games that proves lovely visuals do not always have to come with over-the-top full-motion videos.