Saturday, May 19, 2018

Gaming Ads: Koei

The Japan-based Koei was founded in 1978 and early on was focused on selling computers and software. In early 1983 Koei released the game Nobunaga's Ambition, a strategy game set in 16th century Japan where players stepped into the role of the ruler Nobunaga Oda. The game became a big hit and the series continues to grow today, just over 35 years later. Koei went on to make numerous strategy and simulation games, such as Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Genghis Khan, P.T.O.: Pacific Theater of Operations, Aerobiz, and many others. A U.S. branch of the company was opened in 1988 under the name Koei Corporation.

While Koei is still in business, in 2009 it merged with Tecmo to form Koei Tecmo Holdings. The naming of the various Koei divisions has been changed a couple times since then. At first the North American Koei was called Tecmo Koei America but in 2014 it was reversed and became Koei Tecmo America. As I mentioned above, it still continues to release historical strategy games like Nobunaga's Ambition, though it has perhaps become better known for its "Warriors" series of games developed by the internal studio Omega Force.

Dynasty Warriors was the first release in 1997 for the PlayStation, and although that game is a one-on-one fighter, the sequel (and all sequels since) is a hack 'n' slash style of game with large battlefields. Samurai Warriors, Warriors Orochi, and Bladestorm followed, with all of the games involving either Chinese or Japanese historical figures. Despite the similarity of the series' games, the popularity of them has led to numerous sequels and spin-offs. Anime and other video game properties have also since received their own "Warriors" games, such as Gundam, One Piece, Arslan, The Legend of Zelda, Dragon Quest, Attack on Titan, and Fire Emblem.

Flickr album: Koei

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