List of 3 player arcade games with joystick or trackball control

Back in 2014 I started working on my first video game project with programmer Adam Jenkins, and I’m pleased to say that it’s nearly fully-fledged and ready to launch. Our final Beta version is available now on itch.io and our next milestone with be our long-anticipated release on Steam.

My game is called Cuttle Scuttle, and it’s a three player cooperative cuttlefish survival simulator. The mazes are rocky reefs full of predators and prey, and the objective is to lay as many eggs as possible while using camouflage, ink-shots and cunning to stay alive.

Cuttle Scuttle captures the spirit of classic cooperative gaming and the hardships of cuttlefish life
Cuttle Scuttle captures the spirit of classic cooperative gaming and the hardships of cuttlefish life

The game’s visual and cooperative arcade style were inspired by some classic games of the 1980s and 1990s, including Ms Pac-Man, Frogger II and Bubble Bobble. We’ve long entertained the idea of eventually housing the game in a custom arcade cabinet, reflective of this great period in gaming history… and we’re beginning to make that dream a reality.

As an avid student of history,  I started down this path by compiling a list of  past arcade games that were made to accommodate a maximum of three players simultaneously. I ruled out the shooter and driving games to concentrate on joystick or trackball-controlled games exclusively. This left me with a list comprised mostly of fighting games, and a few oddities like The Three Stooges, Pig Out and SegaSonic the Hedgehog.

With the help of Wikipedia’s terrific alphabetised list of arcade video games, I was able to compile the following list of (non-shooter) 3-player arcade games released between 1984 and 1997. While the table below strives to being exhaustive and accurate, please let me know if you have any titles to add or corrections to make.

If all goes well, Force of Nature might be able to add Cuttle Scuttle (2018) to this list in the months ahead.

Game Alternative titles Year Publisher
The Three Stooges 1984 Mylstar
Rampage 1986 Bally Midway 
Dark Adventure 1987 Konami
Xenophobe 1987 Bally-Midway 
Gain Ground 1988 Sega
Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker 1990 Sega
Pig Out: Dine Like a Swine 1990 Leland
Pit-Fighter 1990 Atari Games
Rampart 1990 Atari Games
The Combatribes 1990 Techn?s Japan
Knights of the Round 1991 Capcom
B. Rap Boys 1992 Kaneko
Cadillacs & Dinosaurs Cadillacs Kyouryuu Shinseiki JP 1992 Capcom
Guardians of the ‘Hood 1992 Atari Games
Warriors of Fate 1992 Capcom
SegaSonic the Hedgehog 1993 Sega
Violent Storm 1993 Konami
Alien vs. Predator 1994 Capcom
Armored Warriors Powered Gear – Strategic Variant Armor Equipment JP 1994 Capcom
Battletoads Super Battletoads 1994 Rare
Rampage World Tour 1997 Midway

 


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