Image: Damien McFerran / Time Extension

The Evercade family of systems has been around since 2020, and has successfully reconnected players all over the world with classic titles in physical form.

Thanks to its selection of curated cartridges, Evercade has delivered hundreds of titles to a receptive audience, celebrating the back catalogues of companies like Toaplan, The Bitmap Brothers, Codemasters, Atari, Namco and many more – as well as offering all-new experiences via native titles, such as Full Void and Cathedral.

With loads of carts to choose from, selecting your next purchase is tricky – so we've put together this guide to help inform your next purchase. It's been built with your votes, and don't forget – you can still influence the running order by giving each Evercade game a score out of 10. This will directly impact the ranking seen below.

20. Team17 Collection 1 (Evercade)

This collection is notable because it's the first Evercade pack to include Amiga games. Team17 was one of the biggest supporters of Commodore's 16-bit home computer, and this pack features some of the company's most famous '90s titles.

  • Arcade Pool
  • Alien Breed
  • Alien Breed 2
  • Alien Breed: Tower Assault
  • ATR: All Terrain Racing
  • Body Blows
  • Full Contact
  • Kingpin: Arcade Sports Series Bowling
  • Project X: Special Edition '93
  • Qwak

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19. Duke Nukem Collection 2 (Evercade)

Duke Nukem Collection 2 feels somewhat superfluous, especially when compared to the first collection, which showcases some stellar remaster work by Blaze. Fans of the crude, shade-wearing anti-hero will no doubt find a lot to like here, though – while these aren't three of Duke's most essential outings, they're still worth a look if you can't get enough of the character.

  • Duke Nukem Advance
  • Duke Nukem: Land of the Babes
  • Duke Nukem: Time To Kill

18. Namco Museum Collection 1 (Evercade)

Industry veteran Namco released a host of amazing games on the NES / Famicom, and this collection pulls together 9 classics – as well as two SNES titles from the early '90s. Sadly, due to complex licencing deals which we don't pretend to understand, Namco Museum Collection 1 only works on handheld Evercade devices, and is not supported on Evercade VS. Equally sad is the news that the cartridge is no longer in production.
  • Dig Dug
  • Battle Cars
  • Galaxian
  • Libble Rabble
  • Mappy
  • Mappy kids
  • Metal Marines
  • Pac Man
  • Quad Challenge
  • Star Luster
  • Xevious

17. Namco Museum Collection 2 (Evercade)

Like the first collection, this pack is full of home console releases rather than arcade ones – and it also won't work on the Evercade VS. It's also discontinued now, so if you see a copy in the wild, you might want to snap it up – it's worth it for the two Mega Drive Splatterhouse games alone.

  • Burning Force
  • Dig Dug 2
  • Dragon Spirit
  • Galaga
  • Pac-Attack
  • Phelios
  • Splatterhouse 2
  • Splatterhouse 3
  • Tower of Druaga
  • Warp man
  • Weapon Lord

16. Technōs Collection 1 (Evercade)

Famous for its Double Dragon games, Technōs produced a string of console-based hits, too – several of which are included here. Note that these are all NES or SNES games, and not the original coin-ops.

  • Crash ‘N’ The Boys: Street Challenge
  • Double Dragon
  • Double Dragon 2: The Revenge
  • Renegade
  • River City Ransom
  • Super Dodge Ball
  • Super Double Dragon
  • Super Spike V’ball

15. The Bitmap Brothers Collection 1 (Evercade)

One of the most famous British developers of the '80s and '90s, The Bitmap Brothers were the coolest outfit around for what felt like forever – and this pack does a good job of celebrating that legacy. It's just a shame that this collection doesn't have more games on it, and that the versions here are all console ports, and not the Amiga originals.

  • The Chaos Engine
  • Speedball
  • Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe
  • Speedball 2100
  • Xenon 2: Megablast

14. The Oliver Twins Collection (Evercade)

The Oliver Twins are most famous for creating the Dizzy series of games, but they also produced a bunch of other classic titles, too. Dizzy fans will want to pick a copy of this up – but you'll need to act fast, as this cart is no longer in production.

