Owlboy - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (John Walker)

The Metroidvania is perhaps one of the more tricky genres to nail down. With its very name coming from an amalgamation of two actually quite different Nintendo-based game series – Metroid and Castlevania – quite what qualifies is always up for debate. Hence, we suspect this could be one of the more controversial lists, when it leaves out a favourite game that someone else might argue fits the remit, but we decided did not. The important thing to remember is that we re right. And all of these games are brilliant.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.>

While Lara Croft is shooting a bear in the face, Nathan Drake is hanging out the back of a plane, and Indiana Jones is squabbling with his dad, the heroes of La Mulana are doing the real work: taking notes, reading patterns, drawing maps. Whether you’d prefer to call it a Metroidvania or an exploration-based puzzler, La Mulana [official site] is the smartest game in its class.

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