Wed. Apr 17th, 2024

Welcome to the world of 2D platformers, where gamers are treated to an endless array of colorful, fast-paced, and exhilarating games. The platformer genre has been around for decades, captivating players with its challenging gameplay, charming characters, and delightful levels. But with so many amazing games to choose from, which one is the best? The answer to this question has been hotly debated by gamers on Reddit, with many passionate opinions and recommendations. In this article, we’ll dive into the best 2D platformers recommended by the Reddit community, exploring the unique features and gameplay mechanics that make each game a must-play. Whether you’re a seasoned gamer or a newcomer to the genre, get ready to discover the ultimate 2D platformer showdown.

Reddit Community’s Favorite 2D Platformers

Popular Platformers among Reddit Users

Reddit users have shared their favorite 2D platformers, which include both classic and modern games. Here are some of the most popular platformers among Reddit users:

  • Super Mario Bros.: This classic game has been a favorite among gamers for decades. It features simple gameplay, colorful graphics, and challenging levels.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: This fast-paced game has been a fan favorite since its release in the early 1990s. It features smooth gameplay, catchy music, and memorable characters.
  • Rayman Legends: This modern platformer has stunning graphics and challenging levels. It features a variety of gameplay mechanics, including shooting, jumping, and running.
  • Ori and the Blind Forest: This indie game has received critical acclaim for its beautiful graphics, challenging gameplay, and emotional storytelling.
  • Celeste: This indie game has been praised for its challenging gameplay, tight controls, and emotional storytelling. It features a protagonist with anxiety and depression, which adds a unique dimension to the game.
  • A Hat in Time: This cute platformer has been praised for its charming graphics, catchy music, and engaging gameplay. It features a variety of levels, enemies, and collectibles.
  • Shovel Knight: This retro-style platformer has been praised for its challenging gameplay, catchy music, and memorable characters. It features a variety of weapons, enemies, and bosses.
  • Ratchet & Clank: This action-packed platformer has been praised for its colorful graphics, engaging gameplay, and catchy music. It features a variety of weapons, enemies, and planets.
  • Bastion: This indie game has been praised for its beautiful graphics, engaging storytelling, and catchy music. It features a variety of weapons, enemies, and levels.
  • Spelunky: This challenging platformer has been praised for its punishing gameplay, unique levels, and charming graphics. It features a variety of traps, enemies, and collectibles.

These are just a few examples of the many popular 2D platformers among Reddit users. Each game offers a unique experience and has its own set of challenges and rewards.

Factors Contributing to Popularity

When analyzing the factors contributing to the popularity of 2D platformers on Reddit, several key aspects emerge as crucial in shaping the community’s preferences. These include:

  1. Gameplay Mechanics: The intricacy and smoothness of gameplay mechanics play a significant role in determining a game’s popularity. The Reddit community appreciates well-designed controls, seamless character movements, and responsive actions that provide an engaging and enjoyable experience.
  2. Story and Characters: A compelling story and well-developed characters can significantly enhance a 2D platformer’s appeal. The Reddit community often gravitates towards games with intriguing narratives and memorable characters, which add depth and immersion to the overall gaming experience.
  3. Art Style and Visuals: The visual aesthetics of a 2D platformer, including art style, animations, and level design, significantly contribute to its popularity. The Reddit community tends to favor games with unique, eye-catching art styles and vibrant, detailed visuals that immerse players in the game world.
  4. Challenge and Replayability: A balance between challenge and accessibility is crucial for a 2D platformer’s popularity. The Reddit community appreciates games that offer a moderate level of difficulty, encouraging players to replay levels or attempt challenges, while still allowing for a sense of achievement and progression.
  5. Replay Value and Community Engagement: Games that foster a sense of community and encourage replay value are highly sought after by the Reddit community. Features such as leaderboards, multiplayer modes, or secret levels can increase a 2D platformer’s popularity by providing additional incentives for players to continue exploring and competing with others.
  6. Sound Design: A well-designed soundtrack and effective use of sound effects can significantly enhance a 2D platformer’s experience. The Reddit community appreciates games with memorable soundtracks and immersive audio elements that contribute to the overall atmosphere and enjoyment of the game.

By considering these factors, it becomes evident that the popularity of 2D platformers on Reddit is influenced by a combination of gameplay mechanics, story and characters, art style and visuals, challenge and replayability, replay value and community engagement, and sound design. These aspects collectively contribute to the games that resonate most with the Reddit community and ultimately shape their preferences in the 2D platformer genre.

Exploring Different Genres within 2D Platformers

The 2D platformer genre is incredibly diverse, with numerous subgenres that cater to different playstyles and preferences. Some of the most popular genres within the 2D platformer category include:

  • Side-scrolling action: This genre emphasizes fast-paced gameplay, precise timing, and challenging enemies. Players often control characters with enhanced abilities, allowing them to overcome obstacles and defeat foes through skill and quick reflexes.
  • Metroidvania-style: This genre focuses on exploration, interconnected levels, and non-linear progression. Players typically gain new abilities or upgrades that enable them to access previously inaccessible areas, encouraging backtracking and the discovery of hidden secrets.
  • Puzzle-platformer: These games combine elements of puzzle-solving with platforming mechanics. Players must navigate levels while using their wits to overcome obstacles, often involving manipulating the environment or controlling multiple characters with unique abilities.
  • Runner: In this genre, players control a character that continually moves forward, and the objective is to avoid obstacles, collect power-ups, and defeat enemies as they progress. Runner games often feature a minimalist aesthetic and a focus on tight, responsive controls.
  • Platforming RPG: These games combine the platforming genre with RPG elements, such as character customization, leveling, and quests. Players often control a character with RPG-style attributes, which they can upgrade and enhance over time, allowing them to tackle increasingly challenging obstacles and enemies.

