Spelunky Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Spelunky RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Best PS4 Platformers to Play on PS5 https://www.gameskinny.com/njha2/best-ps4-platformers-to-play-on-ps5 https://www.gameskinny.com/njha2/best-ps4-platformers-to-play-on-ps5 Wed, 23 Dec 2020 15:45:43 -0500 Ethan Anderson


Rayman Legends


Last, but not least, we have Ubisoft's platforming mascot, Rayman. Rayman hasn't gotten a new mainline game in nearly 10 years, so sometimes this platforming great isn't as talked about as others.


That shouldn't be the case, because Rayman Legends knocked it out of the park. It's a vibrant, joyful, and creative platformer that'll have you on the edge of your seat more than once throughout its relatively short runtime.


The game also features some of the best couch co-op platforming that you can find on the PS4, so don't miss out if you're a fan of the genre.


As you can see, there are more than enough top-notch PS4 platformers that should be played on PS5. And we can't wait to see even more games get added to the PS5's library in the years to come.


Are there any platformers that you'd like to see added to the list? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!


Sonic Mania Plus


Sonic the Hedgehog is a household name at this point. With Sonic Mania, SEGA and developer Headcannon brought the series back to the 2D platformer roots that made it so popular.


The "Plus" version adds DLC, allowing players can speed through levels as Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Mighty, or Ray. It also features new zones, updated classic stages, and a four-player multiplayer option.


This game is a must-play for any and all Sonic fans, and it's also a great entry point for anyone curious to see what the blue hedgehog is all about.


Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove


Shovel Knight started out as a Kickstarter campaign that slowly became more and more successful. Developer Yacht Club Games has managed to deliver on everything promised and more.


This is another platformer that successfully captures the magic of retro games in the genre while still adding enough present-day flair to stand out on its own merit. Arming the player with a simple shovel and a few movement options seems odd at first, but you'll grow to love it in no time at all.


The Treasure Trove edition contains all four DLC campaigns, as well as a multiplayer Battle Mode and co-op for the main campaign. This is a platforming experience that absolutely shouldn't be missed out on.


The Messenger


The Messenger is a love letter to old-school Ninja Gaiden fans with its retro sounds/soundtrack, visuals, and overall feel. It even has an unexpected amount of humor, which is just a bonus, since it's already excelling in other aspects.


You assume the role of a ninja who must deliver a scroll to save his clan after his village has been attacked by a demon army. You'll be jumping, swinging, slashing, and warping between 8-bit and 16-bit worlds on this journey.


The level of nostalgia here is simply unmatched. The Messenger really does have everything that you could ask for as a fan of old school platformers.


Spelunky/Spelunky 2


Spelunky is a platformer with an endlessly fun roguelike gameplay loop. The first game launched on consoles back in 2012, and Spelunky 2 was just released in September for PS4.


The sequel piles on the exploration as players are tasked with avoiding traps while searching for treasures and missing family members on the moon. Each run can reveal new items, NPCs, and paths through the game. As you venture deeper, your home base will grow, leaving you more prepared to make those deep runs into the unknown.


This treasure hunt can be completed alone or with friends online, so there's plenty of randomized platforming to go around.




INSIDE is another entry on this list that's able to mix genres effortlessly. It's a relatively short narratively driven puzzle-platformer that'll keep you gripped through your entire playtime.


Those who played Playdead's previous platformer, LIMBO, will no-doubt love INSIDE just as much, if not more. It takes what made its predecessor great, and improves upon that already winning formula.


You're once again playing as a young boy, but this time, you seem to be heading towards the main cause of the danger around you.


The dark atmosphere, mysterious plot, and creative obstacles will be sure to leave you wanting more by the time the experience comes to a close.


Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition


For most players, the first genre that comes to mind when thinking of Hollow Knight is probably Metroidvania. That said, there's still plenty of challenging platforming to overcome here.


It isn't easy, but if you can master the movement, timing, and control needed to traverse Hollow Knight's world, you'll find that it contains some of the best platforming experiences that the genre has to offer. You'll be finding secrets, tackling tough bosses, and enjoying that sweet satisfaction of improvement as you progress.


The Voidheart Edition is essentially the console version that contains all of the content added to the PC version of the game before it came to consoles. It was free on PlayStation Plus back in November but is $14.99 otherwise. 


Ratchet & Clank


Like Crash Bandicoot, Ratchet & Clank is also a classic platformer. The difference here is that it's fully 3D and a lot more action-oriented, containing some of the most oddly unique weapons found in any game in the genre.


It's also technically a game based on a movie, based on a game. That sounds confusing, but trust me, it makes sense.


The Ratchet & Clank movie was coming out around the same time as the game, and this soft reboot is a retelling of the very first game. This means that all newcomers to the longstanding franchise are welcome to give this one a shot.


You'll get to see how Ratchet and Clank start out, going from humble beginnings to intergalactic heroes.


Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time


This classic platforming franchise made its return to relevance in 2017 with the N. Sane Trilogy, and as it turns out, Crash and Coco have a lot more to give to the genre beyond the original trilogy and a few spin-offs.


Crash 4 manages to bring back the feel of the original games while adding plenty of twists to keep things feeling fresh.


This time around, there are five playable characters and new masks that provide special powers to shake up the platforming. This is one that both newcomers and series veterans should check out.




While all of the entries on this list are undoubtedly worth playing, Celeste can be considered one of the best platformers of the generation. It won both the Games for Impact and Best Indie Game awards at The Game Awards in 2018, and for good reason.


The game has tight, responsive controls, a fantastic soundtrack, and a plot that can be relatable to so many of its players.


Celeste is able to meaningfully tackle the topics of anxiety and mental illness while still making sure that its platforming stays enjoyable throughout the entire experience. It truly is one of the best in the genre.


The PlayStation 5 has finally arrived, but there aren't a ton of brand-new launch games to pick from. That's doubly true if you're a fan of platformers. Sure, Sackboy: A Big Adventure released alongside Sony's new console, and it is a fantastic game by our account, but overall, genre choices are currently thin on the PS5.  


The good news is that plenty of PS4 titles are available to play on PS5 through backwards compatibility, including plenty of must-play platformers.


It's not too late to look back and find a few games that you may have missed — or may be hiding in your backlog. Here are some of the best PS4 platformers that you should definitely play on PS5, as we wait for games like Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart and Balan Wonderworld

Spelunky, Spelunky 2 Head to Nintendo Switch in Summer 2021 https://www.gameskinny.com/9z53z/spelunky-spelunky-2-head-to-nintendo-switch-in-summer-2021 https://www.gameskinny.com/9z53z/spelunky-spelunky-2-head-to-nintendo-switch-in-summer-2021 Tue, 15 Dec 2020 14:00:19 -0500 Josh Broadwell

Spelunky and Spelunky 2 are coming to Nintendo Switch in summer 2021, Mossmouth announced during Nintendo's December Indie World showcase. 

In Spelunky, the game that stole our resident roguelike lover's heart, players explore randomly generated caves stuffed with both treasure and deadly surprises. Death is nearly inevitable, with cleverly disguised traps around every corner and monsters waiting for those explorers who manage to avoid these traps.

These death caves are fully explorable — and fully destructible as well. When dying and destroying get too much, there’s always a safe base camp to modify with whatever treasures you spelunked.

Spelunky 2 released for PC and PS4 earlier this year and follows a similar gameplay pattern, but with more of everything — more monsters, more traps, and more importantly, more treasures. Spelunky 2 on Nintendo Switch will also feature local and online multiplayer, while Spelunky comes with local multiplayer.

Prices for either game were not announced, but Spelunky retails for $14.99 on both PC and PS4, while Spelunky 2 goes for $19.99 on both storefronts. Stay tuned for more. 

Derek Yu Shares New Spelunky 2 Screens, Details https://www.gameskinny.com/pnlp3/derek-yu-shares-new-spelunky-2-screens-details https://www.gameskinny.com/pnlp3/derek-yu-shares-new-spelunky-2-screens-details Wed, 11 Mar 2020 17:36:17 -0400 Ashley Shankle

If the screens posted by developer Derek Yu over at the PlayStation Blog are anything to go off of, Spelunky 2 is shaping up to take what was already an addictive and challenging formula to new heights.

Yu states one of his goals for Spelunky 2 is to offer a more "personalized adventure" per run, hinting at more variety. You can really see it in the stills he's shared in the post, as well as a previously revealed trailer.

No longer are you confined to just a mine, a jungle, an ice cave(?) filled with aliens, or Olmec's temple. New areas await, including what looks like underwater-ish caves, a new spooky forest, and some sort of industrial locale making heavy use of magma and fire in general.

However, the new areas aren't the only things shown in these screenshots. We can see new conveyor belts, a new shop and NPC, and two new enemies along with familiar faces. Did I mention a mount? Yep, a reliable turkey, which you can see in action in the old trailer above.

Spelunky 2 hasn't been graced with a release date just yet, but the folks over at Mossmouth have clearly been busy making a worthy sequel to their prolific roguelike. However long it takes, Spelunky 2 is sure to be worth it if you were a fan of the original freeware title or the HD remake.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more on Spelunky 2 as it breaks. 

