Some of the most popular arcade games of all time are "Donkey Kong," "Mortal Kombat," "Asteroids," "NBA Jam" and "Street Fighter II." As of 2015, "Pac-Man" still holds the records for number of cabinets sold and total revenue over its lifetime.
"Donkey Kong" was Nintendo's first major arcade hit and the first game designed by Shigeru Miyamoto, who would go on to design the Mario" and Zelda franchises, among others. It was also the first game to feature the Mario character and was first released in 1981.
"Street Fighter II" was not the first one-on-one fighting game, but It is the game that popularized the genre and became the template upon which much of it was built. The game was released by Capcom in 1991.
"Mortal Kombat" was released in 1992 to great controversy over its use of blood and the ability to kill opposing characters with "fatality" maneuvers. The controversy was very beneficial to sales, however, and the series would go on to enjoy a very long life.
"NBA Jam" was released in 1993 and was the first arcade basketball title to offer a simplified two-on-two play style and to use licensed NBA players and teams.
"Pac-Man" sold about 400,000 cabinets and has earned over three billion dollars in revenue worldwide.