Best 4-Player NES Games for the Nintendo NES Four Score
When most people think back on the Nintendo Entertainment System, they think of hit games like Super Mario Bros and The Legend of Zelda. Ironically, these popular titles barely scratch the surface of the system’s potential.
The hardworking folks at Nintendo wanted their first home console to offer an advanced, immersive, varied gameplay experience. So they strove constantly to create exciting new accessories that would break through the console’s initial limitations.
One of their most successful accessories is the NES Four Score, a multitap that allows 4-player, simultaneous gameplay. In this article, we review the 6 best 4-player NES games that are compatible with the Four Score. Read on to learn more.
1. Bomberman II
This was the first Bomberman to allow multiple players. Though, technically, the player count with the Four Score is limited to 3, not 4.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the series, each round is a competition to be the last bomber standing. Each player sets bombs that explode after a few seconds.
The explosion reaches up, down, left, and right (not diagonally in most games) from the origin point. Any bomber who touches the explosion, including the one who set the bomb, is out until the next round.
Each game has different powerups and variations. Bomberman II features several familiar power-ups: extra bombs, bigger explosions, speed boosts, etc.
This is an excellent party game and a chance to see the origin of this glorious multiplayer frenzy. Oh, and there’s probably a 1-player mode, too, we guess.
2. Gauntlet II
Gauntlet II is the 4-player NES port of the arcade game of the same name. The graphics had to be scaled down due to the console’s limitations. And, inspite of this, the game still suffers from lag and a few other unfortunate glitches.
Still, the NES port has all the fun, fantasy, and mystery you’ve come to expect from this franchise. And, with 100 levels and seemingly endless baddies, you and your friends can battle co-op-style for hours.
3. Super Off-Road
Super Off-Road is a top-down racing game, an unusual sub-genre which used to be quite popular in arcades and on home consoles. While most racing games simulate actual driving, playing a top-down racing game is like controlling a remote control car. It’s a very different type of racing experience but it’s still a lot of fun, especially with 4 players.
Super Off-Road spawned several sequels, though this one stands out for its large tracks and considerable difficulty. The controls are decently responsive with no major glitches to fret about. And this is one of the earliest racing titles that allows you to buy vehicle-enhancing upgrades with your winnings.
4. R.C. Pro-Am II
R.C. Pro Am II is another beloved top-down racer for the NES like Super Off-Road. This game also allows you to upgrade your car with your winnings. And both games seem to let the AI opponents “cheat.”
But while these two games are similar in most respects, this one offers a lot more depth. For one thing, the tracks are more colorful and detailed. And there are numerous types of terrain that affect the gameplay.
Also, most players agree that the controls in this game are more responsive than those of Super Off-Road. Whether this game is “better” than Super Off-Road is a matter of opinion. Try them both and decide for yourself.
5. Caveman Games
Caveman Games, also known as Caveman Ugh-Lympics, is a par-for-the-course sports game for the NES. As in most multi-event sport games of the day, your success depends on properly timed button tapping. That is, players must perform specific button combinations at the appropriate time to win each event.
What sets this game apart, other than 4-player compatibility, is that it focuses more on humor than on gameplay. You and 3 friends compete through 6 hilarious events to be the ultimate neanderthal athlete.
If nothing else, it’s a fun, goofy romp to enjoy with friends and family. For those 21 and older, it’s also a hilarious drinking game.
(Winner takes a drink. Play responsibly.)
6. U.S. Championship V’Ball
Simple, classic sports games are the most universally enjoyable video games there are. They’re easy to learn and easy to play. Gamers of all types, ages, and experience levels—and even non- gamers—can join in the fun.
Unfortunately, most of these games allow only two players. And that’s why U.S. Championship V’Ball may be the best multiplayer NES sports game in existence.
It’s one of the few 8-bit sports titles that allows a 2-on-2, 4-player competition. And the controls are more responsive than other 4-player NES sports titles, like Top Players’ Tennis.
Not only that, but it also allows a surprising amount of strategy for a 2-button game. Quick thinking and precision timing are required to block a spike or perform a Super Spike. With enough practice, you can master the game, destroy your friends, and rub it in their faces.
Honorable Mention: Smash T.V.
We didn’t want to end our list without mentioning Smash T.V. for NES. Although it’s only a 2-player game, it makes use of the Four Score.
Each player uses two controllers to control their character. This is meant to emulate the dual-joystick controls of the arcade version.
Specifically, one joystick/D-pad moves your character, the other aims your character’s gun. Thus, Smash T.V. is one of the earliest video games in which players can walk in one direction while shooting in another. Add to that a second player and a bunch of baddies with guns of their own and you get hours of explosive, adrenaline-fueled mayhem.
Try These 4-player NES Games With the NES Four Score
Want to experience 8-bit fun like never before? Then get these 4-player NES games and an NES Four Score!
Find these games, NES consoles, the Four Score, and other NES accessories in our Nintendo shop. Don’t forget to purchase enough controllers for 4-player fun.