Best Arcade Games on PC

Need your retro fix?
Looking for the best Arcade Games on PC?

Looking for the best Arcade Games on PC?

Ah the arcade, remnants of the past, a place that we all knew and loved. You could go and spend all your quarters for a few minutes of glory in the machines. Well now most of them are gone, dust in the wind, fading with the golden age of home gaming. Well what if I told you that you could play all those arcade games on your PC right now? Well you can, and we’ve narrowed them down for you. Here is our best arcade games available on PC.

1. The King of Fighters XIII Steam Edition


You have been invited to the ultimate fighting tournament. A competition between the best fighters in the world.  Defeat the mysterious organization behind the tournament, stopping them from using their powers to cross time and space, and even from destroying the universe.

King of Fighters XIII is an arcade fighting game with a single player and multiplayer mode. With an interesting and compelling plot, you’ll have a lot of fun taking your character to the top, and trying to become the king (or queen) of fighters. Without spoiling anything, getting to the end of the game will reveal some very interesting and exciting plot developments for the series as a whole. This game is one of many in a long series of fighting games.

Dating back from 1994, when the series started, King of Fighters has been around for a while. This installment adds a number of new characters, like Vice, and Takuma. The game also adds new features that balance the fighting out, like the EX Mode, which lets the players use an even more powerful super move, which will devastate their opponent.

Jump kicks are your best friend.

Athena vs Athena. Athena casting magic at herself.



2. Street Fighter 5

The Black Moons are hovering above earth, seven artificial satellites that orbit the planet. They are ready to fall at any moment, and your job is to help your team find the keys to stop them. If you fail, the Black Moons will strike six cities around the world in 24 hours. You and your allies have the entire globe on your shoulders.

Street Fighter 5 is the newest installment in one of the most popular fighting game series of all time, Street Fighter. Play as the renowned characters Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li and even new ones that have been added, like Rashid and Laura. The game also adds a new system called a V-Gauge, which lets you collect power when attacked, and use that power in the form of V-Skills and V-Reversals. Each of these attacks are powerful and unique to every fighter.

Battle your way through the plot, stopping the Black Moons from destroying Earth, or go at it online with people from all around the world, climbing the leaderboards.

Ryu deflects M. Bison’s deadly attack.  

Ryu versus Nash



3. Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara

Travel through the land, battling demons, beholders, and finally defeat the evil Deimos, the being that is trying to destroy your world. Co-operate with your party, and save the world from the demons trying to destroy it.

Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara collects two classic games from the D&D franchise, Tower of Doom and Shadow over Mystara. Two stories, two classic games, collected in one package and remastered with HD graphics. Transport yourself back to the days of arcades, and battle along in a 2D side scrolling adventure with your party to save the world.

Choose from multiple different heroes like a Cleric, Dwarf, or a Fighter. Use your spells or your handheld weapons to defeat the enemies attacking your world. Travel to small towns to take a rest and restock your provisions, hopefully to last you for the rest of your journey.

Destroy enemies and take their gold for yourself.

Defeat powerful bosses and make your way to the end.


4. Metal Slug 3


A new and alien threat is coming to destroy your planet, and it’s your job to defeat them. Fend off their attacks by joining up with your Strike Force who are the member in the strike force? Name them. And what is this strike force formed for?  and defending your world against the terrors of the aliens. Fight old, and now stronger foes, and come up against newer and even more fearsome ones. Don’t let them take your home, and in the end, take the battle to them.

Metal Slug 3 is a classic arcade game that finally made its way to PC. It is a 2D side-scrolling shoot-em-up game, letting you take control of a rebel soldiers defending their world against the alien threat trying to take it over. You have various different weapons like Rocket Launchers and even a Ninja Sword.

You can take control of slugs or vehicles like a Driller that lets you mow down your enemies, creating a path for you to storm through, or even a Astro ship, that lets you take the fight into space. Metal Slug 3 also lets you make decisions throughout the course of the game, which alter the levels slightly.  For example, in certain missions you will be able to take an underwater path or an above ground path, both changing which version of the level you experience.

The boss fights are massive.

These soldiers blast a powerful enemy out of their path.



