from Space Invaders to Metal Slug 2

The arcade games They have been part of our lives for many years, before many of those who are going to read this publication were even born, and they will continue to be here after us… as long as the conservation of video games improves.

No matter how old you are, listening to “arcade game” is instantly recalling the classic video games most famous: Tetris, Pac-Man and Super Mario, for example. They are essential classics and an intrinsic part of Popular Culture.

The question is: which ones are the best so far?, most outstanding?, most loved? Below you can find a list with the best of the best, ordered from oldest to newest.

Space Invaders (1978)

It doesn’t happen so much anymore, but before “kill martians“was synonymous with playing video games… and it’s your fault Space invaders from 1978. The premise was very simple and it didn’t take long to conquer the world. It was in arcades and home consoles.

space invaders

Space Invaders was one of many video games that were modified to increase speeds and other parameters to make it more complicated. Its impact was such that it inspired other video games and movies.

Pac Man (1980)

Pac Man It is another of the most outstanding arcade games in history. It was released in 1980 and was a real madness in arcades.

Pac Man

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It became popular to such an extent that it had a TV series and they were created different versions among which was a female. Studies revealed that Pac-Man particularly attracted women. In addition, many were made speed changes and the AI behavior to make it more challenging.

The Guinness Book of Records states that the highest score is for the American Bully Mitchell with a whopping 3,333,360 points. A dementia that no one has managed to match to this day.

Donkey Kong (1981)

donkey kong It is a curious video game: you were driving Mario, who had to rescue Princess Peach, while Donkey Kong throws barrels to hinder you. The game is named after the villain. The premise was very simple, but it managed to conquer the hearts of the fans in the arcades of the 80s.


Tetris (1984)

The classic of the classics. The first version of Tetris It was released in 1984 and it was crazy for all the fans. Tournaments and competitions were not long in coming. It became one of the most prominent arcade games of the 1980s and is currently among the best-selling games of all time. You can’t not know Tetris.


Super Mario Bros. (1985)

Super Mario or Mario Bros, call it what you want. The first Mario video game came to home consoles in 1985 and since then Nintendo has not stopped releasing piecework games. Its franchise continues year after year in the form of video games, movies, series…

Super Mario Bros

It has become one of the most iconic characters of the video game industry and is part of Popular Culture. Even people who don’t play video games know who Mario Bros. is. It’s completely impossible not to have ever seen him.

It has inspired hundreds of games. Some recent games are Super Mario 3D World, Super Mario Odyssey, and Luigi’s Mansion 3. Also, there is a very promising movie on the way. Mario is simply a legend and you can’t dislike him. “It’s me, Mario!

Ghosts ‘n Goblins (1985)

If we’re talking about arcade artwork, then Ghosts ‘n Goblins It is mandatory mention. It was released in 1985 and was present in both arcade games, home consoles, and different computers. It has three official sequels (Ghouls’n Ghosts, Super Ghouls’n Ghosts, Ultimate Ghosts’n Goblins) and inspired others. It is considered one of the most difficult games on the NES.

Ghosts N Goblins

Its aesthetics, setting and soundtrack are wonderful. Secondly, Sir Arthur He is the protagonist and a well-known figure among arcade lovers… so much so that he even appears in the game “Marvel Vs Capcom”, this game being the second company that gives its name to the game.

Out Run (1986)

Admittedly, this list could have run out of Out Run from 1986 and it wouldn’t have been a drama, but I’ve taken the license to add it because it’s one of my favorite arcade games. A game of cars, has no more mystery.

Out Run

It is a car game that is played in an arcade machine shaped like a “convertible cabin” and without doors, so that we understand each other. Have you seen the set ups that lovers of running simulators put together? Well, more or less the same, but almost two decades ago.

Against (1987)

In 1987 came another one of those games that wowed fans of 80s and 90s action heroes: Against, a platform and shooter video game in which you have to kill everything that stands in your way with a machine gun. It’s all bullets, explosions and frenzy. An orgasm of stimuli without limit.


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As of today you can play Contra: Rogue Corps on PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch. On PC you can find everything you want regarding arcade games.

Street Fighter 2 (1991)

Street Fighter was released in 1987. It was one of the video games that laid the foundation for the fighting genre. However, Street Fighter 2 of 1991 was the one that shot the franchise to exorbitant heights. It caused a sensation in arcades, bars, and malls during the 1990s.


We have a double reference: it influenced the fighting genre and also the competition. Official and unofficial Street Fighter 2 tournaments were not long in coming. Many friendships have been broken and many problems solved in front of the arcade games of this legend.

Mortal Kombat (1992)

Mortal Kombat from 1992 is surely the video game on this list that generated the most controversy during its launch. It was born as an alternative to Street Fighter… a brutal and bloody alternative that would revolutionize the fighting genre.

Mortal Kombat Arcade

In general, it was a video game that parents hated and young people loved to death. Things haven’t changed much with respect to passions and brutality has only gotten more… MUCH MORE.

Time Crisis (1995)

Action heroes drove the world crazy during the 1980s and 1990s. Any youngster who’d seen one of those shooting-and-explosion-filled movies wanted to experience that in a video game…and Time Crisis of 1995 he knew how to give exactly that. We are facing one of the fathers of the shooter genre.

Time Crisis

It was played on a slightly larger than usual arcade machine and with plastic guns with sensors. The camera would pan across the stage as enemies spawned and players had to take them out by aiming their guns. At the same time, you could step on a pedal for cover. It could be played alone or cooperatively. It was insanely fun.

Metal Slug 2 (1996)

Following in the wake of Contra from 1987, Metal Slug 2 It arrived in 1996 to continue delivering doses of adrenaline and destruction to fans of gunshots and explosions. Technological advances allowed to have more elements on the screen (including explosions) and a better visual section.

metal slug

Other modern arcade games that could be in an arcade

  • Cuphead, one of the games that would be better suited to an arcade. It is one of the best arcade games of recent times.
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimatea frenetic fighting game from Nintendo that could well be in an arcade machine for several players to break each other’s faces a few centimeters away.
  • OlliOlli: a 2D skateboarding game that would go to arcades like a glove.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge: Ninja turtles, pizzas and an arcade? Give me paper and a pen that I sign immediately!
  • Damn Castile: don’t be fooled, it was launched in 2012. This is a clear Ghosts ‘n Goblins inspiration that would not be out of place in an arcade.
  • The Binding of Isaac: Have you ever thought about what it would be like to play Isaac in an arcade? Well now yes. Now you can write down another item on your list of things to do before you die.
  • Jump King: Be careful with the rageos that the arcade is not yours, colleague.
  • Vampire Survivors: the perfect game for arcades. I have proof, zero doubts and a desire to play it that freaks him out.
  • Dead Cells: This would be one of the games that would raise the most money in arcades due to how hectic and complicated it can be.
  • Hotline Miami: a classic! Shots, blood and death. A magnet for any clavillo that entered the arcade. I say yes.
  • Party Hard: more blood and death, but with the incentive of not getting caught. Perfect for playing in an arcade with the three or four kids watching from behind.

And it would be! If you have been wanting to know more about classic games, I remind you that Netflix has a very interesting documentary called High Score: the world of video games with more information.

Finally, I am aware that some classics are missing such as Ninja Gaiden from 1988That’s why I ask you: which ones do you think are missing? Which ones would you add? I read you in comments.

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