8 Best Indie Games for the PS Vita https://www.gameskinny.com/r4alh/8-best-indie-games-for-the-ps-vita https://www.gameskinny.com/r4alh/8-best-indie-games-for-the-ps-vita Fri, 21 Apr 2017 08:00:02 -0400 Nick Lee

While the PSP was discontinued in 2014 per Sony's new direction with gaming, there were definitely some gems from the indie scene that shined through for the PS Vita. Without the bigger companies the mobile gaming hardware might not have been as successful as it was, but indie games allowed the more creative and riskier side of game development to lead the way while on the go.

So what are the best indie games still available for the portable PlayStation consoles? Let's see.

Super Meat Boy

By now, gamers across the world of PlayStation know the iconic title but may forget it was all done by an indie developer and can still be played on the go. Released back in 2010, Super Meat Boy won numerous awards and topped gaming lists everywhere.

The fast paced platformer gave a new life to the platform genre, elevating it among a wider audience cementing its place next to Super Mario Bros.; no matter how hard it was to beat.


Severed is a beautifully designed game exclusively for the PS Vita which may be the game's only folly. The game follows main character Sasha through a bizarre world that truly needs a full campaign on other consoles that sadly only belongs to the handheld gamer or WiiU owners. The actual battles within the game focus on tactical decisions as enemies are both fast and dangerous. The game deserves it's own spot on this list for not only the potential but the lack of credit given to this indie game.

Don't Starve

The indie survival game Don't Starve is iconic for its dark nature and perfection of the survival template. Created by Klei Entertainment, the game incorporates so many gaming elements in a randomly generated world gamers couldn't stay away.

Though initially developed on Steam and then ported to PS4, the game also has the pocket editions that make it the perfect on the go survival game like no other.


Another platformer, Spelunky offers randomized levels giving each player a unique experiences and allows local co-op play as well. With changing game play and multiple playable characters this game is still fun with plenty of replay-ability. Often giving gamers a love/hate relationship with the game, Spelunky teaches its' players to learn from the failures made to improve each level.

Octodad: Dadliest Catch

Created by developer Young Horses, Octodad follows the ridiculous and often destructive path of fatherhood. First made by students in 2010 who formed Young Horses, Octodad is an absurd game with amazing reviews -- an even more amazing animation. The wacky physics of Octodad are made even better when gamers can band together to control other limbs and create what the devs call "limbsanity."

Rogue Legacy

The 2D action platformer was created by Cellar Door Games and changes game play each time a player joins. The idea behind the changing game play is that the players child succeeds whichever character died, and each of them is unique in their own way, creating a legacy. Each level of the game is randomly generated as well, giving players a fresh challenge in even more ways. Rogue Legacy takes on the platformer genre similarly to indie greats like Spleunky, but with its' own spin that gamers love.

The Swapper

Created by a team of four developers, The Swapper crafts an amazing atmosphere with puzzles and perfect atmosphere. Receiving overwhelmingly positive reviews, the game gifts players an intricate platformer that more than deserves a spot on the list of the best indie games of all time period. As a lone astronaut, players have to use their own ingenuity in an atmosphere that immerses them in the loneliness and serenity of space.


Few games can be as calming and quaint while also challenging players quite like Eufloria. Also taking cues from the future of space exploration, the game tasks players to explore and grow in order to survive. Developed by Rudolf Kremers and Alex May, the game has the feel of 2001: A Space Odyssey due to its' soundtrack and ambience while also incorporating bright and soothing emotions. It is truly a game to relax on the go with as it is one of the most calming games of all time.


While consoles and pc have dominated the market in indie games, handhelds like the PS Vita have allowed growth in the industry for smaller and creative devs. Though in no way a complete list, these games all share a similarity in challenging players, forming creative stories, and allowing player choice to play a big role in success.

7 Tough Games That Meet at the Corner of Frustration and Fun https://www.gameskinny.com/ocsmu/7-tough-games-that-meet-at-the-corner-of-frustration-and-fun https://www.gameskinny.com/ocsmu/7-tough-games-that-meet-at-the-corner-of-frustration-and-fun Mon, 03 Oct 2016 17:15:36 -0400 Jeremy Brown

Plenty of games lend their sense of accomplishment through their stories, atmospheres, and satisfying mechanics. However, some games offer a more masochistic approach to their gratification by giving you "never back down" challenges, which push you even more to overcome them.

This concept applies to many more games than the ones on of this list. Those on this list made the cut for having a foundation of cruel-yet-fair gameplay. Whether or not that makes them good, well, that's up to you.

Super Meat Boy

Super Meat Boy is a platformer focused on speed and pain. Meat Boy's girlfriend, Bandage Girl, has been kidnapped by the nefarious Dr. Fetus, and you must save her by going through a series of circular saws, and spikes. Believe it or not, salt is really lethal too. 

What pushes players in Super Meat Boy, however, is the drive to collect more bandages, hidden in hard-to-reach spots, and getting the "A+" ranking to unlock secret levels. The game requires patience, but the controls and animations make every mistake the player's and not on the game's. Even better, when beating later levels, the replay (showing every single attempt simultaneously) is that much more rewarding.

Hyper Light Drifter

Perhaps the least punishing on the list, Hyper Light Drifter puts players in a bleak world where everything has already gone down the tubes, and they must fight through the villains and bullies of the world to rebuild it. 

What makes Hyper Light Drifter so challenging is the fast-paced combat. Every step counts, and any misstep can mean death. Those only set you back to the beginning of the room, though. Of course, that'll happen quite often, and boss fights will increasingly test your skills by being more difficult than the last.


Furi is a fairly recent game, as it was a free game of the month for PlayStation Plus over the summer. It has a plot focused on a silent protagonist and a person in a bunny hat telling him to kill bosses. While the slick style of the game does help overall, the real focus here isn't the story.

It's a test of determination that the game demands of its players. Boss fights have increasingly harder stages as players keep fighting them, and players only have three lives. If they fail to defeat the bosses, even on the last hit, these long fights will start all over. It makes for a real struggle of memorizing moves, which results in the biggest trial-and-error in the game, even though the basic combat is rock solid. 



VVVVVV is an incredible game for those looking to push the boundaries of their sanity. After a sci-fi disruption in space-time causes the players' ship to crash, the captain of the ship must go out and save the loyal crew to rebuild and leave this frequently spike-filled land.

The idea is simple: players move left and right, but instead of jumping, can only invert gravity. From then on out, the level design decides how well players can wield the tools given to them. There are parts where gimmicks make the game even more crazy, but even its premise makes for a difficult, but ultimately, rewarding game. 

Lovely Planet

Oddly enough, Lovely Planet has more in common with Super Meat Boy than anything else. It doesn't require you to be the fastest player, but it does force players to have peerless precision and a lot of coordination. Apart from the Katamari art-style, nothing is kid-like in this game.

Players are given a semi-automatic weapon to shoot red guys, and they must use near-death leaps to cross at any given point. The frantic nature of this game makes it one of the most demanding on this list because one small mistake means starting the level over.

The Witness

Agreeably the most calm, calculated, and methodical game on this list, Jonathan Blow's latest acclaimed puzzler, The Witness, stretches the boundaries of its simple premise to every conceivable length. Though the game doesn't present fail-states like the rest on this list, it sure feels like it does.

Simply, players walk up to panels and draw a line from point A to point B on them. As players progress across the game's luscious landscapes, the levels become more and more complex, using reflections, shadows, and field of view. Melting distortions shape even how your character moves within a hedge maze to squeeze every single way the puzzle can be completed into one game. The result creates later puzzles that can leave players staring at the screen for hours.

Honorable Mention: Hotline Miami

While I loved Hotline Miami, I felt it wasn't a perfect fit for the list. It's a top-down hyper-violent shooter that requires bold strategy, quick reflexes, and improvisation. Why isn't it part of the list, though?

Rather than something players did which lead to their demise, the biggest issue holding it back is random flukes in the enemy AI that are completely out of player control. I still highly recommend it, even though you're going to see "You're dead" pop up fairly often.

Do you agree with our list? What games would you like in this subgenre of genres? Let us know in the comments section below, and as always, thanks for reading.

Xbox Games with Gold for August 2016! https://www.gameskinny.com/5m4o1/xbox-games-with-gold-for-august-2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/5m4o1/xbox-games-with-gold-for-august-2016 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 17:12:20 -0400 Ryan Gulliford

With July coming to a close, we have a whole lot of gaming news to look back on! We witnessed Pokémon overtake our world, and continue to do so, with Pokémon Go being a gaming sensation. So, to end the month on a high, let's look at the next set of free games with Xbox's Games with Gold programme...

For August of 2016, Xbox gold members will be hitting the ring with the launch of WWE 2K16 as a free game for the month! You'll be able to access your favourite WWE superstars as of August 16th on Xbox One. You'll also be experiencing high paced action with WARRIORS OROCHI 3 Ultimate as of the beginning of the month. With that being said, here's whats in store for the 360 players among you.

As of August 1stSpelunker will be free to 360 players, with Beyond Good & Evil HD coming August 16th. All in all, this represents some classic, pick up and play, 360 titles for gamers to enjoy. 

