Operation Wolf is one of Taito's most iconic arcade titles, so much so that it recently got a new entry in the shape of Operation Wolf Returns. Released in arcades in 1987 to commercial and critical acclaim, it would be ported to multiple home formats at the close of the decade, gaining a solid reputation in the process.

As you might imagine, Taito exploited the game's popularity by releasing a series of sequels, none of which got anywhere close to reaching the heights of the original game.

These include Operation Thunderbolt (1988), Operation Wolf 3 (1994) and Operation Tiger (1998). What you might not be aware of is the fact that Operation Tiger itself got a Japan-only sequel in the form of Operation Tiger: Second Mission – but it's so rare many people didn't even realise it existed until fairly recently.

According to Video Game Esoterica, Operation Tiger: Second Mission runs on custom Taito 3D hardware, and an original arcade PCB has now been found and preserved online.

"It's an absolute arcade hidden gem and a video game hidden gem...and a VERY RARE piece of rare gaming hardware," adds Video Game Esoterica. "I discovered the game existed via documents, and Lukemorse1 found the ROMs in Japan and dumped them."

You can view the game in action in the video at the top of the page.

[source youtube.com]