The Best Alternatives to Hollow Knight: Uncovering the Hidden Gems of the Indie Platformer Scene

  • Charlotte Price
  • Mar 30, 2023
  • 322
The Best Alternatives to Hollow Knight: Uncovering the Hidden Gems of the Indie Platformer Scene

If you’re a fan of Hollow Knight and its captivating story-driven narrative, then you’ll be thrilled to know that there are some great alternatives out there. It can be hard to find other compelling games like Hollow Knight with such an interesting 2D sidescrolling action platformer, but these picks have something special that will keep you entertained for hours on end. Some of them are visually similar, while others focus more on the gameplay and exploration aspect, so no matter what kind of experience you’re looking for, there should be something here that strikes your fancy. Let's take a look at the top best games like Hollow Knight!


This beautiful little gem is a delightfully challenging game with a strong focus on story and character development. The pixelated visuals are both endearing and evocative, while its tight controls allow even novice players to get into its fast-paced action. Despite having an incredibly steep difficulty curve, Celeste also offers generous helpings of support from characters who genuinely care about our protagonist Madeline’s journey through her own struggles with mental health - making it an emotionally rewarding experience unlike any other game out there today.

Cave Story+

Another classic 2D adventure full of memorable characters and charmingly crafted puzzles, Cave Story+, takes us back to simpler times when exploration was key (and secrets were everywhere!). Its retro-style graphics may not be as visually impressive as modern titles but they still capture the essence of what makes this genre so enjoyable – which is discovering surprises around every corner. It may be a bit rough around the edges, but those willing to dig deep enough will find plenty here to love about this timeless gemstone!

Cave Story+ game


Taking inspiration from Limbo yet being wholly distinct in its own right, Inside crafts an eerie atmosphere by blending puzzle elements with dark themes such as oppressive governments or corporate greed – making it much more than just another sidescroller title. Its hypnotic soundtrack, coupled with its gorgeous artwork, gives life to a world where nothing is quite what it seems, creating an experience akin to solving intricate riddles within dreams themselves – something only possible through video games!

Hyper Light Drifter

A stunningly vibrant world full of mystery awaits those brave enough to venture into Hyper Light Drifter’s realm - providing hours upon hours worth of content for anyone willing to explore its many secrets! Combat is intense yet satisfying, thanks largely due to its simple combat mechanics, which allow players room to express their own creativity whilst taking down enemies in stylish fashion - plus its luscious pixel art visuals look fantastic no matter how far along one progresses within this mesmerizing world!

Axiom Verge

With fascinating weapons such as data bombs or address disruptors allowing players to tackle obstacles in ways never before seen in gaming mediums, Axiom Verge stands tall amongst other ‘Metroidvania’ titles thanks largely to the due artistic vision behind it. As one delves deeper into this alternate reality, one will soon realize why ‘Axiom Verge ‘ has become a cult classic over the years – combining engaging storytelling alongside brilliant level design to create the pure joyride fans the Metroid series crave!

Axiom Verge game


Not technically a platformer, Cuphead nevertheless deserves mention here sheer due amount of hard work that has gone into developing a beloved masterpiece! Combining 1930-inspired cartoons gameplay reminiscent of Contra NES days, developers Studio MDHR created a truly unique amalgam of two genres that should appeal to all types of gamers. Plus, each boss fight feels fresh challenge requiring skillful maneuvering to survive; if it succeeds, then the rewards cup head receives are certainly worth the effort invested!

Ori And The Blind Forest

Next up is Ori And The Blind Forest, which is another stunningly beautiful adventure platformer filled with epic boss battles, gorgeous hand-painted environments, and a fantastic soundtrack that further immerses players into its world. Just like Hollow Knight, Ori also has plenty of secrets hidden throughout its levels which makes exploring each area even more thrilling than usual. In terms of difficulty level, both games offer up their own unique sets of challenges. However, Ori And The Blind Forest might be slightly easier for newcomers who don't quite have the patience to master those tougher sections just yet!

Dead Cells

Moving onto Dead Cells now, which takes everything we love about roguelike runs from Spelunky or Rogue Legacy but adds its own spin on things thanks to its slick combat system and ever-evolving stages filled with treasures and surprises around every corner! You'll need quick reflexes if you want to survive all the way until the end, but thankfully this game doesn't punish failure too harshly either, so it's never too frustrating when things don't go your way - perfect for those who prefer smoother difficulty curves over punishing ones!

Dead Cells game

Salt & Sanctuary

Another great alternative would be Salt & Sanctuary, which combines elements from both Dark Souls AND Castlevania into one amazing package full of incredible 3D visuals and intense hack-and-slash action sequences! There's also a deep character customization system coupled with tons of weapons/spells that let you tailor your playstyle however you see fit, making Salt & Sanctuary not just an excellent choice for fans seeking something similar to Hollow Knight but also gamers who enjoy creating builds according to their preference instead!

While none of these alternatives can match the level of the intrigue of the main Hollow Knight storyline, they still manage to convey the same atmosphere, albeit by different means. Whether it's fighting enemies with your fists, the mask of a luchador, solving complex puzzles, the ancient ruins of Axiom Verge, Celeste's master of complex jumps, etc., there's a good chance that at least one of these options will leave you feeling satisfied after a long day spent exploring virtual realms in search of answers left unanswered in the main title. So why wait? Try them today and see for yourself!

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