Mystelious Challengers

Arm Wrestling (Arcade) - Perhaps Nintendo's most bizarre in-house game, Arm Wrestling is like Punch-Out!! crossed up with Wario Ware.

Bio-Miracle Bokutte Upa (NES) - Leave it to Golden Age Konami to give us a platformer starring a crawling infant that is awesome.

Cadillacs & Dinosaurs (Arcade) - C&D was one of Capcom's last arcade beat-em-up releases and learned a lot of lessons from everything that came before it. Too bad that by the time it came out, hardly anyone cared anymore.

Chew Man Fu (Turbografx 16) - Don't let the uninspiring name and screenshots fool you, this is a great little action-puzzle game.

Do-Re-Mi Fantasy (SNES) - The SNES follow-up to Milon's Secret Castle ditches the lame format of that one in favor of something resembling a really, really good clone of Super Mario World.

Famicom Detective Club 2 (SNES) - One of Gunpei Yokoi's lesser-known projects, FDC2 is sort of an unknown early precursor to the Phoenix Wright games.

Firemen, The (SNES) - The Firemen proves you can use shooting game mechanics successfully in a concept that doesn't involve killing things.

Frankenstein's Monster (Atari 2600) - Only game I know of in which losing leads to being teabagged by Frankenstein's Monster.

Ganbare Goemon 2 (SNES) - The sequel to Legend of the Mystical Ninja never made it out of Japan, which is a shame, because it's a more traditional platformer game that also happens to be way better.

Jumping Flash (PSX) - One of the first 3D platformers, and probably the first really good one, Jumping Flash is like an early beta of Metroid Prime. Just with robo-bunnies firing carrot missiles.

Hellnight (PSX) - A number of horror games make you unable to retaliate with force, but Hellnight is the only one I know of that strips you of everything but the ability to run. Oh, and the monster is faster than you.

Majyuuou (King of Demons) (SNES) - This really dark platformer/run-n-gun never made it out of Japan, probably due to the whole "dark" thing.

Mystic Warriors (Arcade) - Great multiplayer arcade game by Konami lost in a wash of great multiplayer arcade games by Konami.

Racing Gears Advance (GBA) - It's the Micro Machines formula, but done *right*. Too bad nobody seemed to notice it.

Radical Dreamers (SNES) - Pseudo-sequel to Chrono Trigger revives the text adventure (sort of) and does a lot of really interesting things that Chrono Cross then went on to ignore.

Ristar (Genesis) - Ristar and Sonic were developed together, like Les Enfants Terribles. Ristar was the Liquid Snake, cast off due to supposed inferiority. But thanks to the Virtual Console, IT'S NOT OVER YET!!!

Rockman 5 Endless (NES) - The funnest bits of Mega Man 5 clipped out and presented to you in random order, sort of like the random mode in Mega Man 9.

Rockman 7-FC (NES) - Mega Man 7 is lovingly de-made to NES-caliber and comes out the better game because of it. Also nicely bridges the aesthetic gap between 6 and 9 ... apparently 8-FC is in the works as well.

Skyblazer (SNES) - Sorta-clone of Actraiser with pretty good level design and gameplay somehow got totally ignored by nearly everyone. I guess being a clone of a really cult game will do that to you.

Super Mario XP (PC) - Mario and Castlevania actually go amazingly well together.

Tin Star (SNES) - Great shooting game designed for a SNES peripheral that never caught on.

Tunnel Runner (Atari 2600) - Ever had a nightmare about being dropped into Pac-Man's maze? Enjoy.

Varicella (Web/PC) - Exceptional text adventure that lends itself well to multiple replays and screwing up a lot.

Zeliard (PC) - Fun PC clone of Ys 3 that actually has better gameplay than Ys 3.