In the games, the player takes up the role of a captain and manages a seagoing fleet to participate in trades, privateering, treasure hunting, exploration, and plain piracy. In East Asia, the series has a large cult following, but it has not received much recognition outside the region. This period was characterized by the rivalry between Spain and Portugal, the advent of colonization, and general exploration. In the first game of the series, the player assumes the role of Leon Franco, the young, ambitious son of a noble family fallen on hard times in Portugal. It was released on MSX and NES in 1991, and Sega Mega Drive/GeNESis and SNES in 1992; the SNES version was originally titled Super Daikoukai Jidai in Japan, as with many SNES ports of Koei games. This game is perhaps the most famous of the series.
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