Games from the period included:
Before you could fight dragons, sail the seven seas, experience war, or transport yourself to another world in the comfort of your living room, there were amusement arcade games, one of the biggest successes in 1970s and 1980s pop culture.
Arcade games: the top 10
Pac-Man (1980) NAMCO
Space Invaders (1978) Taito
Street Fighter II (1991) Capcom
Donkey Kong (1981) Nintendo, Atari
Ms Pac-Man (1981) Namco
Asteroids (1979) Atari
Defender (1981) Williams Electronics; Taito
Centipede (1980) Atari
Galaxian (1979) Namco
OutRun (1986) SEGA
When setting up your home network, first consideration should be given to finding the best gaming router you can. After all, it is at the center of everything. A good router contains both multiple LAN ports for wired connections, and the ability to send out a wireless signal. The current standard for Wi-Fi is 802.11ax, also known as Wi-Fi 6, which promises higher data throughput, and also a higher efficiency at transferring data.
There are many gaming routers on the market, and most will be able to connect a user’s multiple devices. Gaming routers often get adorned with fancy stripes, and colorful LEDs, with multiple antennas, but this is really just window dressing. The real advantage of the best gaming routers lie not in the external adornments, but rather in the Quality of Service (QoS), which is the ability to prioritize traffic to your gaming PC for a better gaming experience, and avoids the annoying lag that occurs when a game bogs down if the network gets saturated with streaming media traffic or downloads.
With the significant advances made with today’s routers, compared to their older counterparts, if your current router is starting to show its age, then these are some great choices for an upgrade.
Best gaming router 2019
Speed: AX6000 | LAN Ports: 8 | Antennas: 4 | Processor: Quad-core 1.8GHz | Dimensions: 4.65 x 2.91 x 1.3 in | Weight: 6.76 lb (801 g)
The Asus RT-AX88U is the best choice for a higher end router. It features next generation 802.11ax technology, and an impressive 8 Gigabit Ethernet ports, which even supports link aggregation. Backing this up is the usual excellent AsusWRT interface, which allows granular control of every imaginable setting. There is also class leading Adaptive QoS, along with Trend Micro antivirus and the WTFast GPN—all with subscriptions included for the lifetime of the router—which are standouts among competing routers.
While the 2.4 GHz speeds are adequate, the 5 GHz speeds are where the RT-AX88U shines. Furthermore, for gaming in a congested environment, this router outdistances the competition with the highest FPS seen to date, and a very low dropped frame rate when simultaneously streaming videos. Sure, next generation ‘Super router’ performance comes at a price of $346, but given these benchmarks, it can be easily justified.
2. Netgear Nighthawk XR700
Speed: AD7200 (Tri-band 4600(AD) + 1733(5GHz)+ 800(2.4GHz) Mbps wireless speed) | LAN Ports: 7 | Antennas: 4 | Processor: Quad-core 1.7GHz | Dimensions: 15.33 x 12.49 x 5.32 inch
The Netgear Nighthawk Pro Gaming XR700 is a strong follow up to the XR500, which impressed us last year as it was the fastest router we had tested to date. Both are part of their ‘Nighthawk Pro Gaming’ networking line of products- but stay tuned as the XR700 is even faster than its predecessor.
The XR700 has plenty of the right ingredients, starting with the more fluid and organic shape, with red accents. It then goes on to the inclusion of 1 WAN and 6 LAN ports (addressing a significant shortcoming of the XR500’s only 4 LAN ports) for enough wired connections, support for link aggregation, and even a 10 Gigabit LAN SFP+ port for ridiculous Ethernet bandwidth. Let’s just get it out of the way- with all the attention on the wireless market heading to 802.11ax/Wi-Fi 6, this XR700 uses a combination of last generation 802.11ac/Wi-Fi 5 wireless, and 802.11ad technology (that’s the 60 GHz frequency one), which unfortunately has not gone mainstream. It also supports Beamforming via 4 active antennas.
Another highlight of the XR700 is the gaming-centric Duma OS. This enables some unique features such as Geo-Filter to connect to the closest server when gaming. The XR700 also has quite granular control of the bandwidth, and can prioritize throughput by each individual device, for both the upload and download separately, and can assign a specific percentage for each device to balance the load, thereby preventing any single device from becoming a ‘Bandwidth hog.’
On our test suite, the XR700 is a strong all around performer, starting with the 2.4 GHz frequency with some of the fastest scores to date of 284.43 Mbps at close range, and 225.36 Mbps on our far test. This continued on our 5 GHz testing with strong scores of 325.31 Mbps and 331.76 Mbps at close and far ranges, respectively. The DumaOS’ exceptional QoS also came through when gaming with our network congestion test with 37.317 FPS, the second highest score to date, but also with an exceedingly low dropped framerate of 6.47% on the video streams.
