A Big Name in Arcade Gaming: Best Sega Arcade Games

If you grew up in the 80s or 90s, there’s a good chance you spent some time at your local arcade playing Sega games. They were a big name in arcade gaming, and their games were always a hit with gamers of all ages.

Today, we’re going to take a look back at some of the most popular Sega arcade games ever released.

Sonic the Hedgehog

In the early 1990s, Sega was at the forefront of the arcade gaming scene with its popular line of Virtua Fighter cabinets. But the company was looking to make a bigger splash in the market, and so it turned to one of its most famous mascots: Sonic the Hedgehog.

The result was a game that combined the speed and attitude of Mario with the cool visuals and tight controls that Sega was known for. The result was a hit, and Sonic quickly became one of the most popular characters in video gaming.

To this day, the blue blur remains an important part of Sega’s identity, and his games continue to be some of the most enjoyable experiences in arcade gaming.

Street Fighter II

Exactly thirty years ago, the first Street Fighter game was released by Capcom. Although it was a popular game, it did not have the same appeal as its sequel, Street Fighter II. Street Fighter II became an overnight success, quickly becoming one of the most popular games in arcades around the world.

The game’s popularity was due in part to its innovative gameplay. Street Fighter II introduced a number of new features that were not present in the first game, such as multiple playable characters and special moves.

In addition, the game’s cutting-edge graphics and sound were head and shoulders above anything that had been seen before in an arcade game. As a result of its popularity, Street Fighter II helped to cement Sega’s position as a leading player in the arcade gaming market.

Mortal Kombat

Mortal Kombat was one of the most popular video games of the early 1990s and remains a fan favorite to this day. The game was originally released as an arcade game in 1992, and it quickly became a sensation.

The game is set in a mystical martial arts tournament and features a cast of colorful characters with unique fighting styles. Mortal Kombat was notable for its violence, which was unlike anything that had been seen in video games up to that point.

The game was also controversial for its use of blood and gore, which led to accusations that it was too violent for young players. Nevertheless, Mortal Kombat proved to be immensely popular with gamers of all ages, and it helped to solidify Sega’s position as a major player in the video game industry.

More than 25 years after its initial release, Mortal Kombat remains one of the most iconic video games of all time.


One of the most successful arcade games of the 1980s was Rampage, an American-made coin-operated game that was manufactured by Bally Midway. The game was released in 1986, and it became an instant classic.

Players took control of one of three giant monsters, who wreaked havoc on a city by destroying buildings and eating people. The object of the game was to cause as much damage as possible before being defeated by the police or military.

Rampage was so popular that it spawned numerous sequels and spin-offs, solidifying its place in video game history. More than 30 years after its release, Rampage remains a beloved arcade classic.


In the 1980s, Contra was one of the most popular arcade games. The side-scrolling shooter featured fast-paced action and challenging gameplay. Players controlled soldiers who had to fight their way through an enemy base, using a variety of weapons to shoot down enemies and destroy obstacles.

The game was so popular that it spawned several sequels, including Super Contra and Contra III: The Alien Wars. In recent years, Contra has been revived in a number of new games, including Contra: Rogue Corps and Contra Anniversary Collection.

Whether you’re a nostalgic player or a newcomer to the series, there’s sure to be a Contra game that you’ll enjoy.

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Virtua Cop

Virtua Cop was one of the most popular arcade games of the 1990s. The fast-paced shooting game put players in the role of a police officer, tasked with taking down criminals.

The game was notable for its use of 3D graphics, which were cutting-edge at the time. Virtua Cop was also one of the first games to use a light gun, making it more immersive than other shooters of its era. The game was a huge hit in arcades, and it was eventually ported to home consoles.

Today, Virtua Cop remains a fondly remembered classic, and it remains an important part of Sega’s history.

Maddison Cox

Maddison Cox is a writer who loves nothing more than watching Rafael Nadal play tennis. She also enjoys reading books, and will read just about anything that comes her way. Maddison likes to spend quality time with herself, whether that's exploring new places or simply relaxing at home. Do you want to read more about Maddison? Connect with her on LinkedIn.

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