The Best 8-Bit Arcade Inspired Titles in the Nintendo eShop

The Nintendo eShop is constantly churning out new releases to keep fans happy, and the latest draft of new games don’t disappoint. Here’s a countdown of some of the best releases on the Nintendo eShop at the moment, which all share a similar aesthetic in being inspired by 8-bit themes and visuals, a throwback to NES days we welcome with open arms.

Pixel Hunter

Pixel Hunter, a 3D sidescrolling game, takes on the classic 8-bit design that is synonymous with arcade games. The game follows a hunter who chases down various weapons stolen by animals through different worlds and different terrains. The features are very reminiscent of the gameplay found in the arcade game. The gameplay is simple yet enjoyable and takes the best features of the side-scrolling arcade game (bonuses, obstacles, and quick reflexes).

The 8-bit design is simple, yet sends players on a nostalgic trip down memory lane. Arcade games, despite the opportunities for other gameplay, are still a firm favourite. Disney even made a film out of one of them! So, here is a collection of some of the best of Nintendo’s latest offerings that are based on arcade games.

Super Destronaut 3D

Available for the Wii U and released in March 2017, Super Destronaut 3D involves shooting against wave after wave of marauding aliens who become more voracious and fast each level of play. The game is available in Classic mode, Time Attack mode and even Multiplayer mode where you can challenge your friends to see who can blast the greatest amount of alien invaders. The game obviously harks back to the classic arcade game Space Invaders, and fans both old and new will appreciate the nuances – and the modifications (erm, 3D!) that made the format timeless.

The winning formula can be seen across the board. For example, in late 2016 Facebook Instant Games offered a retro throwback through the Messenger app for some of the most popular arcade games. Pac Man and Galaga come jumping out of the arcade and onto your mobile. The appeal works almost the same as the arcade game’s scoring system when everyone could compete for the top spot. Facebook Messenger friends in the chat can see your score and attempt to best it. Similarly, Fabulous Bingo offers Space Invaders in slot form. The slot game incorporates the graphics for fans of Space Invaders with the slot style of gameplay. The live winner’s tally is also reminiscent of the leaderboard found in arcade games.


Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers

Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers completes the fighting game saga and is set for release late May 2017. Street Fighter made its debut in arcades in 1987, and while celebrating its 30th anniversary, remains a firm favourite. Arguably the first game to establish the one-on-one fighting gameplay that has become a part of pop culture since its inception. Available for Nintendo Switch, Ultra Street Fighter II’s biggest allure is the ability to fight against players the world over.

And the portable aspect of the Switch enables you to fight anywhere with anyone, really taking fans on the authentic Street Fighter journey. The arcade game attracted children and adults for many years to spend the time in its darkened rooms with the glare of the screen and the constant clang of the machines. By allowing fans to take the arcade game with them, they will no doubt be transported back to their childhood, overtaken by the nostalgia of hanging out in the arcade.

Super Mario Maker

Inspired by everyone’s favourite miniature plumber, Super Mario Maker gives fans of the game a taste of being involved with the creatio of the Mario games. Super Mario Maker allows players to actually make the levels and stages that they spent hours playing over the years to allow the Mario experience to come full circle – from the initial placing of the blocks that make up the game world levels to the application of enemies and obstacles, the boxes of potential treats, and the placement of the coveted mushrooms.
The game then allows you to actually play your course and to see whether you’ve been a martyr to difficult design. Although there are many more Mario games on offer, this one is perhaps the most innovative of late.

Fans may have migrated away to other consoles and ways of gaming over the years, but whatever they’re doing, they’ll always come back to the good old fashioned arcade.

the author

He’s a cat. He likes to play video games. He often has a hard time with this since he’s a gamer cat living in a gamer human world, but he gets by.