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thetick1

Most underrated arcade games

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So there are a few arcade games I just think are the best but for various reasons never get any love like the biggies (PacMan, Centipede, Asteroids, Space Invaders, Donkey Kong, Defender, Frogger, Q*Bert ....etc).

 

Anyway below are my most underrated arcade games:

 

1) Super Zaxxon

2) Mappy

3) Pooyan

4) Mr Do!

 

What are yours ?

Edited by thetick1
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1) Super Zaxxon

2) Mappy

3) Pooyan

4) Mr Do!

 

I'm not sure any of these games are really underrated...thought they are rather well known and respected? Of course not on the scale of the Arcade Super Hits, but still.

 

I could list probably double (triple) digits list of arcade games that definitely should get more love...but off the top of my head: 64th Street, 3 Wonders, Armored Warriors, Chicken Shift, R-Type Leo, Carrier Air Wing and many others

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I'd consider Mr. Do! underrated in relation to Dig Dug. I strongly feel that Mr. Do! is the superior game with deeper mechanics, but many people scoff and say it's just a Dig Dug ripoff with a lame clown protagonist.

 

I would also list Donkey Kong 3 though it seems to be getting more appreciation in the past decade or so.

 

For obscure games, I'd say Lasso, Time Tunnel, and Wild Western. Wild Western in particular gets a lot of hate on Youtube. It's not a bad game, though it can be difficult. Perhaps it's the loud train whistle that puts everyone off.

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Wild Western in particular gets a lot of hate on Youtube. It's not a bad game, though it can be difficult. Perhaps it's the loud train whistle that puts everyone off.

 

Wild Western is a good game. My suspicion is that the people who are giving it a hard time are playing it in emulation, and it's a game where it really only plays well when you're using the original controls; Front Line falls into this category as well.

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Wild Western is a good game. My suspicion is that the people who are giving it a hard time are playing it in emulation, and it's a game where it really only plays well when you're using the original controls; Front Line falls into this category as well.

 

I've actually never had the pleasure of playing Wild Western on the original cab. I first discovered it on the Taito Legends PS2 disc. I find assigning a button combo for the aiming to work pretty well for me. I set it up so you hold button 2 while quickly pushing a direction on the joystick to change your aim. The game isn't as fast paced as say Robotron where you need to constantly be shooting in different directions so the button combo isn't that bad. I'd still love to play it with the dial though.

Edited by Ramses

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I'm not sure any of these games are really underrated...thought they are rather well known and respected? Of course not on the scale of the Arcade Super Hits, but still.

 

I could list probably double (triple) digits list of arcade games that definitely should get more love...but off the top of my head: 64th Street, 3 Wonders, Armored Warriors, Chicken Shift, R-Type Leo, Carrier Air Wing and many others

 

Well maybe I should have picked some better wording. Obviously the games I listed are very well know by almost everyone here. What I should have said is what games don't get mainstream pop culture love like the biggies do. For example my wife nor my parents ever heard of the four I listed.

Edited by thetick1
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I guess I get it, but perhaps there's limited space for videogames in mainstream anyway. Only a few will filter through, and it's all about seizing the moment too - mainstream folk wouldn't care much if Mr Do! had better mechanics than Dig Dug since the latter had already filled the quota.

 

Also the classics you listed in the OP were from the dawn of videogaming, later on they had to jostle for the limelight with computer and home console games.

 

Personally I consider 90% of arcade games underrated (along microcomputers) in the modern sense, where the stranglehold of the big 4 (NES/SMS/SNES/Genesis) on retro gaming in general is kinda tiresome.

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I agree Donkey Kong 3 is often underrated.. because people think of it in terms of "Donkey Kong", when it really is a cartoony Nintendo take on Galaxian/Galaga style games.

 

Star Force I think should be a legendary game in the shmup genre, but it seems to get forgotten a lot in people's lists. So I'd count it as underrated.

 

Pinball Action is also an underrated game in my book.. I put in many hours playing it as a kid and trying to visit and beat all the playfields with the Poker, Bowling, and Slots themes. Great fun. :)

 

fSiOPYI.jpg

 

And yeah it's really too bad about Wild Western.. there's just no easy way to really duplicate those controls at home (i.e. a dial you can rotate and press to shoot, and a button to jump on the train). I used to really like that game but find playing it emulated just doesn't cut it. Speaking of dial games.. Sheriff sure was a beaut. :)

27365021907_01c97d6871_z.jpg

Edited by NE146
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Pandora's Palace - With Konami behind it, circa 1984, cannot believe this title has not seen a port under any system; especially at least the Famicom/NES, BITD; it's highly underappreciated and underrated. A friend's reaction called it a reverse flowing Donkey Kong. Never saw it that way before, but would explain why I like it so much (DK being my all-time favorite Golden Age Arcade game). It also may explain why it never saw the light of day on the aforementioned systems. Still, there is enough variety, great gameplay, and huge fun factor in its own right:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6c9LH9PtoU