The Nighthawk Pro Gaming XR700 is a great choice for its well rounded throughput (a significant upgrade from the XR500’s weakness), and seriously strong gaming performance. It is currently available for $490.
3. ASUS RT-AC68U
Speed: AC1900 | LAN Ports: 4 | Antennas: 3 | Processor: Dual-core 1GHz | Dimensions: 6.3 x 3.3 x 8.6 in (160 x 84 x 218 mm) | Weight: 1.4 lbs (635 g)
The Asus RT-AC68U features AC1900 speeds (N600/AC1300) that are fairly standard in this segment. It takes a fairly business approach to the router design, with matte black plastic in a vertical design, with three antennas that can be positioned. The router features a 3 x 3 antenna design and a dual core 1GHz processor inside, with 256 MB of RAM with 128 MB of flash memory. With wide support for custom firmware such as Merlin, Tomato, DD-WRT and OpenWrt, functionality on the RT-AC68U can be exponentially upgraded with a simple firmware flash.
While several others have struggled on the 2.4 GHz frequency, the RT-AC68U hardly breaks a sweat. The only real problem for this otherwise capable router is that it got bested on the streaming video tests and falls short in 5 GHz performance. However, priced at $160 with support for just about every custom firmware the RT-AC68U is great for power users on a budget.
Sorry, but mobile gaming is the biggest player in the video game market. In 2018, it made almost half of the industry’s global revenue. Smartphone games once existed separately from console and PC titles, but in the wake of titles like Fortnite, it’s all got a little blurry. You’ll find several games in our selection that are also available on your home consoles and PCs, but most of them sing on your smartphone, and the fact that you can play them absolutely anywhere makes up for any other pitfalls. Whether it’s Android or iOS, here’s some crucial games to start with.
If you liked Alto’s Adventure, you’ll love Alto’s Odyssey. The sequel to Snowman’s endless runner — sorry, endless snowboarder — is a stylish and highly-addictive sandboarding game with multiple biomes to discover. Just like the original, your goal is to ride for as long as possible while avoiding rocks, completing tasks and racking up high scores with a mixture of backflips and death-defying grinds. Odyssey introduces a new move, wall rides, that serve as both a gnarly trick and traversal mechanic for reaching higher lines. It’s a welcome addition to an already stellar iOS and Android game. NS
The Banner Saga
The Banner Saga, on both iPhone and Android devices, is as good as it is on PC. This tactical RPG involves humans, giants, centaurs and the sinister dreg, with each tribe capable of different attacks, skills and tactical flourishes. Like the bleak storyline, it’s a tough tactical RPG that rewards careful thought. Augmented with a mature, illustrated visual style, stirring music and voiced characters, expect to make some hard decisions as you take your caravan and band of warriors across the nord…ish world and try to survive the apocalypse. This is a game where it’s all about the journey, not the destination. MS
Fortnite Battle Royale
Fortnite is a cultural phenomenon, responsible for popularizing a new shooting-game genre and doing it in a way that has millions playing across mobile, PC and games consoles, like the Switch — you’ll see this particular game appear in several of our lists. It all started with a simple idea: survive. (Actually it started with a tower-defense-esque game where you built a fort to protect human survivors against zombies, but hey, it evolved.) Fortnite has a low barrier to entry (it’s free!), and the sheer momentum behind the fact that everyone is playing it makes resistance futile. Parachute into the field, grab supplies, guns and ammo, build some defensive protections if you like and make it to the end. Sounds simple, but the best game ideas are. PUBG, Apex and the rest have a tough fight on their hands. MS
Fire Emblem Heroes
Fire Emblem Heroes is a mixed bag. On one hand, it’s a superb translation of Nintendo’s extremely complex tactically RPG for mobile devices. A fun campaign filled with new characters and series favorites is complemented by regular special events and a couple of engaging multiplayer modes.
On the other hand, it’s a disappointingly predatory game from Nintendo, a family company. You see, Heroes, like many popular Japanese mobile games, has you “summoning” characters using in-game currency. While Nintendo is generously giving away this currency, it’ll also happily sell you it at extremely high rates. Even buying the best-value pack (which costs $75), the cost to summon a random character ranges between $1.60 and $2.70.
