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Nebulon

List of 80s arcade games

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Here's my list of recommended 1980s arcade video games (with Gauntlet marking the halfway point in the decade):

 

TRON
Centipede
Defender
Space Fury
Galaga
Tempest
Missile Command
Battle Zone
Donkey Kong
Pac-Man
Mr. Do!
Gaplus
Mr Do's Castle
Burger Time
Ms. Pac-Man
Robotron
Crystal Castles
Moon Cresta
Dragons Lair
Stargate
Frogger
Phonix
Gorf
Jungle King
Pengo
Pole Position
Elevator Action
Pole Position II
Tapper Punch-Out!!
Spy Hunter
Bag Man
Tutankham
Time Pilot
Krull
Venture
Satan's Hollow
Zaxxon
Black Widow
Sinistar
Tac/Scan
Zektor
Turbo
Armor Attack
Food Fight
Space Wars
Subroc 3D
Star Castle
Super Pac-Man
Firefox
Donkey Kong Jr.
Millipede
Jr. Pac-Man
Time Pilot '84
The Glob Mappy
Regulus
Paperboy
Super Cobra
Carnival
Mouse Trap
Star Jacker
Mega Zone
Space Odyssey
Bump 'n' Jump
Orbit Blaster
Popeye
I Robot
Roc'n Rope
Scion
Track & Field
Vulgus
War of the Worlds
Space Dungeon
Phoenix
Bosconian
Pooyan
Future Spy
Wizard of Wor
Rampage
Marble Madness
Starforce
Eliminator
Kangaroo
Gyruss
Scramble
1942
Two Tigers
Dig Dug
Juno First
Star Wars
Joust
Moon Patrol
Qix
Turtles
Front Line
Strong X
Berserk
Exerion
Cosmic Avenger
Gravitar
Discs of TRON
Astro Blaster
Frenzy
Star Trek
Omega Race
Asteroids
Rally-X
Q*Bert
Congo Bongo
Q*Bert Cubes
Asteroids II
Star Force
Vanguard
Vanguard II
Major Havoc
Xevious
Gauntlet
Gauntlet II
Armored Scrum Object
The Empire Strikes Back
Ghosts 'n Goblins
Green Beret
Metal Soldier Isaac II
Gradius/Nemesis
Section Z
Space Harrier
Terra Cresta
Bubble Bobble
Darius
Gladiator
Ikari Warriors
Outrun
Rampage
Rolling Thunder
Rygar
Side Arms
Spelunker
Victory Road
1943
Ajax
Alien Syndrome
Bionic Commando
Black Tiger
Blazer
Contra
Double Dragon
Galaga 88
Heavy Barrel
Karnov
Pacmania
R-Type
Shinobi
Terra Force
The Ninja Warriors
Time Soldiers
Tiger Road
Twin Cobra
Xenophobe
Xybots
Altered Beast
Assault
Cabal
Operation Wolf
Cobra-Command
Double Dragon II
Ghouls'n Ghosts
Image Fight
Last Duel
Mirai Ninja
Raimais
Scramble Spirits
Shadow Warriors
Silk Worm
Sky Soldiers
Super Contra
The New Zealand Story
Truxton
Turtle Ship
Twin Eagle
Vindicators
Vulcan Vunture
Act Fancer
Arbalester
Blast Off
Burning Force
Dangerous Seed
Darius
Darius II
Dyger
Escape from the planet of robot monsters
Galaxy Gunners
Gigandes
Golden Axe
Gradius II
Gradius III
Hellfire
Ikari III
Klax
Legend of Hero Tonma
R-Type II
S.T.U.N. Runner
Saint Dragon
Search and Rescue
Shadow Dancer
Strider
The Astyanax
The Next Space
U.N. Squadron
Volified
Night Striker
Omega Fighter
Pang
Plus Alpha
Top Gunner/Jackal
Rambo III
Arkanoid
E-SWAT
Battle Shark
Tetris
Ninja Spirit
Fighting Hawk
Forgotten Worlds
Chelnov - The Atomic Runner
Armed Formation
Rainbow Islands
Gemini Wing
Afterburner
Afterburner II
Xain'd Sleena
Tiger Heli
TwinBee
MX 5000
Blasteroids
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That's quite a list. What should we do with it? Play them because you like them? I'm down with that. :-)

 

Well, tastes may vary. Personally, I find these to be fun games (along with Chack'n Pop and Rodland which I forgot to include).

 

So if I were to edit the list, I'd add those two and I'd also add the missing apostrophe in Dragon's Lair and move Mappy onto its own line).

 

Anyway, this is the combined result of my mis-spent youth along with a quest to see what neat games I missed back then.

