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Famicom Wars

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Famicom Wars
Developer(s)Intelligent Systems
Nintendo R&D1
Director(s)Satoru Okada
Kenji Nishizawa
Producer(s)Gunpei Yokoi
Designer(s)Hiroji Kiyotake
Hirofumi Matsuoka
Programmer(s)Toru Narihiro
Artist(s)Makoto Kano
Composer(s)Hirokazu Tanaka
Kenji Yamamoto
Platform(s)Family Computer
  • JP: August 12, 1988
Genre(s)Turn-based tactics

Famicom Wars[a] is a wargame developed by Nintendo and Intelligent Systems and published by Nintendo for the Family Computer. It was released on August 12, 1988, in Japan.[1] It was later re-released on Virtual Console. It is the first game in the Wars series.


Title screen of Super Famicom Wars

Players take control of one of two warring nations, Red Star and Blue Moon, as they seek to establish turn-based dominance over each other. After selecting which stage to start the game and setting which, if either, player will be controlled by a person, the Red Star army is given the first turn. The objective in each stage is to either capture the enemy's headquarters or destroy all remaining enemy units in one turn. During each turn, the player is given a certain amount of funds which can be used to build units in factories, seaports, and airports under their command; additional funds are earned by conquering cities near their headquarters. Each unit has their own speciality and unique abilities, with ten land units (including two foot soldier units), four air units, and two sea units. Some units have heavier firepower than others, while others provide support to allies. Only foot soldier units are capable of conquering cities, which can then be used to repair or refuel damaged units. There are 15 maps available at the start of the game, with two secret ending maps dependent on which nation the player fights for when playing against the computer.


Development of Famicom Wars began as Intelligent Systems changed its direction from creating hardware to developing simulation games.[2]

Reception and legacy[edit]

On release, Famicom Tsūshin (now Famitsu) scored the Famicom version of the game a 33 out of 40.[3][1] The 1989 "All Soft Catalog" issue of Famicom Tsūshin included Famicom Wars in its list of the best games of all time, giving it the Best Simulation and Best Commercial awards.[4]

The original Famicom Wars was followed by a series of sequels which were released only in Japan as well, which includes Game Boy Wars in 1990 and Super Famicom Wars in 1998, both which were developed by Intelligent Systems and Nintendo, as opposed to a sub-series of sequels to the original Game Boy Wars, which were developed and published by Hudson Soft. The series eventually made its international debut with Advance Wars, released for the Game Boy Advance in 2001. The maps from both Famicom Wars and Super Famicom Wars were later included in Advance Wars and its sequels.[5]

A group of six soldiers from the game appears in the Wii game Captain Rainbow. The soldiers aspire to win the volleyball gold medal.[6]

Super Famicom Wars[edit]

Super Famicom Wars
Developer(s)Intelligent Systems
Director(s)Toru Narihiro
Producer(s)Takehiro Izushi
Designer(s)Shouzou Kaga
Artist(s)Masahiro Higuchi
Composer(s)Kenichi Nishimaki
Platform(s)Super Famicom
  • JP: 1 May 1998
Genre(s)Turn-based tactics
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Super Famicom Wars is an enhanced remake of Famicom Wars developed by Intelligent Systems and released for the Super Famicom on May 1, 1998, exclusively via the Nintendo Power service in commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the original Family Computer version.[7]

Improvements over the original Famicom Wars include the inclusion of 8 new types of units in addition to the 16 original units, a faster decision-making process for the CPU, the introduction of Reconnaissance Mode (also known as "Fog of War" mode in later localizations, in which enemy units are invisible during the player's turn when they're not in proximity to the player's units) and the maximum amount of deployed units being increased from 48 to 60 units.[8] In addition to the original campaign between the Red Star and Blue Moon armies, there's a new campaign also consisting of 17 maps involving two new factions, Green Earth and Yellow Comet. In addition there is a 4-players mode consisting of 10 maps involving all four factions. This brings the total count of maps to 44. The player can also assign one of seven generals to each army, which mainly affects what kind of strategies the CPU will employ, although some of the generals do provide passive benefits even when assigned to a player-controlled faction.

The game was digitally released on Nintendo's Japanese Virtual Console for Wii,[9] Wii U,[10] and 3DS platforms.[11]

An English-language fan translation was released in 2018.[12][13]


  1. ^ Japanese: ファミコンウォーズ, Hepburn: Famikon Wōzu


  1. ^ a b "ファミコンウォーズ [ファミコン] / ファミ通.com". www.famitsu.com. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  2. ^ Iwata Asks - Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon Archived November 4, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ 30 Point Plus: ファミコンウォーズ. Weekly Famicom Tsūshin. No.257. Pg.40. 12–19 November 1993.
  4. ^ "'83〜'89 ベストヒットゲーム大賞" ['83〜'89 Best Hit Game Awards]. ファミコン通信 〜 '89全ソフトカタログ [Famicom Tsūshin: '89 All Software Catalog]. Famicom Tsūshin. 15 September 1989. p. 138.
  5. ^ Accessed 2007-11-25 Archived 2011-06-29 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-20. Retrieved 2008-08-06.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "スーパーファミコンウォーズ [スーパーファミコン] / ファミ通.com". www.famitsu.com. Archived from the original on 2018-08-21. Retrieved 2018-08-20.
  8. ^ "スーパーファミコンウォーズ" (in Japanese).
  9. ^ "Japanese Nintendo downloads: Super Famicom Wars, Diner Dash". Engadget. Archived from the original on 2018-08-20. Retrieved 2018-08-20.
  10. ^ Bivens, Danny (October 3, 2013). "Japan eShop Round-Up (10/02/2013)". Nintendo World Report. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
  11. ^ Bivens, Danny (November 28, 2016). "Super Famicom Wars, Live A Live and More Hit 3DS eShop in Japan - News". Nintendo World Report. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
  12. ^ "Fan Translation Makes Super Famicom Wars Playable In English - Siliconera". Siliconera. 2018-01-02. Archived from the original on 2018-01-07. Retrieved 2018-08-21.
  13. ^ "'Super Famicom Wars' And 'Princess Minerva' Translated to English". Nintendo Life. 2017-12-26. Archived from the original on 2018-01-30. Retrieved 2018-08-20.

External links[edit]