The Best of Antstream Arcade!
Updated: Mar 27, 2020
With Antstream Arcade going live next Monday (1st July), what better time to look at ten of the brilliant retro games that we have available for streaming from day one. From the retro arcades to the home consoles and computers, if these classic games don’t tempt you, there are plenty more to enjoy on Antstream Arcade!
This classic brawler was an instant hit in arcades and inspired a long-running series, which we covered in detail on the Antstream blog back in September last year. Playing as one or two of the street warriors Billy and Jimmy, there are a wealth of punks to beat up as they strut through the downtown streets in an effort to rescue the fair maiden Marian. Attractive cartoon sprites, a set of jaunty tunes and damn fun gameplay cemented Double Dragon’s legendary status, and we’ll never tire of the ability to assault a bad guy with a weapon you’ve just knocked out of his own clammy grip.
Available On: Arcade
Also Try: Double Dragon II
With 3D games taking over the arcades by 1996, this stoically 2D run ‘n’ gunner could well have felt stale, when in fact the exact opposite was the truth. Utterly loopy, comical and frenzied, this hugely entertaining game somehow avoided over-criticism of its high difficulty level by being unreservedly hilarious and exciting. Ready that pistol, rescue the prisoners and jump into pulsating encounter after encounter in this wonderful game from SNK. HEAVY MACHINE GUN!
Available On: Arcade
Also Try: Ikari Warriors
Ever wanted to jump out of an aeroplane or sit astride a speeding armed motorbike, performing dangerous wheelies and ducking enemy fire? Drawing on countless James Bond films and beyond, Sly Spy allows you to do just that as the player takes on the demonic Council For World Domination, a Spectre-esque organisation bent on, erm, world domination. With his trusty pistol by his side, Sly can whizz across zip wires, athletically leap between levels and, of course, eliminate a virtual horde of henchmen and bosses in an effort to liberate the free world. Aesthetically similar to the Rolling Thunder games, Sly Spy is a fun and thrilling spy caper from start to finish.
Available On: Arcade
Also Try: Western Express
This memorable ninja spy adventure stunned Spectrum and Commodore 64 owners back in the Eighties, and has still got it today. Featuring an immense open warehouse and factory, the player must infiltrate the building, dodge or kill the guards and pilfer an incriminating floppy disk. Atmospheric, intense and exciting, this is an 8-bit game that has stood the test of time, and is still well worth playing today.
Available On: ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64
Also Try: The Last Ninja 2
Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe
ICE CREAM! ICE CREAM! With that clarion cry the ball is launched and the violence begins! Loosely based on the 1975 movie Rollerball, Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe continues the good work laid down by The Bitmap Brothers’ earlier game, Speedball. A manic combo of handball, ice hockey and pinball, Speedball 2 rewards (and fails to punish) even the most unnecessary acts of aggression, which unsurprisingly makes it even more enjoyable to play. Voted the third best game ever in Amiga Power magazine, this is one sports game where a shoulder barge is as useful as a precise throw.
Available On: Mega Drive, Commodore Amiga
Also Try: Super Dodge Ball
Eschewing the behind-the-car view that had become popular thanks to games such as Out Run, Super Cars presents a birds eye view of each race, similar to the arcade classic Super Sprint. With its neat presentable graphics, fun upgrades, funky music and sheer playability, Super Cars is a great game for racing fans looking to scratch that nostalgic itch.
Available On: Commodore Amiga
Also Try: Super Cars II
When Ocean successfully ported Taito’s brawler Renegade to the home computers in the mid-Eighties, it cannily negotiated the rights to produce further games under the same name. Recreating all the high-kicking thrills of the first game, Target Renegade subtly alters the attack patterns without sacrificing any of the playability of Renegade, creating another huge hit that’s waiting to be discovered on Antstream.
Available On: ZX Spectrum
Also Try: Renegade
Designed and created by the legendary Commodore 64 coder Andrew Braybrook, Uridium (named after the misheard chemical element iridium) is as hyperactive and furious today as it was back in the Eighties. Taking control of the rapid and manoeuvrable Manta space craft, the player must negotiate several well-protected dreadnoughts, destroying both ground-based and flying enemies. A ZX Spectrum version was long considered impossible, until Hewson and coder Dominic Robinson proved the doubters wrong with another fantastic game.
Available On: Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum
Also Try: Zynaps
Unlike Uridium, Xenon got its chemical element name correct, and while it may not be as nippy as its illustrious precursor, it remains a fantastic game thanks to its central gameplay hook. Contrasting with many other shooters of the time, in Xenon the player can alternate between air and ground-based combat, with each respective vehicle (jet fighter and tank) offering a unique perspective on the battlefield. With its beautifully clean metallic graphics and helpful power-ups, Xenon is a tough test for any gamer and regarded as one of the finest shoot-‘em-ups of its generation.
Available On: Commodore Amiga, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum
Also Try: Xenon 2: The Megablast
Released by Gremlin in 1992, Antstream detailed the making of Zool: Ninja of the Nth Dimension (to give it its full title) back in August last year. While it may not have been totally influenced by Sega’s famous blue hedgehog, as was generally assumed, Zool is fast and funky enough to stand on its own two spindly green feet, complete with a bizarre set of crazy levels that are a joy to traverse.
Available On: Commodore Amiga, Mega Drive
Also Try: Flimbo’s Quest
Antstream Arcade officially launches in the UK this Monday - head to Antstream.com where you will be able to sign up! You should also follow us on Facebook to be the first to hear all the news about exciting new content.