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Retro Games

What are the best PICO-8 games? Here are the ten best games ever made on the PICO-8, listed in no particular order. (Note: this list is only limited to the PICO-8 because that’s all I could test, but some of these games may have been ported elsewhere.) These titles were chosen based on their innovation, creativity, and depth of gameplay — as well as my own personal enjoyment! Let me know what you think in the comments section below!

1) Flappy Bird

Flappy Bird is one of the best Pico 8 games. It’s a game that is challenging and will make you want to avoid obstacles and keep on going. It’s also a very simple game to play, which makes it very easy for anyone to understand how it works. Flappy Bird is also available on many different devices, which makes it accessible to anyone who wants to play this amazing game. Along with being available on many devices, Flappy Bird also has four different modes that you can choose from when playing this game. You can either play the original mode or you can try any of the three other modes that are available for Flappy Bird.

2) Crazy Golf

Crazy Golf is a delightful recreation of the miniaturized golf course you would find in a garden center. It’s one of the best Pico-8 games because it’s so easy to learn, but difficult to master. You have three clubs: a driver, a wedge, and a putter, each with its own special properties that make it more or less powerful on different kinds of shots. You can only see the bottom of the hole at first, so you have to step up onto the green to see how far down it is before deciding which club will be best for your shot. The game has one other rule that makes it even more challenging: you are not allowed to move your ball once you’ve placed it on the tee or any other surface.

3) Star Wars Battle Pod

Star Wars Battle Pod is a game that combines some of the most iconic elements from the Star Wars universe. You’ll get to pilot an X-Wing or TIE fighter, shooting down enemy fighters and destroying the Death Star. As you progress, your skills will increase, and so will your opponents’ abilities. It’s a really fun game, combining the best parts of a flight simulator and a shooter into one fast-paced package. It’s also designed for use on the PICO-8, so it has retro graphics that really capture that old-school arcade feel. You can play solo or with up to three other friends in coop mode too!

4) Catastrophe 

I have always been a fan of the old Game Boy and NES, having played them extensively as a child. When I heard about a new console called the Pico-8, made by Lexaloffle Games, my curiosity was piqued. It turns out that this is a console that runs on the Lua programming language, with 8 kilobits of memory to play with. This means that you can make games on it easily and fast, but you are limited in what you can do.

5) Gravitar

Gravitar was the first game I played on the console, and it remains one of my favorites. It is a very simple space shooter where you are tasked with destroying all of the asteroids in a certain amount of time. You shoot your laser by pushing up and down on the D-Pad, with the left button controlling your speed and the right button shooting. This game is very easy to pick up and play but still offers fun for longer periods of time thanks to its challenging nature.
The first level is free to play, but after that, you must pay. It’s 99 cents or $1.99 for more levels, which seems like a fair price for what you get.

6) Pong

Pong is one of the earliest arcade games ever created. It was developed by Atari founder Nolan Bushnell in 1972. The objective of the game is to bounce a ball off two paddles and hit it back to your opponent’s side. If a point is scored, the score increments by one, but if a player misses the ball, then their opponent receives a point. 
Pong originally had no sound effects or music; it only consisted of white lines drawn on a black background with four square blocks for graphics representing each player and an added dot to represent the ball being hit back and forth between them.

7) Snake Byte!

Snake Byte! is a game in which you control a snake by using the arrow keys on your keyboard. Your goal is to gobble up as many of the blue dots on the screen as possible before crashing into either a wall or another snake. You can also gobble up yellow dots for points, but these will make you faster and thus more likely to crash into something. You get a point bonus for every ten blue dots you eat, and your score will show up at the bottom of the screen in red numbers. If you manage to make it through an entire level without hitting anything, your score will be doubled for that level! 
If that wasn’t enough, Snake Byte! has three different difficulties that provide a challenge for players of all skill levels: Easy, normal, and hard.

8) Gotcha Force Battles

Players take turns battling creatures on a game board, and the creature that defeats the most enemies is declared the winner. Players can choose from six different types of creatures, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Creatures are made up of four parts: head, body, arm (two), and leg (two).

9) Snake Byte!

Lazer Cops! is a simple shoot-em-up game made for the PICO-8. Like most games, your goal is to shoot the enemies and make it to the end of each level. The more you kill, the higher your score will be! This game also has a boss battle at the end of every five levels.

10) Nightmare House

Nightmare House is a game made by Daniel Remer and it’s the perfect combination of horror and humor. Players take control of a man who wakes up in a house with no recollection of what’s happening. He soon realizes that there are three demons living in the house with him, who plan on eating his soul unless he can escape them. This game is perfect for anyone who loves horror games but doesn’t want to be scared to death.
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