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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Cave Story (2004) is a running and jumping game styled after classic Metroid and Castlevania games of the 1980's. Unusually, it was initially overlooked until it gained popularity on the internet and then received widespread critical acclaim. The simplicity, poignant story and fast action combine to make this one of the classic indie games of its era.

Play is fast paced traversal as a robot character. You explore and shoot your way through a system of caves. As well as jumping and shooting you use momentum and simulated physics to reach platforms. This requires considerable skill to get used to and pull off.

As you progress you learn about your amnesia, backstory and escape from the cave. New abilities grant access to new areas which in turn enable you to find more powerful and useful weapons by collecting triangular experience crystals. Along the way you meet characters who tell you more about the world and its inhabitants.

The game is available on different systems and in different versions:
  • Cave Story (2010) Wii, DS, Nintendo 3DS
  • Cave Story+ (2011) PC, Switch
  • Cave Story 3D (2011) 3DS

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Cave Story 2 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 23 months ago.
Kids not old enough for this yet? There are lots of games similar to Cave Story. Here are some similar younger-rated games:

Play StylePlay Style

This is an Action and Platform game with Narrative and Puzzle elements. This is a single-player game.


Play Time: This game will take between 8 hours and 14 hours to complete.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 12 for Mild Swearing.

Rated for younger players in the US. Rated ESRB EVERYONE 10+ for Fantasy Violence, Mild Language.


Cave Story usually costs £10.99.

Cave Story

Steam Store PC £10.99
Steam Store PC £10.99
Switch Store Switch -
App Store Mac Unavailable On Digital Store
There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 20/12/2004, updated in 2018

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, DS, Mac, PC, Switch and Wii

Players: 1

Genres: Action, Platform (Narrative and Puzzle)

Accessibility: 0 features documented (Tweet Developer )

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Developer: Studio Pixel JP (@StudioPixelJP)

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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