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ARC

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time

Players
4444
Length

0:40

Difficulty

Casual

Release

’91

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time is the sequel to Konami’s popular licensed 4-player classic. It updates the formula with new attacks and features the Heroes in a Half-Shell fighting the Foot Clan through different periods in time.

NES

Adventures of Bayou Billy, The

Players
1
Length

0:30

Difficulty

Brutal

Release

’89 ’88

The Adventures of Bayou Billy is a one-of-a-kind hybrid brawler/light-gun shooter/driving game by Konami for the NES. You play as Billy, basically an American Crocodile Dundee, who has to rescue his cousin/girlfriend Annabelle from the clutches of Godfather Gordon. Its combat is a straightforward punch/kick system with a handful of weapons including whips, sticks, and guns. This game is well-known for its brutal difficulty and super catchy music.

NES

Adventures of Gilligan's Island, The

Players
1
Length

1:00

Difficulty

Easy

Release

’90

The Adventures of Gilligan’s Island is an adaptation of the beloved TV series developed by Bandai for the NES. It barely qualifies as a brawler. Although it has 3D movement and a combat engine, the game is mainly about avoiding enemies like boars and snakes so you can escort Gilligan through various traps to fulfill mission objectives.

ARC

Age of Heroes, The

Players
4444
Length

1:00

Difficulty

Easy

Release

’00

The Age of Heroes is a late-generation weapons-based 4-player arcade brawler based off of Chinese mythology. It’s similar to the Capcom Dungeon and Dragons games because it has advanced techniques and an inventory button to cycle through items and spells. It’s also notable for its pre-rendered CGI sprites.

ARC

Combatribes, The

Players
333
Length

0:45

Difficulty

Hardcore

Release

’90

The Combatribes is the spiritual successor to Renegade. Its atypical combat engine lacks a jump button and emphasizes dashing for crowd control. It’s the only brawler with the brutal "pavement kiss" attack. Its art style is defined by its vibrant urban setting and bobbleheaded characters.

SNES

Combatribes, The

Players
22
Length

0:30

Difficulty

Hardcore

Release

’93 ’92

The Combatribes is a port of Technos arcade brawler, which is the spiritual successor to Renegade. Although certain stage sections, items, and a few attacks are missing, this port captures the spirit of the original with intensely difficult street-fighting action. It has a colorful, exaggerated art style and a rockin’ soundtrack.

ARC

Crystal of Kings, The

Players
22
Length

0:50

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’01

The Crystal of Kings is an obscure late-generation weapons-based beat ’em up that features pre-rendered graphics, a unique morality system, and a halfling archer that rides an aardvark. It has multiple endings based on character choices such as attacking innocents or stealing gold.

SNES

Death and Return of Superman, The

Players
1
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’94

The Death and Return of Superman is a licensed single-player brawler SNES-exclusive brawler starring the Man of Steel. Its combat is similar to Final Fight but adds Super abilities such as flying and laser vision. You can also throw enemies into the background like in 64th Street. It’s also notable because it was developed by none other than Blizzard.

ARC

Gladiator, The

Players
4444
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’00

The Gladiator is an extremely late-generation weapons-based arcade brawler from IGS. Like most of their games, it’s heavily inspired by Capcom’s D&D games. It has six playable characters, huge movesets with advanced techniques, large enemy waves, and a magic/inventory system. It has high-quality pixel art, fluid animation, and a fantasy medieval China setting.

ARC

Legend of Silkroad, The

Players
333
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Easy

Release

’99

The Legend of the Silkroad is a late-generation weapons-based arcade brawler set in a mythological ancient China. It features three characters with unique movesets that include advanced techniques with fighting game-style inputs. It also has a magic/inventory system like the Capcom Dungeons and Dragons games. It’s notable for its pre-rendered CGI graphics.

ARC

Ninja Kids, The

Players
22
Length

0:45

Difficulty

Casual

Release

’90

Ninja Kids is a one-of-a-kind puppet-themed beat ’em up from Taito. It plays a lot like TMNT, but adds distinct characters, Golden Axe-style magic attacks, and unique wall-climbing sections.

SNES

Peace Keepers, The

Players
22
Length

1:00

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’94 ’93

The Peace Keepers is the final chapter in Jaleco’s SNES-exclusive Rushing Beat trilogy. It features an all-new cast of fighters with advanced techniques including screen-filling super attacks like Golden Axe. It also has branching paths, hidden characters, and lets you color-swap every character and enemy in the game. The US localization was brutally butchered by removing/mistranslating large parts of the story and replacing the music with ambient sounds.

