The Third World War

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ThirdWorldWar MCD JP SS Title.png

The Third World War
System(s): Sega Mega-CD
Publisher: Micronet (Japan), Extreme Entertainment Group (US)
Peripherals supported: CD BackUp RAM Cart
Genre: Simulation[1][2]

Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Mega-CD
¥7,800 (8,034)7,800e[3] T-22034
Sega Mega-CD
$49.9549.95[4] T-22025
Videogame Rating Council: MA-13

The Third World War (ザ・サード ワールド ウォー) is a Sega Mega-CD strategy game. Bignet/Micronet planned a Sega Mega Drive version of Third World War for release in December 1992. It was later shown at Winter CES 1992[5].

The Japanese version of the game has a cover depicting Bill Clinton and Saddam Hussein shaking hands and smiling while the background is being ravaged by war.


Players take control a country of their choosing and attempt to gain military or economical supremacy while at the same time developing their economy and technology level. In addition to the grand strategy options played in a global map, players will also command their forces in real time strategy various maps.


The Third World War
This is the world situation at the early 90s. The United States is immensely powerful while China and Russia have trouble keeping their armed forces due to economical problems. UK, Japan, Germany and France have similar troubles while underdogs like Iraq, Libya and South Africa are in perfect position to assert local dominance.

This is a recommended campaign for newcomers.

Cold War
The final stages of the Cold War take place in late 80s. While both USA and Russia have immensely powerful military forces, this large spending is also bleeding their economies dry. Concentrating the GNP improvement is the key here.
War in the Pacific
After annexing several ASEAN nations, Japan becomes immensely powerful in this scenario, enough to challenge the US. Aiding the revolutionaries and terrorists in this scenarios will be beneficial.
Superpowers reduce their military spendings while developing nations such as Iraq, Libya, South Africa and India are re-emerging as potential challengers.
The Economic Struggle
Unless the player invades someone, there will be no wars during this campaign as every nation is focusing on developing their own economies and taking control of the others. Investments will be key to victory here. The player should try to defend theirs and their vassal states' economies from revolutions while spraking them in enemy countries.


United States of America
Powerful in terms of economy and military, the USA is a perfect country for beginners. Players can use the country's strong economy to invest in technology and establish their domination over the globe.
After the USA, Russia is next best candidate for military domination.
With a mostly defensive military force, Japan is not the best candidate for military victory. However, the nation's strong economy (Second highest after USA) will allow the player to either establish economical dominance or rebuild their army to challenge other superpowers. Players should make good use of their international trust to make necessary treaties with other nations.
Germany is very powerful economically and has a decent ground force. Their air force and navy is quite mediocre though. Either start a new ground war in Europe or conquer other nations with the country's potent economy.
China's massive manpower is your greatest strength. Players should focus on ground-based war as their navy is poor.
An average nation. When using France, the player should focus on domestic policies to survive.
United Kingdom
Being an island nation, the UK is pretty much immune to ground invasion. If everything else fails, the player can send the powerful Royal Navy to expand their influence.
The player should be very mindful of terrorist attacks and revolutionary rebellions when using this country, and make good use of India's status as an emerging superpower. An alliance with Russia might help too.
South Africa
Being in the southernmost tip of Africa makes South Africa an isolated nation. On the bright side, this means it is not an important target to other countries, giving the country an advantage. The player should expand further into Africa and swallow Libya. After that, they are set for world power.
Just like South Africa, the player should conquer the South and Central America first, then set their sights on the rest of the world.
Australia is also in a isolated position, so the player should focus on swallowing the nation's neighbors. The country has painfully low manpower, so the player must pick their invasion targets carefully and never become overconfident.
You are in a relatively safe area. Being a neighbor to USA can be either a blessing or a death sentence, depending on the scenario. Focus on domestic issues first and don't worry about military expansions too much.
Iraq, for obvious reasons, have very low international trust, so the player should not bother with treaties too much, and instead increase their GNP even further with oil revenue and launch as many invasions as possible.
Israel is a country that punches considerably above its weight. The player should use Israel's well-trained and powerful army to expand influence. The country's economy will need some help though, and the player can't rely on economic aid from USA forever.
Saudi Arabia
This country is at risk of invasion from Iraq. The player should quickly improve the economy and expand their armed forces. They may also ask for help from the United States.
This country has a pathetic military and like Iraq, poor economy despite oil wealth. On the plus side, launching terrorist attacks or revolutions as Libya will be much easier to pull off.

