We are transported to the heyday of gaming thanks to the blocky, minimalist aesthetic of pixel art. It evokes a sense of familiarity and pleasant memories by calling to mind the era of 8-bit and 16-bit consoles.
In addition to evoking nostalgia, the purposeful use of few colours and pixels highlights the extraordinary creativity of game developers.
We'll be covering the best pixel art games in terms of gameplay, style mechanics and overall fun factor.
While pixel art games may at first look seem straightforward, they are incredibly engaging. Within the constraints of pixelated settings, creators have cleverly constructed fascinating universes, gripping plots, and difficult levels.
These games demonstrate that engaging gameplay and compelling storytelling are more important to gamers than stunning visuals.
Table of Contents
- 21. Undertale
- 20. Katana Zero
- 19. Toodee and Topdee
- 18. Enter the Gungeon
- 17. SKUL: The Hero Slayer
- 16. World of Horror
- 15. Eastward
- 14. Children of Morta
- 13. Backbone
- 12. Terraria
- 11. Coffee Talk
- 10. Blasphemous
- 9. Axiom Verge
- 8. Stardew Valley
- 7. Hyper Light Drifter
- 6. Shovel Knight
- 5. Dwerve
- 4. Inmost
- 3. Prodigal
- 2. Noita
- 1. Octopath Traveler
Monsters and humans dwell in the land of Undertale, which is divided by an antiquated wall.
Taking on the role of a toddler who accidentally enters the Underground, a place full of intriguing secrets and eccentric residents.
Every choice you make as you set out on your journey will have a big impact and have a variety of branching pathways and outcomes. The pixel art look of Undertale is proof of the enduring appeal of vintage design.
Each character, setting, and interaction has been painstakingly created and exudes charm and nostalgia.
The emotions and delicate subtleties may be expressed via pixel art because of how straightforward it is.
20. Katana Zero
In addition to its exhilarating action that you can see from the screenshot, Katana ZERO also features a gripping story that keeps players on the edge of their seats.
Discover an exciting story of redemption, retaliation, and time manipulation. Players will experience surprising twists and turns that test their understanding of reality as they advance through the game.
The gorgeous pixel imagery that brings the game's universe to life leaves one speechless. Every sprite and environment has been carefully designed, which is evidence of the developers' talent and commitment.
By embracing the beauty of pixel art and taking it to a new level, Katana ZERO captivates players with its distinctive visual design.
19. Toodee and Topdee
We loved how Toodee and Topdee was made for fun and not to make you frustrated throughout the gameplay.
The gameplay tilts from 2d to top down, hence the pun on the names. We thought this mechanic worked quite well. You'll have to flip between them to move blocks around or solve puzzles.
Toodee and Topdee present a plethora of perplexing riddles that will leave you perplexed while also entertaining you with their ingenuity. Utilise our dynamic duo's special skills, the environment, and switches to conquer obstacles and advance through the game.
The puzzles in Toodee and Topdee are just the right amount of challenging and satisfying, rewarding your perseverance with a sense of achievement at every turn.
18. Enter the Gungeon
If you're a fan of games like Smash TV, you'll feel right at home with Enter the Gungeon.
Every trigger-happy gun enthusiast will find something to their liking thanks to a vast arsenal of more than 300 distinctive weaponry, ranging from common pistols to weird, extraterrestrial weapons. The game is a genuine shooter's paradise because of its emphasis on guns and its ability to make each firearm feel unique and thrilling.
Each floor features a collection of rooms including dangers, obstacles, and hidden information. In this gun-filled maze, avoiding rolling, blasting enemies away, and carefully utilising the surroundings are essential for survival.
17. SKUL: The Hero Slayer
SKUL: The Hero Slayer's amazing pixel art visuals immediately capture our attention. A visually attractive experience is created by methodically crafting each character, beast, and setting. You are drawn into a cosmos where darkness and light clash thanks to the meticulous attention to detail in each and every pixel.
The exciting and frantic gameplay of SKUL: The Hero Slayer captivates players. Every level has its own set of challenges that call for quick reflexes, strategic thinking, and exact timing.
As you advance in the game, you'll encounter challenging monster fights, navigate convoluted dungeons, and discover buried information.
No two playthroughs will be the same due to the game's limitless replayability and constantly shifting locations and opponent encounters.
16. World of Horror
The artwork in World of Horror is something like no other.
Picture one massive game that resembles your favourite Gameboy Printer taken snapshots in an epic horror setting and you have one of the coolest ideas for a video game.
A point and click adventure for the masses, something you commonly don't see in the realm of the world where shooters are king.
The World of Horror's distinctive pixel visual style, which is reminiscent of vintage horror games from the 1980s, quickly grabs your attention when you enter.
The game's monochromatic graphics, which are rich in fine details, produce a compelling and ominous mood.
Every animation and picture acts as a doorway into a world where unspeakable horrors are everywhere.
