While Jaleco's P-47 Thunderbolt (known as P-47: The Freedom Fighter and P-47: The Phantom Fighter in Japan and North America) has recently seen a rerelease as part of the Arcade Archives collection, its 1995 sequel P-47 Aces has yet to receive a similar treatment. This means the best way to experience the game is still to hunt down an old Mega System 32-compatible arcade cabinet out in the wild.
That may all be changing soon, however, with the company exA-Arcadia developing a brand-new version of the game for its own arcade systems, with fully-arranged music from one of the original composers Manabu Namiki. According to the exA-Arcadia website, P-47 Aces MK.II, as the game will be called, will support 16:9 widescreen and four-player simultaneous multiplayer. It will also feature additional balance adjustments and brand-new bug fixes, with the developer apparently testing this new version with "expert players".
As 4Gamer.Net reported today, the game is being location tested in Japan, in Osaka, Umeda, Kanagawa, and Atsugi from July 21st to July 27th, but it will also be available for purchase for those with their own exA-Arcadia boards from September 2022 onwards. This will be welcome news for fans of the game, as it could potentially mean being able to play an improved version of P-47 Aces in their local arcade, but there's also a bit of a catch we have to cover.
As exA-Arcadia states in its FAQ, "exA-Arcadia is not licensed to manufacture games on any console, PC or smartphones and does not have development teams who can support these formats." As a result, it's likely we won't be seeing the game following its predecessor to consoles anytime soon. Nevertheless, we're hoping to see the game come to an arcade near us, so we can save some money on the cost of overseas travel!
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