Edited by Nebulon
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Here's a fixed-up list in alphabetical order and without the break halfway through the decade:

 

1942
1943
Act Fancer
Afterburner
Afterburner II
Ajax
Alien Syndrome
Altered Beast
Arbalester
Arkanoid
Armed Formation
Armor Attack
Armored Scrum Object
Assault
Asteroids
Asteroids II
Astro Blaster
Bag Man
Battle Shark
Battle Zone
Berzerk
Bionic Commando
Black Tiger
Black Widow
Blast Off
Blasteroids
Blazer
Bosconian
Bubble Bobble
Bump 'n' Jump
Burger Time
Burning Force
Cabal
Carnival
Centipede
Chack'n Pop
Chelnov - The Atomic Runner
Cobra-Command
Congo Bongo
Contra
Cosmic Avenger
Crystal Castles
Dangerous Seed
Darius
Darius II
Defender
Dig Dug
Discs of TRON
Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong Jr.
Double Dragon
Double Dragon II
Dragon's Lair
Dyger
Elevator Action
Eliminator
Escape from the planet of robot monsters
E-SWAT
Exerion
Fighting Hawk
Firefox
Food Fight
Forgotten Worlds
Frenzy
Frogger
Front Line
Future Spy
Galaga
Galaga 88
Galaxy Gunners
Gaplus
Gauntlet
Gauntlet II
Gemini Wing
Ghosts 'n Goblins
Ghouls'n Ghosts
Gigandes
Gladiator
Golden Axe
Gorf
Gradius II
Gradius III
Gradius/Nemesis
Gravitar
Green Beret
Gyruss
Heavy Barrel
Hellfire
I Robot
Ikari III
Ikari Warriors
Image Fight
Joust
Jr. Pac-Man
Jungle King
Juno First
Kangaroo
Karnov
Klax
Krull
Last Duel
Legend of Hero Tonma
Major Havoc
Mappy
Marble Madness
Mega Zone
Metal Soldier Isaac II
Millipede
Mirai Ninja
Missile Command
Moon Cresta
Moon Patrol
Mouse Trap
Mr Do's Castle
Mr. Do!
Ms. Pac-Man
MX 5000
Night Striker
Ninja Spirit
Omega Fighter
Omega Race
Operation Wolf
Orbit Blaster
Outrun
Pac-Man
Pacmania
Pang
Paperboy
Pengo
Phoenix
Phonix
Plus Alpha
Pole Position
Pole Position II
Pooyan
Popeye
Q*Bert
Q*Bert Cubes
Qix
Raimais
Rainbow Islands
Rally-X
Rambo III
Rampage
Regulus
Robotron
Roc'n Rope
Rodland
Rolling Thunder
R-Type
R-Type II
Rygar
S.T.U.N. Runner
Saint Dragon
Satan's Hollow
Scion
Scramble
Scramble Spirits
Search and Rescue
Section Z
Shadow Dancer
Shadow Warriors
Shinobi
Side Arms
Silk Worm
Sinistar
Sky Soldiers
Space Dungeon
Space Fury
Space Harrier
Space Odyssey
Space Wars
Spelunker
Spy Hunter
Star Castle
Star Force
Star Jacker
Star Trek
Star Wars
Starforce
Stargate/Defender II
Strider
Strong X
Subroc 3D
Super Cobra
Super Contra
Super Pac-Man
Tac/Scan
Tapper Punch-Out!!
Tempest
Terra Cresta
Terra Force
Tetris
The Astyanax
The Empire Strikes Back
The Glob
The New Zealand Story
The Next Space
The Ninja Warriors
Tiger Heli
Tiger Road
Time Pilot
Time Pilot '84
Time Soldiers
Top Gunner/Jackal
Track & Field
TRON
Truxton
Turbo
Turtle Ship
Turtles
Tutankham
Twin Cobra
Twin Eagle
TwinBee
Two Tigers
U.N. Squadron
Vanguard
Vanguard II
Venture
Victory Road
Vindicators
Volified
Vulcan Vunture
Vulgus
War of the Worlds
Wizard of Wor
Xain'd Sleena
Xenophobe
Xevious
Xybots
Zaxxon
Zektor
Edited by Nebulon
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On 9/9/2019 at 11:00 PM, Shack said:

Who knows of the game that started with “Bon Voyage” was a space game.

 

Vanguard.  Skip to about the 1m20s mark to bypass the attract mode.

