Standing on the shoulders of 8-bit giants — what makes a good game?

Recently I was asked to solve a puzzle. I was faced with a very quick demo of a game that I did not recognize, and I was asked how it was done. It was a fun challenge, but it started me thinking about if classic 8-bit arcade games had anything to offer us today. There are a lot of really good 8-bit (or at least retro) games, true there are some stinkers too, but is there…