I buy a lot of games. Most of them I play for 10 minutes just to scope out the competition.
For most games 10 minutes is more than enough.
I bought Dead Cells to other day for just this reason. I heard interesting things about it and thought it warranted a 10 minute "checking out".
I'm not a platform person. I grew up playing PC games and largely skipped the early Nintendo phase including games like Mario and never fully embraced console gaming. I never got good at platforming and hate it to this very day. There is a lot to like about Spelunky, but the platforming has always gotten in the way and I plough my way though to marvel at the design. The same is true of Celeste.
I expected Dead Cells to be more of the same. But I was wrong. I'm having a great time.
I think the key difference is the platforming in Dead Cells is easy. It doesn't seem to be a skill they want you to grow in any meaningful way. The "game" isn't about getting good at complex platformobatics (I just made that word up); it's more about quick combat skills and building your character. That's stuff I like and am good at.
For a pixel game its also very polished and has set a new bar for my game. Well done Dead Cells.
Erlend Dal Sakshaug
My favorite platformer is Ori and the blind forest. Love the exploration and the sense of achievement. It is really hard, and you do need to learn a lot of buttons, but the award is fantastic.
The fluidity of movement is a joy, to the extent where I think I'd happily play a parkour focused variant of that game without any other mechanics.
The demo is more than enough for this.
Alternatively, if it's too hard, there's always YouTube.
It's interesting what kind of drama you can achieve with just pixel art.