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MicroProse Software, Inc. was an American video game developer, founded in 1982 by Sid Meier and Bill Stealey. It is known as the publisher of the majority of Meier's hit computer games, such as Pirates, Silent Service, Railroad Tycoon, and Civilization and for the sci-fi X-COM series.


In the early 1980s, Microprose was primarily known as a publisher of flight and military simulation titles for 8-bit home computers such as the Commodore 64, Apple II, and Atari 8-bit family. As the industry changed, it moved with it, supporting IBM PC compatibles and 68000-based machines like the Amiga and Atari ST. Also in the mid- to late-1980s, Microprose began publishing a number of strategy games.

In 1990 and 1991 it released the blockbusters Railroad Tycoon and Civilization, which quickly became two of the best-selling strategy games of all time. However, the company quickly ran into financial trouble because it followed those releases with a large number of titles into a saturated market. It also made an unsuccessful venture into the creation of an arcade flight simulator.

In 1993, Microprose was acquired by Spectrum Holobyte. Both brand names continued until 1996, when the combined company consolidated all of its titles under the Microprose brand. Sid Meier departed the company after the buyout, forming a new company called Firaxis Games.

The post-merger Microprose in turn was acquired by Hasbro Interactive, a short-lived division of U.S. toy maker Hasbro, in 1998.

In 1999, Hasbro Interactive closed the former Microprose studios in California and North Carolina. In 2001, after French game publisher Infogrames (now Atari) took over Hasbro Interactive, the label ceased to exist entirely, with remaining titles in its catalog being relabeled and re-released.

The history of Microprose finally came to an end when, in November 2003, Atari Inc. closed its development studio in Hunt Valley, Maryland, which had been Microprose's original location.