If you trust yourself to not spend hundreds of dollars to unlock your favorite characters, Fire Emblem Heroes is a superb game that will keep you engaged for weeks and years. If you have any doubts about controlling your impulse, or any history with gambling addiction, steer well clear. AS
Life Is Strange
Dontnod’s iconic episodic adventure has appeared across major consoles and PC and is now available on both iOS and Android devices. The game’s stripped-down aesthetic has seen better days, sure, but Life Is Strange was never about realistic skin textures: it’s a story about friendship and trying to find where you belong. The touchscreen controls are a little awkward, but this is a critically acclaimed series that demands you play it through its entirety. And if the controls really do frustrate too much — it’s still available to play elsewhere. MS
Both Monument Valley and Monument Valley 2 deserve a spot on this list. The casual puzzle games have a unique and truly jaw-dropping art style inspired by Dutch graphic artist Maurits Cornelis (M.C.) Escher. The visuals are also tied to the gameplay, which revolves around twisting and turning geometrically-impossible structures. It’s a clever concept that slowly ramps up in difficulty with a subtle, dialog-free storyline and soothing soundtrack by Stafford Bawler, Obfusc, and Grigori. You can complete each game in a single sitting — perfect for a long train ride or evening tucked up in bed. NS
80 Days is an interactive fiction (think Choose Your Own Adventure) game based on the Jules Verne novel Around the World in Eighty Days. You play as Phileas Fogg’s faithful servant, tasked with aiding your master on a journey from London to… London. This is not the Victorian world of the original book, though: The game starts with an underwater train journey from London to Paris, and following that you’ll ride all manner of Steampunk-inspired creations as you attempt to circumnavigate the globe.
Of course, you’ll be making decisions along the way. With limited funds and baggage space, every decision is difficult: Should you pay a hefty fee to take an earlier train? Should you sell your coat to make space for a timetable? Do you talk to the train guard to get more information, or tend to your master’s beard? The sheer number of choices would be overwhelming, were it not for the game’s superb writing, and its imminent replayability: There’s no such thing as a perfect journey, and with almost 750,000 words written for the game, you could play 80 Days eighty times and never have the same experience. AS
When Pokémon Go launched in 2016, there were some obvious omissions, such as trading and player-versus-player trainer battles. In early 2019? Almost every problem and missing feature has been addressed. The game isn’t perfect, but the fundamentals — walking around outside, spinning Pokéstop signs and catching critters — make this a truly unique and health-beneficial experience for Pokémon fans. The daily “research” quests and timed events, which boost the appearance of certain monsters, are a great excuse to log in every day. Niantic is slowly expanding the Pokédex, too, so that your collection is never quite finished. NS
Reigns: Her Majesty
This narrative strategy borrows a Tinder-esque interface that has you swiping through decision cards and queries from your subjects. Every choice made affects various aspects of your kingdom, across finances, the church, public affection and the military. If your score in any of these topics gets too low — or too high — you’re killed (usually in brutal fashion) and you start up again as a new ruler. It may sound like a simple balancing act, but things don’t always go the way you might expect them to — and you’ll have to learn your lesson in the next generation. Despite the simple controls, the world of Reigns has a weird, wonderful lore that will keep you entranced. And since progress is done swipe-by-swipe, it’s ideal for killing time. MS
Playing Threes is like being wrapped in a warm towel after a hot bath on a rainy day. It’s engrossing, with tile-swiping, number-adding gameplay that makes the minutes disappear into thin air, and besides, it’s utterly adorable. The number tiles have personalities and backstories, and they make adorable cooing noises to encourage players as they swipe away. Threes is the original tile-based adding game, with a handful of popular copycats rolling out after its launch, but none of them can compete with the style, strategy and depth that this game offers. Oh, and adorableness, of course.
The Witness places you onto a strange island full of puzzles, and lots of questions. The only thing you can do is solve puzzles dotted around the island, gather clues and try to make your way home. The more you unearth, the more you appreciate how just darn well-designed this is — it’s unlike any puzzle game you’ve played before. Also, there aren’t many games that make you feel smart like The Witness does.
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The best arcade games of all time usually have the same qualities. They’re simple, clever, difficult, and insanely addictive. In the 80’s and 90’s, they kept us glued to the screen, popping in quarters one after another in a desperate attempt to defeat the enemy or obtain the high score. But, it wasn’t easy. These games were incredibly frustrating and that only intensified our desire to win. So, out of all the arcade games, which ones did we keep coming back to? Get ready to press start because here are the 25 Best Arcade Games Of All Time.
This classic released in 1981 by Williams Electronics, Inc. was considered a flop even though it was incredibly popular. In the game, you’re defending the human population from a swarm of aliens. It’s noted for its considerable difficulty, making it rather addictive.
24: Dig Dug
This game released in 1982 by Atari had the player digging through the ground and destroying their enemies with an air pump or by dropping rocks on them.
