Formats: PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, Wii U, Android, PC
Release date: 2010
The twitch platformer to end all twitch platformers, the levels that await our eponymous cube of raw protein are devilishly difficult. Throw-the-controller difficult. But rather than an irritant, the uncompromising brutality combines with the tight controls and even tighter level design to fuel the glorious, natural high of finally completing each and every challenge. Each facet of the game, from the handling, to the stage titles, to the zany cinematics, is a nod to one retro game or another, but cranked up with consummate modern polish. And the unlockable cast of characters is a gathering of indie gaming’s greatest hits.
Super Meat Boy had humble beginnings befitting of any indie legend, as a Flash game that didn’t initially drum up all that much hype. But with its staggering subsequent sales on both console and PC, it is now – rightfully – one of the great indie success stories. If you’ve beaten the Dark World or Cotton Alley, you can consider yourself among the platforming elite.