10 Best Side-Scrolling Beat 'Em Ups Of All Time

Kick ass. Move right. Repeat.

teenage mutant ninja turtles in time

Think back to a simpler time in video games, before all the microtransactions and before all the off-the-wall gameplay mechanics. Before drop-shots and 360 no-scopes, back when all it took was a little bit of a shuffle to the right, and the ability to beat numerous amounts of goons into the ground. Back when side scrolling games were king, and when the simplest of gameplay mechanics were enough to satisfy us.

Even though the genre has essentially been phased out at this point, side scrolling beat 'em ups will always have a special place in most gamers' hearts - especially those older gamers, who remember arcade cabinets sucking quarters out their pockets with no remorse. And while the genre may have had its golden age over three decades ago, that's not to say some good hasn't come from it in recent years as well.

Yes, there's no doubt a lot of people have fond memories of different titles from this genre, and with so many classic games to choose from, what is the greatest side scrolling beat 'em up of all time?


10. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World: The Game

Scott Pilgrim Game

If the Scott Pilgrim series of graphic novels wasn't written to be a side scrolling beat 'em up, then I don't even know what's real anymore. The world, style and story just work all too well. For starters, Scott's journey to be with Ramona Flowers involves him having to defeat her seven evil exes - come on, it's too perfect.

The game itself pays tribute to the older 16-bit style beat 'em ups, even though it was released in 2010. Even though it takes a lot from the older beat 'em up games from the genre, it still threw in plenty of updates and new tricks. For instance players could upgrade their movesets by earning experience as well as using coins, dropped by defeating enemies, to buy items that can boost your stats.

Unfortunately, unless you currently own the game and have it downloaded, it's not possible to play anymore as Scott Pilgrim has been delisted from Xbox and Playstation stores, more than likely due to licensing. It's a game that's been lost to time, and those looking to play it again may have to resort to less legal actions.


Just a gamer with an unhealthy addiction to achievements, fantasy booking WWE events and watching 90's teen comedies.