|Battlezone||1980||Simulation||Tank simulation with wireframe enemy tanks, UFOs and obstacles. Movement and turning is similar to that of a tank: slow as fuck. Once an enemy has you in his sights it's pretty much over.|
Some of the old cabinets to this game had an awesome, pseudo-3D effect with a graphical overlay you had to look through.
|Berzerk||1980||Run and Gun / Maze||Berzerk is a very straight to the point game. Shoot anything that moves and survive as long as you can. Despite having only one real enemy, the game still keeps things fresh and varied with encounters. The fear of accidentally killing yourself by touching walls or robots is very real, and the synthesized voice-acting is very charming and memorable still today. Check it out for a simple but fun action shooting experience.|
|Blaster||1983||Shoot 'em Up||OH GOD MY EYES. Pilot a space ship in search of paradise through a bunch of rainbow-flavored strobe levels. Joystick action which is better emulated with an actual joystick. Supposedly the envisioned sequel to Robotron: 2084 though it bears little resemblance.|
|Bosconian||1981||Shoot 'em Up||8-directional movement with a tail gun that allows you to make quick work of enemy squadrons even when running away. Hunt the green enemy space stations to progress through levels and keep your threat level manageable. Red threat level is when the kamikaze pilots start coming out of the woodwork.|
|Bump 'N' Jump/Burnin' Rubber||1982||Action / Driving||Birds eye view racer, drive to the finish while avoiding traffic and jumping over obstacles.|
|BurgerTime||1982||Puzzle||Make gigantic burgers by dropping ingredients downward and avoiding enemies.|
|Centipede||1980||Shoot 'em Up||Similar to Space Invaders, but involves bugs and mushrooms instead of shields and aliens.|
|Defender||1980||Shoot 'em Up||Battle against confusing six-button controls trying to save humanoids from hordes of enemies. Has a "sequel" named Stargate, which is more of the same, but with extra enemies.|
|Dig Dug||1982||Maze||Tunnel underground and shoot monsters with a spike that fills them up with air until they explode.|
|Discs of Tron||1983||Action||A disc-throwing competition, based on one of the scenes of the movie. Jump between you disc-shaped platforms and shoot your opponent while avoiding his shots.|
|Donkey Kong||1981||Platformer||Run and jump through 4 stages to rescue Pauline from Donkey Kong. KILL SCREEN COMIN' UP.|
|Donkey Kong II: Jumpman Returns||2006||Platformer/Mod||A great mod/sequel to the arcade classic, Jumpman Returns features all of the classic elements of the first Donkey Kong with 4 entirely new levels, and "Cutscenes"|
Gameplay footage can be found here
|Frenzy||1982||Run and Gun||Fantastic sequel to Berzerk. A lot of things have been reworked for the better: walls are no longer electrified and instead can reflect bullets or be destroyed, single-sprite robots now come in skeleton and.. uh.. octopus variety, and Otto can be killed! That can be seen as a blessing or a curse, because after he dies he comes back faster than before. Markedly weaker voice work, something that made the original so memorable.|
|Frogger||1981||Action||Cross the highway and avoid getting splattered.|
|Galaga||1981||Shoot 'em Up||Shoot aliens. Protip: Get one ship captured and save it, now you have DOUBLE SHOT POWER.|
|Gorf||1981||Shoot 'em Up||Fixed shmup with five different missions, each with it's own enemy formations and set rules.|
|Gravitar||1982||Shoot 'em Up||A Vector graphis game similar to Asteroids, but with the added twist of gravity. Once you enter a planet, you're taken to a side view level where you must destroy all turrets before moving to the next planet.|
|Gyruss||1983||Shoot 'em Up||Save the solar system from great evil as you make your way to Earth!
A fun and unique Konami "tube shooter" (meaning the field of play is akin to a giant abstract tube with the player's ship). Gameplay involves quick reflexes dodging satellites, space lasers, asteroids and all manner of obstacles in the reaches of space while destroying all the enemy ships that are coming after you. This is all done while listening to a radical electronic version of Bach's Toccata and Fugue.
There are many ports of this game, including an excellent NES port with 39 looping stages that take you past Earth and to the Sun (not 24 like the arcade which take you as far as only Earth), a bit of added throwaway plot and an intense end boss at the Sun.
|Halley's Comet||1986||Shoot 'em Up||While it may look painfully basic the gameplay is actually quite fun, well worthy of a quick play. You launch from a planet and scroll vertically towards a hollowed out, alien-infested comet. Enemy ships that make it past you damage your home planet for a set percentage, where 100% damage results in a game over. Tiered weapons, erratic enemy patterns and random warp jumps give the game variety.
Spawned a sequel on the Game Gear: Halley Wars.
|Joust||1982||Platformer||You're a knight. You joust... ON AN OSTRICH.
Joust is a competitive game, requiring precise movement and momentum to eliminate the ever-increasing throng of enemy knights. Elevation is the only factor in rendering a killing blow. The knight flying above at the point of contact kills the opposing one. Contact on an equal level is a draw, resulting in both bouncing away.
