There’s no denying that the 80s were a transformative era for video games. It gave us some of the most iconic and classic video games, from Pac-Man to Mario Bros. There’s something about the 80s aesthetics that still holds a special place in our hearts.
However, not all games from that era got the recognition they deserved. There are some hidden gems that flew under the radar and could have been so much more. These are the underrated 80s video games that deserve a comeback.
Spy Hunter (1983)
While most people remember the likes of Mario Bros. and Donkey Kong, Spy Hunter deserves to have its moment of glory. Developed by Bally Midway, Spy Hunter is an arcade-style driving game that puts players in the driver’s seat of an armed sports car. The game was an instant hit but unfortunately never got the recognition it deserved.
Spy Hunter is perhaps most famous for its unforgettable theme song, but it’s so much more than that. The game featured machine guns, oil slicks, and smoke screens, making it a pioneer in the car-based combat game genre. Spy Hunter deserves a modern-day remake or at least a mobile app port because it’s timeless fun.
Burgertime is a chef-themed arcade game developed by Data East. The game involves navigating over different platforms while avoiding enemy obstacles such as oversized fried eggs, sausages, and pickles while trying to make giant hamburgers.
While not as well-known as Pac-Man or Donkey Kong, Burgertime is one of the most unique games of its time. It’s a game that has stood the test of time purely because of its unique concept and fun gameplay. It’s overdue a sequel or a remastered version because it would be relevant and entertaining for today’s audience.
Gauntlet was an arcade game released in 1985 and later on home consoles. Players could choose from one of four characters: warrior, wizard, valkyrie, and elf. The game involved fighting monsters while traversing through dungeons in an overhead view.
The game was a commercial success, but it never really reached the mainstream status of games like Super Mario Bros. or The Legend of Zelda. Gauntlet was one of the first games that let players choose between different characters, each with their unique playing styles. If someone were to develop a sequel or some kind of remake of Gauntlet, they could expand upon it with quests, player classes, and online multiplayer.
Punch-Out!! is a single-player boxing game developed by Nintendo. The player takes control of a boxer named Little Mac and must fight against different boxers from around the world. To win, the player must dodge their opponent’s punches and knock them out by landing blows.
While Punch-Out!! was popular among console gamers, it never got the same attention as games like Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. It’s one of the first boxing simulators to be released, and it stood out previously because it was one of the few video games that featured a black boxer. While there are newer versions of the game, a sequel that includes more boxing legends and a more substantial career mode would be epic.
The 80s gave us so many classic games that we still play and talk about to this day. However, there are some games from this era that were overlooked and didn’t get the recognition they deserved. These games prove that great gameplay never goes out of style. Hopefully, this article has given you an idea of some of the hidden gems from the 80s you may have never come across.
It’s important to remember that video games don’t always have to be the most complex or revolutionary to be enjoyable. Sometimes, simple games with straightforward mechanics like Burgertime and Punch-Out!! are just as entertaining as the more advanced games.
Who knows? Maybe game developers will take inspiration from these underrated 80s video games and create updated and improved versions we can all enjoy today.
Whether you’re new to video gaming or a veteran, it’s essential to appreciate the classics that laid the foundation for modern gaming. So why not fire up some Spy Hunter and remember why it’s fun to be a kid playing video games again.