Alternatives to ‘Metroidvania,’ Because If I See It One More Time, I’ll Die


  • Comes from the names of two games that do a similar thing
  • ? We don’t call FPS games “Doom clones” anymore
  • ? Imagine if we called real-time strategy games “Warconquers” or platformers “Sonarios”
  • ? Doesn’t mean anything
  • ? I don’t care that it’s come into common usage
  • ? Bad
  • ? Stop it

“Where the fuck do I go kind of games”

  • I got it from the Angry Video Game Nerd
  • ? Aptly describes the experience of play
  • ? Kind of a mouthful

“Search action”

  • From a description of a Touhou game
  • ? Actually explains what you’re doing
  • ? Concise
  • ? Possibly too broad

“Maze games”

  • Just describes what they are
  • ? They are mazes
  • ? Potential confusion with things like Pac-Man but come on it’s 2019


  • ? Fuck you


  • I guess we do this with Roguelikes already
  • ? I forget that Rogue was actually a game most of the time
  • ? “Roguelike” is also a bad term

“Hunter gatherers”

  • You’re hunting and gathering items
  • ? Nice synergy with Metroid being a bounty hunter
  • ? Already taken by pre-industrial humans
  • ? Civilization was a mistake


  • I made this up
  • ? These games are all about unlocking gated areas
  • ? I’ll be the first to admit that it’s bad
  • ? I wouldn’t use it
  • ? And I wouldn’t suggest you do either
  • ? Good day

merritt k

Managing Editor, Podcasts

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