1987 in video games
This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2009)
1987 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games, such as Dragon Quest II, along with new titles such as Contra, Double Dragon, Final Fantasy, Metal Gear, Phantasy Star, Street Fighter, The Last Ninja, After Burner and R-Type. The Legend of Zelda was also introduced outside of Japan.
Highest-grossing arcade gamesEdit
|1||Out Run||Large||33||Out Run||Deluxe||3734|
|3||After Burner||Large||20||Hi Sho Zame (Flying Shark)||Table||2434|
|4||1943: The Battle of Midway||Table||12||Major League||Table||2285|
|5||Double Dragon||Table||10||World Cup (Tehkan World Cup)||Table||2210|
|7||Dragon Spirit||Table||7||Super Hang-On||Ride-on||1901|
|8||Hi Sho Zame (Flying Shark)
|9||Table||5||1943: The Battle of Midway||Table||1778|
|10||Super Hang-On||Large||4||Side Pocket||Table||1744|
United Kingdom and United StatesEdit
|Rank||Dedicated arcade cabinet||Conversion kit|
|Ikari Warriors |
In the United Kingdom and United States, the following titles were the top-grossing games on the monthly arcade charts in 1987.
|Month||United Kingdom||United States (RePlay)|
|Upright arcade cabinet||Software conversion kit||Ref|
|January||Unknown||Out Run||Gauntlet II|||
|February||Out Run||Championship Sprint|||
Best-selling home video gamesEdit
|1||Dragon Quest II: Akuryō no Kamigami||Chunsoft||Enix||RPG||Famicom||< 2,200,000|
|2||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium '87||Namco||Namco||Sports||Famicom||< 1,300,000|
|3||Moero!! Pro Yakyū (Bases Loaded)||TOSE||Jaleco||Sports||Famicom||< 1,000,000|
|4||Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (The Adventure of Link)||Nintendo R&D4||Nintendo||Action RPG||Famicom Disk System||Unknown|
|5||Family Computer Golf: Japan Course||Nintendo R&D2||Nintendo||Sports||Famicom||< 740,000|
|6||Saint Seiya: Ōgon Densetsu||Bandai||Bandai||Action RPG||Famicom||Unknown|
|7||Momotarō Densetsu (Momotarō Legend)||Hudson Soft||Hudson Soft||RPG|
|8||Nakayama Miho no Tokimeki High School||Squaresoft||Nintendo||Dating sim||Famicom Disk System|
|9||Sanma no Meitantei (Great Detective Sanma)||Namco||Namco||Adventure||Famicom|
|10||Famicom Mukashibanashi: Shin Onigashima||Nintendo R&D4||Nintendo||Adventure||Famicom Disk System|
|Chart||Week 1||Week 2||Week 3||Week 4||Ref|
|January||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium (Famicom)||Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (Famicom Disk System)|||
|February||Dragon Quest II (Famicom)||Family Computer Golf: Japan Course (FC)||Unknown|||
|April||Sanma no Meitantei (Famicom)||Argus no Senshi (Famicom)||Family Jockey (Famicom)|||
|May||Kinnikuman 2 (FDS)||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium (Famicom)||Yūshi no Monshō (FDS)|||
|June||Bug-tte Honey (Famicom)||Family Boxing (Famicom)||Unknown|
|August||Unknown||Unknown||Saint Seiya: Ōgon Densetsu (Famicom)||Dracula II: Noroi no Fūin (FC)|||
|September||Shin Onigashima (Famicom Disk System)||Unknown||Unknown|||
|October||Unknown||Unknown||Side Pocket (Famicom)||Momotaro Densetsu (FC)|||
|November||Famicom Grand Prix: F-1 Race (FDS)||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|December||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium '87 (Famicom)||Nakayama Miho no Tokimeki High School (Famicom Disk System)|
United Kingdom and United StatesEdit
In the United States, The Legend of Zelda was the best-selling home video game of 1987, becoming the first third-generation video game (non-bundled) to cross a million US sales that year, followed by Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! In the United Kingdom, Out Run was the best-selling home video game of 1987, with its 8-bit home computer ports becoming the fastest-selling games in the UK up until then.