A game where you guide the intrepid, nameless, khaki clad jungle hunter through trials of vine swinging, river swimming, and, uh, jumping over rocks in order to save your female companion from the savages. Lots of the game is reaction/timing based.
Oh, and P.S. you'll never get the damn soundtrack out of your head after the first 30 seconds.
There's also a pirate themed sister-game called Pirate Pete. Pretty much the same thing, just pirate-y.
|Kangaroo||1982||Platformer||Platformer similar to Donkey Kong, you control a mother kangaroo trying to rescue her children. You don't actually have a jump button, having to press up for jumping.|
|Kung Fu Master||1984||Beat 'em up||Aka Spartan-X and Kung-Fu. Kick assholes and save your girlfriend.|
|Lady Bug||1981||Maze||Pac-Man style maze game where you can actually change the maze's layout by shifting through gates on the maze.|
|Lode Runner||1983||Platformer||Get gold and escape. Dig holes in front of or behind you to trap enemies.|
|Mario Bros.||1983||Platformer||Collect coins, stun monsters then kick them. Avoid Fireballs. Much more fun in later remixes with 4 players.|
|Millipede||1982||Shoot 'em Up||Shoot the millipede to bits while collecting magic wands. Don't let it eat all the mushrooms! It's as frenetic and trippy as it sounds.|
|Motos||1985||Action||Simple game where you control a bumper car and must bump into the enemies to throw them out of the playing field.|
|Mr. Do!||1982||Maze||Very similar to Dig Dug, you must dig tunnels and collect the fruit while dealing with the enemies. You have a ball you can throw at enemies but you must retrieve it back to be able to attack again.|
|Ms. Pac-Man||1981||Maze||If you've played Pac-Man, then you've played Ms. Pac-Man. Fortunately, it's just as good as its predecessor.|
|Nibbler||1982||Maze||Let the snake eat the food without running into itself or the walls.|
|Pac-Man||1980||Maze||Eat pills in a dark room and chase ghosts while listening to repetitive techno music.|
|Pole Position||1982||Racing||Drive through a course to get the best time. A lot harder than it sounds.|
|Q*bert||1982||Puzzle / Platformer||Jump on every panel to make them the same color. Avoid enemies by jumping away or jumping on flying saucers.|
|Qix||1981||Action||Try to make a picture by clearing away the cover sheet with careful navigation.|
|Rally-X||1980||Racing / Maze||Mix of maze and racing game, you collect flags on the maze track while avoiding the other cars.|
|Robotron: 2084||1982||Shoot 'em Up||Dual-stick shooter, later copied by Smash T.V. Shoot robots and save humanity. This game doesn't pull punches.|
|Sinistar||1982||Shoot 'em Up||I AM SINISTAR. BEWARE, I LIVE. Shoot aliens and asteroids to collect crystals and stop a planet-sized monster from eating you.|
|Space Invaders||1978||Shoot 'em Up||You pilot a mobile cannon tasked to repel an alien invasion. As you kill aliens the music speeds up and they start to descend faster, with the last one styling all over your cannon-y ass. Good luck sniping that swift bastard.
One of the most iconic games on the arcade which helped bring video gaming into the limelight. If you've been living under a rock there's been multiple remakes which are simply AMAZING.
|Space Zap||1980||Shoot 'em Up||description goes here|
|Star Wars||1983||Rail Shooter||description goes here|
|Tapper||1983||Action||Serve (Root) Beer to customers. Don't let them break anything. Harder than it sounds.|
|Tempest||1980||Shoot 'em Up / TUUUUBES||Vector tube-based shmup which utilized a paddle controller. You're a crab-shaped spaceship. There's a bunch of monsters coming up at you from the depths of god-knows-where. Scroll your wheel, slide around the tube, and blast that shit back to oblivion. Also, watch out for pulsars and those goddamn fuseballs.
One of the most addictive shooters of its day. There's not much plot aside from "SHOOT THE LITTLE BUGGERS", but the original designer says it was going to be a sort of first-person Space Invaders until he had this trippy nightmare about monsters coming out of a hole. Take from that what you will. Has a few direct remakes and ports, like Tempest 2000. Geometry Wars could be considered a mix of this and Robotron 2084.
|Tutankham||1982||Maze||description goes here|
|Vanguard||1981||Shoot 'em Up||An early TOSE-developed game with some very innovative traits for its day. It had horizontal, vertical, even diagonal stages - and each section was visually distinct. The player could fire in multiple directions. And there were digitized voices. So good, you'll forgive them for shamelessly ripping the music from Flash Gordon and Star Trek.|
|Wizard of Wor||1980||Action / Maze||Pac-Man with guns. Blast through a labyrinth with weird looking creatures while hunting the elusive Wizard of Wor. Snipe the Worluk/Wizard before they escape to start a double score bonus stage. Shit gets real on the Worlord levels.|
Allows for bro-op if you both are well coordinated.