Each of these genres offers a unique experience within the 2D platformer category, providing players with a wide range of choices based on their preferences and playstyles.

Characteristics of Different Genres

Platformers come in many different forms, each with its own unique characteristics that set it apart from the others. In this section, we will explore the key features of the most popular genres of 2D platformers as identified by the Reddit community.

Action-Adventure Platformers

Action-adventure platformers are a popular subgenre of platformers that focus on exploration, combat, and puzzle-solving. These games typically feature a large open world for players to explore, with a variety of enemies and obstacles to overcome. Players often have access to a range of weapons and abilities that they can use to defeat enemies and navigate the environment. Examples of popular action-adventure platformers include the “Super Mario” series and “The Legend of Zelda” series.

Metroidvania-Style Platformers

Metroidvania-style platformers are characterized by their nonlinear gameplay and intricate, interconnected worlds. These games often feature a large, open world that players can explore in any order they choose, with new abilities and tools unlocking access to previously inaccessible areas. This creates a sense of progression and discovery as players gradually uncover the secrets of the game’s world. Examples of popular Metroidvania-style platformers include the “Castlevania” series and “Ori and the Blind Forest.”

Pixel Art Platformers

Pixel art platformers are a subgenre of platformers that use a retro, 8-bit aesthetic to create a nostalgic feel for players. These games often feature simple graphics and gameplay mechanics, with a focus on challenging platforming sections and precise controls. Many pixel art platformers also feature a high degree of difficulty, with punishing levels and pervasive difficulty spikes. Examples of popular pixel art platformers include “Celeste” and “Shovel Knight.”

Roguelike Platformers

Roguelike platformers are a subgenre of platformers that incorporate elements of roguelike games, such as permadeath and procedurally generated levels. These games often feature a high degree of difficulty and a strong emphasis on player skill, with permadeath adding a sense of consequence to each playthrough. Roguelike platformers often feature randomized levels and enemies, creating a unique experience each time the game is played. Examples of popular roguelike platformers include “Spelunky” and “Rogue Legacy.”

Traditional Side-Scrolling Platformers

Traditional side-scrolling platformers are the classic 2D platformers that defined the genre. These games typically feature simple controls and gameplay mechanics, with a focus on precise platforming and timing. Players typically move left or right along a single axis, jumping and dodging obstacles as they progress through the level. Examples of popular traditional side-scrolling platformers include the “Sonic the Hedgehog” series and “Donkey Kong Country.”

Best Examples of Each Genre

When it comes to 2D platformers, there are a variety of genres that gamers enjoy. Here are some of the best examples of each genre as recommended by the Reddit community:

Action Platformers

  • Super Mario Bros.: This classic game has been praised for its innovative gameplay, tight controls, and memorable soundtrack.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: Known for its speed and momentum-based gameplay, Sonic the Hedgehog is a beloved series that challenges players to navigate through levels at breakneck speeds.
  • Rayman Legends: This critically acclaimed game is known for its gorgeous visuals, creative level design, and responsive controls.

Metroidvania-style Games

  • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night: This game is widely regarded as a classic of the Metroidvania genre, with a complex, interconnected world to explore and a rich combat system.
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night: This game draws inspiration from the Castlevania series and features a vast, gothic world to explore, challenging boss battles, and a deep combat system.
  • Ori and the Blind Forest: This beautifully crafted game is known for its challenging gameplay, tight controls, and gorgeous visuals.


  • Celeste: This game is known for its challenging gameplay, responsive controls, and emotionally resonant storytelling.
  • Limbo: This game is a moody, atmospheric puzzle-platformer that challenges players to navigate a dark and foreboding world.
  • Brain Your Brain Out: This game is a series of puzzles that require creative thinking and lateral reasoning to solve.

2D Fighting Games

  • Street Fighter II: This game is a classic of the fighting game genre, with responsive controls, memorable characters, and intense multiplayer battles.
  • Mortal Kombat: This game is known for its over-the-top violence, memorable characters, and deep combat system.
  • Skullgirls: This game is a unique 2D fighter that features a colorful cast of characters and deep, strategic gameplay.

Overall, these games represent the best of what the 2D platformer genre has to offer, and are sure to provide hours of entertainment for gamers of all stripes.

User Recommendations and Personal Favorites

Key takeaway: The Reddit community’s favorite 2D platformers vary in genre and features, but all offer unique and engaging experiences. Some popular genres include classic side-scrolling action, Metroidvania-style games, and puzzle-platformers. The Reddit community values gameplay mechanics, story and characters, art style and visuals, challenge and replayability, replay value and community engagement, and sound design. Some examples of popular 2D platformers include Super Mario Bros., Sonic the Hedgehog, Rayman Legends, Celeste, and Shovel Knight.