August should be a very exciting month for Games with Gold, particularly for Xbox One players, reliving their favourite matches from WWE with the widely popular game series.

Also as ever, the games available on 360 will be downloadable on Xbox One consoles as a part of backwards compatibility. 

6 Games The Speedrunning Community Can't Get Enough Of https://www.gameskinny.com/h9wrf/6-games-the-speedrunning-community-cant-get-enough-of https://www.gameskinny.com/h9wrf/6-games-the-speedrunning-community-cant-get-enough-of Thu, 09 Jun 2016 13:04:33 -0400 RobotsFightingDinosaurs


I Wanna Be The Guy


And now for something completely different. I Wanna Be The Guy is notorious for its difficulty -- and that, of course, enticed the hardcore speedrunning community. Whereas Spelunky trades on its uniqueness and random level generation, I Wanna Be The Guy's cache in the speedrunning world comes from the fact that the game, at heart, is all about pattern recognition. 


For speedrunners, this game is everything they love about speedrunning Super Mario Bros., just dialed up to 11. Yes, the game is insanely difficult, but the paths through and around each obstacle are decently clear, so it's a matter of stringing together that one perfect run and entering that zen-like flow state. Plus, at the end of the day, it's just insanely satisfying for viewers to see a game like this taken down that fast.


What's your favorite game to speedrun? Let us know in the comments! And hey, if you can't get enough speedrunning, make sure to check out our guide on how to speedily run through Dashes in Mirror's Edge Catalyst!




Spelunky is an odd case. Since it is procedurally generated, there will always be an element of luck to any Spelunky speedrun. Having said that, however, this randomness means that speedrunners need to constantly be on their toes. They cannot rely on rote memorization, and must use their general knowledge of the game and how level seeds are usually assembled to set new records.


Though Spelunky is not as popular as the previous games on this list, its following in the speedrunning community is surprisingly loyal, and that's due to the fact that, quite literally, speedrunning the game is a completely unique experience, mixing luck and raw skill.


Super Mario 64


Now, if we're talking about sequence-breaking and games that have countless glitches and exploits that allow for insanely fast completion, Super Mario 64 needs to enter the conversation at some point. As you can see above, sequence-breaking can allow a skilled player to beat this game in under 6 minutes. And if you've been paying attention, you know that those times are only about a minute slower than the fastest times for the original Super Mario Bros. on NES.


In addition to these "sprint" runs of Super Mario 64, the variety the game offers in terms of levels and objectives makes 100% speedruns unique as well. In particular, the fact that each stage features a star that can only be earned after 100 coins are collected means that players must plan their paths through each stage in creative ways, using all of the movement options that Super Mario 64 has to offer.


The Legend Of Zelda: The Ocarina Of Time


Of course, a big reason that The Legend Of Zelda: The Ocarina Of Time is on this list is that it is often hailed as the best game ever made. But Link's debut on the Nintendo 64 has so much more to offer to speedrunners apart from nostalgia and great gameplay.


Like Super Metroid, speedrunners of Ocarina of Time must be creative and sequence-break in order to post a quick time. However, what sets Ocarina of Time apart is the plethora of glitches and techniques that players can use to increase move speed and fly across the map. Many Nintendo 64 games, and other games from the first generation of 3D gaming, are favorites of the speedrunning community for this reason. Since the technology was not perfected yet, there are plenty of exploits for speedrunners to find. This not only makes for good times, it also means you can finally skip that damn water temple.


Super Mario Bros.


Whereas Super Metroid sticks around in the speedrunning scene because of its open nature, Super Mario Bros. sticks around for the exact opposite reason. Speedrunning Super Mario Bros. is a fairly linear experience. The best path through the game has been mapped out many times. The challenge this game offers speedrunners is the pursuit of perfection.


It's almost like an Olympic sprint in that fractions of a second often make the difference between a record-breaking run and one that does not, so speedrunners shave those precious moments off of their time whenever they can, keeping their momentum, making pixel-perfect jumps, and generally entering a supreme state of concentration and flow. It's cathartic to watch as well, especially since speedruns of the game generally hover around 5 minutes due to all of the warps.


Super Metroid


The speedrunning community owes a lot to this game. Super Metroid was and remains one of the most popular games to speedrun because it was one of the first to allow players to "sequence-break". Since Super Metroid is such an open game and power-ups are scattered all across the map, progression is linked to when and in what order these power-ups are collected. Sequence-breaking occurs when a player, either using glitches or pure skill, is able to skip a "required" power-up or sequence in order to complete the game faster.


Because there are so many power-ups in Super Metroid, and so many different paths to take, going for a speedrun at any completion level offers huge potential for creativity in how to tackle obstacles.


And that's not even mentioning the ridiculous 100% completion speedruns. There are so many different ways to speedrun Super Metroid, and so many different viable ways to attack each speedrun, it's really no surprise that it's still a mainstay for the community.


Speedrunning is as popular as it's ever been. No longer relegated to a small corner of a convention game room, the speedrunning community has exploded in recent years and brought the concept of beating a video game as fast as possible to the mainstream. It's not just the wonderful Awesome Games Done Quick events every year-- there are countless new games (Undertale and Shantae and the Pirate's Curse, to name a few) that specifically reward players who choose to speedrun them.


So with Summer Games Done Quick right around the corner on July 3rd, it's a great time to pay tribute to the games that speedrunners always seem to come back to.

Platformers aren't dead, they're just mostly indie right now https://www.gameskinny.com/fswy3/platformers-arent-dead-theyre-just-mostly-indie-right-now https://www.gameskinny.com/fswy3/platformers-arent-dead-theyre-just-mostly-indie-right-now Tue, 16 Feb 2016 18:11:40 -0500 Ashley Shankle

Everyone has their favorite game genre. RPG, FPS, puzzle, RTS, MMORPG...the list could go on.

The popularity of individual genres comes and goes in waves. Right now we're in a third-person action RPG phase. A few years ago we were amidst the big first-person shooter boom. Somewhere before then, RPGs dominated all but the sports game market -- and right in the middle of that period came the fall of platformers, the genre many who played games in the late 80s and early to mid-90s grew up with.

I grew up in that era, and like many others I cut my gaming teeth on Super Mario Bros. 3. Later I moved onto Kirby and Sonic, devoured Mega Man and Castlevania, then spent ages demolishing Rareware's N64 offerings, Spyro, and Crash Bandicoot. Some move on from platformers but I have not. Platforming games are all I need.

Within reason.

Someone outside of the retro or indie gaming communities may assume the platforming genre is dead. After all, how many big name platformers have been released in the past few years? And don't point toward third-person action adventure games like Uncharted and modern Tomb Raider as examples. They may have "jumpy bits" but they are certainly do not fit within the overarching "platforming" genre.

Platforming isn't dead, it's just not AAA anymore

Despite the genre's current "sleeper" status, there are still plenty of good platformers released today for both consoles and PC. One look at Steam's "Platformer" tag coughs up 630+ results, and a sizable portion of the best on there were released within the past three or four years.

So why is it the platforming genre is generally considered "dead"? At a time when more platformers are being released than ever, one can only assume it's simply because AAA developers/publishers aren't putting them out, with the odd game in the genre released by a big publisher being minimally marketed.

Sorry, Rayman Legends.

You can take the above as it is and go, "Yep, that's it!" but the issue may just be more complex than the exclusion by big publishers.

On one hand we have a woefully small pool of marketed platforming games these days, but on the other hand we have...well, a really mixed bag of indie releases.

The genre is one of the biggest among the indie development community. Indie platformers come in all styles, difficulties, types, and quality levels. And the quality levels are where people who are less familiar with the indie scene have trouble -- with platformers being one of the easiest genres to make, there are a ton of indie releases in the genre that are less than spectacular.

In the land of indie platforming games

There are 630+ games on Steam tagged as being platformers. But what percentage of that 630+ is worth your time? Not a ton, but wading through the indie game pools can lead to some truly stellar platforming experiences.

There are a lot of great games of the genre on Steam, but let's be real: A lot of what's available isn't exactly what most people would even consider halfway good.

Spelunky is, though. You should play it.

I'm not saying this is indicative of the average quality of platformers today, but it is something that every modern fan of the genre that plunges into the grimy depths of indie platforming games has to bear in mind when they're looking for something new.

Now let's be totally clear: Some of the indie-developed platforming games I've played over the past few years fit very snugly into my list of favorite games: La-Mulana, Spelunky, Risk of Rain, Freedom Planet, Wings of Vi, Rogue Legacy, Rabi-Ribi -- these are just a few of the indie platformer offerings that have won my heart (and rage) over the past three years. And each one is insanely different, showing creativity in the genre isn't dead.

It'd be too easy to lament the amount of not-so-great options out there these days, but variety is the spice of life. Many new developers migrate towards the genre because it's easiest to dive right into making, and everyone has to start somewhere. And that somewhere may lead to something truly special later.

The future of platforming

You may not see advertisements for the genre anymore, but it is by no means dead. Indie developers have kept the platforming train chugging along, filling the genre with respectable games and keeping the hype alive for what's to come.

