Retro Games, Arcade Games

Top Five Arcade Video Game Franchises of All Time

October 26, 2020

Top Five Arcade Video Game Franchises of All Time

The 70’s was the beginning of the gaming era with countless games were created. However, there was nothing like these five video game franchises that changed the whole gaming community forever. We will be going through five top retro video games that paved the way for our modern video games such as GTA 5 and EA Sports Fifa.

Pac Man 

Pac Man is a Japanese Arcade game that was first released in 1980, and went to be the best-selling retro game franchise of all time. This enabled gaming companies with inspiration and ideas to help form our modern video games. The Pac Man character is a yellow circle with a pizza slice in the middle.

Pac Man was created and developed by NAMCO based in Japan, Tokyo. Over time Pac Man became the longest-running, bestselling and highest-grossing retro game franchise in gaming history selling close to $48 million copies across various platforms.

Who thought a maze arcade game would become an international sensation? The objective was to collect all the dots while controlling Pac Man and avoiding the four ghosts coloured in pink, red, blue, and orange. Ghosts can be eaten as well for bonus points, but only when Pac Man eats large flashing dots called energizers allowing the Ghosts to turn blue to activate the perk.


Defender is an arcade game created and released by Williams Electronics in 1981. This retro game is one of the best-selling retro video games along with Pac Man, selling over 75,000 units! Defender is a horizontal scrolling shooter based on an unnamed planet where the player must defeat a wave of aliens stampeding towards him while protecting the astronauts.

The gross revenue for Defender was $2.7 billion up to 1982. This was the companies best video game ever created which went on to become a vital inspiration for other games called Asteroids and Space Invaders. This paved the way for future SCI-FI Shooter games such as Halo, Fallout and a much recent game called Destiny.

Street Fighter 

Streetfighter was created and published by Capcom, which is based in Osaka, Japan. This retro game was released in 1987 selling up to 500,00 units up to 2002 with gross revenue of $5.2 billion. Capcom also established Street Fighter 2 in 1991, which became the best-selling retro game they have ever created with gross revenue of $10 billion.

Streetfighter 2 is an iconic retro game that has established various conventions of the one on one fighting genre and went on to develop five other main series games along with spin-offs and crossovers. Streetfighter has multiple characters to choose from with each character having a unique look and their stats detailing key strengths. The objective of the game is to beat your other opponent by using fighting combos and finishing moves.

Space Invaders 

The majority of the major selling retro video games were made in Japanese video game companies such as Space Invaders. Space invaders is a shooting retro game created and released by Taito. This game was inspired by media breakouts such as  Star Wars and The War of the Worlds.

Over time, space invaders helped to mould the gaming industry into a global giant becoming an insight for various modern games. Space invaders were first designed for arcade games then transferred over to different gaming platforms; numerous spin-offs have been created by Taito to fuel the famous franchise even more into stardom.

The game is an attacking spaceship with three lives controlled by the player to take down the incoming wave of aliens similar to Defender.

Donkey Kong 

Donkey Kong is a game featuring the adventures of a Gorilla published in 1981 by Nintendo. Nintendo has created multiple spin-offs of Donkey Kong to push the franchise further. Donkey Kong was first released on Arcade Machines then transferred over to other platforms. This famous retro game sold 167,000 copies, and the gross revenue shot up to $787 million worth of hardware sales.

The Donkey Kong video game featured jump man as the opponent, which came out to be Mario. This game was the first appearance for Mario.

Buy Arcade Machines from Arcade Mania 

If you’re looking to buy classic arcade machines for your retro arcade bars, then take a look at our fantastic range of arcade machines. Alternatively, if you have a question about our products, please give us a call on 0121 433 5554 and we would be more than happy to help.


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