What was your all-time favorite arcade game - and why?
There's #1 and #2 sitting right next to each other
SPY HUNTER - Because... it's SPY HUNTER, man! It took me years to get the Peter Gun theme out of my head. Oh wait... damn, it's back again. Getting to the boat level was my guage of whether I was having a good day or not. Getting PAST the boat was an ego reward beyond compare.
TRON - I played the game before I saw the movie. Heck, I still play GLTron now and then. I'm sorta skeptical about the new Tron 2.0 game and the movie that is supposedly in the works. However, considering that I own the original and 25th anniversary DVDs, I guess you could call me a fan. As for the game, it was one of the first to have four distinctly different sub-games that worked as a whole. As with the Spy Hunter boat level, getting to the Recognizer tank level was my measure of achievement.
They're both vector games: Warrior (1979), which was a top-down-view swordfighting game -- kind of weird, very hard to find. That and Tempest.
Probably Asteroids. It was just so cool when it first came out.
Donkey Kong was a lot of fun. I also like Donkey Kong Jr. too.
Elevator Action was a nice one too.
I'm sure I spent more money on Asteroids than any other game, though.
The Star Wars Arcade game is the favorite... because, when I find it, it still makes me physically dodge the fireballs. I like all the vector games actually. Sea Wolf, Battlezone, Tempest, Red Baron, etc.,
Also, Ms. Pac Man, but that's because I'm madly in love with her.
I'm all about the Discs of Tron. Not the Tron game referred to above, mind you-- Discs of Tron.
I found myself liking the more obscure games, probably because of their unobtainability. Spiders and Red Alert were two great ones.
Robocop: it was really hard, and I liked the quotes.
I'll have to go with a broad answer, which is "any side scrolling beat-'em-up" (most notably the endless parade of them produced by Capcom). How can you not love games where pork chops are ejected from people when you beat the stuffing out of them with a baseball bat? :D
Star Wars arcade game and Beer Tapper.
Discs of Tron was a very good game. Hard to find though. Sparky, is that vector Warrior game MAME'd? I've never seen it and I'm very curious now.
Speaking of sword fighting, anyone remember Swashbuckler for the Apple II?[/b]
I liked Warrior, again, probably because of its obscurity. There was an arcade in Charlottesville, VA that had it when I lived there circa 1980. I always used to play it when I went there. Of course I was just a mini-wumpus at the time.
Warrior is available in MAME, you'll want the background overlay too. Unless you like falling into a pit over and over.
The X-Men Beat em Up is the only Arcade game that I can really remember from my childhood, I did also play a lot of Street Fighter II Champ Edition.
I could go on and on about Capcom Arcade games from recent memory tho.
It is a toss up between Defender, Galaga and Tempest. Because these games required twitch monkey reflexes in order to navigate through series of challenging levels. Besides, they all looked cool at the time. Oh, and if the arcade had an air hockey table, I'd spend a lot of time there defending my uber puck-handling skillz. :wink:
That's part of the beauty of Warrior! :) If anyone's in the SF Bay Area in September, there's usually a Warrior at the California Extreme arcade game show (http://www.caextreme.org). It's basically an awful lot of arcade and pinball machines - quite a few rare ones and all the classics, set up on freeplay. More fun than a basket of weasels.
Originally Posted by wumpus
Galaga all the way. If I had saved all the quarters I dumped into that game during my summers at the Harding University basketball camp, I would be rich :D
Originally Posted by SFCommando
I never could get the hang of Defender or Tempest :( They looked cool, but I just sucked at them.
R-Type. Blah blah blah "thinking man's shooter".
All time favorite is Ripoff for introducing me to great co-op play. http://www.klov.com/R/Rip_Off.html
Atari Football, with the giant trackballs, for competitive team play. I will probably get arthritis on the insides of my knuckles from the beating they got playing this game. http://www.klov.com/A/Atari_Football.html
I like shooters, and my favorite is Turkey Shoot. It had the first sniper-style wave (level, for you young'uns) I can remember, where you had to make headshots on turkeys that held hostages in front of themselves. http://www.klov.com/T/Turkey_Shoot.html
I loved the Terminator 2 shooter, but Operation Wolf and Operation Thunderbolt got lots of play, too.
Bank Panic, which became a very competitive issue in college for some reason, even though it was a couple years old. http://www.klov.com/B/Bank_Panic.html
Steel Talons, The last game I dominated in the arcades. http://www.klov.com/S/Steel_Talons.html
I could also just state a couple broad categories: Anything by Cinematronics That Didn't Involve Don Bluth, and Anything by Williams Electronics Released Before 1985.
Street Fighter 2. I remember spending an entire weekly allowance on it every friday back in `92... and I still play it today on GBA.
And yet I still can't always do that dragon punch, gah.
I'm a Toobin' man myself. Spent a fortune in quarters on it as a kid and later got hold of several PC conversions (none of which managed to capture the charm of original).