Reddit Users’ Top Recommendations

When it comes to 2D platformers, Reddit users have plenty of personal favorites and top recommendations. Here are some of the most frequently mentioned games on various platformer-focused subreddits:

  • Celeste: This beloved indie game, developed by Matt Thorson and released in 2018, is a must-play for any platformer enthusiast. It boasts a challenging, rewarding gameplay experience with stunning visuals and a heartfelt story.
  • Super Meat Boy: Created by Team Meat, this lightning-fast platformer is renowned for its precise controls, fiendishly difficult levels, and addictive gameplay.
  • Rayman Legends: Ubisoft’s 2013 platformer is praised for its gorgeous visuals, imaginative levels, and tight platforming mechanics. It’s a great choice for players looking for a family-friendly game with plenty of content.
  • Ori and the Blind Forest: This 2015 metroidvania-style game, developed by Moon Studios, is beloved for its stunning visuals, tight gameplay, and immersive world. It offers a challenging but rewarding experience for platformer fans.
  • Axiom Verge: This 2015 sci-fi metroidvania game, developed by Thomas Happ, is praised for its innovative gameplay mechanics, tight controls, and intriguing story. It’s a must-play for fans of the genre.
  • Shovel Knight: This 2014 indie game, developed by Yacht Club Games, is a retro-inspired platformer that has won the hearts of many. With its charming pixel art, catchy soundtrack, and addictive gameplay, it’s easy to see why it’s so popular.
  • Ratchet & Clank: This 2002 platformer, developed by Insomniac Games, is a classic PlayStation game that still holds up today. With its mix of fast-paced platforming and third-person shooter mechanics, it’s a must-play for fans of the genre.
  • Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams: This 2012 platformer, developed by Black Forest Games, is a challenging and visually stunning game that offers a unique twist on classic platforming mechanics. It’s a favorite among players who enjoy a tough but rewarding experience.
  • Limbo: This 2010 indie game, developed by Playdead, is a hauntingly beautiful platformer that offers a dark and atmospheric experience. Its moody visuals and challenging puzzles have earned it a place among the top 2D platformers.
  • Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon: This 2019 platformer, developed by WayForward and published by 505 Games, is a spiritual successor to the classic Castlevania series. With its tight controls, challenging gameplay, and gorgeous visuals, it’s a must-play for fans of the genre.

These are just a few of the many top recommendations from Reddit users, but they offer a great starting point for anyone looking to explore the world of 2D platformers. Whether you’re a fan of challenging, retro-inspired games or more modern, metroidvania-style titles, there’s something here for everyone.

Analyzing User Reviews and Feedback

To determine the top 2D platformers as recommended by Reddit users, we analyzed a diverse range of user reviews and feedback. This involved extracting key information, such as game title, genre, release date, and overall user ratings, as well as examining written comments and recommendations. Our analysis revealed several patterns and trends that helped us identify the most popular and highly regarded 2D platformers among the Reddit community.

Here are some key insights we gleaned from our analysis of user reviews and feedback:

  • Gameplay Mechanics: Many users praised games that had well-designed gameplay mechanics, including responsive controls, challenging level design, and varied enemy patterns.
  • Story and Characters: Some users favored games with engaging stories and memorable characters, which often provided a strong narrative backdrop to the platforming action.
  • Replay Value: Gamers appreciated titles with high replay value, such as those with multiple playable characters, secret areas, or branching storylines.
  • Graphics and Sound: Users often highlighted games with impressive visuals and soundtracks, which contributed to an immersive and enjoyable gaming experience.
  • Community and Support: A strong community of players and active developer support was seen as a valuable aspect of many 2D platformers, fostering a sense of camaraderie and continuous improvement.

By taking these factors into account, we were able to create a list of top 2D platformers that cater to a wide range of preferences and interests. Whether you’re a fan of challenging gameplay, captivating stories, or immersive graphics and sound, our recommendations have something for every 2D platformer enthusiast.

Comparing Personal Favorites

When it comes to 2D platformers, Reddit users have a wealth of personal favorites to share. But how do these titles compare to one another? In this section, we’ll examine some of the most popular personal favorites and attempt to draw conclusions about their relative strengths and weaknesses.

One game that consistently stands out in this category is Super Mario Bros., which has been hailed as a classic for its tight gameplay, iconic characters, and catchy soundtrack. Another notable title is Rayman Legends, which is praised for its stunning visuals, tight controls, and innovative gameplay mechanics.

However, it’s worth noting that opinions on these games (and others) can be quite subjective. Some users may prefer the retro charm of CastleVania, while others may prefer the modern polish of Ratchet & Clank. Ultimately, the “best” 2D platformer is a matter of personal taste, and it’s important to consider individual preferences when making a decision.

That being said, it’s clear that there are many excellent 2D platformers out there, each with their own unique strengths and weaknesses. By examining these personal favorites and considering factors such as gameplay, graphics, and sound, users can make informed decisions and find the perfect 2D platformer to suit their needs.

Critically Acclaimed 2D Platformers

Overview of Critically Acclaimed Games

The gaming industry has witnessed a surge in popularity for 2D platformers in recent years. These games are characterized by their side-scrolling gameplay, precise controls, and engaging storylines. In this section, we will take a closer look at some of the most critically acclaimed 2D platformers that have captured the hearts of gamers worldwide.

Some of the most popular critically acclaimed 2D platformers include games such as “Celeste”, “Ori and the Blind Forest”, “Rayman Legends”, “Shovel Knight”, and “Super Meat Boy”. These games have been praised for their exceptional gameplay, challenging levels, and immersive storytelling.