Platformers may be hiding in the corners of both hardcore and casual gaming for now, but it's not going to be that way forever. The genre dips in and out of popularity as soon as another genre strangles the market share, but it never goes away. It never will -- platforming is one of the few genres developers haven't squeezed all the potential from, and it's possible they never will.

While I am eagerly awaiting upcoming indie platformer darlings Mighty No. 9 and Yooka-Laylee, even without those big names coming I could do just fine with what's else is on the pipeline. There's so much in terms of the platforming genre today, it's hard to get dissatisfied with what's available, even among the sub-par options. There are just too many good platformers out these days to count, much less let the bad wash away the good.

Just because platforming games don't get the attention they used to doesn't mean they're dead, and it certainly does not mean there aren't any amazing recent releases. Platforming is the one genre that can stand the test of time -- and right now it's standing quite proudly, regardless of its current marketing clout.

Watch Spelunky speed run world record broken https://www.gameskinny.com/e3ff6/watch-spelunky-speed-run-world-record-broken https://www.gameskinny.com/e3ff6/watch-spelunky-speed-run-world-record-broken Thu, 13 Aug 2015 06:30:45 -0400 Callum Wiggins

As a casual gamer that likes to take things slow, experience every detail and tell a story in whatever game I enter, the realm of the speed runner is far from my area of expertise. However, that does not mean I don't appreciate the perfection of their craft and the manner in which they brush off runs of remarkably challenging games with consummate ease.

This is especially the case with Spelunky, the platform cave explorer, where you control an adventurer seeking plunder and riches while evading the variety of monsters, wild animals and hunters. 

Unless of course you are YouTuber D Tea, whose goal is simply to get to the bottom of the earth and back to the top in the quickest time possible.

Beginning in the opening mines, he locates both a jetpack and teleporter in the very first shop, which he proceeds to steal and use his lightning reflexes to vastly speed up his progress throughout the levels. D Tea then travels throughout the game with high speed locating items needed to progress beyond the normal end game boss Olmec.

He grabs the Hedjet in the ice caves and the Scepter in the temple to unlock the City of Gold, before using Olmec to descend down into Hell. It is then simply a case of phenomenal speed and agility that sees him defeat the final boss Yama and clock a time of 3:44.411.

It would probably take me that long to complete the first section of the mines, if I hadn't already become a cobra's evening feast. Tea himself states that it was a run where virtually everything went as best as it possibly could in his favor, besides not having a map. The options in the first shop set the tone of this speed run as it ensured his quick passage across all the opening levels.

I tip my miner's cap to this effort, and someone will have to dig deep to beat this unbelievable time.

PlayStation Now All-You-Can-Eat Coming January 13 https://www.gameskinny.com/8wn17/playstation-now-all-you-can-eat-coming-january-13 https://www.gameskinny.com/8wn17/playstation-now-all-you-can-eat-coming-january-13 Tue, 06 Jan 2015 06:18:57 -0500 mchiu

While Sony's PlayStation Now game streaming service is a good attempt at bringing PS3 games available to the PS4 and other Sony devices, the pricing model has not been the greatest, with individual games being rented at $5 for four hours of game time, or as much as $30 for a 90-day subscription to a single title.

Sony has listened well to the complaints, and starting January 13, PlayStation Now will start to offer an all-you-can-eat service, a la Netflix, for $20/month in the North American market. No details have been made for a launch in Europe or Japan as of yet. Initially, this new pricing model will be available only on the PS4, with added support for other devices such as the PS Vita, Xperia phones, PS TV, and SmartTVs. 

There will be over 100 titles available on this new pricing model. In the video games such as Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, Spelunky, NBA2K14, The Last of Us, and God of War Ascension were featured.

The subscription business model for AYCE gaming has come a long way. I remember back in 2005, I had subscribed to an AYCE online game service called GameTap which offered old-school games for download in a similar way. In fact, it's UX design and several other features of the service seemed to have been borrowed by the Xbox 360, in the sense that it also offered videos of upcoming games, but also animated shorts and other original contents. While the PS Now also offers "old-school" games, it's certainly games that are still popular and relevant, and I would be interested in seeing if Sony would start offering current games and new releases at a higher price point for its subscription service.

In the end, this is great to see,  and makes me wonder what is next. Since Sony Electronics produces Bravia SmartTVs and Sony Mobile produces the Xperia line of phones, it makes me wonder if the PlayStation Now service will eventually turns these kinds of products into next-gen consoles and handhelds? Having so many set-top boxes connected to my TV is starting to feel so 1990s now... 

Dad Makes Son Play Video Games in Historical Order, Son Loves It https://www.gameskinny.com/gvojl/dad-makes-son-play-video-games-in-historical-order-son-loves-it https://www.gameskinny.com/gvojl/dad-makes-son-play-video-games-in-historical-order-son-loves-it Thu, 11 Dec 2014 06:17:37 -0500 Ashley Hall

Andy Baio had a son back in 2004. Before that even happened, he and his friends and coworkers brainstormed various experiments he could run using his son as the primary test subject.

Influenced by a Steve Martin standup routine, Baio decided it was perfectly reasonable to deliberately experiment on his offspring, saying, “If you have a kid, why not run experiments on them? It’s like running experiments on a little clone of yourself! And almost always probably legal.” Whether Baio was serious or just joking, he still managed to come up with a non-harmful way to experiment on his son.

Baio cites the reasoning for his eventual experiment as the era in which he grew up. Born in 1977, he experienced the arcade boom firsthand, playing the earliest games as they were released, rather than as a retro game through an emulator or some other console. Baio had a plan: he would have his son play video games in historical chronological order, staring with the Atari 2600, released in the same year Baio was born, dedicating a year to each curriculum, so to speak.

The experiment truly began in 2008, when Eliot turned four, with games from the late 1970s and early 1980s, mostly from the Pac-Man series. Using the plug-and-play joystick games loaded with several retro games, he played his way through, often beating his father’s high scores. Father and son accelerated quickly through these games, moving to Atari 2600 games like Asteroids and then to 8-bit gaming. By six years of age, Eliot was beating games without his father’s help.

“He can appreciate retro graphics on its own terms, and focus on the gameplay.”

NES, Super NES, Nintendo 64, PlayStation 2: Eliot played through them all, up to modern consoles. Of course, some consoles were skipped and not all games were played (a feat that is probably literally impossible). As a result of this experiment, Baio believes Eliot to be more appreciative of modern games, as well as more skilled at video games than many people his age and older.

His son enjoys playing video games, particularly difficult or weird ones, and has an appreciation for low-fi games: “He can appreciate retro graphics on its own terms, and focus on the gameplay.”

Baio used what must be loosely termed as an experiment as a bonding activity and never forced his son to play games he didn't want to play. Through an encouraging and low stress environment, he engendered within his son a love of video games and now his son is taking things into his own hands. Recent conquests include Spelunky and Nuclear Throne, both of which are indie games in a retro style.

To read more about Eliot’s adventures in gaming and Baio’s responses to his recent post revealing the details of his experiment, visit Baio’s Twitter.

Spelunky SD Adds Online Co-Op So You Can Die With Your Friends https://www.gameskinny.com/ymnmr/spelunky-sd-adds-online-co-op-so-you-can-die-with-your-friends https://www.gameskinny.com/ymnmr/spelunky-sd-adds-online-co-op-so-you-can-die-with-your-friends Mon, 07 Jul 2014 10:36:52 -0400 WitheredGryphon

If you're a fan of brutal unforgiving roguelikes, but don't quite have the money to shell out $14.99 for the HD version of Spelunky, then Spelunky SD might just be perfect for you. Especially now that "YellowAfterLife" has released a co-op version of the game to play with your friends. 

For those of you unfamiliar with Spelunky, it is a 2D cave exploring permadeath game in which you must simply make it to the end of the game by proceeding through the doors at the end of the levels. It's not as easy as it sounds though, as traps, monsters, and enemies will all go out of their way in an attempt to make sure you don't.

Spelunky was originally released on the PC as the "Classic" version, and then moved to consoles with a significant graphics upgrade. Modders then picked up work on the classic Spelunky as it was released as an open-source project. Eventually the HD version of Spelunky also moved to PC.

"Legends speak of a Colossal Cave that extends deep underground, so twisted by time that its passages shift like the sand under which it lies... the Cave is said to be filled with fabulous treasures, but also incredible danger!"
- Spelunky

It was not all fun and games though, as the developer of Spelunky SD claimed it took three months to get the co-op version implemented. It was not actually implementing the multiplayer that was the problem for "YellowAfterLife," but the fact that the game simply refused to recognize the other player. Meaning enemies, traps, and more would outright ignore the second player.

Eventually after long hours of testing and development, however, the mod was finished. The mod currently supports 2 players and the developer has expressed interest in multiplayer PvP, a level editor, and compatability for Mac and Linux. However, the developer has said he plans to pursue other games, working on fine-tuning his implementations of multiplayer.