The following titles were the top-selling home video games on the monthly charts in the United Kingdom and United States during 1987.
|Month||United Kingdom||United States|
|All formats||ZX Spectrum||Sales||Title||Platform||Sales||Ref|
|January||Gauntlet||Olli & Lissa||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|July||Unknown||Barbarian: The Ultimate Warrior||Unknown||The Legend of Zelda||NES||Unknown|||
|November||Unknown||Game Set and Match||Unknown||Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!||NES||Unknown|||
|1987||Out Run||250,000+||The Legend of Zelda||NES||1,000,000+|||
(Japan, December 1987)
|2nd Famitsu Best Hit Game Awards
(Japan, February 1988)
|2nd Famimaga Game Awards
(Japan, February 1988)
|5th Golden Joystick Awards |
(United Kingdom, March 1988)
|Game of the Year||Darius||Dragon Quest II (Famicom)||Out Run|
|Critics' Choice Awards||N/A||Tsuppari Ōzumō (Famicom)
Zombie Hunter (Famicom)
Shin Onigashima (Famicom Disk System)
Family Computer Golf (Famicom Disk System)
Bubble Bobble (Famicom)
Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei (Famicom)
|Best Game Design||N/A||Nakayama Miho no Tokimeki High School (FDS)||N/A||N/A|
|Best Playability||N/A||N/A||Dragon Quest II||N/A|
|Best Story||N/A||Dragon Quest II (Yuji Horii)||N/A||N/A|
|Best Graphics||After Burner||Faxanadu (Famicom)||N/A||N/A|
|Best 3D Game||N/A||Highway Star (Rad Racer)||N/A||N/A|
|Best Speech Synthesis||Genpei Tōma Den||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Best Music / Sound||Darius||Momotaro Densetsu / Exciting Billiards||Dragon Quest II||N/A|
|Best Character / Character Design||Athena Asamiya (Psycho Soldier)||Momotaro Densetsu (Famicom)||Dragon Quest II||N/A|
|Best Developer / Software House||Sega||N/A||N/A||U.S. Gold|
|Best Programmer||N/A||N/A||N/A||Jon Ritman|
|Best Ports||N/A||Wizardry / Salamander||N/A||N/A|
|Best Original Game / Originality||N/A||N/A||Dragon Quest II||Nebulus|
|Most Popular Game / Long Seller||Out Run||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium (R.B.I. Baseball)||N/A||N/A|
|Arcade Game of the Year||N/A||N/A||N/A||Out Run|
|Best Action Game||N/A||Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic (Famicom)||Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (FDS)||N/A|
|Best Shooter||N/A||Fantasy Zone (Famicom)||Salamander||N/A|
|Best Adventure Game||N/A||Hokkaidō Rensa Satsujin: Okhotsk ni Kiyu (FC)||Shin Onigashima (FDS)||The Guild of Thieves|
|Best RPG||N/A||Dragon Quest II (Famicom)||Dragon Quest II||N/A|
|Best Action RPG||N/A||Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (FDS)||N/A||N/A|
|Best Sports Game||N/A||Mike Tyson's Punch-Out! (Famicom)||Pro Yakyū: Family Stadium||N/A|
|Best Puzzle Game||N/A||Shanghai||N/A||N/A|
|Best Simulation / Strategy Game||N/A||SD Gundam World Gachapon Senshi (Famicom)||N/A||Vulcan|
|Best Leisure / Casual Games||N/A||Mezase Pachi Pro: Pachio-kun / Side Pocket||N/A||N/A|
|Best Board Game||N/A||Tetsudou Ou (Famicom)||N/A||N/A|
|Best Mahjong Game||N/A||Professional Mahjong Gokū||N/A||N/A|
Famitsu Platinum Hall of FameEdit
|Title||Platform||Score (out of 40)||Developer||Publisher||Genre|
|Dragon Quest II: Akuryō no Kamigami (Dragon Warrior II)||Family Computer (Famicom)||38||Chunsoft||Enix||RPG|
|Zelda 2: Link no Bōken (Zelda II: The Adventure of Link)||Famicom Disk System||36||Nintendo EAD||Nintendo||Action RPG|
- New companies: Apogee, The Bitmap Brothers, Empire Interactive, GameTek, Maxis
- Defunct: Electric Transit, English Software, Muse
- Activision acquires Infocom.
- Electronic Arts acquires Batteries Included.
- Atari Games establishes the Tengen division for porting their games to home systems.
- Nintendo of America, Inc. v. Blockbuster Entertainment lawsuit: Nintendo sues Blockbuster for photocopying complete NES manuals for its rental games. Nintendo wins the suit, and Blockbuster includes original manuals with its rentals.
- SSI President Joel Billings acquires the license to the Dungeons and Dragons tabletop role-playing game, setting the stage for the Gold Box line of D&D games.
- February 20 – Konami releases Contra
- July 1 – Irem releases scrolling shooter R-Type.
- July – Technōs Japan releases Double Dragon to arcades, distributed internationally by Taito.
- August 30 – Capcom releases Street Fighter, the first game of the series.
- Taito releases Rastan and Operation Wolf.
- Namco releases Wonder Momo, which is their last 8-bit game, Yokai Dochuki, which is their first 16-bit game, Dragon Spirit, Blazer, Quester, Pac-Mania, Galaga '88 and Final Lap.
- Atari Games releases RoadBlasters, Xybots, and APB.
