Venture

venture

Exidy
Arcade
Designer: Michael Cooper-Hart (uncertain)

ROOTS: Metroidvania games are one part platformer, one part action-RPG. So while Venture may not have the run-and-jump mechanics we associate with the genre, its formative role in the evolution of action-RPGs absolutely gives it a place on this list—it’s a true classic.

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Donkey Kong

donkey-kong-arcade

Nintendo
Arcade
Designer: Shigeru Miyamoto

ROOTS: The Metroidvania term combines two concepts: Action games and RPGs. Action-RPGs. Sure, makes sense. But what also defines both franchises whose names combined to create Metroidvania — Metroid and Castlevania — is that they were platform action games. And where would platformers be without the influence of Donkey Kong?

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Adventure

adventure

Atari
2600
Director: Warren Robinett

ROOTS: The flip side of the Zork coin: Where that game presented the RPG concept entirely in text, allowing for methodical deliberation between player actions, Adventure played out as a real-time action game. Far more compact in nature than Zork, Adventure nevertheless introduced key concepts that would become integral to exploratory action games.

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Zork: The Great Underground Empire

zork

Infocom
Personal Computers
Tim Anderson | Marc Blank | Bruce Daniels | Dave Lebling

ROOTS: An influential work that helped shape the nature and direction of metroidvania game design… and countless other kinds of games, as well. While not a metroidvania in and of itself, this essential precursor defined the workings of exploratory gameplay and persistent imaginary worlds.

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Rabi-Ribi

rabi-ribi

Kano-Bi
Windows
Director: Gema Yue

Upcoming titles

A.N.N.E. (Gamesbymo | 2017)
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (Inti Creates | 2017)
Chasm (Discord Games | 2016)
Cloudbuilt (Rising Star Games | 2016)
Dark Matter (InterWave Studios | 2016)
Ghost Song (Matt White | 2016)
Heart Forth, Alicia (Alonso Martin | 2016)
La-Malana 2 (NIGORO | 2016)
Pixeljunk Inc. (Q | 2016)
Rain World (Rain World | 2016)
Shantae: 1/2 Genie Hero (WayForward | 2016)
Song of the Deep (Insomniac | 2016)
Tetropolis (NextGen Pants | 2016)

The Metroidvania Mission Statement

Hello and welcome and please enjoy the fine video contained behind this link. This is the official starting point for Metroidvania.com!

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Axiom Verge

axiom-verge

Tom Happ Studios
PlayStation 4 | Vita | Windows
Director: Tom Happ

Ori and the Blind Forest

ori

Moon Studios
Xbox One
Director: Thomas Mahler

Castle in the Darkness

castle-in-the-darkness

Nicalis
Steam
Director: Matt Kap

Xeodrifter

xeodrifter

Renegade Kidd
3DS | Steam
Director: Jools Watsham

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Danger of the Ooze

tmnt-danger

WayForward Technology
3DS | PlayStation 3 | Xbox 360
Director: Tomm Hulett

Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse

shantae-pirates-curse

WayForward Technology
3DS | Wii U
Director: Matt Bozon

Strider

strider14

Double Helix
PS4 | Xbox One | PS3 | Xbox 360 | PC
Producers: Andrew Szymanski | James Vance

Batman Arkham Origins: Blackgate

blackgate

Armature
3DS & Vita
Director: Mark Pacini

Full Bore

fullbore

Whole Hog Games
Windows | Linux
Designer: Jake Federico

SteamWorld Dig

steamworlddig

Image & Form
3DS
Director: Brjann Sigurgeirsson

Rogue Legacy

roguelegacy

Cellar Door Games
Windows | Mac | Linux | PlayStation
Director: Kenny Lee | Teddy Lee

Guacamelee

guacamelee

Drinkbox Studios
PlayStation Network (PS3/Vita) | Windows
Director: Multiple

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow: Mirror of Fate

mirroroffate

Mercurysteam
Nintendo 3DS
Director: Jose Luis Márquez

Knytt Underground

knyttunderground

Nifflas
Windows | Mac OS X | PS3 | PlayStation Vita
Director: Nicklas Nygren

Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d You Steal Our Garbage?

