As a nerd of A Certain Age, I clearly remember the first Space Invaders console I ever saw, outside the local grocery store, usually surrounded by a line of kids.  By the time I was in middle school, my home town (population 5,000 on a good day) had three or four discrete arcades, including one above the worst bar in town that was nonetheless worth the trip for the best consoles.  (They alone had ‘Robotron 2084’, f’rinstance.)  By the time I was a grown-up, video games were a home phenomenon, and I clearly remember going to Wal-Mart in the dead of night to buy an N64 and WWE No Mercy, thanks to my strange work schedule.  Though my ‘Mighty King Cobra alias predates that game, it was there that he and the rest of my imaginary wrestlers really took form, and I measure it as perhaps the most perfect vidja game of all time, leading to today’s 8-bit query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) still measures all wrestling games by the ‘No Mercy’ replayability factor, asking: Which pixelated delight is YOUR favorite old school vidja game?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Let’s just say that I still got my 1988 purchased NES hooked in bedroom crt TV and pretty much everything released after that in working order as well, so I got several.

  2. For solo play it was Phoenix edging out in a photo finish Galaga. However, I probably pumped as much money into Gauntlet – playing multi player with some friends typically for an hour or more at the local arcade before we would go to concerts or minor league hockey games at the Centrum

  3. How “old school” are we talking? If original Xbox era counts, I’d have to say Morrow in for its amazing-at-the-time graphics and story. If N64, I’d call it a toss up between Perfect Dark and/or 007 Goldeneye and Zelda Ocarina of Time. If NES, I’d probably go with Excite Bike because of the track building options and multiplayer.

  4. I keep with the classic of super Mario world for snes. I don’t play it as often as I would like too, but when I do I enjoy every second of it.

  5. This is a SUPER hard question for me to answer – there were so many games I loved to death – but my fondest memories are probably attached to the games my roomate and friends and I played endlessly at our dorm rooms and computer labs in college, and that’s Mario Kart 64, Star Fox 64 and the original StarCraft on the PC.

  6. At my Safehouse which is on an undisclosed Mountain Top, My Atari 2600 is hooked up to a TV and works.
    I enjoy the paddles which I use in the game Warlord. My son also has a particular fondness for this game.

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