You can check out the developer's full entry at: http://yal.cc/

To pick up the mod you can head over to: http://gamejolt.com/

Persistence: Gaming's Greatest Teaching https://www.gameskinny.com/oocib/persistence-gamings-greatest-teaching https://www.gameskinny.com/oocib/persistence-gamings-greatest-teaching Sat, 24 May 2014 23:39:57 -0400 Mike Acciarino

Playing Rogue Legacy, Spelunky, Volgarr the Viking, Hotline Miami, and Risk of Rain, games that can be excruciatingly difficult at times, and these games have me wondering what it is that keeps me crawling back for more. The simple answer would be that some of these games have leveling systems that just plain work. The sophisticated answer? These games are helping players like me build a strong sense of persistence.

The aforementioned titles are all about countless retries, repeated moments of “I can do so much better, let me have another go.” Maybe it is merely the stats that keep me from rage quitting, I'd probably fully agree with that point if it wasn't for Volgarr the Viking, possibly the hardest game I've ever played, which has zero stats whatsoever – and even forces you to start from the beginning of the game every time you decide to log back on, retro style.

As tedious as restarting the game sounds, it doesn't keep me from playing the hell out of it. My increasing persistence allows me to memorize each stage and eventually even master them. If Volgarr kept count of how many times I've died in my five or so hours of playtime, it'd be embarrassing to repeat here. Nonetheless, my persistence reigns true in this title especially, and nothing stops me from trying again and again to clear each stage. 

One of my proudest nerd moments was the time I beat the Forgotten One (above) from the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow DLC Resurrection. The entire DLC was this one, huge boss fight that had me pulling my hair out for a good hour and a half. The sense of relief I felt when I took the beast down is not exclusive to gaming.

I get the same feeling when acing a test I thought I'd done poorly on even after studying hard. Or after I've written a piece of fiction that receives positive feedback from multiple critics. Sure, it was one test, and sure, the critics might have been a few friends and family members - but if you're persistent, you have permission to feel a wave of relief at the finish line.

My theory is that enduring consistent struggles in something like a video game can carry over into the real world. As a student and creative writer, persistence is armor I want and truly need. Basically, small victories like slaying the Forgotten One might help me shake off potential rejections when I try to get my writing published someday.

Rogue Legacy (above) tallied up my playthroughs recently after I'd completed the game. I died two hundred and thirty-four times. Two hundred and thirty-four. That's a pretty insane number of deaths. Why I kept jumping back into the castle full of things that wanted to kill me – and did kill me – could arguably have been because of the title's level functionality, but I'm willing to bet it's because, subconsciously, I knew I could do better.

Failures in life can't be undone with a simple respawn or redo, but you can always pick yourself back up after you've fallen and try again. Especially, I've found, when it comes to writing. Your skill with a pen improves over time, practicing constantly with some inevitable flops. Keep your pen in hand long enough and you could write something people really dig.

J.K. Rowling was famously rejected twelve times when trying to publish her phenomenon Harry Potter. Lesser known fact, after being rejected because his story was too violent, author Chuck Palahniuk wrote an even more disturbing piece to piss his editor off. This work is today known as Fight Club, a book that spawned a cult classic film directed by David Fincher. When life (editors, coaches, parents, et cetera) knocks you down, and it will, come back swinging. Hell, start a fight club.

Opinionated Gamers, Old vs. Young: Who is More Entitled? https://www.gameskinny.com/e020u/opinionated-gamers-old-vs-young-who-is-more-entitled https://www.gameskinny.com/e020u/opinionated-gamers-old-vs-young-who-is-more-entitled Thu, 20 Mar 2014 02:16:47 -0400 Pierre Fouquet

Before you dive into this article I just want to give you an idea what I mean by old and young.

Old is when you were a child or teenager at the time of 8-bit or 16-bit consoles. Think the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive or NES/SNES era, maybe even Commodore 64.

Young is when you were a child or teenager when 3D games were here. Think Sony PlayStations, Microsoft Xbox (not One but the first one), Nintendo GameCube and N64 type eras.

Gamers who are children or young teenagers (below 14) now, and are growing up with the Xbox 360, PS3 (and now Xbox One and PS4) are included in the group Young. However they will be dubbed as baby gamers for the purposes of this article.

Right are we all understood? Great, let’s dive head first into this.

Who Gets the Bigger or Louder Say?

The Debate

There’s been a debate raging between gamers for as long as I can remember so, this is nothing new. It’s got everything to do with who gets the biggest say between gamers and their ages. Do the older gamers get a bigger say about what should happen in the gaming industry because they used to play 8-bit or 16-bit 2D platformers? Do the young gamers get a bigger say because they were the reason 3D gaming became a thing? Do baby gamers have the biggest say because they are the future of gaming? Because they will shape what gaming will be like in the future, how it will be perceived?

As I said, this debate is nothing new. I simply wanted to share my feelings as a young, 20-year-old, gamer who grew up in the PS2 and Xbox Original era. There is no one, of any age, who is right, or better. No one gets a bigger say. No one has a better opinion, but let’s think why some age groups think they are better. Well, my opinion of why at the very least.

The Righteous Wiseman

There are older gamers out there who believe they have the only say. That they have the ultimate power for what games should be like. Gamers who were... say, under 15, when Thief first came out, World of Warcraft, or even Half Life. On the console side, they played the 2D platformers, like Sonic. Scrolling beat-em ups, like Streets of Rage. Fighting games like Punch-Out.

The Original Sonics are the best.

Some of them believe games should go back to how they were when they were kids: they have to be brutal, unforgiving and have no saves. They believe that those sorts of games are the only way to game, and that everyone should love them.

This has nothing to do with if I like the game or not, I personally love Sonic (lately it has gone down a very steep hill). But why do some older gamers feel the need to tell us young gamers what we should and should not play, or like? Is it because they grew up with these games? So they feel if they had to play them, that we must play them also? By "had", I mean if they wanted to play games, they had no other choice than to play what they had. This isn’t inherently bad.

So the above is the stereotype, but these come from where right? Of course the older gamers how have legitimate complaints are voicing opinions like,  hit a button and go, no 100 hoops to jump through. To be able to be in the privacy and comfort of your own room. Having no forced multiplayer, no constant "sharing" via social media. And nobody knowing what you're playing and doing 24/7. Along with no constant patches, updates, DLC, etc. Thank you Fathoms_4209 for bringing this up.

I agree with Fathoms

Why do we have multiplayer thrown at us all the time, along with patches, DLC and social media? Can we not just enjoy a nice single player game? Ok, so this is slightly off the topic. There are games for you, The Last of Us being one of the best examples for this in really recently times.

Can we all be Happy?

Old gamers want their super-tuff-no-save 2D platformers, but I want my not-too-hard, always save FPSs. Ok not me per say, but some baby gamers find the 2D games to be terrible, a waste of time and boring. And that’s fine to. Let’s just have both, with games like Super Meat Boy, Spelunky or VVVVVVVV (how many Vs does the game have?) older gamers have their platformers.

I have yet the play Spelunky as I feel 2D platforming games are a bit saturated. But there are still some great ones out there, and which are going to come out.

With the Call of Duty and Battlefield franchises, and now Titanfall, baby gamers have lots to choose from for their FPS gaming.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 had some amazing moments, but marked the beginning of the downfall of Call of Duty for me.

Baby Gamers Baby Crying

Baby gamers want JUST Call of Duty (or that fish game, CoD is it?). I mean look at the sales, it shows it’s the best game ever created right? Wrong. There are lots of baby gamers who use the, “it sold more than your game” argument to prove that the game is better. Sales do not equate to quality.

It’s apparent that the quality of Call of Duty, or even Battlefield, has been decreasing. They are getting more and more buggy. But their sales are rising. Why is this? Is it because baby gamers just want the same thing over and over? Well that’s just the thing, there is more and more outcry about how all games are becoming Call of Duty. Even the likes of racing games, other FPS games or even 2D platformers--but why is this?

Each Call of Duty sold more and more, but are they getting better a better?

Online Ranking Systems

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare brought online ranking systems to the forefront of how a multiplayer shooter should be. With its successes, many games started copying it. Which is fine; if something does well why not take its ideas? It works with the Batman Arkham games. They don’t do anything new, but they put a fresh spin on ideas.

As this ranking system got more popular, other genres started to use it. Look at the Forza Motorsport series, most notably Forza 3. This version in the series introduced an online ranking system, which works much like Call of Duty: compete to gain points. Get specific levels you get bonuses, like cars or XP boosts, or a reduction on cost of parts. Look at Ace Combat: Assault Horizon--many calling it Call of Duty in the sky. I tend to agree with them, but it was an enjoyable game. Which brings me to my next point.

Ace Combat changed, but was it for the better?

Gamers Both Want Change and Loath Change

An example of wanting and liking change, Deus Ex: Human Revolution. The game is different from the originals by adding a cover mechanic, the praxis points and the ability to lift only very specific things. But they kept the core of what Deus Ex was, the ability to play the game how you wanted.

An example of going against change, Thief (the new one). Again the game is different from the originals by adding a cover mechanic, adding a leveling and upgrade system. Also only allowing you to jump or climb at specific points. They also kept the core of what Thief is, the ability to play the game how you wanted. Ghosting or more aggresive stealth (of course the only option is stealth).

