Distinctive Software

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Distinctive Software logo

Distinctive Software, Inc. (DSI) was a Canadian game developer established in Burnaby, British Columbia, by Don Mattrick and Jeff Sember after their success with the game Evolution.[1] Distinctive Software was the predecessor to EA Canada. Most DSI games were distributed by Accolade.

Distinctive Software was best known in the late 1980s for their ports, racing and sports games, including the Test Drive series and Stunts. The code base for 1987's Test Drive was also used for Test Drive II: The Duel, 1988's Grand Prix Circuit, and 1989's The Cycles: International Grand Prix Racing.[citation needed]

DSI also made sports games like 4D Boxing, and the second title in the Hardball series.

In 1991, DSI was acquired by Electronic Arts in a deal worth US$11M and became EA Canada. This was significant blow to Accolade, which lost credibility and market share in the following years.[citation needed]

Trade-named as Unlimited Software, Inc., and lawsuit[edit]

In 1989, programmers Pete Gardner and the "Old Kid" (Amory Wong) of DSI, under the pseudonym USI (Unlimited Software, Inc.), converted Sega's arcade game Out Run into a PC DOS version. Consequently, Accolade charged that DSI violated a working agreement, and sued.[citation needed]

Notable games[edit]

Game Published Publisher Platform
4D Sports Boxing 1991 Mindscape/Electronic Arts PC DOS, Amiga, Atari ST
4D Sports Tennis 1990 Mindscape PC DOS
Accolade Comics 1987 Accolade Commodore 64
Ace of Aces 1987 Accolade Atari 8-bit family
After Burner 1988 Sega PC DOS
Altered Beast 1990 Sega PC DOS
Bill Elliott's NASCAR Challenge 1990 Konami MS-DOS, Amiga, Macintosh, NES, handheld
Castlevania 1990 Ultra Games PC DOS
Grand Prix Circuit 1988 Accolade PC DOS, Commodore 64, Amiga, Apple IIGS
Fight Night 1985 Accolade Atari 8-bit family, Apple II
Hardball! 1985 Accolade Commodore 64, Apple IIGS
Mario Andretti's Racing Challenge 1991 Electronic Arts PC DOS
Metal Gear 1990 Ultra Games PC DOS
Mission: Impossible 1991 Konami PC DOS
Out Run 1989 Sega PC DOS
Stunts (4D Sports Driving) 1990 Brøderbund/Mindscape PC DOS, Amiga
Super C 1990 Konami Amiga, PC DOS
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1990 Ultra Games PC DOS, Commodore 64
Test Drive 1987 Accolade PC DOS, Commodore 64, Amiga
The Cycles: International Grand Prix Racing 1989 Accolade PC DOS, Commodore 64
The Duel: Test Drive II 1989 Accolade PC DOS, Commodore 64, Amiga, Apple IIGS
Top Gun: Guts and Glory 1993 Konami Game Boy
Wings of Fury 1990 Broderbund Amiga, PC DOS


External links[edit]