5. Sky Force Anniversary


Blast your way through the skies, taking out all the enemies in your path, and saving your world from the alien regime that holds it. Destroy their bases, take out their planes, fight them in the sky, or shoot their turrets on the ground. Whatever you do, make it fast, because the world is in jeopardy.

Sky Force Anniversary is an update to the original 2004 “Sky Force”. This game is an ode to the classic Capcom flying shooters of the early arcade days. You fly through the sky in your plane, destroying enemies as you fly ever forward, continuing on your path to saving the planet.  You can upgrade your blasters and your ship in the hangar, making yourself all the more powerful.

Sky Force fills your retro shoot them up craving, letting you take to the sky and skillfully shoot your enemies out of the air. The boss fights are great as well, letting you take down huge and fearsome enemies, like huge massive ships, or enormous and powerful tanks.

Defend yourself with power-ups like shields.

The surroundings are beautiful.



6. Kung Fury: Street Rage

You are Kung Fury, the best cop in the world, using your kung-fu skills to fight crime. Defeat the criminals and the robots that threaten to destroy your city. Bounce from enemy to enemy with your super powered punches and kicks, making your city safer, one punch at a time.

Kung Fury: Street Rage is a side scrolling beat-em-up game based on “Kung Fury”, a film made as a love letter to the 80’s. The game has the same philosophy, trying to emulate the arcade games of the same era. Your job is to take out the Nazis and the robots that are trying to control your streets. Defeat them and don’t let them take your city.

When you combine these two things, you get a great and immersive world, with a lot of humor thrown in as well. With simplistic controls (left attack, right attack) you get an easy, but very addicting game. Your main goal will always be to beat your highest score, and you won’t stop until you do.

Defeat enemies while a triceratops, Viking woman, and a giant robot watch you.

The man, the myth, the legend.



7. Double Dragon Trilogy

The Black Warriors gang has kidnapped your girlfriend, Marian. Take your fight to the streets to beat down every member of the gang and rescue Marian from the clutches of evil. Defeat Willy, the leader of The Black Warriors, as he tries to get you off the streets by taking what is nearest to you. Watch out, because some epic foes await you in the streets of your city.

The Double Dragon trilogy is the legendary set of games that defined the beat-em-up genre for years. You fight along the streets, playing as one of the two brothers (Billy or Jimmy) and using your martial arts prowess to wreck your enemies and rescue Marian from the Black Warriors gang.

This collection gathers all three games and put them into one, letting you play them on your PC as well. An added benefit is being able to play co-op online with your friends. Go up against tough bosses, like Abobo, who will throw huge items that you have to dodge, or Willy who will shoot at you with a machine gun. The game can be very difficult at times, but as a testament to the classic games of that era, it can also be very rewarding by giving you the satisfaction of having taken down the most powerful gang in the city.

Make it quick because you have a timer.

When you aren’t fighting bad guys, you’re relaxing with your very expensive car.



8. Streets of Rage

Your city, once calm and peaceful, has now been taken over by a criminal organization, and the corrupt cops are on their side. People are killed every day, you are not safe, no one is safe. You play one of three ex-police officers , turning their backs on the force that once stood for justice, to fight back against the tyranny of the city you once loved.

Streets of Rage is the first in a trilogy of side-scrolling beat-em-up games. Originally released on the Game Gear, Streets of Rage lets you control one of three characters. Adam Hunter, who is slow but can jump high, Axel Stone, who moves quick, but can’t jump very well, and Blaze Fielding, who moves fast and jumps but isn’t very powerful. All of the characters have their own strengths and weaknesses.

The premise is simple, make your way through the city, defeating enemies as you go, eventually advancing to the boss at the end of each level and defeating him once you move to the next. You can pick up weapons like knives and bottles, or power ups that supply your special ability. Enemies will come at you from all sides, relentless and never stopping, not until you destroy the man at the top of the syndicate, Mr. X.

The heroes of our tale.

A policeman firing a rocket launcher.



9. Streets of Rage 2

It has been one year since you have destroyed Mr. X, and saved the city from his evil clutches. The city lives in peace, without crime and violence. Now Mr. X has returned, stronger than ever and has stolen one of your group members, Adam. It is your job to save him, and take down Mr. X again, this time for good.