How is this different from Deus Ex? Not letting you jump all the time? Why would you want to? Would Garrett really bunny hop? Have they not kept the core of what Thief is? The similarities between how Eidos Montreal made the Thief and Deus Ex reboots are close. They both add a hub type world, they restrict what you can do without making it feel like you can’t do anything. And, above all, they both made mistakes but, overall are fantastic. Are they not? If you don't like them, tell me why.

With both of these games they tried something new and both had different outcomes on what people thought. They both made mistakes, but both kept to what the series is known for. Young gamers really like the games, but some old gamers do not.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution, the Detroit hub world.

Whose Voice is for Change?

It seems like there are plenty of voices for change, but there are plenty against. It sounds like to me that most of the noise for change is coming from my era, the PS2 era. But that may be me being a little bit biased. What do you think?

Baby gamers are saying we need more FPS games. Older gamers are saying, with any reboots they need to be made exactly the same as the originals. But the PS2 era gamers are saying we need hybrids of each.

Who’s Right?

There is no right and wrong. There are currently games for everyone and anyone, games for all ages, all gamer styles. They are not all old 1980s games, there are plently of older style games which have come out very recently.

Whose Voice is the Truth?

After going off track, let’s bring it full circle. Your voice is the truth, but only for you. My voice is the truth, but for everyone! Ok, everyone who agrees with me. If you are reading this thinking, "God! SpazldNinja has written utter rubbish!" Please write a counter argument telling me why. I always love to hear both sides.

I honestly think that this whole my voice is the best attitude is rubbish, everyone is correct for themselves, and the sooner everyone accepts that, the quicker we will all get along.

Generalising the Minority

Of course for anything said I am generalising. For the purposes of this article, I had to. The people arguing like this are the minority, they are just a bit more vocal.

Back to Entitlement

No one has the entitlement to be the only correct voice. No one has a louder voice. Everyone is equal. So with that cheese out the way, let’s get into the meat of this. I've said this about 10 times by now right? Sorry.

If everyone thinks they are the only truth, then are we not all wrong? After saying your voice is the truth, I am now saying you are wrong, why? For me, if you say Call of Duty: Ghosts is the best game, I will say you are wrong. That means you are wrong, right? Wrong. But... what? You are right for you, and that is all that counts. So, again, your truth is the truth for yourself, and not fact.

What Does your Voice Say About You?

Instead of thinking that your voice is correct, think about how your voice comes across to others. Does it make you seem like you’re arrogant? Does it make you come across as a person with an opinion, who also respects others? Does it say that you’re immature and dumb, even when you aren’t?

Do you think I’m right or wrong? How did I come across to you in this article? What do you think? Have I respected your age group? Let me know in the comments below.


If anything in this article offends you, please let me know. Then I can explain that I didn’t mean to. I will then add to the article explaining why I have said what I did.

All of this was from my head, if I got anything wrong, please let me know.

PSN: 14 For '14 Sale Begins This Week https://www.gameskinny.com/c6wha/psn-14-for-14-sale-begins-this-week https://www.gameskinny.com/c6wha/psn-14-for-14-sale-begins-this-week Mon, 13 Jan 2014 06:06:22 -0500 Brandon Morgan

We're two weeks into the New Year, and sales have already begun for our favorite consoles. Sony is notorious for hosting sales on their PSN platform, especially for those who subscribe to PlayStation Plus for the yearly membership fee. The 14 for '14 sale will begin this week, offering up numerous titles for great prices.

The sale begins on January 14 and ends on January 20. Those subscribed to PlayStation Plus will get even more off the original and sales price for some of the hottest games available today.

14 for '14 sale:

BIT.TRIP Presents… Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien
PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Crysis 3
PS Plus Price: $5.00
Sale Price: $9.99
Was: $19.99

Deus Ex Human Revolution: Director’s Cut
PS Plus Price: $13.49
Sale Price: $14.99
Was: $29.99

ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West – Premium Edition
PS Plus Price: $5.00
Sale Price: $9.99
Was: $19.99

F1 2013
PS Plus Price: $20.99
Sale Price: $29.99
Was: $59.99

Far Cry Blood Dragon
PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut (Cross Buy)
PS Plus Price: $5.24
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $12.99

Pool Nation
PS Plus Price: $2.25
Sale Price: $4.49
Was: $8.49

PS Plus Price: $7.00
Sale Price: $13.99
Was: $39.99

PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Rayman Legends
PS Plus Price: $35.99
Sale Price: $47.99
Was: $59.99

Tales of Xillia
PS Plus Price: $10.00
Sale Price: $19.99
Was: $39.99

The Wolf Among Us Season Pass
PS Plus Price: $13.49
Sale Price: $14.99
Was: $19.99

Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
PS Plus Price: $7.50
Sale Price: $14.99
Was: $29.99

Killzone: Mercenary
PS Plus Price: $9.00
Sale Price: $17.99
Was: $35.99

PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut (Cross Buy)
PS Plus Price: $5.24
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $12.99

PS Plus Price: $5.00
Sale Price: $9.99
Was: $19.99

PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (PS Vita)
PS Plus Price: $6.75
Sale Price: $13.49
Was: $26.99

Soul Sacrifice
PS Plus Price: $9.00
Sale Price: $17.99
Was: $35.99

SPELUNKY (Cross Buy)
PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49
Was: $14.99

Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark (Cross Buy)
PS Plus Price: $4.19
Sale Price: $5.99
Was: $9.99

The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season
PS Plus Price: $5.00
Sale Price: $9.99
Was: $19.99

Thomas Was Alone (Cross Buy)
PS Plus Price: $2.50
Sale Price: $4.99
Was: $9.99

Velocity Ultra Vita
PS Plus Price: $2.00
Sale Price: $3.99
Was: $7.49

Worms Revolution Extreme
PS Plus Price: $3.75
Sale Price: $7.49

Waiting for NIDHOGG? Here are 4 Great Indie Arena Fighters https://www.gameskinny.com/dql6a/waiting-for-nidhogg-here-are-4-great-indie-arena-fighters https://www.gameskinny.com/dql6a/waiting-for-nidhogg-here-are-4-great-indie-arena-fighters Wed, 08 Jan 2014 10:55:15 -0500 Amanda Wallace


4. Spelunky 


While the game is probably best known for its roguelike caving, Spelunky also has one of the best indie deathmatch modes ever. Rounds rarely last longer than 30 seconds, and death comes swiftly and frustratingly. 


In regular gameplay, everything in the Spelunky universe is trying to kill you, so its no surprise that the same is true in deathmatch -- except now you also have other players actively seeking your head. One place where Spelunky deathmatch truly shines is what happens after your character is brutally murdered. Your ghostly presence can still affect the battle, and can sometimes turn the tide in one direction or the other. 


Spelunky is available on PC and Xbox 360, and you can check out more info on the Mossmouth website.


3. Samurai Gunn 


Samurai Gunn is a "lightning fast, bushido brawler," where 2-4 players battle out their differences with a sword and a gun with three bullets. The quick gameplay lends itself to relatively quick matches. 


The game also has serious points in the "style" category with it's Asian flair and the visual effects of watching a head fly off. 


You can buy the Samurai Gunn on Steam


2. Foiled 


A fighting game surrounding the mechanics of fencing doesn't initially sound as fascinating as Foiled ends up being. The game can alternatively be fast-raced and nail-biting, or slow and determined, and that all depends on the way you play. 


Once you beat an opponent (by running them through with your foil) you must then drop off their soul into the corresponding box at the top of the screen. With clear mechanics and basic graphics, foiled allows the gameplay itself to shine. 


The game is free on the Foiled website


1. Towerfall 


Stripped of unnecessarily flashy graphics, Towerfall is a bare, bones kind of arena fighter available now in the Ouya marketplace. Pre-Matt Thorson, the world didn't know it needed this archery based combat game, or even that it would be the defining game of Ouya's launch. 


Currently, you can only buy the game in the Ouya app store, but the game is coming to PC and PS4 sometime in the Spring


With the weather outside being decidedly frightful, there's really no better way to hang out with friends, significant others, and random strangers than attempting to kill each other in arena fighting games. 


Fighters are expensive though, even if you hit up the bargain bin at Gamestop. But you can save money and help feed a starving indie game maker by trying out these fantastic independent games. 

Great Games From Steam's Holiday Sale 2013 https://www.gameskinny.com/7thoo/great-games-from-steams-holiday-sale-2013 https://www.gameskinny.com/7thoo/great-games-from-steams-holiday-sale-2013 Fri, 27 Dec 2013 03:10:03 -0500 Mike Acciarino

Note: This is an ongoing seasonal sale. 

Now that December's end is approaching, I thought I'd take the time to highlight some of the great games that Steam's Holiday Sale has been shooting out at us this year. Note that these are the games I purchased myself, and would actually love if you left some of your own recommendations in the comments below. I'm not much of a PC gamer and just recently jumped on this high-speed Steam train. I game – usually – on my laptop, so these games will more than likely run for any of you interested in a title I mention.  


