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Best metroidvania games on PC for Hollow Knight fans

Best metroidvania games on PC for Hollow Knight fans

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Bykasumikasumi
Best metroidvania games on PC for Hollow Knight fans

Roam through huge world maps and dive into top-notch action-adventure with these amazing metroidvania games.

The first representative of Metrodvania subgenre is considered to be Metroid, which was released in 1986 on NES console. The game became a huge success worldwide and set an example for dozens of games to come. Released 11 years later, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, refined the genre with large open-world and RPG elements. Sometime after the launch of Castlevania, a name for the genre was coined - "metroidvania". The rules invented by the pioneers turned out to be timeless and to this day are an inspiration for game developers. 

Since then lots of interesting Metroidvania games have been released. We have therefore prepared a small compilation of the best metroidvania games on PC. 

Axiom Verge

Release Date: 31 March 2015

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo WiiU

Before the release Axiom Verge was considered not only a promising metroidvania game, but also a true spiritual successor of Metroid. Created by one person, the title has a dedicated fanbase that appreciated the effort put into the production and many interesting gameplay solutions. 

For instance, the variety of guns and its updates is so large you end up snooping through every pixel of the map to find them all. And just when you start grinding your teeth in frustration, you suddenly discover a new weapon or ability update which gives you that sweet relief and solves your struggle. 

Blasphemous

Release Date: 10 September, 2019

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Released last year, Blasphemous takes the player into a dark, gothic world, dominated by religious fanaticism and a belief in superstition. As part of penance for their sins, most of the inhabitants of Orthodoxia have been transformed into beasts that the protagonist has to face as he traverses to dark locations. 

The production is distinguished by a high level of difficulty and is treated by many players as a souls-like 2D game (Blasphemous was even included in our list of the best souls-like games for PC). However, the root of its hardcoreness is not in the battles with opponents themselves, but  in the location of enemies and numerous terrain obstacles that come straight from the most brutal platformers.

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

Release Date: 18 June 2019

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

"The best Castlevania game in years" - these are the words that usually start the reviews of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. However, it was not having a smooth start. After fundraising 10 times more than the original goal on Kickstarter, the demo presented to the supporters was met with criticism. The release was consequently postponed, but the end result paid off and showed the players that heart and soul was put into it.

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night wows with its dark, stylish anime-style graphics which tributes the first Castlevania game. The design of the maps and the combat also seem heartwarmingly familiar, while the variety of neat weapons and tons of powers gives you an opportunity to define your builds as much as you want to match your playstyle. This is a must-try game for die-hard metroidvania fans.

Cave Story+

Release Date: 22 November 2011

Platforms: PC, Nintendo Switch

Cave Story+ is a refreshed version of the 2004 metroidvania game, which was warmly received by players. The gameplay is pretty straightforward as it’s all about traversing through vast labyrinths, jumping on platforms, avoiding traps and fighting enemies. But this in combination with the extensive mechanics and memorable soundtrack made the game iconic and entertaining to this day.

Thus the decision of giving the second life to one of the best metroidvania games was justified. On the top of all benefits that the original game had, Cave Story+ received the ability to choose the difficulty level, as well as six new game modes, HD graphics update and remastered soundtrack, which elevate the charm of the game. 

Dead Cells

Release Date: 7 August 2018

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Many of the players might probably claim that Dead Cells is not a typical metroidvania, but rather a platformer with roguelike elements. To some extent, it’s hard to disagree with this observation. The gameplay of Dead Cells does not focus on slow and thorough exploration. It’s all about quick paced completion of stages, at times without even getting rid of all opponents.

Nevertheless, the production has many features that fit the metroidvania genre, such as the ability to unlock alternative routes with different enemies. While exploring new locations, it is worth pausing for a while to enjoy colourful and detailed pixel graphics. Dead Cells is one of those metroidvania games that bring new flavour to the genre.

Ori and the Blind Forest, Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Ori and the Blind Forest Release Date: 11 March 2016

 

 Release Date: 11 March 2020

Platforms: PC, Xbox, Nintendo Switch (only Ori and the Blind Forest)

These marvelous games that tell the story of a young spirit of the forest, Ori, and his adventures are suitable for getting acquainted with metroidvania titles. Ori and the Blind Forest shouldn't be a problem even for complete rookies (as long as they don't try to set the highest difficulty level). The sequel is a bit more complicated and challenging.

Beautiful, fairytale-like graphics, the soundtrack which involves real orchestra and a touching plot make it difficult to tear yourself away from the monitor. In addition to all these perks, there is an extremely satisfying gameplay that requires a lot from the player, but at the same time is fair, well-balanced and does not cause frustration.

Owlboy

Release Date: 1 November 2016

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Owlboy allows us to dive into the story of Otus, a winged being who is half a boy and half an owl. The game was born in great pain, because the time gap between the first announcement and the premiere of the game is 9 years old! Fortunately, this time was not wasted, and Owlboy was fine-tuned by D-Pad Studios down to the smallest detail. 

The end result deserves all the praise and for its expanded gameplay which requires great both reflexes and tactics as well as for its gorgeous visuals. Pixel-art graphics, retro-style music, silent hero and speech bubble dialogs (well-written by the way) will surely delight many players who still remember the games of the 90s.

SteamWorld Dig 1 and 2

SteamWorld Dig Release Date: 7 August 2013

SteamWorld Dig 2 Release Date: 21 September 2017

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo 3DS

Originally released for Nintendo 3DS, SteamWorld eventually made it to other platforms. This metroidvania series takes players to a colourful setting, which is a mash-up of the Wild West and steampunk. This world is dominated by steam-powered machines.

The essence of the game is traversing underground caves, avoiding traps and fighting enemies. It is also extremely important to collect resources, which can then be exchanged in the city for the necessary items to facilitate further travel.

Sundered

Release Date: 28 July 2017

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

The first thing that catches your eye after launching Sundered is its beautiful, hand-drawn graphics. And this title continues revealing its numerous advantages and signature features of the metroidvania genre. Sundered gives players a lot of freedom by allowing them to freely choose their path between key rooms. So, if the path to the boss is too challenging at the moment, you can always choose a different way.

What's more, the construction of the location changes after each death. For many, the downside may be the simplicity and repetitiveness of the game. There aren't many types of enemies here, and character stats are more important in fights than dexterity and reflex.

The Messenger

Release Date: 30 August 2018

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

The Messenger is a huge gift to the older generation of gamers who still remember and love games with 8-bit graphics. This retro metroidvania will surely bring a smile to the faces of those who still remember Commodore. Although the plot in The Messenger is practically non-existent, it is worth paying attention to the witty dialogues referring to the current situation in the gaming industry.

Despite targeting veterans, the younger players will also have a great time with this title. All thanks to the brilliant gameplay and mechanics that allow you to change the graphics from 8 to 16-bit, which allows you to overcome traps that were previously impossible to avoid.

Metroidvania games have come a long way. Nowadays, it's hard to find a title that would stick to the rules developed years ago. Most of the recent releases combine the features of various genres and games, introducing a number of innovations to them. Is it bad? Not at all! If it wasn't for the developers' courage, there would never be this many great metroidvania games. 🙂



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