Celeste, for instance, has been widely acclaimed for its challenging gameplay, stunning visuals, and emotional storytelling. The game follows the story of a young girl named Madeline who embarks on a journey to climb a mysterious mountain. Along the way, she encounters various obstacles and must use her skills to overcome them.

Ori and the Blind Forest is another popular 2D platformer that has received critical acclaim. The game features stunning visuals, a captivating storyline, and challenging gameplay. Players control Ori, a small spirit, as they navigate through a mystical forest filled with dangerous creatures and treacherous obstacles.

Rayman Legends is another critically acclaimed 2D platformer that has gained a cult following. The game features stunning visuals, innovative gameplay, and a charming storyline. Players control Rayman, a character who must navigate through various levels filled with obstacles and enemies.

Shovel Knight is a retro-style 2D platformer that has gained a loyal following among gamers. The game features a charming storyline, addictive gameplay, and challenging levels. Players control Shovel Knight, a character who wields a shovel as a weapon, as they navigate through various levels filled with enemies and obstacles.

Super Meat Boy is a fast-paced 2D platformer that has been praised for its challenging gameplay and addictive gameplay. The game features stunning visuals, innovative gameplay, and a captivating storyline. Players control Meat Boy, a character who must navigate through various levels filled with obstacles and enemies.

In conclusion, the world of 2D platformers is home to some of the most critically acclaimed games in the gaming industry. Games like Celeste, Ori and the Blind Forest, Rayman Legends, Shovel Knight, and Super Meat Boy have captivated gamers worldwide with their challenging gameplay, stunning visuals, and immersive storytelling.

What Makes These Games Stand Out

Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe

  • Iconic plumber protagonist:
    • Mario, the endearing and ever-popular mustached hero, continues to charm players with his adventures.
  • Impeccable level design:
    • Nintendo’s meticulous attention to detail is evident in the carefully crafted stages, ensuring a smooth and engaging experience.
  • Inventive power-ups:
    • The game’s creative power-ups, such as the Super Star and the Tanooki suit, add an extra layer of excitement and replayability.
  • Rich multiplayer experience:
    • The addition of a second player adds a new dimension to the game, making it an ideal choice for both solo and cooperative play.

Rayman Legends

  • Captivating art style:
    • The game’s hand-drawn graphics are a feast for the eyes, creating an enchanting and visually striking environment.
  • Innovative platforming mechanics:
    • Rayman’s unique abilities, such as wall-jumping and punching enemies, contribute to the game’s inventive level design.
  • Challenging yet rewarding gameplay:
    • The game’s tight controls and precise platforming make it both challenging and satisfying to master.
  • Extensive replay value:
    • The game’s multiple paths, hidden secrets, and challenges ensure a long-lasting and rewarding experience.


  • Emotional narrative:
    • The game’s poignant storytelling, conveyed through its atmospheric environment and protagonist’s expressive movements, creates a deeply affecting experience.
  • Stunning visuals:
    • Gris’ hand-drawn art style, inspired by the game’s Spanish origins, creates a mesmerizing and cohesive world.
  • Engaging gameplay mechanics:
    • The game’s seamless integration of platforming, puzzles, and exploration results in a cohesive and captivating experience.
  • Powerful soundtrack:
    • The game’s evocative soundtrack, featuring a blend of classical and electronic elements, further enhances the game’s emotional impact.

These critically acclaimed 2D platformers stand out due to their iconic characters, meticulous level design, inventive gameplay mechanics, and emotional narratives. They offer engaging and rewarding experiences for players, making them stand out as top picks from Reddit.

How They Compare to Reddit’s Top Picks

Critically acclaimed 2D platformers, such as “Super Mario Bros,” “Mega Man,” and “CastleVania,” have long been considered classics in the gaming industry. However, it is interesting to compare these popular titles to the top picks chosen by Reddit users.

Reddit’s top picks for 2D platformers often include more recent releases, such as “Rayman Legends,” “Bastion,” and “Shovel Knight.” These games have been praised for their unique art styles, engaging storylines, and challenging gameplay mechanics.

When comparing the critically acclaimed 2D platformers to Reddit’s top picks, it is clear that both sets of games have their own strengths and weaknesses. The older titles have the advantage of being established classics, with nostalgic value and a proven track record of success. However, the newer games have the benefit of modern technology and game design techniques, which allow for more diverse gameplay and visually stunning graphics.

Ultimately, the choice between the two depends on personal preference and gaming experience. Reddit users may be drawn to the newer titles for their innovative gameplay and fresh perspectives, while classic gamers may prefer the familiarity and comfort of the older titles. Regardless of which camp one falls into, it is clear that 2D platformers continue to be a beloved and enduring genre in the gaming world.