  • Professional BMX Simulator
  • Dizzy The Adventurer
  • Dreamworld Pogie
  • The Fantastic Adventures Of Dizzy
  • Firehawk
  • Go! Dizzy Go!
  • Mystery World Dizzy
  • Panic Dizzy
  • Super Robin Hood
  • Treasure Island Dizzy
  • Wonderland Dizzy

13. Data East Arcade 1 (Evercade)

This collection includes some of Data East's most iconic arcade offerings. Are you a bad enough dude to pick it up?
  • Bad Dudes Vs. Dragon Ninja
  • Breakthru
  • Burger Time
  • Chain Reaction
  • Dark Seal
  • Darwin 4078
  • Lock 'N' Chase
  • Sly Spy
  • Tumblepop
  • Wizard Fire

12. Delphine Software Collection 1 (Evercade)

With only four games included, Delphine Software Collection 1 feels rather lightweight – even more so when you consider how superfluous the two point-and-click adventures are. And, let's face it, if you're a fan of Delphine, you'll have no doubt played Another World and Flashback quite a few times by now. We'd like to have seen Cruise for a Corpse or the excellent PS1 title Fade to Black make the cut – but then again, there's always Delphine Software Collection 2, right?

  • Another World
  • Flashback
  • Future Wars
  • Operation Stealth

11. Toaplan Arcade 2 (Evercade)

While not quite as essential as the first Toaplan Arcade collection, this is still a brilliant way to familiarise yourself with the coin-op output of one of Japan's legendary arcade game makers.

  • Demon's World
  • Fireshark
  • Hellfire
  • Rally Bike
  • Twin Cobra
  • Twin Hawk
  • Wardner

10. Renovation Collection 1 (Evercade)

Despite offering 12 titles, what's odd about Renovation Collection 1 is that none of the games are quite what you'd call a solid-gold release; Wolf Team and Telenet both had a reputation for somewhat average games back in the day, and even their best-known releases – such as El Viento and Valis – are rough around the edges and lack the finesse displayed by Sega, Capcom, Nintendo or Konami's output from the same time period. Having said that, if you're a Genesis / Mega Drive fan, then you'll no doubt have fond memories of at least one of these games – and even if you ignore Dino Land and Beast Wrestler, you're getting good value for money here.

  • Arcus Odyssey
  • Beast Wrestler
  • Dino Land
  • El Viento
  • Exile
  • Final Zone
  • Gaiares
  • Granada
  • Sol-Deace
  • Traysia
  • Valis: The Fantasm Soldier
  • Valis III

9. Codemasters Collection 1 (Evercade)

With 17 games, Codemasters Collection 1 certainly can't be accused of short-changing the customer, and, if you're willing to put in the time, you'll find that pretty much all of the included titles offer some entertainment value. However, for many people, Sensible Soccer and Cannon Fodder will be reason enough to pick this one up, so everything else is a bonus.

  • Bee 52
  • Big Nose Freaks Out
  • Big Nose The Caveman
  • Boomerang Kid
  • CJ's Elephant Antics
  • Cannon Fodder
  • Cosmic Spacehead
  • F-16 Renegade
  • Linus Spacehead
  • Mega-Lo-Mania
  • MIG 29 - Soviet Fighter
  • Psycho Pinball
  • Sensible Soccer
  • Stunt Buggies
  • Super Skidmarks
  • Tennis All-Stars (Previously Unreleased)
  • The Ultimate Stuntman

8. Piko Interactive Collection 1 (Evercade)

Piko owns the rights to more games than you can shake a stick at, thanks to its tactic of hoovering up old IP. As a result, there's a real mix of games on this cart – and while not all of them are classics, you're getting amazing value for money with this one.

  • 8 Eyes
  • Brave Battle Saga
  • Canon – Legends of the New Gods
  • Drakkhen
  • Dragon View
  • Dorke and Ymp
  • Iron Commando
  • The Immortal
  • Jim Power – The Lost Dimension
  • Magic Girl
  • Nightshade
  • Power Piggs of the Dark Ages
  • Power Punch II
  • Radical Rex
  • Switchblade
  • The Humans
  • Tinhead
  • Top Racer
  • Exploding Fist
  • Water Margin

7. Xeno Crisis & Tanglewood (Evercade)

Both originally developed for the Sega Mega Drive, these two indie hits are well worth a look. Tanglewood is a whimsical platformer packed with brain-bending puzzles, while Xeno Crisis is a top-down shooter which calls to mind the likes of Smash TV and Alien Syndrome.

