Released originally in 1992 for the Amiga, Mega Drive/Genesis, Master System and Super NES, and later (1994) for DOS Personal Computers. It was also released for most portable platforms; the Atari Lynx was the first, in 1993, followed by the Game Gear (1994), Game Boy (1995) and finally Game Boy Advance in 2002, developed by Budcat Creations. In November 2006, Electronic Arts also ported Desert Strike to the PlayStation Portable as part of EA Replay.
The story follows the player, an AH-64 Apache (although the title screen for most versions seems to show a Comanche used in the game's sequel instead as the rear rotor of the helicopter used in the game was actually Comanche's rear rotor) pilot in a conflict inspired by the Gulf War. A year after the Gulf War, General Ibn Kilbaba takes over a small Arab Emirate and plans to start World War III, and the player must open way for ground troops by disabling most of his defense and offense, and finally take on the "Madman" himself.