Although the release of Streets of Rage 4 last year proved the beat-em-up genre could still captivate, there haven’t been many other games out there looking to make the old-school gameplay return to form any time soon. In this exclusive Old School Gamer list, we take share five side-scrolling brawlers worth checking out that you may have missed when first released.

Golden Axe: Revenge of the Death Adder: This was an arcade exclusive for a while, but is now a part of the Arcade1Up family. It’s easily the prettiest and best version of a Golden Axe game.

Bucky O’Hare: Many people know of it because it’s hard to find, but it’s a damn good beat-em-up in its own right.

Fighting Force: It’s one of the only true beat-em-ups on the PS1. Although it hasn’t added as gracefully as other games on this list, it’s still damn fun.

Magic Sword: This was ported to the PS3 and should definitely be checked out. The ally system adds a cool layer to the fun.

The Takeover: Sure, it was released last year, but it didn’t exactly get the attention it deserved. It’s beautiful and a ton of fun.

Patrick Hickey Jr. Patrick Hickey Jr. (330 Posts)

Patrick Hickey, Jr., is the founder and editor-in-chief of and a lecturer of English and journalism at Kingsborough Community College, in Brooklyn, New York. Over the past decade, his video game coverage has been featured in national ad campaigns by top publishers the likes of Nintendo, Deep Silver, Disney and EA Sports. His book series, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews With Cult and Classic Game Developers," from McFarland and Company, has earned praise from Forbes, Huffington Post, The New York Daily News and MSG Networks. He is also a former editor at NBC and National Video Games Writer at the