Celeste is about Madeline, who tries to climb celeste mountain, while avoiding obstacles, meeting new characters, and collecting strawberries. The main mechanic of the game is the ability to dash in mid-air to precisely move and climb. The player can only dash once before needing to touch the ground. Before dashing, the player's character's hair will turn red, but once the dash ability is exhausted, her hair will turn blue. Other elements, such as spikes, moving platforms, and dash-through blocks are used to create challenges and demand the use of the dashing mechanic.
The game began as a game for the Pico-8 Fantasy Console, and had gained praise and recognition in the community. Later, the game's creators began to create a standalone PC version of the game with more features. Soon after the PC's official release, it was announced that the game would be ported to the Switch as well.
Celeste received "universal acclaim" reviews from critics according to Metacritic and was tagged as a "Must-Play" game with a current Metascore of 92/100. On whatoplay.com, it receives an aggregate score (playscore) of 8.68 based on 27 critics and 280+ gamer ratings.