10 old video games I really miss playing

With the advancement of technology and the seemingly endless amount of data that could be stored and sent, video games of today are not like the ones we played back in the 80′s. It’s great, because now we can have super complex story lines and killer graphics that make for an incredible experience, making our fathers jealous of our boogie.

But with the rise of indie game developers creating fun and simple games on mobile platforms, it reminds us of the days of yore — when the Atari was only for the elite and fortunate. When simply clicking the space bar prompted the only action on the only weapon available during hunting time in Oregon Trail. When kids actually knew how to play Hearts.

Related Article: Atari Brings 100 Retro Games to Apple’s iOS

Here is a list of ten old video (arcade and console) games, back before rebooting a game franchise was even a thing, that I wish I could play right now, in its original state.


screenshot of skifree

Screw that snow monster! The suspense of whether you could out-ski that Yeti-like monster created an addiction in you to continually and stupidly keep playing, even after being eaten almost 20-some times.

screenshot of tank wars

Tank Wars was developed originally for DOS and became the precursor to games like Worms and Scorched Earth. This particularly was interesting when it first released because it was one of the first to incorporate some level of multi-person cooperation, albeit with only one input device.

screenshot of joust video game

Although not the first, Joust had multiplayer gameplay so incredibly engaging that it quickly became one of the most memorable games of the 80's. I remember seeing that ostrich on pinball machines and referenced in movies and shows, making Joust one of the first games to enjoy branding outside of the video game world.

screenshot of pitfall for the atari

Overshadowed by best-selling Pac-man, Pitfall! was one of the top games for Atari, and rightfully so. Now referenced by some as the original Temple Run, it's no doubt that the maze-like gameplay and self-negotiating factor was inspiring to future game developers.

where in the world is carmen sandiego

No one can argue with me the sheer impact that this franchise had on not only the gaming industry, but pop-culture in general (remember the reality competition TV show?). Perfectly combining education and gameplay, 'Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego' made its permanent memorable mark on a large gamut of ages and backgrounds. By the way, I wonder what would happen if her and Waldo had a baby?

screenshot of atari's primal rage

Our love for frightening dinosaurs was our 80's version of today's love for sparkling vampires. Primal Rage fed into our more animalistic need to compete and win, giving it the much warranted branding exposure through merchandise like lunch tins. Plus, how many games get to enjoy having an accompanying novel to go with it?

screenshot of contra the game

Who actually remembered the story line for Contra? I don't. But who cared? The game was way too fun to even take notice that there was a plot. I remember my friends and I constantly yelling at each other to make our respective burly, armed gunman kill that other thing, so you could go do that next thing.

screenshot of chrono trigger

Sure, Chrono Trigger was no Final Fantasy, but to me, Chrono Trigger really shaped my views on what gaming meant to my life. It was one of the few games I actually enjoyed watching other people play, too. Its active combat style really kept you on your toes, and the story line, although pretty intense, was really touching. And Marle was one crazy, blonde, ice-wielding and fun chick.

screenshot of killer instinct black orchid 42hit combo

I don't care what anyone says, Killer Instinct was Da Shit. Its focus on ridiculously long and simple combo moves, and the added element of Humiliation, featuring dance steps as finishing moves, this fighting game was addictive, competitive, and campy. Can someone tell Rare and Microsoft to get their shit together and get a release out of KI3?

pokemon screenshot of bulbasaur and charmander

Arguably one of Nintendo's most recognizable brands, behind Mario Bros., Pokemon had everything a gaming franchise could ever want -- multiple series of games, a TV show, movies, merchandise, tournaments, a super memorable mascot, Pikachu, you name it. Sadly though, I lost a lot of interest after the Pokedex started looking like animals of the future took a time machine back to only make Ash go crazy trying to catch them all (which, hate to break it to you, he doesn't actually catch them all).

screenshot of skifreescreenshot of tank warsscreenshot of joust video gamescreenshot of pitfall for the atariwhere in the world is carmen sandiegoscreenshot of atari's primal ragescreenshot of contra the gamescreenshot of chrono triggerscreenshot of killer instinct black orchid 42hit combopokemon screenshot of bulbasaur and charmander


What games do you remember, loved, and want to play again? Reply below.

Rocky Vy Khamken

Digital marketing consultant by trade, a freelance writer by passion. Also, anything that involves innovative tech, fashion, entrepreneurialism, Pantone 021C and pandas are cool, too. Follow him @rockyvy.

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