True timeless games.

The "enjoyable for kids today" is a bit difficult, because quite a lot of games depend at least a bit on their graphics or music, in a way that really don't translate very well to people who hasn't got the whole rose-tinted nostalgia bit down since their youth. For instance, I recently tried Uridium, which we all remember as this wizz-bang fast as hell graphically stunning frantic shooter, ne? And today...well, I can play it and enjoy it, but seen through the eyes of "kids today", it really just looks naff. For a similar reason, I can't get into Atari 2600 games, or Odyssey, or Intellivision. I can understand, in my head, that people obsess about them and remember their childhood and all that, but when it comes down to playing them, I really can't get by the (to me) cruddy graphics and simplistic gameplay. I imagine the Kids of Today would feel rather the same about some of my absolute faves.

With that said, I'd mention "Xeno" for the ZX Spectrum. Does not score very highly for graphics or sound, but the gameplay is simple to learn, simple enough that it doesn't get hooked up on lack of processing power, and addictive as f*ck. Plus it is something of a hidden gem.

Whenever I get my thumb out (as we say in sweden) and actually get into some sort of game programming, the first thing I do will be a Xeno port.
...and for the same reason, I think Stunt Car Racer for the Amiga/ST works, still, as well as the Super Mario games on NES and SNES (never depended on their graphics, even thought they were good), and so on. Advance wars, certainly, but (and that is what makes it something that works as good today, in my book) you could just as easily say "Famicom Wars" (or at least with a translation patch) - It is the gameplay that will draw people here, and in that respect they are almost the same.
BoulderDash - Atari

SpinDizzy - CPC

The Sentinel - CPC

Uridium - C64

ParaDroid - C64

CastleVania: Symphony Of The Night - PSX

OutRun - Arcade

RoboCop - Arcade

Castlevania psx, forgot about that one, epic game.

Let me add this one to the list, its the prequel of Castlevania on the psx, every fan of Symphony of the night must play it:

PC Engine CD:

Castlevania - Rondo of Blood

+1. That's my favorite!!

Blood Bros

Cadillac & Dinosaurs

Final Fight

Golden Axe


Out Run



Rainbow Island


Shadow Dancer

Street Fighter II CE


I just bought Guardian Heroes on Xbox Live, I hadn't bought anything on there for eons until I saw that and had a major peepee tingle. I thought it might be a little boring after I'd played the Saturn version to death but to my pleasant surprise I had an absolute blast playing it again. In today's age of Hollywood budget games I think big developers have lost sight of the essence of gaming, thank Jeremy J Christmas for the indie scene and games like Hotline Miami, they are really bringing the spirit of 80s/90s back to life, with all the wacky lunacy that comes with it.