Codex Gamicus

Tecmo, Inc. (テクモ Tekumo?), formerly known as Tehkan Ltd. (テーカン?), was a Japanese video game corporation founded in 1967. In 2009, it merged with Koei to form the holding company Tecmo Koei, and was operated as a subsidiary and brandname until its disbandment in early 2010. Tecmo is best known for the Star Force, Dead or Alive, Ninja Gaiden, Deception, Monster Rancher, Rygar, Tecmo Bowl, Fatal Frame, Tōkidenshō Angel Eyes and Gallop Racer video game series.


The company was founded on July 31, 1967 as a supplier of cleaning equipment.[1] Two years later, in 1969, it started to sell amusement equipment.

In March 1981, a U.S. division was inaugurated as U.S. Tehkan, Inc.. A month later, on April 1981, Tehkan released in Japan its first arcade video game titled Pleiads (which was distributed in America by Centuri). When it was still called Tehkan, the company also released such classic games as Bomb Jack and Tehkan World Cup. On January 8, 1986, Tehkan officially changed its name to Tecmo.

On the 3rd June, 2008 Team Ninja head Tomonobu Itagaki resigned from the company and filed a 145 million yen ($1.3 million) lawsuit for "unpaid completion bonuses" and "emotional distress".[2] This was followed by another lawsuit filed on the 16th of June by two plaintiffs on behalf of Tecmo's 300 employees for unpaid wages amounting to ¥8.3 million.[3] On August 29, 2008 Square Enix made plans for a friendly takeover of Tecmo by purchasing shares at a 30 percent premium with a total bid of ¥22.3 billion.[4] On September 4, 2008 Tecmo officially declined the takeover proposal.[5] Tecmo subsequently engaged in talks with Koei about a possible merger between the two companies,[6] and agreed in November 2008 to merge on April 1, 2009 to form Tecmo Koei Holdings.[7] On January 26, 2009 the two companies officially announced the merger, and the holding company formed on April 1, 2009 as planned.[8]

The subsidiary Tecmo and associated development teams have been declared disbanded in Japan as of February 25, 2010, and relevant intellectual properties are slated to be further managed by Tecmo Koei, effective April 1, 2010.[9][10] On March 15, it was re-established as a game development studio.



Main article: List of Tecmo games


  1. (October 2002). "Ninja Beach Party". Official Xbox Magazine (11): 52.
  2. Ashcraft, Brian (2008-06-02). Itagaki Leaving Tecmo, Suing Tecmo. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2008-06-17
  3. Boyes, Emma (2008-06-17). Report: More staff sue Tecmo. Gamespot UK. Retrieved on 2008-06-18
  4. Thorsen, Tor (2008-08-29). Report: Square Enix makes $200M Tecmo bid. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2008-08-29
  5. Ashcraft, Brian (2008-09-04). Report: Tecmo Rejects Square Enix's Takeover Offer. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2008-09-04
  6. Ashcraft, Brian (2008-09-04). Report: Tecmo And Koei In Talks To Merge. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2008-09-04
  7. Tecmo and Koei to Merge in April 2009
  8. Koei Tecmo Reveals Its New Company Logo (Looks Familiar)
  9. Tecmo: Declaration of Disbandment
  10. Tecmo Koei: Declaration of Succession

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