 

 

Ponpoko - Another title which really needs more exposure, appreciation, and is underrated. Wildly popular in South Korea, enough so, that the couple of games to pay homage to this Arcade original includes a DOS based Korean only title, "Doraon Neoguri". The only other platform I have found to have something (very) close to it is under the MSX, "New Neoguri". While the DOS game is easily obtainable, sadly, the MSX game appears to be extremely rare with no publicly available dumps known. Like Pandora's Palace it has great gameplay. I find myself often wanting to play the game more than just once; in fact, several times in a session, due to the addiction factor:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nWJa-efleuw

 

 

Phoenix - While perhaps in the minority here, I like and enjoy this game much more than either Galaxian or Galaga. The latter titles have received copious ports under a variety of systems. Phoenix has seen one 'official' port under the Atari 2600, and a clone under the C64, "Eagle Empire". Despite underrated and underappreciated for the most part, there have been and remain glimmers of hope on seeing it fully ported to the ColecoVision; would love to see a port under the Atari 7800, NES, and SMS systems as well! A real standout at the time, a ton of fun to play, and just love those doorbell chimes-melodies:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDAzknWyu_g

 

 

Do! Run Run - While Mr. Do! and Mr. Do's Castle have received a plethora of porting across various systems, and Mr. Do's Wild Ride has seen a port or two, the ever elusive and quite frankly truest successor to Mr. Do!, Do! Run Run, has not been ported to any console or computer. It is really a shame; as although similar in nature to Mr Do!, there is enough differences and uniqueness to this game, that it really deserves a fair shake, its own spotlight, and some appreciation; it truly is underrated. I actually find myself playing this more than the original at times. A great game:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBAETNU03Zc

 

 

Jumping Jack - An underappreciated and underrated gem from Universal; it feels like some of the concepts from more renowned classics such as Q*bert and Congo Bongo (Of course, Mr. Do's Wild Ride as well), have been combined, while being introduced to new and fresh material to make a pleasurable and challenging title. The animation of the protagonists is fun to watch. Additionally, the challenge of acquiring fruit and arriving to the goal, while looking-out for same space occupation with monkeys, dodging boulders and spears, keep the game engaging and exciting:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2f-dQhs96Xc

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The Empire Strikes Back. It was a conversion game for Stat Wars arcade but very few operators converted their cabs for it. It's fun to take down AT-ATs

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Id like to know if anyone has either seen or played Shuuz on actual unit. Talk about a niche game!

Shuuz was conversion only but yes, I've played one. Also had one pop up locally on craigslist a couple years back.

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Shuuz was conversion only but yes, I've played one. Also had one pop up locally on craigslist a couple years back.

Very nice. :)

 

I can’t imagine what type of arcade cabinet I’d actually like enough to play all the time — maybe Gyruss — let alone something rare but probably awful, like Snax ‘n Jaxson appears to be...

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One I've been enjoying that I didn't know existed until I found it on the Namco Megamix collection for the Wii is Namco's King and Balloon which is an interesting twist on the Galaxian theme

 

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Jumping Jack - An underappreciated gem from Universal; it feels like some of the concepts from more renowned classics such as Q*bert and Congo Bongo (Of course, Mr. Do's Wild Ride as well), have been combined, while being introduced to new and fresh material to make a pleasurable and challenging title. The animation of the protagonists is fun to watch. Additionally, the challenge of acquiring fruit and arriving to the goal, while looking-out for same space occupation with monkeys, dodging boulders and spears, keep the game engaging and exciting:

 

Damn - you just beat me to it :D Jumping Jack is a lot of fun, and always seemed to me like it could have been the 5th game in the Mr. Do! series with some graphics tweaks to the sprites.

 

Some more for consideration:

  1. Cosmic Chasm
  2. Peter Pack-Rat
  3. Congo Bongo
  4. Pepper II
  5. Gaplus
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Phoenix - While perhaps in the minority here, I like and enjoy this game much more than either Galaxian or Galaga. The latter titles have received copious ports under a variety of systems. Phoenix has seen one 'official' port under the Atari 2600, and a clone under the C64, "Eagle Empire". Despite underrated and underappreciated for the most part, there have been and remain glimmers of hope on seeing it fully ported to the ColecoVision. Would love to see a port under the Atari 7800, NES, and SMS systems as well. A real standout at the time, a ton of fun to play, and just love those doorbell chimes-melodies:

 

 

I'm with you 100%. Phoenix is in my top 5 favorite arcade games, all time. It definitely hasn't seen enough love on the home consoles and I've also been hoping for 7800, NES or Colecovision homebrew ports, especially 7800 and NES. In fact NES needs more homebrew arcade ports period but I understand most homebrewers who are NES fans are also fans of different genres than arcade games.

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