Streets of Rage 2 picks up 1 year after the original game. Adam has been kidnapped by Mr. X and two new members of the alliance are there to replace him, Skate and Max. You now have four characters to choose from, Skate, Max, Blaze, and Axel.

A few different features were added in the sequel to Streets of Rage, for instance, an updated interface was added, making the game look cleaner and better developed. They also added more movement, letting the player move up and down, as well as side to side. Along with these changes came some difficulty as well, but it was taken for granted as Streets of Rage 2 has been critically acclaimed as one of the best games of all time.

Four enemies ganging up on Axel, he can take them.

Axel and Blaze using teamwork to defeat the goons.



10. Streets of Rage 3

For the final time, Mr. X is back, he has developed a plan to take over the world. Replacing all the city leaders with his own cybernetic robots, he will be able to control the city from within. A newcomer, Dr. Zan has discovered this plot and joins the gang to help them take down Mr. X for one last final time.

Streets of Rage 3 was the final installment in the streets of rage series. It added one new character, Dr. Zan, and kept three from the previous game, Blaze, Axel and Skate. They all have their respective weaknesses and strengths, making them all unique in their own regard.

The third installment in the series added a few new features, making the game much more fast paced than its predecessors. Characters can now run, and use vertical dodge moves, adding an entirely new dimension to the game. Players also deal far less damage, making this game much more difficult than the ones that came before it. There was originally planned to be a fourth installment in the series, Streets of Rage 4, but the genre had gone quickly out of fashion for the era and Sega shot the idea down.

Axel fighting one of the many bosses of the game.

Axel strolling past some enemies.


11. Insanity’s Blade

You are on a quest for revenge, hordes of enemies have destroyed your village and everyone you knew. Now you have to seek out the ones who were responsible, the foul creatures that have decided to destroy your world. Your job is to travel the ends of the earth, find out who did this, and make them pay.

Insanity’s Blade is an action platforming game with a very retro style, giving it an all-around old-school feel. The style and gameplay are very much in the vein of games like castlevania, with your main abilities being throwing knives and slicing in front of you with swords. You can use many unique weapons, even utilizing a zombie arm if you are in need of a weapon.

Your objective is to complete the stage in the allotted amount of time, defeating the boss at the end of every stage. Most bosses are very powerful, coming with their own mechanics that must be adapted to. Some will slam their fists on either side of the map, and others will shoot beams down at you that you will have to dodge.

The hero of the story starting off in a wasted jungle.

Facing a powerful enemy.




Take control of a warplane, and pilot your way to victory, bringing your faction to the winning side. You are the good guy, and you must defeat your enemies, stopping them at all costs in an all-out dogfight of the skies. If your mission fails, the world will be plunged into utter turmoil, the fate of it rests upon you.  If and when you win, you will become the god of the skies, controlling anything and everything in them.

Luftrausers takes its inspiration from shoot-em-ups of the past, but improves on them in many ways. With an incredibly fast-paced gameplay system, you no longer just shoot in one direction, this game allows for full 360-degree movement of your plane, letting you have the entire control of your aircraft.

With the end of each level, comes a new set of upgrades, letting you pick and choose how to pimp out your ship. Make yourself all powerful, and destroy the enemies that would take the skies from you. With a color scheme straight out of the systems of the past, Luftrausers is incredibly retro, and pays homage to many different games of the past, in more ways than one.

Let the scientist upgrade your ship to make you even more powerful than before.

Ships and bullets will come from every side.



13. Ikaruga

You are the last surviving pilot to stand against Tenro, the leader of the nation and the man who has taken over the world. He has utilized the power of the gods, an energy that was found naturally occurring in the ground. Tenro utilized this to take over the planet, and you are the last one alive to challenge him. It’s up to you alone, to bring down his entire organization.

Ikaruga is a classic shoot-em-up with very unique features. The main gameplay feature of Ikaruga, is the polarity mechanic, a feature which switches your ships polarity (color) throughout the match. You can only be damaged by bullets of the opposite polarity and ones of the same polarity will heal you and give you more power.

You can also chain your attacks together, destroying enemies consecutively to increase your score. Differing from the games that it shares a genre with, Ikaruga has entirely 3D landscapes and models, giving it a more modern feel than its competition.