- January 14 – Nintendo releases Zelda II: The Adventure of Link for the Famicom Disk System in Japan only. The game would go unreleased in America for nearly two years afterwards.
- February 12 – Infocom releases Bureaucracy from author Douglas Adams.
- June 21 – Nihon Falcom releases Ys I: Ancient Ys Vanished for the PC-8801 in Japan only. The game's director is Masaya Hashimoto, and it is the first game in the long running Ys series.
- June – Codemasters release Dizzy – The Ultimate Cartoon Adventure
- July 5 – the Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards adventure is released by Sierra Entertainment.
- July 7 – Konami releases Metal Gear for the MSX2 home computer platform in Japan and Europe.
- August 22 – Nintendo releases The Legend of Zelda in America and Europe, a year after being available in Japan.
- August 28 – Konami releases Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, the second Castlevania title released for the NES.
- October – Nintendo releases Mike Tyson's Punch-Out for NES/Famicom.
- October – LucasArts releases Maniac Mansion, the first game to use the SCUMM engine, innovating the point-and-click interface for the adventure game genre.
- November 14 – Sierra On-Line releases Space Quest II: Vohaul's Revenge, the second game in the Space Quest series.
- December 17 – Capcom releases the first Mega Man game in the long-standing series for the NES/Famicom.
- December 18 – Square's Hironobu Sakaguchi releases Final Fantasy for the Famicom in Japan. Originally intended to be the company's last release, the game's success resulted in a prolific series. It was released in the U.S.A. 3 years later.
- December 20 – Sega releases Phantasy Star on the Master System, featuring a female protagonist.
- FTL Games releases Dungeon Master for the Atari ST.
- Sierra On-Line releases Police Quest: In Pursuit of the Death Angel, the first game in the Police Quest series.
- MIDI Maze for the Atari ST is a first person shooter allowing up to 16 computers to be networked via the built-in MIDI ports for deathmatch-style fights.
- Incentive Software releases Driller, a first person game using 3D filled polygons.
- Ocean Software releases Head Over Heels, an isometric arcade adventure, for several 8-bit home computers.
- MicroProse releases Sid Meier's Pirates!, the first game from Meier with his name in the title.
- System 3 releases The Last Ninja.
- Accolade releases Test Drive.
- April – IBM launches the PS/2 line of computers which introduces VGA graphics and 3.5 inch floppy drives to PCs.
- September – Master System released in Europe.
- October 30 – NEC releases the PC-Engine console in Japan.
- Acorn releases the Acorn Archimedes 32-bit home computer, which brought the game Zarch (later known on other platforms as Virus) to prominence.
- Commodore releases the lower-cost Amiga 500 which became a significant gaming machine, particularly in Europe, and becomes the best-selling model.
- Atari Corporation releases the XE Game System, or Atari XEGS, a repackaged 65XE computer which is the last in the Atari 8-bit family.
- Master System is released in Japan.
- AdLib sets a de facto standard for PC audio with its Yamaha YM3812-based sound card.
- Namco develops the Namco System 1 arcade system board, followed later in the year by the Namco System 2.
- The IBM PCjr is discontinued after three years.
- "87' ゲーメスト大賞 〜 ベストインカム" [87' Gamest Awards – Best Income]. Gamest (in Japanese). Vol. 17 (February 1988). December 28, 1987. pp. 25-38 (36-7). Lay summary.
- "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25: '87" (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 324. Amusement Press, Inc. January 15, 1988. p. 20.
- "Nominees Announced For AMOA's JB, Games, & Vending Promo Awards" (PDF). Cash Box. October 3, 1987. p. 37.
- Compasio, Camille (November 14, 1987). "Around The Route". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co. p. 32.
- "米国「リプレイ」誌 ザ•プレイヤーズ •チョイス 1987年1月号から" [US "RePlay" Magazine: The Players Choice - From the January 1987 Issue] (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 300. Amusement Press, Inc. January 15, 1987. p. 17.
- "Top Ten Coin-Ops of the Month". Computer and Video Games. No. 66 (April 1987). March 1987. p. 92.
- "Arcade Action". Computer and Video Games. No. 67 (May 1987). April 1987. p. 93.
- "Coin-Op Top Ten". Top Score. Amusement Players Association. Winter 1987.
- "Arcade Action". Computer and Video Games. No. 70 (August 1987). July 15, 1987. p. 112.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 21 (September 1987). August 1987. pp. 34–5.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 22 (October 1987). September 10, 1987. pp. 66–7.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 23 (November 1987). October 12, 1987. pp. 72–3.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 24 (December 1987). November 1987. pp. 38–9.
- "Arcade Action: The Top Ten". Computer and Video Games. No. 75 (January 1988). December 15, 1987. p. 151.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 26 (February 1988). January 1988. pp. 22–3.
