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Thexder on the NEC PC8801

History

Thexder is the classic action-arcade game from GameArts. You play as a fighter robot able to morph into a jet. Originally released in 1985 for the NEC PC8801 platform in Japan, the game quickly became a huge hit selling over 500,000 copies. Later that same year, GameArts licensed Thexder to Square in order to develop a conversion for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) game console. In 1987, GameArts also developed a Thexder conversion for the MSX platform.

The NEC PC8801 and MSX platforms were only popular in Japan and Thexder garnered little attention abroad. That all changed, however, when Sierra licensed Thexder for release in the United States. In 1987, Sierra ported the game to multiple platforms including the IBM PC, Apple II, Commodore Amiga, and Tandy TRS-80 Color Computer (CoCo3). Thexder continued its track record of success and became a best-seller for Sierra.

The two GameArts developers responsible for creating Thexder were Hibiki Godai and Satoshi Uesaka. In 1986, they developed another action-arcade game called Silpheed and in 1989 they wrote a Thexder sequel named "FireHawk: Thexder". As with the original, FireHawk sold extremely well in Japan and the United States. Today, Thexder is still remembered by many as a classic action-arcade game.

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