In recent years, pixel art has witnessed a remarkable resurgence in the world of gaming.
With its nostalgic charm and intricate attention to detail, pixel art has become a beloved art form, capturing the hearts of both seasoned gamers and newcomers alike.
Eastward is a shining example of this pixel art renaissance, breathing new life into the genre and captivating players with its stunning visuals and rich storytelling.
Exploration and combat is the name of the game in Eastward. Blasting enemies with your shotgun is a breath of fresh air, while hitting them with a frying pan is something you don't see everyday.
Eastward is a delightful journey the entire time. The simple combat, relaxed melodies are surely enough to carry you through the entire way.
14. Children of Morta
Children of Morta is a beautifully designed pixel art game that offers a modern gaming experience while paying respect to the vintage aesthetics of the past.
Players are submerged in a world filled with detailed details and vivid colours thanks to the charming and nostalgic pixelated aesthetics.
The game comes to life in a visually appealing way thanks to the thorough design that goes into each character, foe, and setting.
The combat is decent and the gameplay is well put together. The roguelike elements are fantastic.
The cooperative experience shines strong with a friend. We think this is totally worth the cost of admission when it routinely goes on sale for $10 to $15.
This fantastic narrative adventure is the gift that keeps on giving.
Creating some nice diversity when introducing the stealthy mechanics. Putting you in the detective role where you'll interrogate people throughout your journey.
The 2.5D stylish pixel art is razor sharp and extremely colorful. We were simply memorized when looking at Backbone run through each of the various scenes.
It makes wonderful use of the controller you have in your hand as the keyboard and mouse feel a bit on the clunky side.
This 5 hour journey will keep you engaged from the moment you pick it up.
Enter a universe where limitless imagination meets 8-bit visuals. In Terraria, players have the freedom and tools to construct, explore, and conquer to their heart's content in a vast sandbox setting with classic pixel art visuals.
Enjoy the pixel art's endearing simplicity as it takes you back to the heyday of gaming while also engrossing you in its detailed and intense gameplay.
Build strong armour and weaponry, build sophisticated constructions, explore enigmatic dungeons, or band together with pals to take on difficult boss fights. Only your imagination can place a cap on the possibilities.
Terraria is really a game that lets you explore your creativity, harness it and exploit it to the entirely unique world brought forward for you to enjoy.
11. Coffee Talk
We were absolutely mesmerised by Coffee Talk's gorgeous pixel art graphics, which perfectly convey the feel of a cosy café.
Every element, from the warm colour scheme to the painstakingly designed characters and landscapes, evokes the feel of early 16-bit video games. The end result is enhanced visually and has a whimsical air thanks to the delightful pixel art style.
Coffee Talk creates an engrossing narrative tapestry by tying together the lives of several persons who come to the quaint café looking for comfort, direction, and company. As they advance through the game, players learn about the deep talks, individual difficulties, and dreams of the coffee-loving patrons.
Every choice made and word spoken has the potential to affect how the characters who frequent the café turn out thanks to the game's intelligent conversation and branching stories.
Blasphemous immerses players in a painstakingly created pixel art realm that overflows with minute details and a sinister mood. The game's graphics are a real tribute to the effectiveness of pixel art; they evoke a feeling of nostalgia while providing a standout visual experience.
Blasphemous offers an intensely engrossing gaming experience in addition to its outstanding aesthetics.
As The Penitent One, a lone warrior seeking forgiveness in the sinister continent of Cvstodia, players will encounter ferocious adversaries, work out challenging riddles, and uncover the secrets of this terrible realm as they set out on their adventure.
Like so many retro throwbacks, it feels like a 16 bit platformer and amplifies it to the modern day era.
We felt like it was a mixture between Castlevania and Dark Souls in terms of difficulty and sheer excitement.
9. Axiom Verge
Axiom Verge's mysterious plot will grip players from the start and is what drives the game.
You take on the character of Trace, a gifted scientist who is accidentally transferred to the enigmatic land of Sudra in this futuristic setting.
Nothing is as it seems as you explore this odd world, and the boundaries between reality and imagination start to blur.
A mix between old school Metroid action and fantastic new gameplay experiences, it really feels like Axiom Verge is the game for you if you're tired of playing the same old Nintendo classics and yearn for a new experience.
8. Stardew Valley
The immersive farming experience that has won the hearts of millions is at the heart of Stardew Valley. You, the player, inherit a dilapidated farm and set out on a quest to bring it back to its former splendour. To take care of your land and create a successful agricultural empire, plant crops, rear livestock, and take part in a variety of other activities. The rewards of your labour will blossom as each day goes by, and the farm will change into a gorgeous retreat.
Stardew Valley offers a complex tapestry of personalities and tales that give the game life, going beyond simple agricultural simulations. Interact with the diverse group of villagers, each of them has a special personality, goal, and tale to tell.
Stardew Valley is a gorgeous game that you could easily sink a few (hundred) hours into without even noticing a thing went by.