  • Tanglewood
  • Xeno Crisis

6. Alwa's Awakening & Cathedral (Evercade)

While Alwa's Awakening is based on the original NES game – which is excellent, by the way – the headline news here is the fact that the equally amazing Cathedral is the first game to have been natively ported to the Evercade, rather than run under emulation.

  • Alwa's Awakening 8-Bit Edition
  • Cathedral

5. Goodboy Galaxy & Witch n' Wiz (Evercade)

This new double pack for Evercade has a distinctly Nintendo-like feel to it, and that's not only because the two titles – Goodboy Galaxy and Witch n' Wiz – were originally designed to run on Game Boy Advance and NES, respectively. This cart is worth buying for Goodboy Galaxy alone, but Witch n' Wiz makes for a fantastic bonus. Don't sleep on this one; it's a must-have for your Evercade.

  • Goodboy Galaxy
  • Witch n' Wiz

4. Toaplan Arcade 1 (Evercade)

Toaplan may be most famous today for its range of horizontal and vertical shmups, but the company has a proud history of dabbling in other genres, as this collection for the Evercade family of systems attests. If you're not a fan of shmups, then you might struggle to get maximum enjoyment from this cart, but fans of the genre – and Toaplan in particular – will be in heaven.

  • Tiger-Heli
  • Alcon
  • Guardian
  • Flying Shark
  • Truxton
  • Zero Wing
  • Snow Bros
  • Teki-Paki

3. Full Void (Evercade)

While the Evercade family of systems is home to a wide range of cartridge collections packed with retro games, we're now seeing 'native' titles which have been designed from the ground up to work on the Evercade hardware rather than via emulation. Full Void is perhaps the most high-profile of these yet, and it's a dazzling reminder that the system is capable of so much more than just playing vintage classics. With its brooding atmosphere, excellent presentation and engaging puzzles, Full Void sets a new high watermark for native Evercade releases – it's just a shame it doesn't last a little longer.

2. Duke Nukem Collection 1 (Evercade)

A few years before he was "all outta gum", Duke Nukem starred in a pair of MS-DOS action platformers which were distributed as shareware. Created by Apogee Software, Duke Nukem (1991) and Duke Nukem II (1993) were two rare beasts, at least on PC; while home consoles had plenty of Contra-style run-and-gun blasters, home computer users were poorly served in this regard. Duke Nukem Collection 1 is a fine example of how Blaze is using its Evercade platform to revisit classic games in new and unique ways, and we sincerely hope it's the first of many to come.

1. Irem Arcade 1 (Evercade)

Irem is best known today for its genre-defining R-Type series, and this collection for the Evercade includes the game that kicked off that famous lineage. R-Type is comfortably the biggest reason to invest in this pack, but it's joined by some equally commendable picks from the Japanese developer's history. Irem Arcade 1 is a real gem of a collection for fans of the company and is highly recommended to all Evercade owners.

  • R-Type
  • Moon Patrol
  • 10-Yard Fight
  • Battle Chopper
  • Lightning Swords
  • In The Hunt

What is Evercade?

Evercade is a family of systems which is focused on playing retro games. The first console was the handheld Evercade from 2020. This was joined by the home console Evercade VS, and then replaced by the Evercade EXP.

What games can you play on Evercade?

Evercade uses its own unique cartridges to deliver its games. Each cart has more than one title on it (with the exception of Full Void). Evercade systems also have pre-loaded games, as well as hidden ones that can be unlocked using codes or (in the case of the Evercade VS home console) cartridge combinations.

Is Evercade handheld discontinued?

The original handheld machine, released in 2020, was discontinued on 31st May 2022. It was replaced by the improved Evercade EXP.

Do all Evercade cartridges work?

Not all Evercade cartridges work on all Evercade systems. The two Namco Museum Collections will only work on handheld Evercade consoles, and not the Evercade VS.

Who owns Evercade?

Evercade is created and owned by Blaze Entertainment.