 

 

Edited by x=usr(1536)
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Who knows of an 80's arcade game that had a character similar in appearance to that from Stormlord (it was a short character, kinda stocky, he might have had a beard)? It was a dynamic game requiring constant shooting (to the point that it was often played by two people where one would only have shooting duties), levels looked like from Stormlord but the game was faster. I remember that one bonus tool or skill that the character was finding was a ladder (it was a short ladder) and if I'm not mistaken also a mask and shoos allowing him to jump higher, but that last one I'm not sure about. I believe this game was also available on ZX Spectrum platform in a simplified version. Thank you so much!! 

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Life Force/Salamander is one not on this list, and is part of the Gradius timeline. You listed Gradius II and Vulcan Venture on this list, they are pretty much the same game, VV is the western revision of Gradius II. Cadash, Burning Force, Marvel Land, and Final Fight are 4 great games from 1989, damned great year for arcade games.

Edited by Bloodreign

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I had a chance to play Time Soldiers recently. I liked it when it first came out, because the whole time travel idea always appealed to me. But playing it recently, my main takeaway was that it's a completely unfair quarter-stealin' game that just throws you into impossible situations. And I was playing it on unlimited credits at an arcade expo!

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OP. Man there are TOO MANY great coin-ops out there.

 

BUT I am glad you put the mighty Bubble Bobble in there. For me: 

 

Midnight Resistance is missing. You get points for Ninja Warriors and Operation Wolf but no place for Karnov or Victory Road for me.

Pair of stinkers.

 

No Smash TV. Mercs might be up your street. As may be Ninja Princess and indeed Ninja Spirit.

 

Another dud spotted Shadow Warriors which looks quite good but plays like a dog.

 

No Commando ?

If you're into the 1941/2 you should really check out the wonderful Loop Master.

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Razzie.P said:

From what I can tell, it gets crapped on a lot, but Speed Rumbler (Capcom) was one my favorites from the 80's.

  

33 minutes ago, Razzie.P said:

Speed Rumbler (Capcom) was one my favorites from the 80's.

Well... It was pretty original at the time, Looked amazing for '86. There is an iffy c64 port knocking about but the arcade original is a lot of fun.

A lot of people must love it too because I think it came out on a Capcom collection for PS2 if I remember correctly?

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This has been bugging me a while, can any of you remember a car shoot em up game in which you go round dodging enemy fire and when your car gets beat up you exit the car and can shoot and dodge enemies until a replacement car gets brought to you.

it was a birds eye view.

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11 hours ago, Bonesonny said:

This has been bugging me a while, can any of you remember a car shoot em up game in which you go round dodging enemy fire and when your car gets beat up you exit the car and can shoot and dodge enemies until a replacement car gets brought to you.

it was a birds eye view.

 

Sounds a lot like Speed Rumbler, the title being discussed above:

 

 

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Recently got acquainted with Xybots. I wasn't really a big fan back in the late 80's of this game, but now it's holding my attention. That and my favorite Wizard of Wor, which I can't seem to get enough of. 

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1 hour ago, Unbeliever said:

Recently got acquainted with Xybots. I wasn't really a big fan back in the late 80's of this game, but now it's holding my attention. That and my favorite Wizard of Wor, which I can't seem to get enough of. 

It's a good game. Some of the conversions were good, others iffy.

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I used to play a fighter pilot type game that made you dock your fighter for the bonus round.  I thought it was called double eagle.  It was somewhat similar to 1943, with a fighter pilot shooting game.  The docking of your fighter was the standout characteristic. Any help in finding the correct name or a pic of a graphic would be cool.  Thanks, Pete

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19 hours ago, archie94 said:

I used to play a fighter pilot type game that made you dock your fighter for the bonus round.  I thought it was called double eagle.  It was somewhat similar to 1943, with a fighter pilot shooting game.  The docking of your fighter was the standout characteristic. Any help in finding the correct name or a pic of a graphic would be cool.  Thanks, Pete

 

Twin Eagle?

 

 

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OP what are you intending to do, get a mame Bartop? You could put all your favourites on there and like most people I personally have not got round to 'weeding' the crap titles out of my collections.

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It's a Great list! (From a few years back)   Personally, just to kind of have (almost) everything:  I'd add Rip Off, Reactor, Dragon Spirit, Break Thru, Space Panic, Looping, Red Baron, Pulsar, Super Zaxxon, Spectar, and a game I constantly play on MAME,  Targ.

 

 

 

PS:  Weird though it looks, it's spelled Volfied (though I just tend to call it Ultimate Qix, haha)

 

PPS:  If you wanted some more weird or obscure shooters you could also add Stratovox, Space Firebird, Zero Hour, and New York, New York.

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23 hours ago, ∞ Vince ∞ said:

OP what are you intending to do, get a mame Bartop? You could put all your favourites on there and like most people I personally have not got round to 'weeding' the crap titles out of my collections.