7. Hyper Light Drifter
Enter a world where pixels come to life in stunning splendor. Players are transported to a visually gorgeous environment in Hyper Light Drifter that expertly combines aesthetic brilliance with a nostalgic charm.
The game, which features painstakingly made pixels, radiates a sense of detailed craftsmanship that both honours classic 16-bit games and pushes the limits of contemporary pixel artwork.
The mood that Hyper Light Drifter creates definitely allows for some deep moments. Through its exciting fighting, it creates a purely fantastical environment and mentality.
It maintains the interactive and tactile qualities that keep you feeling immersed in a special experience throughout.
6. Shovel Knight
Remember the iconic pogo stick mechanic that made DuckTales so great on the NES?
Some may always ask why do indie games use pixel art.
To put it simply, it scales well and looks fantastic when pulled off correctly. Shovel Knight does all of this and keeps the gameplay experience fantastic.
Shovel Knight fits the retro bill with those colourful inspired pixel art in this 2d platformer for the ages.
Shovel Knight proudly wears its retro-inspired armour in a world overflowing with aesthetically gorgeous video games.
This 2D side-scrolling platformer by Yacht Club Games transports players through a painstakingly created universe that is evocative of vintage NES adventures.
Every character, opponent, and setting are given life by its colourful and expressive pixel art, which enchants gamers with its nostalgic allure.
Dwerve is, to put it simply, a dwarfish slaying of trolls in this amazing dungeon crawling RPG experience.
Set up some turrets to defend yourself and take on the badest of enemy hordes.
The dungeon crawling aspect will leave you looking for switches to pull in order to make it through and pick up that item you've been waiting for after hours of time being put in.
It's more based on strategy and combat than it is on exploration. We think Dwerve looks absolutely adorable!
It's easy to answer the question: do people like pixel art in games as Dwerve looks absolutely stunning.
The stunning pixel graphics that brings Inmost to life will enthral you.
You are submerged in a gorgeously evocative environment with minute intricacies and striking aesthetics thanks to the painstaking attention to detail put into each and every pixel.
The game's dark, enigmatic tone is wonderfully complemented by the visual aesthetic, providing an otherworldly experience that is both visually striking and emotionally stirring.
As Inmost reveals a thought-provoking narrative that examines themes of grief, hope, and the intricacies of the human psyche, get ready to be emotionally engaged.
The game is a very immersive and contemplative experience that reverberates long after the closing credits have rolled through the connected experiences of its three heroes.
Explore the intricately detailed universe, learning its mysteries, and developing a connection with the characters that is unmatched.
Being heavily inspired by games that were featured on the Gameboy and Color consoles that you can totally get behind.
And while it may appear to be a Zelda clone, there's simply more under the hood in Prodigal.
It will really sit you back and wonder how hard is pixel art to create?
Prodigal pushes the limits of gaming by providing a unique experience that goes beyond the accepted norms of the sector. This pixel art masterpiece was created by an imaginative team of designers and masterfully combines intriguing stories, gorgeous visuals, and compelling gaming mechanics.
Navigate perilous dungeons, work out challenging puzzles, and participate in thrilling combat with powerful adversaries. Prodigal keeps you on your toes by fusing exploration, fighting, and puzzle-solving in a way that constantly tests your abilities.
Even things like the aspect ratios of the Gameboy were taken into consideration. Displaying items on the sides and keeping the focus in the size of the Gameboy screen.
Noita immerses players in a captivating realm where the fundamental principles of physics coexist with mysterious arts.
As the main character, you play as a strong sorcerer who is adventuring across a randomly created, pixelated terrain rife with peril and intrigue. Your goal is to travel perilous settings, face off against strong foes, and discover the mysteries concealed therein while armed with a variety of spells.
Nothing less than a visual masterpiece can be spoken about Noita's pixel art style. The developers painstakingly created each pixel, creating a tapestry of vivid colours and minute details that brings the game's world to life.
Every pixel creates a picture, from the vast tunnels to the soaring mountains, that submerges players in a visually breathtaking realm.
1. Octopath Traveler
The rock, paper, scissors formula featured in classic JRPGs is enhanced here. Everything here is available for your experimentation.
Admire the attention to detail, the colourful environments, and the painstakingly created characters that conjure a sense of nostalgia while giving a wholly original and entrancing experience.
You'll be immersed in the gameplay, wanting to explore each of the storylines from all of the fantastic characters.
A fantastic charm of old school meets new, Octopath Traveler offers some really unique experiences and there's a ton of different things to keep you coming back for more.
We welcome you to immerse yourself in a selection of the top pixel art games that have enthralled players all around the world as we come to an end with our examination of the fascinating world of pixel art video games.
These games, which range from retro throwbacks to avant-garde works, feature breathtaking aesthetics, compelling gameplay, and a hint of artistic expertise.
Come along as we reveal the best pixel art games that have captured the attention of players of all ages.