The Game: As an airborne rescuer with a helicopter backpack and plenty of explosives, your job is to fly (and run) through a series of sinister caverns, retrieving hostages and doing away with such deadly dangers as poisonous spiders. (In short, you’re venturing into places that would have Pitfall Harry making a tar pit in his pants.) Oh, and make sure you don’t shoot out the lights handily installed in nearly every cavern, or you won’t be able to see the danger until you put your foot in it – and then even your helicopter backpack won’t help you. (Activision, 1984)
Memories: One of Activision’s most celebrated originals, H.E.R.O. is a fast-paced game with enough exploration and enough hair-trigger excitement to keep all kinds of gamers happy. In some respects it’s very similar to Pitfall II, only this time you get to blow obstacles away instead of just having to avoid them. You’re also packin’ dynamite, which can kill you just as easily as it can blow up the bad guys, as many a novice player (or some joker like me who hasn’t played it in a long time and is trying to record a video of me playing the game that doesn’t make me look completely incompetent) has found out.
H.E.R.O. has been ported to many other platforms, and consistently shows up in Activision’s greatest hits packages (whether on more recent platforms or in stand-alone form) to this day. The fact that it’s loads of fun probably has something to do with that.