Indeed.

 

Sometimes the question is to weed or grow. Either trim and cull a large collection of everything down till only your favorites remain. Or grow your collection, adding favorites as you encounter them or recall them.

 

Having started in the pre-golden days of emulation there weren't large collections, so I tend to build up and add as time progresses.

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25 minutes ago, Keatah said:

Indeed.

 

Sometimes the question is to weed or grow. Either trim and cull a large collection of everything down till only your favorites remain. Or grow your collection, adding favorites as you encounter them or recall them.

 

Having started in the pre-golden days of emulation there weren't large collections, so I tend to build up and add as time progresses.

 

I think the question is to grow your collection or smoke weed?   And the answer is Both!

 

HAhaHaHAAhahahahahahha!

 

Yeah,    I slay me!  Haa!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So for me,  I like to collect Anything AND Everything,  Just have ALL of the ROMs because you never know,  but then you can make smaller lists of Favorites.

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, GoldLeader said:

So for me,  I like to collect Anything AND Everything,  Just have ALL of the ROMs because you never know,  but then you can make smaller lists of Favorites.

Well...

 

I've been retro gaming since 1988 or earlier. * 1983.

 

By the time I got to various systems, their golden days were gone so I was looking back the first time I played a game.

 

Mum used to get Nintendo Game and Watches on the secondary market through a guy who used to buy bankrupt stock. So I would play Mario in 1985-6, years after it had came out.

 

I got a Atari 2600 in 1988, which was a decade and a bit after it came out.

In 1990 I had my c64 which came out in 1982.

In 1992 I had my Amiga which came out in 1985.

 

I got my PS1 in 2001, My PS2 in 2006, My PS3 in 2013, My PS4 in ? not straight away. Hopefully I will get another PS3 at some point.

 

I remember when some of the failed systems came out, like the Jaguar (over-rated, over-priced, late to market) or the Amstrad GX4000 (8 bit in 16 bit generation and no games) I got, which was probably the only system I got in the same year it was released, only to find that by Christmas they had stopped making them and they had no games.

I leave it now, even if I could afford one right out of the gate. Let them iron out issues first (red ring of death anyone), and wait for an established market and some good games first.

 

At every single step I have been Retro Gaming.

 

I couldn't afford new games, so I would buy cheap rereleases on cassette for £1.99, £2.99 and £3.99 for Hit Squad (Ocean) titles.

 

If you paid £1.99 it was probably an old game, 90% of the time. They discounted them. Some would sit on the shelves for years, but I didn't care. They were NEW to me!

 

I got them all the time because they were good games and it meant I could get two or maybe three if I asked my lovely dad, nicely.

 

This left me in a strange world where the games I was buying, a lot of the time had been reviewed in the mags years ago before I ever saw them. But I was getting mags all the time so wanting these news beautiful expensive games but only being able to afford the old ones.

 

This was actually a fantastic thing because when they were inevitably discounted and reissued on HS usually I could play them fresh and enjoy them more having only limited funds.

 

Amiga mags here used to have coverdisks with faithful reproductions of Arcade classics on them, like Pacman like Space Invaders.

 

I fell in love with SI, and I found it through a coverdisk with a really fantastic CLONE. **

 

** I wrote my own authentic Emu for SI. That Amiga game was right on the money, resolution aside.

 

My first experience of gaming was a Pong TV game. Which came out in the 70s but I was playing sometime in 1983.

 

I also saw a lot of knockoff handheld consoles, that looked like my Gameboy, but had one game and the display of the Games and Watches.

 

Anyway. When I first got the 'friendly internet', I downloaded my favourites. It was painstaking and quite arduous.

 

Then one day I got an archive for the c64, it was a CD retail release. Then I got the Spectrum one and the Amstrad CPC one.

 

Then in 2001, Retro Gamer UK came out for its first issue. This was early in the year and it came out 4 times that year I think.

 

Coverdisks full of Emulators and Remakes but no roms.

 

Once I had the Emus I sought out the games for them.

At some point I got broadband and downloaded a huge 40Gig archive of every system I ever wanted.

 

Anyway, then I built an upright arcade and put the computer into it.

I then got one made with a Pi running it.

 

I will get round to culling, the main issue is, the roms do not have the same name as the games themselves so it can be a seriously tedious endeavour let alone the possibility of losing games by accidently 'offing' one of your faves you thought wasn't named that.


The knack of the 'got everything' is, knowing your games. Know the good ones. Play the good ones. Worst case you can just ignore the crap ones.

Edited by Guest
Bit More + 'CLONE' missing from end of a sentence

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