Underrated 2D Platformers Worth Playing

Identifying Underrated Gems

  • Uncovering hidden gems in the vast world of 2D platformers
    • Utilizing Reddit as a platform for discovering lesser-known titles
      • Platformer-specific subreddits such as r/GameDev, r/IndieGames, and r/RetroGaming
      • Searching for community recommendations and discussions
    • Examining user reviews, ratings, and playthroughs
      • Identifying titles with high user satisfaction and positive feedback
      • Considering factors such as unique gameplay mechanics, level design, and soundtrack
    • Evaluating game’s cultural impact and recognition
      • Investigating the game’s reception among critics and influencers
      • Analyzing the game’s presence in gaming events, awards, and festivals
    • Assessing the game’s potential for long-term replayability
      • Considering factors such as level variety, secret areas, and challenges
      • Examining the game’s longevity through post-launch content updates and community engagement
    • Taking into account personal preferences and playstyle
      • Accounting for individual tastes in art style, genre, and difficulty level
      • Experimenting with different games to find the perfect match

Reasons Behind Their Underrated Status

Lack of Marketing and Promotion

One of the primary reasons that some 2D platformers go underrated is due to a lack of marketing and promotion. These games may have been developed by small indie studios or individual developers who lack the resources to create a massive marketing campaign. As a result, these games often slip under the radar and fail to gain the attention they deserve.

Limited Availability

Another reason that some 2D platformers are underrated is due to limited availability. These games may only be available on specific platforms or in certain regions, making it difficult for players to access them. This can lead to a lack of exposure and hinder the game’s ability to gain a large following.

Niche Genres and Themes

Some 2D platformers are underrated because they belong to niche genres or feature themes that are not popular with mainstream audiences. These games may appeal to a dedicated fanbase, but they may not attract a wider audience due to their unique style or theme.

Quality Over Quantity

Finally, some 2D platformers are underrated because they prioritize quality over quantity. These games may be shorter or less expansive than other popular platformers, but they focus on delivering a polished and memorable experience. While this approach may not appeal to players who prefer larger and more expansive games, it can result in a more satisfying and memorable experience for those who appreciate a well-crafted game.

What Makes These Games Special

These underrated 2D platformers have unique features that make them stand out from the crowd. Some of the elements that contribute to their specialness include:

  • Creative storytelling: These games often have intriguing narratives that go beyond the typical “save the princess” or “stop the villain” storylines. They delve into deeper themes, such as personal growth, self-discovery, and the human condition.
  • Innovative gameplay mechanics: These games experiment with new and unique gameplay mechanics that set them apart from other platformers. They might incorporate elements of puzzle-solving, exploration, or even meta-gaming, adding a layer of complexity and depth to the gameplay experience.
  • Beautiful artwork and music: These games boast stunning visuals and immersive soundtracks that bring the world to life. The art style might be hand-drawn, pixel art, or even cel-shaded, but each game’s aesthetic is carefully crafted to create a visually striking experience. The music is often equally impressive, with composers taking inspiration from various genres and styles to create memorable tunes that enhance the gameplay.
  • Challenging difficulty: These games are not just about running and jumping; they offer a genuine challenge to players. The levels are designed to test players’ skills, reflexes, and problem-solving abilities. The difficulty curve is often well-balanced, with each level ramping up the challenge just enough to keep players engaged without becoming frustratingly impossible.
  • Emotional resonance: These games often evoke strong emotions in players, whether it’s through their storytelling, character development, or gameplay mechanics. They might make players feel a sense of accomplishment, joy, sadness, or even nostalgia. These emotional connections can make the games feel more personal and memorable to players.

Overall, these underrated 2D platformers are special because they go beyond the standard formula of the genre, offering unique experiences that stand out from the crowd. They showcase the creativity and innovation of indie developers and demonstrate that the 2D platformer genre is far from dead.

Innovative 2D Platformers with Unique Features

Platformers with Innovative Gameplay Mechanics

  • These games are not just platformers, but a combination of various genres that create a unique experience for the players.
  • These games often have innovative mechanics that add an extra layer of complexity and challenge to the gameplay.
  • Examples of such games include:
    • “Super Meat Boy” – A fast-paced, difficult platformer with a focus on precise controls and level design.
    • “Rayman Legends” – A platformer with a strong emphasis on exploration, puzzle-solving, and gorgeous visuals.
    • “Axiom Verge” – A platformer with elements of Metroidvania-style gameplay, where players can explore large, interconnected levels and gain new abilities.
    • “Ori and the Blind Forest” – A challenging platformer with a beautiful art style and music, with a focus on precision platforming and challenging boss battles.
    • “Celeste” – A challenging platformer with a focus on precision platforming, with a story that touches on mental health and personal growth.
    • “Dust: An Elysian Tail” – A platformer with RPG elements, featuring a unique combat system and a vast, interconnected world to explore.
    • “Hotline Miami” – A top-down shooter with a focus on fast-paced, intense gameplay and a unique art style.
    • “Enter the Gungeon” – A dungeon crawler with a focus on gunplay and a unique, procedurally generated world.
    • “Vlambeer’s Rad” – A short, arcade-style game with a focus on procedurally generated levels and unique, challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Super Crush KO” – A platformer with a focus on unique, challenging gameplay mechanics and a beautiful, colorful art style.
    • “Necrosoft Discovery” – A puzzle-platformer with a focus on unique, challenging gameplay mechanics and a dark, atmospheric art style.
    • “Lazarus” – A puzzle-platformer with a focus on unique, challenging gameplay mechanics and a focus on environmental storytelling.
    • “Spelunky” – A platformer with a focus on procedurally generated levels and unique, challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “TowerFall” – A archery-based platformer with a focus on local multiplayer and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Bionic Commando” – A platformer with a unique swinging mechanic and a focus on challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Strider” – A fast-paced, difficult platformer with a focus on precise controls and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Dark Souls” – A challenging action-RPG with a focus on difficult gameplay mechanics and a unique, atmospheric world.
    • “Ninja Gaiden” – A challenging action-platformer with a focus on precise controls and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Shadow of the Colossus” – A challenging action-adventure game with a focus on boss battles and a unique, atmospheric world.
    • “Bloodborne” – A challenging action-RPG with a focus on difficult gameplay mechanics and a unique, atmospheric world.
    • “CastleVania” – A challenging action-platformer with a focus on precise controls and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Metroid” – A challenging action-platformer with a focus on exploration, puzzle-solving, and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Resident Evil” – A challenging survival-horror game with a focus on exploration, puzzle-solving, and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Monster Hunter” – A challenging action-RPG with a focus on exploration, hunting monsters, and challenging gameplay mechanics.
    • “Devil May Cry” – A challenging action-game with a focus on stylish

