GenTEN List: Top 10 Favorite 2D Platformers – Staff Picks

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When coming up with a new GenTEN List topic the idea of doing Platformers popped up rather quickly. The downside to such a great topic was that there were just too many games to choose from. To remedy this we made the GenGAME staff go through and pick their favorite 2D Platformers. This GenTEN List will show some retro games so expect some opinions to be heavy here. If you like the writers here, come take a look at their favorite Platformers and see if you can relate! Maybe there are a few of these games you’d put on your personal top 10 list.

Staff Picks: Top 10 Favorite 2D Platformers

Aaron Ludington

On Twitter: @AaronLudington

(Honorable Mentions: Duck Tales)

10. Whomp’em
9. Castlevania 3 Dracula’s Curse
8. Ninja Gaiden III(NES)
7. Little Nemo Dream Master
6. Sonic & Knuckles
5. Rocket Knight’s Adventure
4. Kirby’s Adventure
3. Mega Man X
2. Donkey Kong Country
1. Super Mario Brothers 3

—–

Alex Plant

On Twitter: @LegendofLex

(Honorable mentions: New Super Mario Bros. U, Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest, Hocus Pocus)

10. Metroid: Zero Mission
9. Jazz Jackrabbit
8. Cave Story
7. Commander Keen: Secret of the Oracle
6. Kid Icarus
5. Sonic the Hedgehog 2
4. Super Mario World
3. Donkey Kong Country Returns
2. Rayman Origins
1. Super Mario Bros. 3

—–

Ben Lamoreux

On Twitter: @Erimgard

10. Vectorman (Gensis)
9. Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
8. ToeJam and Earl in Panic on Funkotron(Genesis)
7. Rocket Knight Adventures (Genesis)
6. Cave Story (3DS)
5. Mega Man Zero (GBA)
4. Sonic & Knuckles (Genesis)
3. Super Mario World (SNES)
2. Metroid Fusion (GBA)
1. Mega Man X (SNES)

—–

Kevin O’Rourke

On Twitter: @Shabazzle

(Honorable Mentions: Megaman 2, Vectorman, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island)

10. Trine 2
9. Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards
8. Sonic and Knuckles
7. Viewtiful Joe
6. Joe and Mac: Caveman Ninjas
5. Donkey Kong Country
4. Megaman X
3. Kirby Superstar
2. Castlevania
1. Super Mario World

—–

Mases Hagopian

Mases is too cool for Twitter

10. Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
9. Duck Tales (NES)
8. Mega Man X (SNES)
7. Sonic the Hedgehog (GENESIS)
6. Super Mario Bros (NES)
5. Mega Man 3 (NES)
4. Super Mario Bros 3. (NES)
3. Ninja Gaiden (NES)
2. Super Mario World (SNES)
1. Mega Man 2 (NES)

—–

Mel DeBottis

On Twitter: @DeBottisto

(Honorable Mentions: Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest)

10. Kirby Super Star (SNES)
9. Mega Man X (SNES)
8. Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (GENESIS)
7. Castlevania 3 Dracula’s Curse (NES)
6. Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)
5. Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
4. Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards (N64)
3. Super Mario World (SNES)
2. Braid (XBLA)
1. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island (SNES)

—–

What the heck is Whomp ‘em? Joe and Mac? Never heard of it. Great lists from the staff, maybe next time around we’ll do 3D platformers. Nintendo consoles ahoy!

  • K2L

    In no particular order:

    -Super Mario All-Stars

    -Super Mario World

    -Banjo-Kazooie

    -Conker’s Bad Fur Day

    -Donkey Kong Country Returns

    -Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back

    -Mega Man X6
    -Banjo-Tooie
    -Commander Keen
    -Yoshi’s Island

    • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

      2D platformers!

      • K2L

        I would have included Galaxy 2 as well, but that would have been already six Mario games in the list (then again, who can blame them for being so good?). =P

        • http://www.gengame.net/ Alex Plant

          Galaxy 2 isn’t a 2D platformer, though…

          • K2L

            Of course it’s not. But you thought I was deliberately favoring 2D over 3D. Thing is, I don’t have a preference.

            • Awesome

              The thing is that the title of the article is 2D Platformers……it has nothing to do with you preferring 2D or 3D Platformers…..it’s about which 2D Platformers do you prefer over other 2D platformers.

