Takeshi no Chousenjou was released only in Japan on December 10, 1986. It was the 9th title published by Taito for the Famicom.
Though other video games bearing the names of Japanese celebrities had been developed prior to Takeshi no Chousenjou, comedian-turned actor and film director Takeshi Kitano (Beat Takeshi) was the first celebrity to actively contribute to the video game's development. The packaging contains several warnings that the game should not be attempted with conventional gaming skills, and the player must complete numerous near-impossible tasks in order to finish the game.
The game was originally planned as a Famicom version of Kitano's television show, Takeshi's Castle, before Kitano contacted the game designers about ideas for a new game. The game's basis of being able to exert violence on all characters. However, many of Kitano's ideas were rejected either because of the limitations of the Famicom game system, or because the content was not suitable for young children.
Kitano incorporated many of his unique and controversial ideas into the game. For instance, the player can beat up a yakuza gangster at a pachinko gambling establishment, and take the yakuza's money to exchange for prizes. The player can use a hang-glider to fly over into a strange land called the 'Red Country' (an amalgam between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany). The player can gain access to the Red Country if they pass over the four other islands, but a huge mountain blocks the way into the country, and the player will be forced to crash into either the mountain or the ground, resulting in an automatic game over screen. There is also a choice on the password-entry screen (Punch the old man) which also results in an automatic game over, even when the player has not even started the game. Other in-game events include: a game over screen where the player's character is given a funeral, singing karaoke at a pub (using the second-controller's built-in microphone), the main character divorcing his wife and paying a settlement, beating up yakuza, or seeing inhumane comments on store signs.
The game's plot, where a despondent salaryman seeks to find a hidden treasure on an island, is introduced as having been created by Kitano while he was drunk at a bar; however, Kitano himself explains that the plot was solely the result of an hour-long talk at a cafe near his production company.
Though Kitano was involved in a scandal concerning the Japanese gossip magazine Friday on December 9, 1986, a day before the game's release, Takeshi no Chousenjou was released as scheduled the following day. Two television commercials were created to advertise the game; one where Kitano is singing karaoke while playing the game, and another where he yells 'Come out!' at the microphone in the Famicom's second controller to pull up a treasure map on the game screen. Both commercials are hints for completing the game. According to a Taito source, 800,000 copies were sold.