Written by John Hollis and first published by Quicksilva for the 48K ZX Spectrum in 1983, Time-Gate was the first Spectrum game I ever played and is a simple first-person space shooter – basically a Star Raiders clone with a few differences.
A rare home port of Nutting Associates‘ famous 1981 arcade game, Gorf. Rare because the original developers licensed both Space Invaders and Galaxian for inclusion in the original Gorf, which restricted its reach in home markets (because anyone wanting to release the game on another system would also have to license both games to make it legal).
Karate Champ is an early one-on-one beat ’em up that was pioneering and influential, and was a precursor to fighting games that followed. It was developed by Technos Japan and manufactured into arcades by Data East in 1984.
Programmed by Doug Anderson and published by A&F Software in 1983, Cylon Attack is an early cockpit-based space shooter for the BBC Micro that still plays quite well today.
Repton for the BBC Micro is a classic digging/puzzle/maze game written by Tim Tyler and published by Superior Software in 1985. The game is usually described as a Boulder Dash derivative, and while it’s true that its author was influenced by Chris Gray and Peter Liepa‘s classic game, he hadn’t played it before he wrote Repton – he’d reportedly only read a review about the game in a magazine. Repton is sufficiently different to Boulder Dash to stand on its proverbial own two feet, but the similarities are obvious and drawing comparisons is unavoidable.
Donkey Kong 3 is a platform shooter released into arcades by Nintendo in 1983. As a sequel to one of the greatest video games of all-time [Donkey Kong] it is a relatively obscure instalment in the series and doesn’t get talked about, or played, much now. Probably because it’s not that great.
Hard Drivin’ is a 1989 arcade game developed and manufactured by Atari Games. It allows the player to drive a sports car on a track that emphasises speed and stunts, and was one of the first driving games with a fully 3D polygonal environment.
SonSon is a scrolling platform shooter created by Capcom and distributed into arcades in 1984. It is loosely based on the Chinese “Monkey King” story from the novel Journey to the West. SonSon can be played single-player, or two player simultaneous co-op.