Situations like this can be very hard to get out of.

Attacks will be flying at you from all directions.



14. Raiden III Digital Edition

You are a pilot, a protector of Earth, a once peaceful planet that has now been invaded by foreign creatures. You know little about the aliens that have invaded your planet, all you know is that you must stop them at all costs. You must travel to the front lines, and use your skills as a flight master to destroy the enemies controlling your home.

Raiden 3 plays very similar to other shoot-em-up games of the past. You gain powers and different weapons from power ups that enemies will drop periodically. You can gain powerful radar missiles or a laser that will blast your enemies out of the sky. You can launch bombs at your enemies as well, casting a circle of fire that spreads, enveloping the enemies in it.

Raiden 3 is the third installment in the series, being ported onto the Playstation 2 as well as the PC. Raiden 3 was also the first game in the series to be published in 11 years.

Enemy fire doesn’t stop until they’re dead.

The bosses of the game are huge, creating a large and powerful presence.



15. Raiden IV: Overkill

Once again, your planet has been invaded. The enemies you stopped last time, were not completely defeated, as they are back, and ready for another round. Their goal is to take over your Earth, and your job, is to stop them, at all costs.

Raiden IV is the next installment in the series, following one of the most influential shooters in the genre. You face fierce enemies, and just like last time, enormous bosses, with huge mother ships trying to take over Earth. This game doesn’t change much as far as gameplay, if it works, don’t change it. But the one thing that does differ, is the level design. The game takes the best parts of the third installment, its gameplay, and the second installment, its level design.

Raiden IV starts out in the farm areas of earth, slowly moving from the urban landscape into the city, and eventually, into space. As well as being ported to PC, Raiden was also released for Playstation 3 and Xbox 360.

Enormous bosses will try their hardest to destroy you.

Hordes of enemies funnel in to attack you.



16. Ace Combat: Assault Horizon – Enhanced Edition


The Russian forces are trying to destroy your country. Your job is to defend America against its foreign enemy using your skills as a pilot, and your mastery of the skies. Destroy their weapons and make sure that no devastation can continue.

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon is the first game in the series to make its way to the PC. The game is one in a long line of combat flight simulators, dating back to 1992. This game grounds itself with much more realistic gameplay than its arcade equals. You are in control of a fighter jet, your goal is to shoot down your enemies using tactical movements and complicated aerial maneuvers.

This installment adds new features that takes the player closer to the combat, making them participate in dogfights, instead of firing from faraway distances. The game also comes with a multiplayer component, letting you compete in a death match mode, or help your friends in co-op missions.

Get close in on your shot before firing.

Explosions are commonplace in Ace Combat.



17. FlatOut: Ultimate Carnage

You’re a demolition racer, and your job is to be the fastest, and destroy the rest. Lucky for you, there are no rules, and you need to end up first on the finish line, no matter what you have to do. Break the boundaries, destroy the track, and flip other cars, whatever you have to do, make sure you win, because everything depends on it.

Flatout: Ultimate Carnage is a destruction based racing game, unlike other racing games, it lets you destroy the track and the other racers on it. This game has many different tracks, including large city storm drains, and populated city streets. Each track comes with its own obstacles and trials.

This game upgrades the graphics of the Flatout series, making the cars and the environment look much more detailed. The game also comes with a multiplayer mode, letting you compete online against other players.

Getting trapped is the easiest way to lose.

This car crashed into many other cars at a very high-speed.



18. BlazeRush

You are involved in a competition, set on three different planets. Your job is to beat the other competitors and survive the dangers of the hazardous tracks. Defeat your other opponents, end up in first or blast your way to the front, either way, make sure you’re not the last to cross the finish line.

Blazerush is a top down racing game, with some very unique mechanics, like a spiked bulldozer that destroys you if you aren’t fast enough. Each car also has different weapons, letting the player destroy the other racers, and defend themselves if need be.

This game is very fast paced, with the time limit behind you, risk of falling of the track, and other races trying to destroy from every direction. Strategy and forward thinking are also involved, because you definitely don’t want to be in first place, as you will be promptly destroyed.

Sometimes your only enemies are the ones beside you.