Unique Art Styles and Aesthetics

  • Breathing life into the gaming world through distinct visuals
  • 2D platformers showcasing diverse artistic expressions
  • A journey through colorful landscapes and captivating character designs

2D platformers have always been known for their vibrant and captivating worlds, and the top picks from Reddit are no exception. These games not only offer unique gameplay experiences but also boast art styles and aesthetics that are truly one-of-a-kind.

In the realm of 2D platformers, artistic expression plays a significant role in creating an immersive gaming experience. The top picks from Reddit showcase a variety of distinct art styles, ranging from pixel art to hand-drawn animations, that bring the gaming world to life in ways never before imagined.

Pixel art, in particular, has become a staple of the 2D platformer genre. Games like “Celeste” and “Ori and the Blind Forest” use pixel art to create a sense of nostalgia while also delivering stunning visuals that are reminiscent of classic 8-bit and 16-bit games.

On the other hand, hand-drawn animations bring a sense of fluidity and grace to the gaming world. Games like “Rayman Legends” and “Kena: Bridge of Spirits” use this art style to create beautiful and detailed environments that are a joy to explore.

Furthermore, the top picks from Reddit showcase a variety of character designs that are both unique and memorable. From the adorable and quirky characters of “Kingdom Hearts” to the mythical creatures of “Hollow Knight,” these games offer a visual feast that is sure to captivate players of all ages.

In conclusion, the top picks from Reddit for 2D platformers offer a diverse range of art styles and aesthetics that are truly breathtaking. Whether it’s pixel art, hand-drawn animations, or unique character designs, these games offer a visual experience that is unmatched in the gaming world. So, if you’re looking for a journey through colorful landscapes and captivating character designs, look no further than the top picks from Reddit for the ultimate 2D platformer showdown.

How These Games Challenge Traditional Platformers

The traditional 2D platformer games have been a staple of the gaming industry for decades, with classics like Super Mario Bros and Sonic the Hedgehog paving the way for the genre. However, in recent years, developers have been pushing the boundaries of what a 2D platformer can be, introducing new mechanics, gameplay styles, and storytelling techniques that challenge the conventions of the genre. In this section, we will explore how some of the most innovative 2D platformers are breaking the mold and redefining what it means to be a platformer.

One of the most significant ways that these games challenge traditional platformers is by introducing new mechanics that go beyond simple jumping and running. For example, games like Celeste and Ori and the Blind Forest feature complex dashing and wall-jumping mechanics that require precise timing and spacing to execute correctly. These mechanics add an extra layer of complexity to the gameplay, requiring players to master new skills and techniques to progress through the levels.

Another way that these games challenge traditional platformers is by incorporating RPG elements into the gameplay. Games like Hollow Knight and Dead Cells feature extensive leveling systems, where players can upgrade their abilities and equipment to make progress through the game. This adds a deeper layer of strategy to the gameplay, as players must balance their resources and choose which upgrades to prioritize.

In addition to new mechanics and RPG elements, these games also challenge traditional platformers by incorporating unique storytelling techniques. For example, games like Katana ZERO and Hotline Miami use a non-linear narrative structure, where players must piece together the story through cryptic clues and dialogue. This adds a new level of depth to the storytelling, requiring players to engage with the narrative on a more intellectual level.

Finally, these games also challenge traditional platformers by featuring challenging difficulty curves that require players to master the game’s mechanics and techniques to progress. Games like Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and Dark Souls are notorious for their punishing difficulty, requiring players to learn from their mistakes and improve their skills to overcome the game’s challenges. This adds a new level of difficulty and mastery to the gameplay, rewarding players who are willing to put in the time and effort to overcome the game’s challenges.

Overall, these innovative 2D platformers are challenging the conventions of the genre by introducing new mechanics, RPG elements, unique storytelling techniques, and difficult gameplay. By pushing the boundaries of what a 2D platformer can be, these games are redefining the genre and offering players new and exciting experiences that go beyond the traditional platformer formula.

Balancing Fun and Challenging: The Ideal 2D Platformer

The Importance of Balance in Game Design

In the world of gaming, balance is key. It is the fundamental principle that governs the fairness and enjoyability of a game. A well-balanced game ensures that players have an equal opportunity to succeed, regardless of their skill level or playstyle. In the context of 2D platformers, balance is crucial for creating an engaging and rewarding experience for the player.

Balance in game design can be achieved in a variety of ways. For instance, the game’s difficulty can be adjusted to cater to different player skill levels. This can be done by introducing simpler puzzles or enemies that are easier to defeat for beginners, while providing more challenging obstacles for advanced players.

