1943 was (is) a single player game released by Capcom in 1988 for the Nintendo Entertainment System. It's an overhead shooter which is based, very loosely, on the Battle of Midway. (I had no idea that a P-38 Lightning could charge up it's cannon.)
It's pretty basic: If something moves on the screen, shoot the shit out of it until the sprite stops moving or disappears. On the upper left of the screen are your points. I've never noticed any particular bonus for any number of points. Located at the lower right is your energy level. This depletes as you take damage, fire your weapon, or just plain fly. Before you begin the game, you are allocated three points to distribute among five attributes of your aircraft:
1. Offensive Power
2. Defensive Power
3. Energy Level
4. Special Weapon
5. SW time limit
Offensive and Defensive power are pretty much self-explanatory. Energy level increases the amount of energy you have (the same energy source seems to supply fuel, ammunition and armor); you begin with 64 (no units of measurement are ever given). Special Weapon makes your special weapon more powerful, and SW Time Limit extends the amount of time you can use your special weapon. As you go through the game, shooting red enemies leave behind goodies, such as a power-up, extra points, or energy, as well as the ability to add more points to the aforementioned power system. You can change the type of power-up by shooting it.

The 'B' button on the controller fires your normal cannon. Hold it down, and as mentioned earlier you fire a charged shot, which makes a ridiculous shot noise. The 'A' button, oh, it is your friend. This is your special weapon (or whatever you'd like to call it). Your airplane become-sprite performs a backflip and lightning bolts appear and smite your enemy (sprites).

Now, as I said, this is Midway. Funny thing though, the carrier that you fly off of looks like a Japanese aircraft carrier, and the carriers you attack look like American carriers, particularly the image of a smoking carrier after you complete a mission. AFAIK, Capcom changed the sprite of the plane and then used names of Japanese carriers in place of names such as Yorktown and Enterprise. A lot of the planes look like B-29s as well. Everytime I play this game I snicker to myself; I'm shooting gaijin!

I could be full of shit. The game could have been created specifically for America. It's hard to find much information on such an old video game, particularly about its development. In any case, there are over 20 levels of play, and it becomes difficult enough that if you ever beat it you should step back and say "It's a fine life."

Edit: Thanks to theBoobooKitty, it has been noted that "the NES version was actually a port of the arcade version. Which (like all Capcom games) came in US, Japan, and World variants. Designed by Yoshiki Okimoto." Also, 1943 is part of a series "that consisted of 1941, 1942, 1943, 1943 Kai!, 1944, 1945, and 19XX." I knew of 1942, but not the others. My thanks.

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