13 NES Multiplayer Classics That Never Get Old

NES Multiplayers That We Love

We all remember how fun it was to play arcade games with friends. Endless hours of fun across all genres on good old 8-bit monster of that time. In case you wasn’t lucky enough to get the glimpse of that 80’s and 90’s gaming experience no worries. We picked out best multiplayer NES games which you can still play thanks to emulators. Team up and dive into action packed retro arcades that will give you and your friends endless hours of fun.

13. Bad Dudes

Bad Dudes multiplayer footage

Games like Bad Dudes have inadvertently became a part of popular culture. Originally known as Bad Dudes Vs. DragonNinja  it was released after huge success of Double Dragon (1986) This made two-player scrolling fighter genre very popular and many games were released in short period. One that stand out and it’s still being played today is Bad Dudes. Controls are quite satisfying which let you focus on on your fighting performance. The game has surprisingly wide range of attack animations which is astonishing considering it was released in 1988. Graphics are fairly good but music, animations and fun gameplay make up for that. Great for a nostalgic slice of some retro fighting action. Needless to say it’s certainly a more enjoyable experience if you team up and take on adventure with a friend. We at Contra Central made sure to provide you with free and safe download of Bad Dudes by teaming up with ROM Central. Don’t wait to join the action!

12. Guerrilla War

Guerilla War multiplayer footage

Guerrilla War is not one of the greatest arcade action shooters for no reason. Firstly you have quiet a lot “toys” to play with.  Your equipment consists of infinite  grenades, machine gun fire and powerups. Inspired by Rambo as it was one of the popular action heroes at the time. It can’t go without saying that game has heavy propaganda through the story itself. You take a role rebel leader who wants to free his country from an evil dictator. Beside that, story is accidentally placed on an island. Do you see where I’m going? I’ll give you a hint, it starts with C and ends with uba. These are all the things that made Guerrilla War its way on this list. Simple and fun two player NES game which gets the job done. If you want to give it a go make use of our partnership with ROM Central.

11. Legendary Wings

Legendary Wings multiplayer footage

Another shoot-em-up published by Capcom which didn’t get the attention it deserved. It’s rarely recognized by gamers of late 80’s which is kind of understandable. At that time Capcom was publishing one game after another. It was very easy for games like this do go unnoticed. Especially when you had Mega Mans and Bionic Commandos at the same time. One of the things I liked the most with Legendary Wings is that it’s partly played as overhead shooter and offbeat run-and-gun for the other half. Difficulty of the game is fair but the bosses had me disappointed. Seems like no effort was put in creating them as none will pose any serious threat. Graphics and sprites are solid but music is just astonishing, something we could expect from Capcom. It’s enjoyable, easy to beat and great when played with a friend. Don’t hesitate to give it a try as we prepared high-speed download for you.

10. Jackal

Jackal multiplayer footage

Simple yet fun overhead-scroller Jackal, originally released as Top Gunner, will bring you authentic war-like gameplay. Simplest way do describe this game would be “Contra from the overhead perspective”. Colonel Decker, Lieutenant Bob, Sergeant Quint and Corporal Grey were determined to execute secret mission code named – Jackal. Interesting how most of war-themed arcade games had such obvious war propaganda in the gameplay and storyline itself. Controls are pretty good and it’s easy to navigate around the map. It will take you six stages until you eventually beat the game. Doesn’t sound like a lot but trust me, it will take you time. Especially since there is a boss fight at the end of each stage. Keep in mind that those fights are no joke. Needless to say it’s much more fun with a friend so team up and try this legendary NES classic.

9. Double Dragon II: The Revenge

Double Dragon II The Revenge multiplayer footage

Who’s there when things in the city get shady and violent? When punks and criminals think they are in charge and things start getting out of control? Two brothers, Billy & Jimmy Lee are ready to take things in their own hands and deal with crime. This side-scrolling beat-’em-up NES multiplayer brings a lot of good co-op action. It was published on so many platforms that it reached out to every gamer int the late 80’s and 90’s. If you were playing games back than chances you played this one or at least seen it are pretty high. Popular for its intense action packed gameplay and slick visuals. Soundtrack was a nice addition where every stage got its unique slice of it. The game is a bit easy but considering it’s still so much fun, you should definitely give it a go.

8. Marble Madness

Marble Madness multiplayer footage

If you were about to experiment and for example decide to combine physics & path-finding in a game, Marble Madness is what you’d come up with. Not so popular as previous games on this list, but it deserved eight spot since it represents a true arcade classic. When you look at the game you get the glimpse of gaming world back in the 80’s. Concept behind the game is simple. You are given control over a ball (marble) and you are supposed to roll it through an obstacle course and reach the finish line. All that in limited time frame. It might sound easy but stages are designed to be pretty hard. Despite having only six stages it still take quiet a lot of time to beat. If nostalgia is shaking you and you can deal with fair level of frustration you’ll definitely get something out of Marble Madness. That glimpse to retro arcade is worth the frustration though so don’t hesitate to give it a try.

7. Contra Force

Contra Force multiplayer footage

This list just couldn’t go without legendary game such as Contra Force. Not so popular among Contra franchise fans it still left a big mark as one popular NES multiplayer. You couldn’t go without playing NES and stumbling upon this game. Interesting story behind it is it was made by accident. Konami was about to publish a game exclusively for Japanese market. Going under the name Arc Hound but it just didn’t happen. Reasons behind that decision are not familiar. What happened in the end, developers did some adjustments and we got Contra Force.  It plays like Contra, it somehow looks like Contra but that just isn’t it. We did a detailed review of this game which you can read here.