Another aspect of balance in game design is the distribution of power among the player’s abilities. In a 2D platformer, for example, the player’s jump height, speed, and special abilities should be carefully balanced to ensure that no single ability is overpowered or underpowered. This ensures that players can experiment with different playstyles without being penalized or heavily disadvantaged.

Moreover, balance can be achieved by providing players with a diverse range of challenges that require different skills and strategies. For example, a 2D platformer may feature levels that require precise timing, levels that require quick reflexes, and levels that require careful planning and execution. By providing a variety of challenges, players can stay engaged and motivated without getting bored or frustrated.

Ultimately, balance in game design is essential for creating a game that is both fun and challenging. It ensures that players can enjoy the game regardless of their skill level, while still feeling a sense of accomplishment when they overcome difficult obstacles. In the world of 2D platformers, achieving balance is the key to creating a timeless classic that players will love for years to come.

How Different Games Achieve this Balance

Various games have different ways of balancing fun and challenging elements in their 2D platformers. Some rely on intricate level designs, while others incorporate innovative mechanics to create a well-rounded gaming experience. Here are some examples of how different games achieve this balance:

Super Mario Bros.

Super Mario Bros. is known for its iconic platforming gameplay that seamlessly combines challenging obstacles with intuitive controls. The game’s levels are designed with precision, incorporating a mix of jumps, enemies, and power-ups to keep players engaged. Additionally, the game introduces new mechanics, such as the Super Star power-up, which adds an extra layer of depth to the gameplay. By balancing these elements, Super Mario Bros. remains a beloved classic that continues to challenge and entertain players of all skill levels.

Rayman Legends

Rayman Legends takes a more approachable approach to platforming, focusing on fluid animations and responsive controls. The game’s levels are filled with vibrant graphics and imaginative design, offering a visually stimulating experience. Rayman Legends also features a variety of challenges, including timed runs, puzzles, and boss battles, which help to break up the gameplay and keep players engaged. Furthermore, the game incorporates cooperative multiplayer, allowing players to team up and overcome obstacles together, making it accessible to both casual and experienced gamers.


Celeste is a challenging 2D platformer that expertly balances difficulty with a touching narrative. The game’s levels are designed with precision, requiring precise timing and skill to overcome obstacles. The game also incorporates a unique mechanic, where the main character, Madeline, can dash in mid-air, adding an extra layer of complexity to the gameplay. Celeste’s difficulty is further enhanced by its optional “B-side” versions of each level, which provide even more challenging gameplay for those looking for a greater challenge. However, the game also offers accessibility options, such as assisted movement and slower respawn times, ensuring that players can tailor the experience to their skill level.

In conclusion, different games achieve the balance between fun and challenging elements in their 2D platformers by incorporating various mechanics, level designs, and gameplay features. Whether it’s the iconic gameplay of Super Mario Bros., the fluid animations of Rayman Legends, or the precise timing of Celeste, each game offers a unique and engaging experience for players of all skill levels.

Factors That Affect a Player’s Perception of Challenge

A player’s perception of challenge in a 2D platformer is a complex interplay of various factors. These factors contribute to the overall experience and determine whether a game is perceived as fun or frustrating. Here are some of the key factors that influence a player’s perception of challenge in 2D platformers:

  1. Skill Cap: The perceived challenge of a game is directly proportional to the player’s skill cap. A game that is too easy for a player will be boring, while a game that is too difficult will be frustrating. A well-designed 2D platformer strikes a balance between being challenging and rewarding, allowing players to push their skills to the limit without feeling overwhelmed.
  2. Learning Curve: A steep learning curve can make a game feel challenging and frustrating at first. However, a well-designed learning curve allows players to gradually learn and master the game’s mechanics, leading to a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. A good 2D platformer should gradually introduce new mechanics and obstacles, giving players time to adapt and improve their skills.
  3. Feedback: Clear and timely feedback is crucial in helping players understand what they are doing wrong and how to improve. Good feedback mechanisms provide players with information on their progress, mistakes, and areas for improvement. This helps players learn from their mistakes and ultimately feel more in control of the game.
  4. Difficulty Spike: A sudden increase in difficulty, often referred to as a “difficulty spike,” can be demotivating and lead to frustration. A well-designed 2D platformer should gradually increase the difficulty, with occasional spikes to keep players on their toes. These spikes should be followed by periods of easier gameplay to allow players to catch their breath and recover.
  5. Randomness: Random elements in a game can be perceived as unfair or frustrating. However, a controlled amount of randomness can add an element of unpredictability and challenge. A good 2D platformer should balance the use of random elements with predictable gameplay mechanics to create a fair and engaging experience.
  6. Fairness: A player’s perception of challenge is heavily influenced by the fairness of a game. Unfair or opaque game mechanics can lead to frustration and discourage players from continuing. A well-designed 2D platformer should be fair and transparent, giving players a clear understanding of the rules and mechanics at play.
  7. Interactivity: The interactivity of a game is closely tied to the player’s perception of challenge. A game that feels like it has a direct relationship between the player’s actions and the outcome will be more engaging and satisfying. A good 2D platformer should encourage experimentation and creative problem-solving, making players feel like they have a direct impact on the game world.

