10 Classic Platform Games That Shaped PC Gaming

PC games have come a long way since the 90s. Here's a look back at ten of the best PC-based platformers that helped to shape the gaming scene as it is today.

by on 10th Jan, 2011

From The Lost Vikings to Commander Keen, PC gamers have plenty of titles to look back on when rekindling their love for classic titles on the platform. Though the genre was extremely hit-and-miss, more than a few games managed to stand out amidst the din. Here are ten of those games.

Gods

gods 1991 pc platformer

Designed by the Bitmap Brothers, Gods cast the player as the legendary Hercules in his quest to achieve immortality. It could be said that the game was God of War before Kratos usurped that throne more than a decade later. 

In Gods, the player had to venture through various Greek-inspired environments that seemed to bear a hint of H.R. Giger's style. The player solved puzzles and acquired various weapons and upgrades throughout the game, allowing the player to defeat each of the game's four Guardians at the end of every area. In this sense, Gods was very much like Bitmap Brothers' other title, Xenon 2 Megablast. 

Duke Nukem

duke nukem 1 pc platformer

"Hail to the King, baby." Duke Nukem parodied the homo-erotically charged and steroid-laden heroes of 1980s action movies in his first game--a platformer--long before swarms of zit-faced adolescents hailed Duke Nukem as the godfather of first person shooters. 

Like many other games at the time, it didn't take itself seriously. Also missing were the helpless strippers, who were only added in the third and 3D installment of the game. Duke spent most of his time collecting keycards and flying around on a jetpack in this one. 

Jill of the Jungle

Jill of the jungle

Released as a trilogy of platform games by Epic MegaGames (now Epic Games) in 1992, Jill of the Jungle put players in the place of an Amazon instead of the typical macho man character. Jill made her way through dozens of levels, using various weapons and she could even transform into various animals to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles in a very Castlevania-like manner. 

The game poked fun at many competing platform games, with newspaper excerpts lambasting the likes of Commander Keen and Duke Nukem. It was even remade by a Christian game developer to promote bible teachings.

The success of Jill of the Jungle allowed Epic MegaGames to create Jazz Jackrabbit, One Must Fall: 2097 and eventually the Unreal series of games. The rest, as they say, is history. 


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