‘Metroidvania’ has become a buzzword in recent years, most often appearing as a bullet point in indie game descriptions. As the name suggests, it describes a game whose design borrows ideas from the likes of Castlevania and Metroid; it’s challenging, exploration-based, and progression throughout is based on acquiring items or upgrades to access new areas.
Because many of the best examples of Metroidvanias pair it with elements of other games – most often roguelikes and RPGs – it’s sometimes difficult to define exactly what a Metroidvania is. For this list, we’re sticking to the basics while casting a somewhat wide net.
Listed below are some of the very best modern Metroidvania games currently available.