Toki is a relatively obscure platform-based arcade game, by Japanese developer TAD Corporation, which was first released in 1989. And it is as bloody hard as nails!
Yu Suzuki‘s 1986 arcade game, Enduro Racer, is seen by many as the dirt bike equivalent of Hang-On, because it uses similar technology and graphical techniques.
The Enduro Racer arcade cabinet came in two variations. One was a stand-up cabinet , with motorbike handlebars, and the other was a full-size dirt bike that you could sit on.
A relatively obscure Taito arcade game from 1989*, Fighting Hawk is a vertically-scrolling bullet hell shooter where you fly an A-10 ‘Tankbuster’ up the screen, fighting its way through waves of enemies and bosses.
Fantasy Zone is a colourful scrolling shooter from 1986. It was created by Sega and it looks simple and cartoony, but is in fact very challenging.
The main character, Opa-Opa, is sometimes referred to as “Sega‘s first mascot” and is very similar to the one seen in the earlier TwinBee. Both TwinBee and this game have been credited with the creation of the “cute ’em up” genre, and that is probably not too far from the truth.
Thunder Blade is a single-player helicopter combat game that debuted in arcades in 1987, courtesy of Sega. It combines overhead shooting sections with third-person, ‘over-the-shoulder’ shooting sections and it features lots of impressive graphical scaling effects on the buildings and enemies.
I hadn’t seen this 1989 arcade game from Atari Games before, until I played it recently, and even then I found it on the Commodore 64 first, then realised that it was an arcade conversion.
Skull & Crossbones has all the ingredients of a classic arcade action game, but – having played it extensively now – I can see why it failed…
Also known as Defender II, Stargate is the 1981 sequel to Williams Electronics‘ Defender, which was released earlier the same year.
Stargate was designed and programmed by Eugene Jarvis and Larry DeMar of Vid Kidz, for Williams, and it features the same superfast blasting action as Defender, but with subtle differences.
Originating in arcades in 1984, Flicky is a super cute bird-collecting platform game by Sega that relies heavily on gravity, inertia, and jumping to provide the challenge.
The aim of the game is simple: you play a blue bird who must collect up the small, yellow chicks (the “PioPio“), and avoid contact with the cats (the “Nyannyan“) on your way to taking the chicks home (the door you came in through). The quicker you do this, the more bonus points you get.
Simple. Or at least you might have thought so…
Mercs is a classic arcade shooter from 1990. It was jointly developed by Sega and Capcom and features simultaneous three-player cooperative gameplay.