This military action game by Capcom was released in 1990 and had one to three soldiers fighting their way through rough terrain to rescue the President of the United States. You could easily use up your cup full of quarters playing this action packed game.
22: Cruis’n’ World
A 1996 racing game by Midway Games, it included up to four seats, letting you race against other players or just the computer. The number of cars, locations, and gameplay combined made this a top attraction at many arcades at the time.
21: Primal Rage
This Mortal Kombat-esque arcade game saw dinosaurs fight each other in a brutal and bloody battle to the death. With fun graphics, a variety of moves, and a fun premise, this game released by Atari was a blast to play with friends.
20: Terminator 2 Rage
Released by Midway in 1991, the controller looked like a machine gun. If you were a kid in the 90’s, you likely saw this arcade machine everywhere. Trying to kill all the terminators proved difficult but was still a lot of fun.
19: Golden Axe
18: Area 51
This 1995 Atari shooter with two handguns as controllers has a fairly simple premise – kill the aliens. Still, this simple game proved highly addictive.
This platformer classic from Williams Electronics had players take control of a knight riding on an ostrich as they jousted against their enemies or other players. While one-player was fun, the two-player combat was much better.
16: Time Crisis
Similar to Area 51, this addictive shooter had a unique feature of stepping out from behind walls by pressing on a pedal. If you needed to reload, you had to hide behind the wall again. The added intensity of the game made it pretty much impossible to stop playing. It produced several sequels due to enormous popularity.
14: Dance Dance Revolution
On its release, this game became a massive sensation, reimagining what arcade video games can look like and how they can be played. It’s also a really great workout if you play it for a long time.
13: Street Fighter 2
When it came to arcade fighters, few could compete with this action-packed game from Capcom. With a number of great characters, cool locations, and the infamous “hadouken” move, this game revolutionized video games in the 90’s.
12: Space Invaders
This 1978 Midway classic had players shooting as many aliens as possible before they reached the bottom and destroyed you. It wasn’t always easy, but it was certainly fun.
11: Metal Slug
Full of explosions and destruction, this beautiful World War II military action-adventure from SNK has you trying to defeat the evil General Morden. Using tanks, bombs, and high-powered machine guns, you’ll fight your way through several locations before taking on a giant soldier at the end.
10: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
This arcade game from Konami, which was ported to the Nintendo Entertainment System, allowed four players to fight against the foot clan, Bebop, Rocksteady, and Shredder in an attempt to save April O’Neil. From the catchy music to the addictive fight scenes, this is certainly one of the best TMNT games of all time.
This 3-D fighter game released in 1994 by Namco is similar to Street Fighter but stands apart for its fluid movements and fighting components with the ability to create unique combos. It also grew to include many sequels, improving on the original.
8: Donkey Kong
This hallowed arcade game is considered one of the most difficult of all time, with a long-standing tradition of players trying to achieve the highest score. As of 2018, the highest score of all time was achieved by Robbie Lakeman with 1,247,700.
7: The Simpsons
A 90’s arcade wasn’t complete without The Simpsons machine. Released by Konami in 1991, four players can taken on the role of Homer, Marge, Bart, or Lisa Simpson with the goal of saving Maggie and recovering the diamond.
6: Sunset Riders
This game from Konami was a cowboy, side-scrolling, shoot’m up game, allowing four players to take on saloon bosses, ride after trains, and avoid stampeding cattle while hunting down high-paying bounties.
This massive machine allowed up to 6 players to take on the role of Wolverine, Cyclops, Storm, Beast, Nightcrawler, Colossus, or Dazzler. If you loved the 90’s X-Men cartoon, then you likely loved playing this game even when the difficulty level became nigh-impossible as you went along.
It’s hard to play a more classic, fun, and addictive game than Pac-man. The concept is easy – eat as many dots as possible before a ghost catches you, but as the game progresses, you’ll find avoiding the ghosts an increasingly difficult task.
A Namco classic, whenever you think “arcade,” it’s likely this game that immediately comes to mind. Playing a spaceship, you fight countless aliens as they create various formations and fly at you. All you have to do is move left and right and fire, but it’s not as easy at it sounds.
2: Smash TV
Playing a contestant on a reality TV show, you tried to get rewards, cash, and keys all while fighting off hordes of enemies. This fast paced and difficult game was also notable for its bloody deaths.
1: Dragon’s Lair
As far as arcade games go, this is the holy grail. The game was known for using a laser disc and contained animation from former Disney animator, Don Bluth. In it, you play Dirk the Daring on your quest to save Princess Daphne from Singe the Dragon. You don’t control Dirk, but are faced with options and have to make the right decisions to survive.