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5 Best Platformers on PC

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Best Platformers on PC

Platformers have come a long way. In the past, most platformers were 2D sidescrollers. They have since evolved into 3D action adventures and later into full-on open-world sandbox games. Before, gamers would focus on pushing forward and executing perfectly timed jumps. Today, though, platformers demand mastery of several skills. They grab your full attention via rich, immersive, vibrant worlds and draw you into compelling, personalized stories. 

The best platformers on PC have broken the mold to include fantastic additives from other gaming genres. They put your navigation skills to the test, placing monsters and dangerous obstacles along the way. Most of all, they incorporate up-to-standard visuals, controls, and design that offer the most rewarding experiences. While there are tons of platformers on PC right now, these are the best platformers on PC (April 2023) that you ought to give a try.

5. Super Meat Boy

Super Meat Boy Teaser Trailer

Super Meat Boy starts off with an absolutely hilarious premise. Perhaps curated to prepare you for a classic, deeply challenging platforming experience from back in the day. Meet Meat Boy, a small, red, cube-shaped lad made of meat. He needs your help to save his damsel in distress. The damsel, who is Meat Boy's girlfriend, is a girl made of bandages. An evil fetus has kidnapped her. And the evil fetus happens to be a jar dressed in a tux.

The gameplay involves leaping over buzz saws, and old needles, and escaping crumbling caves. This gets much harder to navigate the more you play. All along, Meat Boy explores various locations. These include haunted hospitals and factories in the hopes of finding his damsel in distress. 

Additionally, Super Meat Boy features epic boss fights. There are 33 achievements, more than 300 levels spread across 5+ chapters, and over 16 characters. These include characters from titles like Minecraft and VVVVVV. There's also a full editor that helps bring to life all of the ideas you may have for the levels and their portals. But with all of the niceties aside, the story still takes the win. That's because it's such an illuminating, emotional journey that even the strong-hearted will shed a tear.

4. Celeste

The First 9 Minutes of Celeste

Celeste features similar core gameplay to Super Meat Boy. The only difference is that Celeste adds more charm to it. Players run, climb, air-dash, and jump against walls for a limited time. They play the character Madeline, a young woman who suffers from anxiety and depression. She must, however, overcome her inner fear and achieve her goal of journeying to the top of Celeste Mountain. 

The means justifies the end here, as players embark on a narrative-driven, single-player adventure of a lifetime. They uncover hidden secrets in the depths of the mountain and encounter a charming cast of characters. All along, Madeline learns to cope with her mental health.

Additionally, you can respawn countless times, thanks to Celeste's growing difficulty across over 700 screens. Each screen presents interesting, hand-crafted puzzles. You can launch higher into the clouds using bubbles. Definitely keep an open mind, and don’t be afraid to toggle the difficulty modes if you so choose.

3. Sonic Mania

Sonic Mania | Launch Trailer

Sonic Mania presents an all-new adventure with the famous trio, Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles. The game pays tribute to the early Sonic the Hedgehog games. It uses rolling 2D landscapes and retro references while adding touches of modern platforming. Together, they create a speedy side-scrolling run with over 13 levels. These include five original ones and eight remixes from past games.

Further, Sonic Mania features a compelling narrative. It tells the story of the trio hunting down their nemesis, Doctor Eggman, and his army, the Hard-Boiled Heavies. You can either choose Sonic, Tails, or Knuckles, with each character having their own unique skills and personalities. Alternatively, you can bring a friend along to play as either Sonic or Tails. Thereafter, you’ll run into various enemies and unique bosses at the end of each level. 

Retro platforming has its nostalgic perks. Still, it wouldn't hurt to have a dash of advanced visuals and music. Sonic Mania perfectly understands this. It’s a game that adds a good number of new experiences to the old. Yet, still maintains the classic gameplay that feels like playing the original Sonic the Hedgehog all over again.

2. It Takes Two

It Takes Two Official Reveal Trailer

It Takes Two dares to color outside the lines, merging several gaming genres into one. It’s an action-adventure 3D platformer that focuses solely on split-screen co-op gameplay. The game features a coy narrative, too. It starts with a couple working through a divorce. However, their minds transfer into two of their daughter’s dolls, which take after their parents. So, now, the couple, May and Cody, must work together to return to their bodies safe and sound.

Right off the bat, it’s clear It Takes Two is something quite out of the box. It’s hard to imagine how dolls can reinstall themselves into human forms. Fortunately, It Takes Two has the “how” nailed out. You must embark on a wild, unexpected journey filled with fantasy and hard-to-imagine things. 

Furthermore, the developer strategically focuses on the influence that narrative and gameplay have on each other. This results in perfectly culminating the full capabilities of platformers beyond side-scrolling and puzzle-solving. In the end, the game demonstrates how platforming can transcend to fully immersive worlds with a gripping story to boost. 

1. OlliOlli World

OlliOlli World – Official Cinematic Trailer ESRB

Speaking of immersive worlds, OlliOlli World is a skateboarding action platformer that features a rich and vibrant world called Radlandia. Radlandia is a bold choice, at first sight, beaming with personality and weird delight. Players embark on a quest for Gnarvana that requires them to grind, trick, flip, and flow throughout Radlandia’s environs. 

Of course, there are no straightforward courses. Instead, navigating OlliOlli World feels like a rollercoaster ride. Or, better yet, finally doing the skateboard moves you’ve been dying to try out. Alternatively, you may simply casually skate across the world, taking in the surroundings as you go. There’s no pressure. In fact, OlliOlli World makes it so any gamer can access the gameplay, whether you’re a master skateboarder or otherwise

So, what’s your take? Do you agree with our best platformers on PC (April 2023)? Are there more platformers on PC we should know about? Let us know down in the comments or over on our socials here.

Evans I. Karanja is a freelance writer who loves to write about anything technology. He is always on the lookout for interesting topics, and enjoys writing about video games, cryptocurrency and blockchain and more. When not writing, he can be found playing video games or watching F1.