              • K2L

                OK, OK, I get it. turns out I hadn’t completely paid attention to the title of the article. I’ll revamp my list:

                -Super Mario All-Stars

                -Super Mario World

                -Donkey Kong Country Returns

                -Commander Keen

                -Yoshi’s Island
                -Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
                -Super Metroid

            • Erimgard

              We’re not talking about preferences. We’re talking about the very nature of the question. What are your top ten favorite 2D platformers. Emphasis on 2D.

  • Awesome

    I’m only slightly disappointed that Donkey Kong Country 2 wasn’t on here (except as an honorable mention). DKC 1 is still amazing, but I much preferred the level design, music, and characters of of DKC2.

    My list…
    10.) Sonic 3 (Genisis)
    9.) Shantae (GBC)
    8.) Trine 2 (eShop)
    7.) Disney’s The Lion King (SNES)
    6.) Super Metroid (SNES)
    5.) Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
    4.) Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins (GB)
    3.) Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (PSX)
    2.) Super Mario World (SNES)
    1.) Donkey Kong Country 2 (SNES)

    • Hawkeye9901

      I really liked DK Country 2. I used to play it at a friends house but I owned DK Country 1 and played that a lot more. It’s a great game. Btw I love that you have Trine 2 on your list. I loved the first game, and the second game was even better!

  • Crimson

    Alex Plant is awesome because he chose Rayman Origins as his 2nd,personally my 1st

  • KY_LOZ

    Surprised FEZ isn’t on anyone’s list here or Super meat boy for that matter with them being two great modern, retro platformers.

    Has anyone played the inde game Giana sisters: Twisted dreams. I played the demo and thought it was fantastic, most reviews were mixed though. It has the core platforming gameplay of NSMB but with a beautiful artstyle, great music and creative game mechanics that actually feel innovative.

    Loved the Rayman legends Demo on wii u too. That’s looking as good if not better than origins.

    • Hawkeye9901

      We’re all mostly retro people. SNES and NES galore here :)

  • Mister Pom

    Some of the games included are not platformers at all, like Toejam & Earl. It doesn’t even have a 2D perspective, for crying out loud.

    My list:

    1) Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii)
    2) Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest (SNES)
    3) Quackshot (Genesis)
    4) Ristar (Genesis)
    5) Super Mario Bros 3 (NES)
    6) Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (Genesis)
    7) Bionic Commando (NES)
    8) Mega Man 2 (NES)
    9) Battletoads (NES)
    10) Ninja Gaiden 2 (NES)

    • Erimgard

      I added a subtitle to ToeJam and Earl. There were multiple games in the franchise, and the game listed is in fact a 2D platformer.

  • BlackRaven6695

    I doubt anybody’s interested in reading my personal top 10 so I’ll just say that Yoshi’s Island would be in my number 1 spot.

    • Hawkeye9901

      With a name like BlackRaven a Mario game doesn’t surprise me :3

      • BlackRaven6695

        ;)

  • zdog

    I love these Gen10 lists, totally makes me want to get out the super nintendo. If I could only play one person’s list for the rest of my life…I’d have to go with Ben’s.

  • CChaplin

    How is DKCR not on more of these lists? Anyone without a Wii game on their top 10 clearly never owned a Wii, the Wii had lots of 2d platformers that, IMO, outshone almost everything else, even on the SNES.

    Also,to Aaron Ludigton, Ben Lamoreux and Kevin O’Rourke… you had “Sonic & Knuckles”, not “Sonic 3 & Knuckles”…? How? Sonic and knuckles is literally only PART of S3&K.

    • Hawkeye9901

      I guess I didn’t really think about that when putting S&K down on my list. I really like the S&K levels though especially Sky Sanctuary. I haven’t done the S3 in S&K cart thing in a long time too. I haven’t dabbled in the Wii’s library of 2D Platformers either. Any you could recommend?

      • CChaplin

        Well, DKCR is my #1 side-scroller. I consider it perfect all except for the one flaw of needing to shake the controller, so it would be worth waiting for the 3DS port to try that one. Both of the Kirby games (Epic Yarn and Return to Dream Land) are fantastic as well. Also, Lost in Shadow is very cool artistically speaking though I wouldn’t say it’s on my top 10.