Yes, it's me again, writing another article which will probably be dissed by everyone again..but anyway.

Do you think your Platformer sucks?
When I say this, I really mean don't you think your platformer is fun?. If you are one of those people, then maybe answering these questions is the key...

Could your platform game be too flat?
Obviously, I don't mean is it too 2D? What I mean by this is the level design. Is it just one long path to the end with some clever/stupid enemies to try and kill you? If yes, then that's a bad start. Ensure that the level encourages exploration, ala Gunner 3. Ok, that's not strictly a platformer, more a platformer shooter, but you get the idea. And don't counter this flat level by adding a few bumps to jump over. That's just as bad, and becomes tedious and repetitive.

Ok, so you've done that. But it still bores you to play it! What else could you improve?

Does your platformer have any situations wherein your character dies through unfairly difficult situations?
This could mean too many enemies, pixel perfect jumps, forced cornering, that kind of thing. If there are too many enemies, simply delete some and pace them throughout the level. Don't give the player an extremely hard situation like Your Character vs 50 Prisioners of War. The Dreamcast Shenmue game had this very example, where you had to beat up nearly 200 people! Ok, it wasn't at once, but you couldnt replenish your health or anything. If your game needs to have Your Character vs 50 Prisioners of War, make it an optional route, and award the player well if he gets through. Perhaps a cheat, a password, minigame access, that kind of thing. An extra life is a no-no, since you just risked killing 50 POWS for your own life, just to get...another life.

Pixel perfect jumps. They're evil. Just don't have them in your game. If theres anything less than a 50% chance that the player will reach the other side, it's time to move the jump closer!

Forced cornering? What is that? Well, I want to take you to Eternal Daughter as an example. You know that green slimey level? Where those rabbit magicians create tomatoes that chase you? They always drive me to a corner unless I kill them quickly. It makes a game extremely annoying. If you are gonna have characters like that, make a limit to their number!

Ok, you've fixed all that. But your game is still too hard! Oh, I know!

You didn't forget to give the player health as well as three lives, did you? You did? Silly pillock
Actually, this is how I made my early games. Just three lives, no health, and if I collided with a bad guy, I'd lose a life and carry on through the level, rather than restart it with 2 Lives and 100% health. I became frustrated with my own games then, and if you are doing the same with yours too, then that's a fairly important issue.

Well, that's all I can be bothered with for now. Hope this helps you to create a half decent platformer. Until next time (probably next week, or sooner ;D)