I'm not even quite sure how I found it, but I fell under Bastion's spell pretty early on in the game. You play as “the kid”, a silent protagonist who wakes up to find his world in shambles – literally. Awakening to the sight of his now floating home, he begins to make his way to the Bastion, a safe location that every citizen should report to in times of distress. The streets form under your feet and you soon find your trusty hammer, which will help you fight the ghostly opponents ahead. After reaching the now destroyed Bastion, you confront a stranger who helps you begin your quest to rebuild the town using cores that can be found around the world and reached using skybridges (basically air vents that shoot you up into the sky, bringing you to your desired location).

Bastion is a ton of fun to play. Leveling up is a blast and upgrading items and weapons you've salvaged along the way make for not necessarily an original, but an addictive, formula. The clever narration makes up for the silent protagonist here, and I can't imagine it being the same any other way. Witty narrators have been an element I've quickly grown very fond of, and I'd like to see it in other games. Bastion is available on both the Xbox 360 and Steam, and is highly recommended by me. 

Guacamelee! Gold Edition 

In Guacamelee!, you play as a Mexican farmer named Juan, who, from the looks of him, is not a very happy man. Woken up by a priest from a local church, you soon find yourself getting caught up in an attack on your village.

After heroically trying to save the president of Mexico's daughter, you are zapped by a hellish skeleton named Carlos Calaca, and killed. Coming to a Limbo-esque setting, you equip an ancient and powerful luchadore mask, transforming you into a powerful fighter. It brings you back to the land of the living, and you set off to rescue the president's daughter from the fleshless hands of Carlos Calaca.

I haven't played a terrible amount of Guacamelee!, but I have played enough to know it is great. Being a game that I heard fantastic things about, I jumped when I saw the gold edition of the title drop to $4. I regretted not having a controller to use on my laptop, but I still had fun.

Without a controller, you use various keys to punch and kick your enemies and finish them off by throwing them in any desired direction. Guacamelee! is available on Steam, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and will soon be coming to next-gen consoles with additional content. 

Killing Floor

Of this list, I have spent the majority of my time playing Killing Floor. Although, this does not mean I like it the best. Months ago, I had a much weaker laptop that struggled to run titles like Bastion. Not only did I have a very low-end PC, I didn't consider myself a PC gamer in the slightest. I had Killing Floor gifted to me and, lucky for me, it ran smoothly. Of my twenty-three hours of game time, I've probably only played with other people four or five times, so this is a game that can be enjoyed solo – though I do recommend hooking up with a few buddies at least once.

Killing Floor is a simple game with a simple objective for the player(s): kill zombies. A game can be created by selecting a map, game length, and difficulty. Around this time of year, the developers change out the standard-looking zombies with Christmas-themed modules. Ordinary zombies wear Santa hats and imitate elves. Slower, fatter zombies that spit acidic vomit are now dressed up as Santa Claus. Tall zombies with melee weapons that charge you are now gingerbread men with candy canes, shouting phrases like “I'm delicious!” in a manner that will creep the hell out of you with headphones on late at night. A nice pop to the head shuts them up however, and maybe you'll even activate ZED mode, a slow-motion gun mode that allows you to witness the destructive process of an exploding head.

When you've taken out a wave of infected, you can visit the weapon store. The store sells guns, body armor that serves as a second health bar, ammo, and other useful items such as frag grenades. The weapon store moves after the completion of a wave, so it's always wise to keep a lookout for it as you near the end of a round. When you've survived each of the waves, you've won the game and will likely want to boot another one up. Killing Floor is available on Steam.

Rogue Legacy

When a friend recommended this to me, I checked it out on Steam and was honestly a bit iffy at first. It was intriguing for sure; randomly generated dungeons with a unique set of characters to choose from definitely got me excited. But I couldn't help but think from the gameplay trailer it would be painfully difficult. Surely enough, when I decided to ignore my nervousness and go with my gut – and the trust I had in the recommendation – it was hard. Strangely though, I didn't regret the purchase, I kept playing – a lot.

Death after death I'd choose a new character and jump into a newly designed castle for me to take on, and despite my consecutive and countless deaths, I was having fun. You see, the good thing about the game is that even though you're dying and choosing a new hero to play as, you're still leveling up. And that's something the player will realize after a little while; the game picks up speed tremendously and you feel much more powerful as you progress, even if you are dying over twenty times before reaching level ten, like myself.

As you level up and earn loot, you can upgrade your hero, which will visually develop your own personal castle. I asked the friend that recommended the game to me if it was supposed to be this difficult, or if it was just my poor skill, and he replied simply with, “dying is like, the entire point.” Rogue Legacy is available on Steam.   

Left 4 Dead 2

Valve surprised us when they made their critically acclaimed title, Left 4 Dead 2, available on Steam for free. After I had rushed to install it, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the download not only included L4D2, but the original Left 4 Dead content as well. The sweet deal lasted only one day, hopefully long enough for you to grasp it, and ended up stressing out those who bought it at full price. One angry user even threatened to bring the developer to court. More on this at eight.

The first-person zombie-killing shooter comes with numerous campaigns, not necessarily short and not necessarily long sequences, that all feature you and three other players trying to reach an evacuation spot somewhere. As loudly as that screams “repetitive”, the different areas you're thrown into change and are held up nicely by the endlessly fun zombie-killing gameplay.

You're given a nice choice of equipment at each safe house you come across, and are expected to hold out with your chosen items for the entire chapter, so choose your gear wisely. You can't go wrong with a shotgun, pistol, pipe bomb (a bomb that attracts the zombie horde's attention, only to explode when they reach the beeping device), and a medical kit that can heal either an injured ally or you.

There are different types of zombies as well, like: Chargers who, well, charge at you; Tanks, who will bang you up pretty badly if you're not careful; and Witches, who I particularly like. They're crying can be heard from dozens of feet away, and it's important to watch your step and keep your flashlight off when you do reach an area that contains a Witch. Happen to get spotted by a Witch – not fun.

When you reach the end of the campaign, you'll need to survive a final stretch as a helicopter flies over to you. Any players killed or left behind will be mentioned lovingly in the credits. God dang Tanks. Left 4 Dead 2 is available on Steam and the Xbox 360


I'd been interested in BIT.TRIP RUNNER for a long time before I saw it drop to a dollar. Its gameplay looked like a nice challenge; jumping, sliding, and even kicking your way through numerous levels. And I was not disappointed when I bought it.

The game is divided into three zones, with a number of levels in each. I'm on the brink of the first zone and am itching to play it as I type this. The game starts slow and easy, as most games do, but takes a dramatic turn to the challenges ahead rather quickly.

As you jump, slide, and kick your way along, musical notes play which allow you to keep up with the game's pace and start a tune of your own. This feature – I would imagine – was designed for not only musical entertainment, but to help you. A lot of the game is about trial and error, remembering where you died last to avoid the obstacle next time, and memorizing the tune of the song you're making as you dodge each obstacle helps tremendously.

There are also gold bars to be collected as you dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge (I couldn't resist the Dodgeball reference, I apologize), and if you collect all of them, you unlock a bonus level jam-packed with gold bars for you to gather. BIT.TRIP RUNNER is just one of those games so simple, it's incredibly addictive. It's available on Steam, Wii, and 3DS. 


Being another game, like Rogue Legacy, that features randomly generated playgrounds full of loot, Spelunky caught my attention when I saw it win the community's choice for a price drop. I'd heard great things prior, but again, it looked challenging as heck. Like before, I ignored all doubts and purchased the game. It was $3.74; if it was not to my liking, it was not to my liking, and that would be that. But that same feeling of joy that filled me when I started learning my way around Rogue Legacy returned when I realized how enjoyable Spelunky really was. Pretty darn difficult, but very entertaining.

Playing as an unnamed adventurer, a “spelunker”, you explore underground tunnels filled with gold to collect. Enemies like bats and snakes will attempt to hurt you, but they can be avoided or taken head on with your whip.

Careful, though – run out of hearts and you'll have to start from the beginning. Items like ropes and grenades can be purchased, or found, and used to get to out-of-reach areas. I haven't had the pleasure of experiencing anything tear-jerkingly difficult, but I also haven't spent a terribly long amount of time with the title. Spelunky is available on Steam, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation Vita

The Binding of Isaac

I bought The Binding of Isaac with its available DLC a long way back, when I had that lower-end PC I was telling you about earlier. It was one of the few games that ran, and a good one at that. Recommended to me by the same person that told me about Rogue Legacy, I bought it willingly. Five dollars is, and always will be, better than a brand new sixty dollar console title, so what the heck, right?

You are Isaac, son to a religious nut of a mother who tries to kill you after she is supposedly commanded by God – who is likely just a wiseass narrator – to sacrifice you. Isaac flees into the basement, now on the run, and must now face the evils that live beneath the ground.

As if I haven't mentioned it enough already, the game is pretty difficult with varying randomized dungeons and boss battles as you progress. Using your own tears as your source of defense, you take on different creatures roaming your basement. The game isn't endless, however it is challenging and hard to beat. I have seven total hours and haven't beaten it a single time. I've come close, though, and that's enough to bring me back for more.

