Oh no Space Harrier?
I’d better say it from the outset: picking 20 all-time arcade game classics is a nightmarish task, not simply because of the almost endless array of titles available to choose from, but because of all the really good ones you have to omit. Space Invader Here then, are the titles that made the cut, either because they have had …
Agree - Space Harrier was to my memory the first mainstream hydraulic cabinet game, and to be honest I think the pinnacle of arcade fun before the consoles took the money and innovation out of the market.
Yeah, would have had Space Harrier, Battle Zone, and Missile Command on the list.
And Moon Cresta, Galaxians, Tempest, Centipede, Asteroids, Scramble, I Robot ... and, and ,and damn it really is an impossible task to whittle these down.
First game to have 16-bit graphics and use the new Sega "super scaler" game engine.
Mr Do should be on the list somewhere too, it was the first game to be sold as an upgrade or conversion kit to reuse existing cabinets, so it was cheaper for arcades to replace games.
Welcome to the fantasy zone... Get Ready!
Yep, Moon Cresta, Scramble and Tempest were great, as was Space Harrier.
We had Gaplus, Amidar and Time Pilot in the college common room, later joined by Food Fight.
I could clock Time Pilot and Gaplus. 10p in Time Pilot was good for whiling away a couple of hours...
No Afterburner on the list? For shame, sir!
Totally agree, the hydraulic cabinet was way ahead of it's time.
I'm sorry that 'Scramble' is absent. That and Defender used to take up a lot of my teenage time.
I was thinking the same about 'Centipede'; the first game I ever saw with a trackball.
Not sure, did missile command do it first?
+1 for Atari Centipede, my all-time favourite game.
Also: Missile Command; Mach 3; Pac-Man; Gorf; Qix; Gradius; Battlezone and Final Fight, to name a few.
> No Afterburner on the list? For shame, sir!
I managed to read this post 8 times, due to the fact the pages had the "top scored posts" at the bottom of every bloody page.
*why*? Even on single pages reading a "top reply" first may be senseless if you don't see what it's a reply to,
If it ain't broke, don't break it :(
Karate Champ, Kung Fu Master, Gorf, Phoenix are on my list.
"Not sure, did missile command do it first?"
Maybe, but I never *saw* that game in the flesh.
I never became any good at Defender, but at the time I found it to be extremely compulsive - just had to put one more 20p (or whatever it cost) in the slot.
For some reason I still have nostalgic feelings about this game; never mind (the bollocks).
I was only looking for Paperboy and Defender for my phone this week.
Just grabbed Dragon's Lair for my Nexus 7 - I can see some definite timewasting coming up over the next day or two...
Ahh the memories of wasted hours [1983) in the Bath Student Union bar trying to 'use the force'. Only got to plant the torp a couple of times.
oddly pints of Wadsworth's 4X didn't help Luke in any form in using the force....
Yeah playing Star wars at the Arcade in Hunstanton was great fun. Never got all that far but it was thrilling to play.
Loved gaming back then as your imagination was encouraged to fill in the gaps.
Luke never could hold his shandy. The amount of times 3PO had to pilot the Landspeeder home was embarrassing.
Wadworth's 4X ???
It's Castlemange who make 4X. (Yes I know how Castlemange is spelt, thank you.)
..maybe he only had 2/3 of a pint?
Yup, got to concur with Star Wars. I spent FAR too much time playing that at Uni. Including one 11 hour game (got to 95 million+, 350 odd death stars (the counter stuck at 99, but after 256 it went back to 0), and then the arcade closed and they threw me out! Still don't know if the score can handle 100M :))
but it took a loooooonnnnggggg time as 3po wouldn't go very fast and stopped at every notice board.
I recently found my Ultima maps and manuals from the Ultima collection (I-VI). That's what I call filling the game's gaps with imagination. Those books really set the mood for the game, I agree that games today lack that...
I knew - and loved - all the earlier games, but the later ones were a mystery. I think I discovered girls or something.
For me, Space Invaders - the first really huge game, Donkey Kong - the first platformer, Star Wars - incredible 3D, but I think BattleZone was first on the Vector 3D..., and Gauntlet - just damn good fun in the Union bar - I got the adaptor for my Atari ST so that we could play G2 4 up on the machine - but since you couldn't buy more healther, it wasn't as good.
All classics - and cheers for the memories (btw, no Lunar Lander? That was the first I played, in the mini Virgin Megastore in Nottingham...)
I always thought it was a great pity that The Empire Strikes Back wasn't more available and that The Return of the Jedi was in raster not vector.
I was surprised that BattleZone didn't make list.
Ah battlezone, with the periscope viewsight. However I think tailgunner was the earliest 3d vector game back in '79...
