• Graeme Mason

Antstream Arcade: 2019 Year in Review

Updated: Mar 27

It’s been a very full and fantastic year for us here at Antstream Arcade HQ with our dream of constantly playable online retro classics continuing apace. There have been a number of improvements and tweaks over the course of the last twelve months, such as the ability to save games and a seven-day free trial offer – but it’s always the great video games that we come back to. As the decade stands poised ready to tick over to the roaring Twenties, we thought it would be an appropriate time to take a look back at some of the classic gaming highlights from 2019 at the Antstream Arcade. Here’s to a bright retro gaming future!


Challenge Central


Antstream Arcade’s challenges and leader boards have long been a centrepiece of the service, and this year saw both increase in popularity. With each enabled game offering five challenges, increasing in difficulty, there’s plenty for retro gaming fans to test themselves, and here are three of the most popular games-with-challenges for you to get your teeth into.


Butasan

This pork-tastic bomb-throwing arcade game proved to be fertile ground for our punning challenge creators. Survive as long as you can with no damage to secure the Piggy In The Middle challenge, or clear a level as fast as you can with no damage to achieve Brick Pig House status. But for the ultimate challenge, there’s Oink Boink, slap as many pigs as possible with the removal of porcine-slap spamming thanks to a cruel cool-down period!


Tumblepop


This Data East coin-op game inspired another brilliant set of challenges on Antstream Arcade. In Considerate Meltdown, it’s a rush to eliminate as many enemy snowmen as you can in the quickest possible time, while the delightful-sounding One-Shot Wallflower is a stern test against one of the game’s botanical boss nightmares.


Horace Goes Skiing



We love Horace, even though we’re still not sure what he actually is! Inserting a quintet of challenges into this uncomplicated second game in the series was fun, from the dangerous-sounding Ambulance Chaser to Gone In Sixty Seconds – how long can you keep Horace on the black road without getting hit? Poor ‘old Horace – no wonder he always looked so sad.



Ongoing New Content


Of course, the nature of Antstream Arcade means that we are able to proudly offer new games all the time, and 2019 saw a range of brilliant new titles debut on the system. Here are three of the most popular new entries.


Brave Battle Saga: Legend Of The Magic Warrior


Mega Drive and Japanese RPG fans were given a special treat in the summer with the addition of this cute yet in-depth role playing game from Chuanpu. When an ancient threat re-emerges, it’s down to freshman magician Tim to save the world – with a little help from loyal Antstreamers of course!


Bomb Jack


November brought a range of Koei games to Antstream Arcade, and it’s hard to pick one from this impressive quartet to favour over the others…but we’ll go with the wonderful Bomb Jack. You now have no excuse not to play this bomb-defusing classic.






Art of Fighting 2

Along with the trusty shoot-‘em-up, the beat-‘em-up remains one of the most popular genres in retro gaming, and we are honoured to host the legendary Art Of Fighting series, encapsulated with this formidable sequel which took its bow in October.


Top Games Played


These three titles were the most popular games on Antstream Arcade this year and, as befits our service, they’re a diverse trio!


Super BurgerTime


Data East’s colourful follow-up to the renowned arcade classic is even more fun than the first game thanks to its varied levels and choice of weapons to use against the mass of errant cooking ingredients that are hunting down poor Chef Pepper.


Prehistoric Isle in 1930


The spirits of Doug McClure and Alan Grant were strong this year in Antstream Arcade as retro gamers flocked to the quaint antediluvian pleasures of this rock-hard shooting game. Mind out for those pterodactyls!



Double Dragon



Finally, the Eighties classic that kick-started a genre and inspired a wonderful movie that somehow missed out on Oscar glory. Punch, kick and head-butt your way through the dangerous streets in order to rescue the girl and save the day. This is the way of the Double Dragon!


So with 2020 almost upon us, all that remains is for all of us here at Antstream Arcade to wish you a very retro New Year full of the very best classic games!