Have your friends join you in multiplayer mode.



19. BRAWL (2015)

You are small child, a teddy bear strapped to your shoulders. With a blindfold over your face, masking your eyes to the horrors that walk the terrifying and unknown place you’re in, the plushy toy that sits above you is the only thing guiding you through this place of mysterious terror.

BRAWL is a top down action game, taking heavy inspiration from games like Bomberman. It gives you control of one of many characters, letting you use weapons that each have their own pattern of attack, some even dealing damage to you, so watch out.

You can play multiplayer against other characters, or check out the story mode, which lets you go through the terrifying and mysterious story behind this game. BRAWL is an homage to the Bomberman-like arcade games of the past, adding an awesome horror aspect to the game.

Arcade mode has many power-ups and weapons

Don’t fall in the fire, or you’re done.


20. Fortix 2

The evil has returned, and it is ready unleash its throes upon the land. They will call upon demons, skeletons, archers, and many more to destroy your world, but it is up to you to defend your land, and stop them, with whatever it takes.

Fortix 2 has a very distinct genre, self-described as a “reverse turret defense game”. You take control of a knight, defending the land against the evil demons fighting against it. The way you do this is through walking, yes it sounds strange, but it is very addicting. You walk your character in a specific direction, and a line follows you, your goal is to come back to where you started and square off a specific area. All the enemies in that area will be defeated, but it’s harder than it sounds.

With arrows and fireballs flying at you from all sides, just walking through enemy territory can be very difficult. The game has a point system, giving bigger scores for larger areas captured. They’ve also added a new zombie mode, with new maps and enemies to face.

Many towers and enemies await the hero in his journey.

Dragons are very dangerous beasts.




21. Tekken 7

Become The King of the Iron Fist Tournament, fight your way to the top and defeat the Mishima’s. Heihachi is hosting another tournament, and it’s your job to finish it, finally taking the title for yourself. Find the secret of the Mishima bloodline, and unravel the secret mysteries behind the Devil Gene, among many other mysteries of the universe.

Tekken 7 is the newest installment of the famous fighting game series, following the Mishima clan and the story surrounding their bloodline. As it does not release until the beginning of next year, much speculation is still left as to where the story will continue to. 10 new playable characters have been added to the game, including Akuma, from the Street Fighter franchise.

Many new features have been added in this installment, including the use of the Unreal Engine, and Rage Art, allowing players to deal very powerful attacks once their health bar has reached a critical area. Players can also empower certain attacks by sacrificing their Rage Drive, and in turn, deal devastating blows to the enemy.

Jin delivering a powerful punch.

Customizable health bars have been added to the game.



22. Mortal Kombat X

A large attack is being waged against Earth by Shinnok and his army of demons, as well as Quan Chi and his band of resurrected humans. You are part of the many people who are still fighting for the safety of Earthrealm. Join with your fellow brethren to defend the only realm that you can call home.

Mortal Kombat X is the latest installment in the franchise, adding 14 new characters to the game, including special appearances by Jason Voorhees, Alien, Predator, and Leatherface. Each character has special, new and unique abilities that set them out from the others. This new installment features many different game modes, like King of the Hill, Survivor, Test Your Luck, and just plain old 1v1.

Players can also join Faction Wars, choosing one of five factions to align themselves with and joining an ongoing online competition. You can play games, gaining points for your faction that level the faction up, this will in return, give you rewards that you can add to your characters, such as faction specific finishing moves.

Scorpion and Sub-Zero match each other equally.

Scorpion can grab people with his change.



23. Jamestown

Travel to Mars, in an alternate history, where the 17th century exists, on another planet. Your job, is to defeat the indigenous martians of the planet, that are trying to take down your settlements. Jamestown is your home, and you must fight the war to take it back.

Jamestown is a shoot-em-up game, based in an alternate timeline of the 17th century. It includes four player co-op, or single player if you like that better. Each ship has different attacks, and a special mode which triggers the ship’s special ability.

There are also challenge modes, that let you undergo strenuous and difficult scenarios, and check your leaderboard, to see how you fare against the other players. Jamestown takes inspiration from the shoot-em-up games before it, and adds a completely new spin on things, with its unique gameplay, graphics and story.