As you play, you can find keys to unlock chests and upgrade Isaac so that his tears are stronger, and his movement is faster. You can even find a companion, like Isaac's cat, that allows you to have multiple lives. Special cards can be found strewn around as well, giving Isaac powers such as “mom's pad,” which can be used to stun or hurt enemies. When you've grown tired of Isaac, there are other characters for you to unlock, too. The Binding of Isaac is available on Steam, and a retail version is also available for PC and Mac, titled The Binding of Isaac: The Most Unholy Edition.

Hotline Miami

My final game on the list is Hotline Miami, a 2D, top-down, brutal shooter that pits you, an unnamed killer, up against mobsters all around the city. The game doesn't always go in chronological order, there are few characters, and it sometimes feels like you're going in a circle – but (at least from my experience) you don't seem to care because the gameplay is so darn fun. 

Pummeling the mob to a sweet soundtrack is undeniably entertaining, and makes for a great time. Using guns and melee weapons, like crowbars and knives, you battle your way through sections of tough gangsters that will kill you in an instant if you're not tactical about where you step first. Although I have gotten lucky and been able to quickly wipe a section clear with several swipes of a crowbar.

At the end of each section you'll be graded on your performance based on things like “boldness” and how long it took you to clear the area. It pushes a player like me to reach for an A and be quick on my feet. As for the story, it seems to still be unraveling where I'm at in the game, which is pretty early on, but so far the gameplay is the aspect pulling me forward. Hotline Miami is available on Steam, PlayStation 3 and Vita

Now if you excuse me, I'm gonna get back to my Steam library. Please post a game or two you recommend below in the comments section, and/or let me know if you'd like to know more about one of the games I mentioned above.

Spelunky Review - The Roguelike Platformer That Stole My Heart https://www.gameskinny.com/iwnl4/spelunky-review-the-roguelike-platformer-that-stole-my-heart https://www.gameskinny.com/iwnl4/spelunky-review-the-roguelike-platformer-that-stole-my-heart Wed, 13 Nov 2013 02:20:40 -0500 Ashley Shankle

I recently purchased about eight indie games off of Steam, each one as different as the last. One has stood above the rest as not only the game I've spent the most time on so far, but also the one I feel like I will be playing for months: Spelunky.

Those who have kept an eye on the indie scene over the past few years have likely at least heard of the freeware version of the game, and the Xbox Live Arcade community saw the remake's release last year. The PC version of the Spelunky remake is virtually identical to the XBLA release, sans a character exclusive to console.


As a long-time roguelike player, Spelunky is an absolute delight. The game mixes together the challenging gameplay of side-scrolling dungeon crawling (like La-Mulana) with the brutal and unforgiving nature of the roguelike, a genre best suited to bull-headed masochists.

Players are tasked with traversing the caves, collecting riches, and surviving -- that last bit is the most difficult part.

Some adventures just aren't meant to end well.

Going through the mines, jungle, ice caves, and so on is no easy task thanks to the multitude of enemies, ranging from benign to murderous, and the numerous traps laid out to slay the unwitting adventurer. A single point of damage early on can mean an untimely death later, and a hit from the wrong enemy can mean taking a lot more damage from other surrounding perils.

As players make their way through the caves, they will also find merchants selling equipment, items, kisses from the damsel not-so-in-distress, and even a gambling parlor. These merchants are randomly placed throughout the caves, as are several special floors that come about randomly (often at the worst times).

Each floor has a hidden damsel in distress, looking for his, her, or its (one of the damsel options is an adorable pug) knight in charming spelunking gear. Finding the damsel and carrying it to the exit will bestow upon you the greatest gift a spelunker could get: a sloppy kiss and an extra life point.

Gimme that sweet, sweet dog slobber.

All of the above makes the game in itself charming and addictive, but the addition of several playable characters, daily challenges, and so many things to discover really push it to the limit. There has been no game that has charmed me so completely, sans Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (life substitute, more like) in quite some time.

So what's the bad?


Yes, that's right: I can find no wrong in this odd beast of a game.

While I certainly would love to see online multiplayer, there is nothing to truly detract from the overall experience of Spelunky.

Some may complain that perhaps the game is too difficult, but that is the point. You're not supposed to have an easy time of it, no matter how experienced you are. The more time you spend with Spelunky, the better you become, but some of the perils that lie within are inevitable, and that is the very nature of a roguelike.

You can't fool me, it's below freezing out here!

As you play on, you can feel yourself becoming more responsive. You can more easily assess a situation, determine what to do, and act on it. In a way, the game rewards you for continuing through death after death because you are honing your skills and learning.

If you like the feeling of accomplishment you get by gradually improving at a game you enjoy, play Spelunky like it's 1999 and don't look back.

If you played and enjoyed La-Mulana, play this game. If you like side-scrolling platformers, play this game. If you like non-traditional roguelikes, play this game.

The freeware version of Spelunky can be found on the official website, should you want to try your hand for free. The remake--featuring some minor gameplay changes, revamped visuals and music, and new characters--can be purchased via Steam or GoG for $14.99.

Spelunky Video Armageddon at PAX Prime 2013! https://www.gameskinny.com/ihw77/spelunky-video-armageddon-at-pax-prime-2013 https://www.gameskinny.com/ihw77/spelunky-video-armageddon-at-pax-prime-2013 Fri, 30 Aug 2013 20:06:10 -0400 The Ian M

It's time for a recap of one of the PAX Prime 2013 panels: Spelunky Video Armageddon! 

First, just let me say: holy crap I had no idea Spelunky was so freaking competitive! 

After many technical troubles (including a dead laptop) the panel finally got underway, featuring a mega throwdown between 4 epic indie developers!

With commentary by Max Temkin, creator of Cards against Humanity, and developer Greg Wohlwend. The build used for the panel was created by Mossmouth specifically for this panel; it's unique in that it allows the competitors to get back into the same seed! This puts all players on the same footing. 

For those of you that don't know Spelunky is a rougelike platformer hybrid, playing as an intrepid explorer who spelunks in caves looking for treasure. With the new version that recently launched on Steam, Mossmouth added a crap ton of new content including local co-op play and 20 different playable characters!

Colin showed off a killer way to KO the dreaded shop keepers early only to the amazement of the audience. 

Doug and Zack were the first devs to go down!

Fallen competitors were replaced by volunteers from the audience. On and on the competition was fierce! 

And then the stream went down due to technical difficulties... :(

...and again and again! 

Next thing we know, the match is over and Colin Northway won by destroying the final boss, King Yama.

It was a nail biter, folks! 

That's the Spelunky Panel Recap!

It's Time for an Xbox Party https://www.gameskinny.com/iumxj/its-time-for-an-xbox-party https://www.gameskinny.com/iumxj/its-time-for-an-xbox-party Wed, 08 May 2013 23:27:01 -0400 Amanda Wallace

If you’re lucky enough to have [gamer] friends, and lucky enough for them to come over to your house/apartment/parents’ basement, then once they’re there you might want to actually entertain them. But with what? You’ve got a broad selection of grey-brown first person shooters, a handful of fighting games, and little else. What is a friendly gamer nerd to do?

But have no fear; there are plenty of games on the market that will function as party games without having to resort to Wii Tennis.

wii tennis


If you don’t already own this independent action adventure game, it’s a great buy for its single player and multi-player modes. For the sake of parties, Spelunky death match is hard to beat. A match can end in seconds, or longer, and it’s pure chaos. There is also a co-op adventure mode, but it’s pretty much impossible to play for longer than a few minutes and will result in you accidentally/intentionally killing your fellow players.  You can pick up Spelunky from the Xbox Live Arcade.


Another game that is a great, chaotic experience is B.U.T.T.O.N.  The name stands for Brutally Unfair Tactics Totally OK Now. The game gives you a series of tasks that you are supposed to complete, but what makes B.U.T.T.O.N unique is that “anything goes.” Want to pick up your opponent to stop them from pressing their button seven times? You can do it. B.U.T.T.O.N is a bit insane, and you really need a bit of space to play it, but it’s the kind of game you have to keep playing once you've started. Just check out this gameplay video and go ahead and get the demo off Xbox Arcade if you're not sold. 

Bomberman LIVE

Bomberman can be a bit of a nostalgia trip if you’re familiar with the franchise, but it’s still easy enough to pick up that casual gamers can enjoy it as well. Your objective is simply to destroy your opponents with bombs, and it has many different modes and character modifications to keep it interesting and re-playable. The game is also available on Xbox Live Arcade.

Soul Calibur IV

Soul Calibur is a fantastically unexpected party game. You can have eight people watching the fights on your television, cheering on their favorite person, and just have the loser pass their controller over to the next person. It’s engaging enough for “non-gamers” but if you’re a really solid Soul Calibur player, it still allows you to demonstrate your knowledge. 

You Don’t Know Jack

Trivia games are traditional, but great party games, and You Don’t Know Jack is no exception. Where YDKJ separates itself from Scene It and other trivia games is its unique sense of humor and challenging questions.  There are only a handful of modes for answering questions, so the gameplay is mostly restricted to the trivia portion, but it’s a good way to keep more than four people involved in your party, since you can team up two to a controller.

What party games do you use when you get together?