The game spawned a few ports for the NES as well as several other video game systems. In addition, a sequel to the game, Balloon Kid, was released in 1990 for the Game Boy.
In the Super Smash Bros. series
Recently, the game and its main protagonist has enjoyed an increasing amount of popularity, largely due in part to the release of Super Smash Bros. Melee. The anonymous man, who is officially referred to as "Balloon Fighter" in-game, was considered to be a playable character and representative of the NES era, but did not make it into the final version of the game, instead being edged out by the Ice Climbers. Balloon Fight still receives some attention in Melee, however; the Balloon Fighter is a collectible trophy, and the Flipper - an obstacle from Balloon Fight - is an usable item and also a trophy. The original background music for Balloon Fight can also be heard in the Icicle Mountain stage as alternate music.
Additionally, a Balloon Fight reference can be found in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. On the stage The Summit, a fish originating from the game appears when the summit of Icicle Mountain slides into the water. The fish is capable of eating any player unfortunate enough to be in the water at the time, dragging them off the screen and taking a life. Additionally, a remix of the Balloon Trip music appears on the same stage in My Music. Also of note is that the Balloon Fighter's "Blue hat, red overalls" outfit is available as one of Mario's alternate costumes throughout the Smash series.
In Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS the playable character Villager from Animal Crossing has a move called Balloon Trip which enables the Villager to fly for a short amount of time in a fashion similar to the fighters from Balloon Fight. The reason this move was chosen is likely because Balloon Fight was the most common collectible NES game in the original Animal Crossing game. The stage based on Balloon Fight also makes a debut in the Smash Bros. Unlike other stages, characters can walk from one side and appear on the other, like traditional gameplay in Balloon Fight (this also makes K.Os harder to achieve).
As a Trophy
The goal in Balloon Fight is to break your enemy's two balloons, depriving him of his flotation devices. If you lose one balloon, your buoyancy drops and it becomes harder to rise. As you can pop both friends' and enemies' balloons, you have to stay alert in this two-player fun fest. The balloonist's name is unknown.