Extra players come in handy with difficult bosses.

Tag-team enemies to take them down a lot quicker.



24. DARIUSBURST Chronicle Saviours

The Belser Army is attacking Planet Darius, threatening its future, and even daring to destroy it entirely. Your goal is to take them out, one at a time, and fend off the attacks made against your planet. Using your trusty Silver Hawk fighter to blast the Belser army out of the skies.

DARIUSBURST Chronicle Saviours is a side scrolling shooter, letting you take control of a Silver Hawk fighter. There are 9 different playable ships that you can choose from, all with different stats and abilities, some of which are the Next, Legend, and the Origin. You can upgrade the fire to missiles or Lasers. Changing the way that your ships fire.

If you buy Dariusburst on steam, you can also get dual monitor support, which is great for multiple monitor enthusiasts.

You can take on even the biggest bosses with your tiny ship.

Fire against fleets of ships that fly against you.



25. PAC-MAN 256

Your world is completely different from the one you once knew. Familiar, static, two-dimensional, but now you’ve been thrust into one that is completely different. The glitch changed all that, and its here to stop you forever, your job is to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Pac-Man 256 is an Endless Runner game that bases its gameplay on the 256 glitch in the original pac-man arcade game. The glitch would make the game effectively crash once the player got to the 256th level, and this is where our game starts.

You control pac-man, as usual, and your world is being enveloped by the glitch. Your goal is to keep running through and endless, maze, away from the glitch, and avoiding the ghosts that still plague you. The game consists of many unique features, such as power-ups that cause tornadoes and explosions that are caused by pac-man capturing a certain number of power pellets.

Don’t let the ghosts touch you or you’ll explode.

Take the offense, and kill those pesky ghosts.



26. Ghouls’n Ghosts 1988

Lucifer has killed hundreds of people, including your one and only, Princess Prin Prin. Your job is to restore all of these people from the dead, and give them their lives back. In the process, taking out Lucifer wouldn’t be such a bad idea.

Ghouls’n Ghosts is a side-scrolling plat former from 1988. It was one of the penultimate games of the time, changing plat forming games for a very long time. You play as a knight named Arthur and face many enemies throughout the game such as skeletons and flying demons. You have many different weapons, like knives that you can throw, or short swords that can stab enemies at close range.

The game is actually doubled, in a sense, as you have to complete the 5 levels twice, once without the special weapon, and a second time with it. After completing these levels, you will be able to access the final chamber, and defeat the boss at the end.

This game does not have an official pc version, but you can download and play it HERE.

Most of the bosses will be much bigger than you.

If your aim is true, you will have no trouble dispensing demons.



27. Ghosts’n Goblins.

You are Sir Arthur, and Satan has kidnapped your princess, stealing her away to the farthest reaches of hell. It is your job to take your back, and load up on many weapons to destroy Satan’s minions of hell. You must travel to the ends of the Earth to save your princess, and defeat Satan in the process.

Ghosts’n Goblins is the original game that Ghouls’n Goblins is based off of, a spiritual successor, if you will. It is another platformer, taking the player to battle with Satan and his minions. They are much the same game, playing mostly the same, only this one is considered much more difficult. Some say that Ghosts’n Goblins is one of the hardest games of all time.

There are 6 stages, and if you lose a life, you start at the beginning of the stage, plus, your lies have timers, so if you take too long, then you’ve lost a life. Once you reach the end, you are prompted to repeat the entire game on a higher difficulty, and once you do, you reach the actual final battle. This game is very difficult, even by arcade standards.

This game also does not have an official PC version, but can be downloaded HERE.

Don’t get surrounded, or you’ll be in big trouble.

Hopefully you don’t have to see this screen, but you probably will.

Related Articles

11 Classic Arcade Games That Are Now Available on PC

10 Classic PC Games That Are Still Worth Playing Right Now

Top 10 Best Fighting Games to Play in 2015, Ranked Best to Worst

17 Best Beat ‘em Up Games for PC

The Best Fighting Games on PC

Writer, Spiritulaist, Gamer.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Marvel Heroes 2016, World of Warcraft
Top 3 Favorite Games:World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor, Borderlands 2, Civilization IV
This article makes me feel: