Do you love the beautiful game of soccer, but also crave the turn-based action of game’s Final Fantasy? Fear not! With Tecmo Cup Soccer Game you can have both at once!

First, let’s acknowledge how clunkiness of title. It reads like a bad subtitle in an old kung fu film. This sorta makes sense, because Tecmo Cup Soccer Game is an Americanized version of Kyaputen Tsubasa, or Captain Tsubasa, a Japanese game based off of a manga series created by Yōichi Takahashi.

The manga, and the original game, follow the career of 11-year-old Tsubasa Oozora. In the American version, players controlled a blond man named Robin Field with a rockabilly haircut. Your mission was to lead your team through the Junior League and up into the World Cup. Another notable difference from the Japanese version of the game was the absence of a side quest. In Kyaputen Tsubasa, you had to convince another player, Taro Misaki, to join your team. In Tecmo Cup, Robin’s brother Cecil is part of your team. 

None of this was particularly odd. What made the game curious, was the method of gameplay. As mentioned, rather than real time, the game was turned based. Plays were made by selecting from a number of choices, After you selected an action, the game moved to a cinematic sequence which showed how the play turned out. The success of actions was determined by factors like their skill level.

Fans of Final Fantasy X would recognize this type of sporting gameplay. It’s similar to the way that the game Blitzball functions. For everyone else though, it must seem bizarre. It’d be like playing a real life sport but being forced to make all of your plays based on the roll of a D12. 

And that, dear reader, is today’s entry in the Cabinet of Curiosities.

Until next time, I remain….

Just another Geek In the Geek Kingdom…

Shaun Jex Shaun Jex (127 Posts)

Shaun Jex is a lifelong gamer, a journalist, and pop culture historian.His love of video games began with a Commodore 64 he played growing up, late night sessions on his NES, Game Boy and Sega Genesis, and frequent trips to the local Tilt arcade. He edits the Citizens' Advocate newspaper in Coppell, Texas and writes about Disney and Walt Disney World history for Celebrations Magazine and the Celebrations Magazine blog. He runs a weekly vlog called "The MCP" dedicated to retro video games, and a channel with his wife Kara called "The Marceline Depot," dedicated to Disney, amusement parks, and travel.