Photo Credit: NamcoBandaiGames
If you don’t know how to sing the theme to Mario Bros, you missed the 80’s. If the 1970’s provided a commercial platform for the gaming industry, the release of Space Invaders in 1978 launched the Golden Age of Video Games into the 80’s.
Commercial success has always been the driving force behind technology, especially in the super business years of the 1980’s but along the way, the creators and developers of arcade video games gave us hours of fun, depleted our pocket money, and gave us a new world to discover.
80’s Chart Countdown
10. Pac Man. Oh that little round ball chomping smaller round balls and the occasional ghost/alien creature. Pac Man may be the most iconic arcade game of all time.
9. Frogger. All you had to do was guide your little frog across the river and through busy traffic to get to the lily pad on the other side. With levels that grew quickly more difficult, Frogger has also stood the test of time.
8. Star Wars was based, of course, on the movie by the same name. You felt a real affinity with the character and it was the first game to use some of the real voices from the film.
7. Tron was also based on a movie, and after its release in 1982, had kids pumping their pocket money into Tron Machines around the world. It featured different sublevels and games that probably started the whole ideas of a side quest in modern RPG’s.
6. Ms. Pac Man definitely deserves its own spot on the list. Did it get girls into gaming though? Girls that were mad about arcade games didn’t care, but this sequel to Pac Man introduced changes that made it more popular than the original. There is no shame in playing a game with pink graphics and a character with a small bow in her hair.
5. Pole Position gave nine year olds the chance to drive a car without having a license. It may not have been the most popular driving simulator of the decade but it definitely was one of the first. The biggest thrill was being able to use a steering wheel to guide your car around the track.
4. Defender was the most complicated game of the 1980’s with users having to navigate using the joystick as well as a handful of other buttons. It might be simple compared to the amount of buttons on your Xbox controller, but back then, it was tough. Real tough…
3. Battle Zone was released in 1980 by Atari and was one of the first games to use vector graphics. It had a unique look and this kept it popular for years.
2. Donkey Kong. Everyone loved Donkey Kong and it is the one of the earliest examples of a platform game released by Nintendo. Donkey Kong was the forerunner and started the franchise of our number 1 classic arcade game of the 1980’s.
1. Mario Bros and Super Mario Bros. While games like this actually sounded the death knell of video arcade games and the move to console and home video games, Mario Bros had believable characters, great graphics and was one of the best platform games ever developed.
Mario Bros and other arcade games have been released in a number of different formats and across different gaming platforms, but nothing, nothing beats the sweet taste of victory and your name right at the top of the high score table at the end of an afternoon at the arcade.
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