Production credits

  • チーフ: M.カトー
  • プログラム: M.カトー, 堀川 謙太郎, 池田 貴之, 常田 稔, SKELETON
  • グラフィック: をたぼう, 奈良岡 勇一郎, 本間 仁, 小田桐 孝一, のむやん
  • 作曲・編曲・音源制作: 田中 遊梦, PIRATA, KAPPA, FANDANGO CO., LTD
  • ナレーション: 篠原 正典
  • SE・セリフ・TD: Studio メディアD
  • 音響効果・編集: (株)ミツエーリンクス
  • デジタイズ: 常田 稔
  • システムサポート: 釈迦
  • 広報: PAGE BOY, おじゃえ, 奈良岡 勇一郎
  • スペシャルサンクス: 黄木 薫
  • Extreme Staff: SNM
  • アルバイター: 宮村 恭子, 池田 俊也
  • 資料映像: WTN, CNN
  • プロデュース: 村上 晶彦
  • 映像提供: CNN Cable News Network (USA), WTN World TV News (USA)
  • 制作・著作: Micronet
In-game credits (JP)
ThirdWorldWar MCD JP SSEnding.pdf

Magazine articles

Main article: The Third World War/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

Print advert in Game Players (US) #0705: "Vol. 7 No. 5 May 1994" (1994-0x-xx)
also published in:
Print advert in Beep! MegaDrive (JP) #1993-12: "December 1993" (1993-11-08)
Print advert in Beep! MegaDrive (JP) #1994-01: "January 1994" (1993-12-08)

Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
78 [8]
Sega Mega-CD
Based on
1 review
Sega Retro Average 
Publication Version Score
Beep! MegaDrive (JP) NTSC-J
Consoles + (FR)
Electronic Gaming Monthly (US) NTSC-U
Famitsu (JP) NTSC-J
Game Players (US) NTSC-U
GamePro (US) NTSC-U
Hippon Super (JP) NTSC-J
Joypad (FR) NTSC-U
Mega Drive Fan (JP) NTSC-J
Mega (UK) NTSC-U
Mega Power (UK) NTSC-U
MegaTech (UK) NTSC-U
Mean Machines Sega (UK) NTSC-U
Sega Power (UK) NTSC-U
Sega Pro (UK) NTSC-U
Sega Saturn Magazine (JP) NTSC-J
Video Games (DE) NTSC-U
VideoGames (US) NTSC-U
Sega Mega-CD
Based on
19 reviews

The Third World War

Mega-CD, JP
ThirdWorldWar MCD JP Box Back.jpgThirdWorldWar MCD JP Box Front.jpg
TheThirdWorldWar MCD JP Spinecard.JPG
TheThirdWorldWar MCD JP Disc.jpg
Mega-CD, US
ThirdWorldWar MCD US Box Back.jpgThirdWorldWar MCD US Box Front.jpg
ThirdWorldWar MCD US Disc.jpg
Thirdworldwar mcd us manual.pdf

Technical information

Main article: The Third World War/Technical information.


  1. File:ThirdWorldWar MCD JP Box Back.jpg
  2. 2.0 2.1 (Wayback Machine: 2019-06-10 17:56)
  3. Beep! MegaDrive, "December 1993" (JP; 1993-11-08), page 15
  4. 4.0 4.1 Game Players, "Vol. 7 No. 6 June 1994" (US; 1994-0x-xx), page 60
  5. GamePro, "April 1992" (US; 1992-xx-xx), page 24
  6. File:ThirdWorldWar_MCD_JP_SSEnding.pdf
  7. Electronic Gaming Monthly, "May 1994" (US; 1994-xx-xx), page 91
  8. Sega Mega Drive Advanced Gaming, "June 1994" (UK; 1994-04-28)
  9. Beep! MegaDrive, "December 1993" (JP; 1993-11-08), page 27
  10. Consoles +, "Mai 1994" (FR; 1994-0x-xx), page 166
  11. Electronic Gaming Monthly, "May 1994" (US; 1994-xx-xx), page 38
  12. Famitsu, "1993-12-03" (JP; 1993-11-19), page 1
  13. GamePro, "July 1994" (US; 1994-xx-xx), page 66
  14. Hippon Super, "December 1993" (JP; 1993-11-02), page 43
  15. Joypad, "Mai 1994" (FR; 1994-0x-xx), page 41
  16. MAN!AC, "05/94" (DE; 1994-04-13), page 70
  17. Mega Drive Fan, "February 1994" (JP; 1994-01-08), page 67
  18. Mega, "May 1994" (UK; 1994-04-21), page 38
  19. Mega Power, "May 1994" (UK; 1994-04-21), page 34
  20. MegaTech, "May 1994" (UK; 1994-04-21), page 52
  21. Mean Machines Sega, "June 1994" (UK; 1994-04-30), page 70
  22. Sega Power, "May 1994" (UK; 1994-03-31), page 50
  23. Sega Pro, "May 1994" (UK; 1994-04-21), page 46
  24. Sega Saturn Magazine, "September 1995" (JP; 1995-08-08), page 86
  25. Video Games, "5/94" (DE; 1994-04-27), page 88
  26. VideoGames, "June 1994" (US; 1994-0x-xx), page 73

The Third World War

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