- "総合TOP50" [Total Top 50]. ファミコン通信 〜 '89全ソフトカタログ [Famicom Tsūshin: '89 All Software Catalog]. Famicom Tsūshin (in Japanese). September 15, 1989. p. 78.
- "Digest of Japanese Industry & Technology: DJIT". Digest of Japanese Industry & Technology (DJIT). Japan Trade & Industry Publicity (276–282): 35. 1993.
"Dragon Quest II," released in the following year of 1987, sold 500,000 copies on the first release, and 2,200,000 copies in total.
- "Japan Platinum Game Chart". The Magic Box. Archived from the original on January 1, 2008. Retrieved August 23, 2019.
- "Game Search". Game Data Library. Famitsu. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
- "ファミコン通信 TOP 30: 1月23日" [Famicom Tsūshin Top 30: January 23]. Famicom Tsūshin (in Japanese). Vol. 1987 no. 3. February 6, 1987. pp. 8–9.
- "1987 Weekly". Game Data Library. Famitsu. Retrieved August 13, 2021.
- "2/9～2/15 — 2/16～2/22". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. March 20, 1987. pp. 132–3.
- "4/6～4/12 — 4/13～4/19". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. May 15, 1987. pp. 136–8.
- "4/20～4/26 — 4/27～5/3". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. June 5, 1987. pp. 138–9.
- "5/25～5/31 — 6/1～6/7". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. July 3, 1987. pp. 172–3.
- "8/24～8/30 — 8/31～9/6". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. October 2, 1987. p. 122.
- "10/26～11/1 — 11/2～11/8". Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). Tokuma Shoten. December 4, 1987. p. 180.
- "ファミコン通信 TOP 30: 2月5日" [Famicom Tsūshin Top 30: February 5]. Famicom Tsūshin (in Japanese). Vol. 1988 no. 4. February 19, 1988. pp. 12–7.
- "Count Down Hot 100: USA Hot 10!". Famicom Tsūshin (in Japanese). No. 226. April 16, 1993. p. 83.
- Lindner, Richard (1990). Video Games: Past, Present and Future; An Industry Overview. United States: Nintendo of America.
- Gellene, Denise (June 13, 1988). "The Joystick Lives: New Technology, Better Marketing Give Video Games a Second Life". The Los Angeles Times. p. 57. Retrieved September 13, 2021.
- "OutRun". Computer and Video Games. EMAP (80): 30–1. June 1988. ISSN 0261-3697.
- "Out Run". Crash. No. 49. Newsfield. February 1988. pp. 22–23 (22). ISSN 0954-8661.
- "Top 20". Your Computer. April 1987. p. 30.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 17. May 1987. Retrieved April 19, 2021.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 17. May 1987. Archived from the original on October 26, 2000. Retrieved April 9, 2021.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 18. June 1987. Archived from the original on December 7, 2000. Retrieved April 9, 2021.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 19 (July 1987). June 1987. Archived from the original on October 26, 2000. Retrieved April 9, 2021.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 20 (August 1987). July 1987. p. 17.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 5. August 1987. p. 1.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 6. September 1987. p. 1.
- "Top Ten Games". Your Sinclair. No. 25 (January 1988). December 10, 1987. Archived from the original on December 3, 2000. Retrieved April 9, 2021.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 7. October 1987. p. 1.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 8. November 1987. p. 1.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 9. December 1987. p. 1.
- Cundy, Matt (December 25, 2007). "Every Christmas Top 10 from the last 20 years". GamesRadar. p. 11. Retrieved March 9, 2021.
- "Street Life". Your Sinclair. No. 27 (March 1988). February 1988. pp. 22–3.
- "License To Thrill?". ACE. Future plc (10): 31. July 1988. ISSN 0954-8076.
- "Top Ten Videogames" (PDF). Computer Entertainer. Vol. 6 no. 10. January 1988. p. 1.
- "87' ゲーメスト大賞" [87' Gamest Awards]. Gamest (in Japanese). Vol. 17 (February 1988). December 28, 1987. pp. 25–38. Lay summary.
- "1987 ベストヒットゲーム大賞" [1987 Best Hit Game Awards]. Famicom Tsūshin (in Japanese). Vol. 1988 no. 4. February 19, 1988. pp. 6–11.
- "1987 ファミマガゲーム大賞" [1987 Famimaga Game Awards]. Family Computer Magazine (in Japanese). February 19, 1988. pp. 114–7.
- "Golden Joystick Awards 1988". Computer and Video Games. No. 79 (May 1988). Future Publishing. April 15, 1988. p. 39.
- "週刊ファミ通クロスレビュープラチナ殿堂入りソフト一覧" [Weekly Famitsu Cross Review Platinum Hall of Fame Software List]. Geimin (in Japanese). Archived from the original on October 27, 2008. Retrieved February 24, 2021.