SNES

Pirates of Dark Water, The

Players
22
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Hard

Release

The Pirates of Dark Water is a licensed two-player beat ’em up from Sunsoft that’s based off the Hanna-Barbera cartoon show of the same name. Although its gameplay is very similar to Final Fight, it incorporates weapon attacks alongside normal punches and kicks. It’s a lengthy, well-made brawler with plenty of enemies, bosses, and stages.

ARC

Punisher, The

Players
22
Length

0:50

Difficulty

Hard

Release

’93

The Punisher is a late-generation brawler from Capcom that’s a licensed adaptation of the Marvel Comics series. It features tons of weapons, automatic gun sequences, and unapologetic violence.

GEN

Punisher, The

Players
22
Length

0:50

Difficulty

Hard

Release

’94

The Punisher is a scaled-back port of Capcom’s arcade brawler. It’s based on the Marvel comics of the same name and features projectile-heavy Final Fight-esque gameplay.

SNES

Ren & Stimpy Show: Time Warp, The

Players
22
Length

1:45

Difficulty

Hard

Release

’94

The Ren & Stimpy Show: Time Warp is a licensed SNES-exclusive brawler based on the hit gross-out 90’s cartoon. It features animations and sound effects that do the show’s grotesque, rubbery style justice. You can play as Ren who slaps or Stimpy who hwarfs up hairballs as a projectile. Its gameplay is focused on collecting items as well as fighting.

ARC

Simpsons, The

Players
4444
Length

0:40

Difficulty

Casual

Release

The Simpsons is a licensed four-player brawler from Konami starring America’s favorite cartoon family. It features Konami’s signature simple, casual gameplay as well as tons of Simpsons references. It runs on the same engine as TMNT.

SNES

Tick, The

Players
1
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Easy

Release

’94

The Tick is a humorous beat ’em up based on the comic and animated series. It spices up its traditional gameplay with tons of superhero parodies and bonus stages.

GEN

Tick, The

Players
1
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’94

The Tick is a humorous beat ’em up based on the comic and animated series. It spices up its traditional gameplay with tons of superhero parodies and bonus stages.

SAT

Three Dirty Dwarves

Players
1
Length

1:30

Difficulty

Hard

Release

’97 ’97

Three Dirty Dwarves is a unique three-player brawler made exclusively for the Sega Saturn. You play as a trio of dwarves who escaped a Dungeons and Dragons game and must fight their way through the real world to save a group of genius children. Its unique combat engine has a ton of moves and is very projectile-heavy. You can freely switch between the three dwarves at any time, and they have completely unique attacks. Also, each dwarf counts as a hitpoint that can be regained by attacking him when he’s down.

GBA

TMNT

Players
1
Length

2:30

Difficulty

Hardcore

Release

’07 ’07

TMNT on the GBA is based off the CGI film of the same name featuring the Heroes in a Half-shell. Its simple combat is surprisingly challenging and is supported by light RPG and exploration elements. You can play as all four turtles and switch off between stages. There are also a handful of side activities in the form of minigames and shopping.

ARC

Tough Turf

Players
22
Length

0:30

Difficulty

Easy

Release

’88

Tough Turf is an early two-player arcade brawler developed by SunSoft and published by Sega. It’s a straightforward Double Dragon rip-off with a punch/kick button setup, small groups of tough enemies, strangely proportioned characters, and a small selection of powerful weapons. However, it lacks DD’s advanced techniques including throws.

NES

Toxic Crusaders

Players
1
Length

0:30

Difficulty

Hardcore

Release

’92

Toxic Crusaders is a single-player beat ’em up from Bandai that’s based off of the cartoon show that’s based off of the Troma film of the same name. You play as the titular Toxic Crusader as he literally mops up the town. Its gameplay is fairly standard although very difficult.

GEN

Toxic Crusaders

Players
22
Length

0:50

Difficulty

Medium

Release

’70

Toxic Crusaders is a cartoony beat ’em up based on the kid’s animated show. It has a lot of moves and puts a strong emphasis on projectiles and vehicle segments.

SNES

UFO Kamen Yakisoban: Kettler no Kuroi Inbou

Players
1
Length

0:45

Difficulty

Medium

Release

UFO Kamen Yakisoban: Kettler no Kuroi Inbou is a bizarre Japan-only, single player only beat ’em up. You play as a ramen-themed superhero with a ramen bowl on his head who must defeat the evil Kettler, a supervillain with a kettle on his head. The combat lacks throws but it has two types of stock-based death-blows as well as a charged projectile attack of hoisin sauce.

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