Why Some of the Best Classic 80s Arcade Games Were So Hard to Beat

Although there are many titles that encompass the period, the classic Pacman arcade machine was the very first game that many in our generation were able to sufficiently master. Even with Pacman, getting past the 17th or 18th level could make turn you into a local legend. Contemporary video games still require good hand-eye coordination, along with sufficient reasoning skills and good reflexes. They also give players the ability to play in modes that have relatively few skill requirements.

In an effort to appeal to consumers of all ages, even popular online MMOs, first person shooters, and interactive fitness inspired games are being programmed at low difficulty thresholds. According to Eugene Jarvis, co-designer of Robotron: 2084, the addicting qualities that we all find in video games might have something to do with how challenging they are. And if you think about it, Jarvis is probably right. While at this year’s Game Developer’s Conference, in San Francisco, California, Jarvis spoke about his experience co-designing Robotron: 2084, and how he and his colleagues challenged themselves while creating the complex game.

Video game companies make more money when more games and accessories are snatched up by consumers. In order to do this, a game, console or peripheral has to have mass appeal across the consumer base as a whole, or to a specific demographic. It’s not that modern video games aren’t hard anymore, it’s just that players aren’t being forced to rise to the challenge. Games like 8 Eye’s were pretty much impossible to beat unless you had to players working to control the main character and his falcon simultaneously. However, that didn’t stop a few show-offs from achieving the unachievable by practicing until they dropped.

Some of the very best games of the Golden Age of arcade gaming were extremely tough to beat. You don’t have to beat a game in order for it to become your favorite. Beating the classic Pacman arcade machine takes only a single quarter, but most games but a few minutes. Because a lot of classic arcade games were created to challenge the player, they are still provide an entertaining pastime to this day.