Platformebruary 2017: Definitive Edition

This series originally ran on our Steam curation group in February 2017.

Platformebruary is back! This edition adds a ton of new features and an HD ahahahahaha no it’s the same series with new games.

Just like last year, I’ll be covering 28 platformers for the month of February. In the 2016 edition I went for the games on my list that had the fewest players, but this time I’m taking a much broader cross-section of the genre. That means more classics, more metroidvanias, and more garbage, as it turns out.

A new review will be posted every day, before the sales change on weekdays and whenever the hell my kids will leave me alone on weekends. As always, game title posted here link to the store review so if you like what I’m doing, please drop by and give it a thumb so others are more likely to see it.

  1. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition
  2. 99 Levels to Hell
  3. A.R.E.S.
  4. Mandagon
  5. Sugar Cube: Bittersweet Factory
  6. Lucidity
  7. Strider
  8. Shantae: Risky’s Revenge – Director’s Cut
  9. Shadow Complex Remastered
  10. Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams
  11. Ultionus: A Tale of Petty Revenge
  12. Apotheon
  13. RONIN
  14. Porradaria 2: Pagode of the Night
  15. The Bridge
  16. eversion
  17. FEZ
  18. Rush Bros
  19. Khimera: Destroy All Monster Girls
  20. Shank
  21. Ballpoint Universe: Infinite
  22. LIMBO
  23. And Yet It Moves
  24. Stealth Bastard Deluxe
  25. A Boy and His Blob
  26. Offspring Fling!
  27. The Sun at Night
  28. Aquaria



Let’s review, shall we?

The Top Five

I reviewed some major heavyweights of the genre this year, but I’m still going to give the top spot to Apotheon. That might sound strange based on how much I disliked the combat, and I stand by my criticisms of it being floaty and too chaotic. But the quality of literally everything else was so high I found myself more enthralled by it than anything else. Ori and Fez are both masterpieces in their own rights, but Ori moreso for its art than its gameplay, and Fez has some legitimate design issues that can hamper enjoyment. I’m still in the middle of Aquaria but it has grabbed me almost as hard as Apotheon and I’m excited to see where it goes. Rounding out the list is Mandagon, a free 30-minute platformer with a magnificent aesthetic that’s just a simple joy to experience.

Also Good

Limbo is another masterpiece of the genre but is well-trod ground and not as expansive as most of the my top five (Mandagon excluded). Strider and Shadow Complex are both excellent metroidvanias with their own quirks and flaws but any fan of the genre would be pleased with them. eversion deserves a place not quite equal with Limbo but at least close, and Offspring Fling! and Stealth Bastard are very solid showings on the puzzle platformer side. Khimera is a ridiculous amount of quality content for the price of free, so get the hell on that if you haven’t already and vindicate my proliferation of words to that effect.

Conditionally Good

Ronin would be amazing if it worked better, but there’s a lot of frustration to contend with once you dig into it. The same could be said of Ballpoint Universe and The Sun At Night, really, because both are missing key polish or quality of life elements for what they are. Shank is solid action but very limited in scope and can be a real pain in the ass near the end, and Giana Sisters is similarly good for what it is but doesn’t aspire to much more than a challenging technical platformer.

The Rest

Each of these games was a disappointment in its own way, usually to the point that I couldn’t finish it. I did beat A.R.E.S. and Sugar Cube, mind you, but that was more a function of them being short and easy than being any sort of good. Delve further if you dare but platformers are so vast and varied that you’re better off spending your time on something better.

I do hope you’ve enjoyed my annual adventure into runny-jumpy games, and either found something new to try or a new reason to dig into your ridiculous backlog. For all the bad ones out there you can find plenty of good (or at least unique), and I’m sure I’ll have an even more eclectic list to go through next year. Thanks for reading!