I was also heavily enamored with arcade simplicity of Golden Axe...and Pong. Oh, yeah, now that I remember it, it's all about the Pong.
World's End Supernova
Robotron 2084. Never actually played it in an arcade (video game machines in shopping malls are rather unusual around here) but you can get the required dual-stick control with MAME and a good gamepad (Sony Dual Shock 2 with USB converter).
Gauntlet/Gauntlet II: Warrior needs food, badly! Shots do not hurt other players. . . yet. And everyone's favorite: Green Elf is about to die!
Elevator Action: I burned a ton of cash on this one. I've got it in MAME, but for some reason I totally suck at it now. I discovered it has a sequel with multiple characters to choose from.
Joust: Quite possibly the finest arcade game released, ever. Someday I want to own a cabinet of this, once I get enough room to set it up.
Omega Race, Galaga, and Sinistar.
Had Omega Race on cartridge for my VIC-20. But that and the MAME version just aren't as good without the spinner controller on the arcade machine. Sinistar's another one that doesn't hold up well on PCs due to the controller issue. Darnit.
Run, coward! Beware, I live!
Defender and Spy Hunter. The first I got so good at I could hang out at the arcade with my buds all night for just a buck or two. We didn't have a Spy Hunter at the arcade but there was one at the beach and we'd line up to take turns at it. I think it was the whole design of the cabinet and the great theme and music that had us. Tempest, Robotron and Battlezone all get honorable mentions. We were also nuts about a sit-down Star Wars 'X-Wing' game but I can't remember what it was called.
I put a dent in my finger laying a pencil across it in order to get maximum performance out of Track and Field. Played that one mostly at the corner Stop 'n' Go. There are too many happy memories to list, but I'll also have to give a nod to Galaga and that *pew* *pew* noise of laser fire. I can still summon the tune that played in between levels. Clearly the game made an impression.
Edit: I left one out. Karate Champ, the white uniform/red uniform side-view fighting game. My brother and I played it endlessly.
Time Pilot was probably the only game I always HAD to play at the arcades back in the day, but I probably tried everything at least once. Lately, I've been playing a lot of Pac-Man. Look out Billy Mitchell!
World's End Supernova
It's a toss-up between Gauntlet and Joust. I like both for the same reason: they are great games to play with friends. We used to make the long trek down to an arcade in Framingham, MA with about $10 in change each, and play all afternoon. Joust is one of the few games that still holds up today. It's as much fun now as it was twenty years ago.
Pole Position: The original. Still great. There was something about the feel of it that still compels me.
Datona: the venerable Sega classic, probably the best arcade driving game ever. 8-man battles at Davd & Busters are intense and amazing at the same time.
The Simpsons: Take an established license, the gameplay from TMNT, and four people, and you have arcade gold.
Silent Scope 2: Playing 2-player is an absolute blast. Trying to find the otherguy in the jungle or on the ferris wheel is like playing a movie. Really great stuff.
I know I've mostly taken recent arcade games, but these are the ones that stick out in my mind.
Holy cow...what a trip down memory lane.
I remember that Warrior game you guys mentioned...pretty cool. Omega Race is another one I haven't seen in years. Also, Wizard of Wor, Tailgunner, Double Dragon, and Ikari Warriors. Two player co-op Double Dragon was just too funny.
But if I had to buy one for my home, I'd want Cyberball.
I'm trying to persuade my wife to let me "invest" in a Star Wars and a Ms. Pac Man cabinet. They can be had at auction for about $600-800 + $200 shipping/packing.... that, the tech downturn, and the space issue here in my small house by the lake should give you an idea why I keep losing this argument. (I don't want a MAME machine - though I admire Sparky greatly for hers - as I want the coin-ops for sentiment more than utility.) Lately I've been collecting Marquees. (The glass or plastic artwork panel at the top.)
During E3 this year I visited Gamespy HQ and was delighted to find:
Sinistar, Joust, Galaga, Ms. Pac Man, Street Fighter 2, (and a few more) coin ops in the lobby. My opinion of Keefer and his crew went up immeasurably. How the hell do they get work done consistently is beyond me.
I'd probably pick Hogan's Alley - a Nintendo gun game. When it got real fast, it could really get me tense, and it felt great to be able to keep my cool and do well at it. There was one in my college's game room and I was able to play for a good hour on one quarter. I never met my worthy nemesis who apparently could do the same on that machine. We were constantly leapfrogging for high scores.
Among others mentioned already, Spy Hunter and Tron were also big favorites.
It is no coincidence that my kids' names both can fit nicely in a 3 character arcade high score. I always felt sorry for the guys who had to pick a vowel to leave out or use initials.
2 on 2 futuristic football with robots which you can upgrade when they begin to smoke after so many hits.
I cannot tell you how many classes I skipped so I could play for 3 or 4 hours before my 2:30pm job when I was in college. Some friends of mine bought it off Ebay for 1,000 or $1,500 and we play now and again. Lots of strategies just come right back to me. It is still just as fun and now we can have beer and pizza. YiPPEE!