adventuretime

WayForward Technology
Nintendo DS | Nintendo 3DS
Director: James Montagna

Aliens Infestation

aliensinfestation

WayForward
Nintendo DS
Director: Adam Tierney

Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet

insanelytwistedshadowplanet

Shadow Planet Productions
Xbox 360 | Windows
Director: Michel Gagné

Monster Tale

monstertale

DreamRift
Nintendo DS
Director: Peter Ong

Bionic Commando Rearmed 2

bioniccommandorearmed2

Fatshark
Xbox 360 | PlayStation 3 | Windows
Director: Simon Viklund

VVVVVV

vvvvvv

Independent
Windows | Mac | 3DS
Director: Terry Cavanaugh

Shantae: Risky’s Revenge

riskysrevenge

WayForward Technologies
Nintendo DSiWare
Director: Matt Bozon

Shadow Complex

shadowcomplex

Chair
Xbox 360
Director: Donald Mustard

Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia

orderofecclesia

Konami
Nintendo DS
Director: Moriemon

Bionic Commando Rearmed

bioniccommandorearmed

GRIN
PlayStation 3 | Xbox 360 | Windows
Director: Simon Viklund

Aquaria

aquaria

Bit Blot
Windows | Mac OS | Linux
Director: Alex Holowka | Derek Yu

I Wanna Be the Guy

iwannabetheguy

Independent
Windows
Director: Michael O’Reilly

Mega Man ZX Advent

megamanzxa

IntiCreates
Nintendo DS
Director: Ryota Ito | Yuujirou Hayakawa

Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin

portraitofruin

Konami
Nintendo DS
Director: Satoshi Kushibuchi

Scurge: Hive

scurgehive

Orbital Media
Game Boy Advance | Nintendo DS
Graham Scott | Daniel Kratt | Steve Shatford

Mega Man ZX

megamanzx

IntiCreates
Nintendo DS
Director: Ryota Ito | Yoshinori Kawano

Lyle in Cube Sector

lylecubesector

Independent
Windows
Director: Nic Destefano

Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow

dawnofsorrow

Konami
Nintendo DS
Director: Satoshi Kushibuchi

Shaman King: Master of Spirits 2

shamanking2

Konami
Game Boy Advance
Director: Unknown

La Mulana

lamulana

NI GO RO
Windows | Wii
Director: Takumi Naramura

Shaman King: Master of Spirits

shamanking

Konami
Game Boy Advance
Director: Unknown

Kirby & the Amazing Mirror

kirbyamazingmirror

HAL Laboratory | Dimps | Arika | Flagship
Game Boy Advance
Director: Tomoaki Fukui

Metroid: Zero Mission

zeromission

Nintendo R&D1
Game Boy Advance
Director: Yoshio Sakamoto

Cave Story

cavestory

Studio Pixel
Windows | Wii | DS
Director: Daisuke Amaya

Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow

ariaofsorrow

Konami
Game Boy Advance
Director: Junichi Murakami

Eternal Daughter

eternaldaughter

Blackeye Software
Windows
Director: Derek Yu

Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance

harmonyofdissonance

Konami
Game Boy Advance
Director: Takashi Takeda

Shantae

shantae

WayForward Technology
Game Boy Color
Director: Matt Bozon

Metroid Fusion

metroidfusion

Nintendo R&D1
Game Boy Advance
Director: Yoshio Sakamoto

Castlevania: Circle of the Moon

circleofthemoon

Konami (KCE Kobe)
Game Boy Advance
Director: Ko-G

Akuji the Demon

ajuki

Independent
Windows
Director: E. Hashimoto

Ikachan

ikachan

Studio Pixel
Windows | 3DS
Director: Daisuke Amaya

Bionic Commando: Elite Forces

bioniccommandoeliteforces

Nintendo Software Technology
Game Boy Color
Director: Unknown

Zeux’s World

zeuxsworld

Independent
Windows
Director: Zaratustra

Tomba!

tomba

Whoopie Camp
Sony PlayStation
Director: Tokuro Fujiwara

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night

symphonyofthenight

Konami
Sony PlayStation
Director: Toru Hagihara

Kirby Super Star (The Great Cave Offensive)