Paperboy was an arcade game you could crash by holding full right (or it might of been left) at the end of the level. This would cause you to miss the end of the level and carry on into the abyss. :) Space Harrier missing? makes me sad. That must of been one of the first full motion sit in arcade cabinet games. There are so many other iconic games missing, Golden Axe, Pole Position, Outrun, Mr Do, Bagman.. Maybe a top 100 list next time?
I second that idea! And would third it too if that were cricket.
If I might over an amendment? Do it as a Reg submission/poll sequence.
Surprised that Golden Axe isn't in there! It was one of the few games from that same era that to me summarised it almost as well as Star Wars! Spent many a £ on Gauntlet, Star Wars and Golden Axe!
I suspect the 'best' coin-ops were the popular ones when you were 12-16 years old, however old you are.
(unless you're under 20, in which case you can just f*ck off back to your console)
+1 - That made me chuckle. Personally I was 12-16 in the late 70's early 80's. Oh the memories.
Me looks wistfully into the middle distance. Must Build Cabinet.
The follow up to Track and Field, Hyper Sports should really have taken it's place. The game play was better as each round got more and more difficult to pass.
Track and Field stopped getting hard after 3 or 4 rounds and and it was possible to play it for 14 hours on a single 10p (restricted to the opening hours of the shop it was in). We did this as a relay team one day taking turns to do rounds - Think we ended up with a score of around 7 million.
For any Hyper Sports fans out there I was part of a partnership called HFX - we mainly played in the north (as that was where we were from and weren't old enough to drive). We held the vast majority of records in Blackpool and surrounding holiday locations.
The definitive list will never be agreed on, but here are my faves from the era:
Bubble Bobble (I mean, come on! 100 levels, hidden portals, easter eggs galore)
Wonder Boy (I can still hum the music)
And to add to the list:
Dragon's Lair (or Space Ace) - As something different, with it's laserdisc animated graphics
Hypersports - much better than track and field (using half a kinder egg to mash the buttons).
Galaxians - would deserve a place, but I guess too much to squeeze into 20 that already has Space Invaders (which should of course always be #1 in the list).
Joust - still love that game today!
Rampage - manga monster mash! Nuff said.
Galaxians? Pfff. We don't need your steenking Galaxians.
Galaga, though, is a whole other story.
Nah, Gorf was better, or at least ate more of my 10p's.
Then there's Asteroids, Tempest, Missile Command, Tron (On Discs of course, the better of the two games) and Battlezone.
Damn, I'm gonna have to dust off Mame and have a retro-fest this weekend!
Surprised at no mention of:
Pacland/Super Mario Brothers
But, each to their own and they all took a big chunk of my available cash. Might be time to fire up MAME again tonight...
What about Space Harrier?
aaah Shinobi....I could have been the next Mozart or George Best but wisely i dedicated my formative years to becoming a Master Ninja.
Yes there are a ton of others you could have had, but the 10 you picked were all bang on as far as I'm concerned, all ten have swallowed up their fair share of my time (actually probably much more than that).
Killer Instinct Arcade would be on their if it was my list, the only arcade I have ever 100% finished (even with eyedol) but it's your list not mine so 10/10 :)
Space Fire Bird (with the screen embedded in a table) and Missile Command? Fond memoiries of playing that in the Bournemouth Pier arcade. The huge explosion when you lost Missile Command and the words THE END blazing from the screen.... ah those were the days.
Explosion icon, obviously.
with the enormous track-ball.
Tellingly, if pushed, you would sacrifice the civilian cities to protect your missile launcher!
Where's WOPR & Matthew Broderick when you need them
And that's why I use a track ball not a mouse ... how can you possibly navigate a spreadsheet <strike>launch nukes at a target quickly and accurately enough </strike> with a mouse ???
I used to be pretty good at Missile Command. Was certainly on the High-Score table most times anywhere I played, and often at the top.
One day I cam to my favourite machine (with the smoothest track ball), and there was a stranger playing. I watched him clock the machine (twice, IIRC), have cities stacked up across the screen, and then get bored after about 45 minutes and walk away before he was wiped out (in fact, before he even started losing significant numbers of cities). You would not believe how erratic the intelligent mines became, and yet he could hit them. I think he must have maxed out the difficulty levels, and the machine started using more and more lurid colour combinations to put him off.
I never saw him again, and I lost all interest in playing, knowing that I could NEVER be that good. In fact, that was pretty much the end of me spending time in Arcades.
Galaxian, Phoenix, Asteroids and one I cant remember the name of but it's catchphrase was "Downtown humanoid"
I believe you mean 'Countdown humanoid, countdown intruder!' and also 'humanoid chicken, fight like robot!'
Loved that game... Berzerk I think it was.