Everyone these days seems to have a favorite game that they have somewhere, and usually they’ll list off many popular titles which are familiar to most. However, there’s a ton of hidden gems in the depths of the internet which are just as enjoyable as a AAA title and free to boot… if you’re willing to find them or get lucky doing so. I’m here to help with that, with a series of the best games I’ve found over years of scouring the internet.
Like Cave Story, Spelunky was created by one individual, Derek Yu, and is available for free in its original form, or an updated version is available across most consoles and Chrome OS. The game is a roguelike platformer, so if you want to finish, you’ll have to hope that your luck holds and learn how everything works and what could happen. The game is randomly generated through each play-through, so open that chest with caution and don’t upset the shopkeeper.
I have a confession to make before I continue… this game has an ending, but I’ve never finished it. I love the game, but I’m terrible at finishing games where the gameplay is an enjoyable round of trial and error. However, any late game information is from research.
The graphics are a mixture of earthen colors with frequent bright colors such as gems, gold and spikes to give the feeling that delving into the caverns is something that you’d want to do. As you delve deeper, however, you’ll discover an underground jungle, ice caves, and eventually a temple buried underneath it all. There are a couple of secret levels as well, but that’s for you to uncover. Despite the seemingly cliché themes of the levels, there are monsters that will keep the gameplay varied.
The music in the game is a well done series of chip tune themes, akin to something you’d hear from a Gameboy Color game. There isn’t much (A little under 20 minutes for the full OST), but it’s enough to keep you entertained for the game’s entirety, even with the mountain of deaths you’ll ultimately accumulate.
This game doesn’t have much of a story, aside from the text in the introduction and a bit towards the end of the game, but the player has memorable moments as they play through it repeatedly. One of my favorite memories was the time that I popped a box open and discovered a gem that I’d never seen before. It was black and round, and began to blink red as it sat there… it began to pick up the pace and eventually exploded… I had a brain fart. It was a bomb.