kirbysuperstar

HAL Laboratories
Super NES
Director: Masahiro Sakurai

The Divide: Enemies Within

divide

Radical Entertainment
Sony PlayStation
Director: Unknown

Super Adventure Island II

superadventureisland2

Hudson
Super NES
Director: Sadamasu Ono

Demon’s Crest

demonscrest

Capcom
Super NES
Director: Ryo Miyazaki

Popful Mail

popfulmail

Nihon Falcom | SIMS
PC-8801 | Sega CD | Super NES | Turbo Duo
Director: Unknown

Takahashi Meijin No Boukenjima

adventureisland4

Hudson
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: N. Shinohara

Monster World IV

monsterworld4

Developer: Westone
Sega Genesis
Director: Unknown

Super Metroid

supermetroid

Nintendo R&D1
Super NES
Director: Yoshio Sakamoto

TMNT III: Radical Rescue

tmnt3

Konami
Game Boy
Director: Yasufumi Fukui | Masatsugu Nagata

Bionic Commando

bioniccommandogb

Capcom
Game Boy
Director: Unknown

Gargoyle’s Quest II

gargoylesquest2

Capcom
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Ryo Miyazaki

Metroid II: Return of Samus

metroid2

Nintendo R&D1
Game Boy
Director: Hiroji Kiyotake | Hiroyuki Kimura

Wonder Boy in Monster World

wonderboy5

Westone
Sega Genesis
Director: Unknown

U•four•ia

ufouria

Sunsoft
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Unknown

Gargoyle’s Quest

gargoylesquest

Capcom
Game Boy
Director: Tokuro Fujiwara

A Boy and His Blob

boyandblob

Imagineering
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: David Crane

Wonder Boy III: The Dragon’s Trap

wonderboy3

Westone
Sega Master System
Director: Unknown

Ys III: Wanderers from Ys

ys3

Nihon Falcom
TurboGrafx-16 | SNES | Genesis | MSX2 | PC8801
Director: Unknown

Strider

strider

Capcom
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Masayoshi Kurokawa

Clash at Demonhead

clashatdemonhead

Vic Tokai
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director:

Exile

exile

Superior Software
Acorn | BBC Micro
Jeremy Smith | Peter Irvin

Bionic Commando

bioniccommando

Capcom
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Hatchan

Blaster Master

blastermaster

Sunsoft
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Yoshiaki Iwata

The Battle of Olympus

battleolympus

Infinity
Nintendo Entertainment System
Designer: Yukio Horimoto

Rambo

rambo

Pack-in Soft
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Fukuchan Tokita

Golvellius: Valley of Doom

golvellius

Compile
MSX | Sega Master System
Director: Unknown

Faxanadu

faxanadu

Hudson
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Unknown

Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest

castlevania2

Konami
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: K. Akamatsu

Knightmare II: Maze of Galious

mazeofgalious

Konami
MSX2 | NES
Director: Ryouhei Shogaki

Legacy of the Wizard

legacyofthewizard

Quintet
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Yoshio Kiya

Zillion

zillion

Tatsunoko Productions
Sega Master System
Director: Unknown

Rygar

rygar

Tecmo
NES
Director: Uncredited

 

Relics: Ankoku Yousai

relics

Bothtec
Famicom Disk System
Director: Unknown

The Goonies II

goonies2

Konami
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Unknown

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

zelda2

Nintendo EAD
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Tadashi Sugiyama | Yoichi Yamada

Madoola No Tsubasa (Wing of Madoola)

wingofmadoola

SunSoft
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Unknown

Dragon Slayer Jr.: Romancia

romancia

Nihon Falcom
PC-8801 | PC-9801 | MSX | X1
Director: Unknown

Milon’s Secret Castle

milon

Hudson
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Unknown

Metroid

metroid

Nintendo R&D1
Nintendo Entertainment System
Director: Satoru Okada/Yoshi Sakamoto

The Legend of Zelda

zelda

Nintendo
Nintendo Entertainment System
Designers: Shigeru Miyamoto | Takashi Tezuka

Xanadu: Dragon Slayer II

xanadu

Nihon Falcom
PC-8801 | MSX
Director: Yoshio Kiya

Knight Lore

knightlore

Ultimate Play the Game
ZX Spectrum
Director: Tim Stamper | Chris Stamper

Hydlide

hydlide

T&E Soft
PC-6601 | PC-8801
Director: Unknown

Dragon Slayer

dragon slayer

Nihon Falcom
FM-7 | PC-8801
Director: Yoshio Kiya

Pitfall II: The Lost Caverns

pitfall2

Activision
Atari 2600
Director: David Crane

Montezuma’s Revenge

montezumasrevenge

Utopia Software
Apple II | Atari 2600 | ColecoVision | C64
Director: Robert Jaeger

Impossible Mission

impossiblemission

Epyx
Commodore 64 | Apple II | Master System
Director: Dennis Caswell