By considering these factors, game developers can create 2D platformers that strike the perfect balance between fun and challenging, providing players with an engaging and rewarding experience.

Summarizing the Best 2D Platformers

In order to determine the best 2D platformers, we conducted a thorough analysis of various online forums and communities, including Reddit. The platformers were evaluated based on a range of factors, such as gameplay mechanics, level design, graphics, and sound. After careful consideration, we have compiled a list of the top picks, which include both classic and modern titles.

  • Super Mario Bros: This classic game, released in 1985, remains a popular choice among gamers. Its well-designed levels, charming graphics, and catchy soundtrack make it a timeless classic.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: Released in 1991, this game introduced a new type of platformer, emphasizing speed and agility. The game’s fluid mechanics and memorable characters have made it a fan favorite.
  • CastleVania: First released in 1989, this game series combines challenging gameplay with gothic-style graphics and a haunting soundtrack. It is known for its challenging difficulty and intricate level design.
  • Rayman Legends: This game, released in 2013, is praised for its beautiful and colorful graphics, innovative gameplay mechanics, and imaginative levels. It is considered one of the most visually stunning platformers available.
  • Celeste: Released in 2018, this game has gained critical acclaim for its challenging gameplay, engaging story, and beautifully crafted levels. It is a more recent addition to the platformer genre but has already become a fan favorite.

These titles represent a cross-section of the best 2D platformers, offering a mix of classic and modern gameplay experiences.

Encouraging Further Exploration and Discussion

The 2D platformer genre is renowned for its ability to provide gamers with an enjoyable and challenging experience. In order to achieve this balance, developers must carefully consider various design elements such as level design, enemy placement, and player abilities.

One key aspect of balancing fun and challenging gameplay is ensuring that players are constantly challenged but never overwhelmed. This can be achieved through clever level design that gradually increases in difficulty as the player progresses. Additionally, enemies should be placed in a way that encourages strategic play rather than simply charging in blindly.

Another important factor in creating a balanced 2D platformer is providing players with a variety of abilities and power-ups. This not only adds depth to the gameplay but also allows players to tailor their approach to each level. For example, a player may choose to focus on ranged attacks or rely on defensive measures such as shields or temporary invincibility.

Finally, the inclusion of collectibles and secrets can also help to balance the difficulty of a 2D platformer. These can provide players with additional incentives to explore each level and encourage replayability.

Overall, balancing fun and challenging gameplay in a 2D platformer requires careful consideration of various design elements. By incorporating clever level design, strategic enemy placement, and a variety of abilities and power-ups, developers can create a game that is both enjoyable and challenging for players.

Joining the 2D Platformer Community

Are you looking to join the world of 2D platformers? With so many games available, it can be challenging to know where to start. But fear not, for the 2D platformer community on Reddit is here to help! This welcoming and knowledgeable community is the perfect place to find recommendations, discuss your favorite games, and discover new titles to add to your collection.

Joining the 2D platformer community on Reddit is easy. Simply create an account and head over to the subreddit, which can be found at r/2DPlatformer. Here, you’ll find a thriving community of gamers who share your passion for all things 2D platformers. With thousands of members, there’s always someone ready to share their thoughts on the latest releases or classic titles.

Once you’ve joined, you can start participating in discussions, sharing your own recommendations, and discovering new games to play. You’ll find a wealth of information on the subreddit, including reviews, walkthroughs, and game-specific threads where members discuss their favorite aspects of a particular game.

So, what are you waiting for? Join the 2D platformer community on Reddit today and discover the best games the genre has to offer!


1. What is a 2D platformer game?

A 2D platformer game is a type of video game where the player navigates a character through a two-dimensional environment, typically by jumping, running, and defeating enemies. These games often feature pixel art graphics and simple controls, and are known for their challenging gameplay and tight controls.

2. Why is the best 2D platformer a popular topic on Reddit?

The best 2D platformer is a popular topic on Reddit because these games are highly regarded by gamers and critics alike. They offer a unique and challenging gaming experience that is both nostalgic and modern, and there are many great options to choose from. Reddit users often share their recommendations and opinions on the best 2D platformers, making it a great resource for gamers looking for their next fix.

3. What are some of the most popular 2D platformers on Reddit?

Some of the most popular 2D platformers on Reddit include “Celeste”, “Super Meat Boy”, “Rayman Legends”, “Ori and the Blind Forest”, and “A Hat in Time”. These games are highly regarded for their challenging gameplay, beautiful graphics, and memorable soundtracks. They are often recommended by Reddit users as must-play games for fans of the genre.

4. What makes a great 2D platformer?

A great 2D platformer is typically characterized by its challenging gameplay, tight controls, and beautiful graphics. It should offer a unique and engaging experience that keeps players coming back for more. A great 2D platformer should also have a memorable soundtrack and engaging story, although these elements are not always necessary. Ultimately, a great 2D platformer is one that resonates with players on an emotional level and leaves a lasting impression.

5. Where can I find more recommendations for 2D platformers on Reddit?

You can find more recommendations for 2D platformers on Reddit by visiting the r/gaming subreddit and searching for posts about the best 2D platformers. You can also check out dedicated 2D platformer communities like r/2Dplatformers and r/Metroidvania, which focus on specific subgenres of 2D platformers. These communities are filled with knowledgeable gamers who can offer recommendations and insights into the best games in the genre.

Top 10 2D Platformers

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