The game was originally planned to be an official licensed adaptation of the second film in the Rambo series, titled "Rambo: Ikari no Dasshutsu" ("Rambo: The Furious Escape"). However, SNK was unable to acquire the rights to the film, resulting in the game's title being shortened to Ikari, referencing part of the film's Japanese title.

After the game was released in North America, SNK got in touch with the film's star Sylvester Stallone, who was personal friends with the president of the SNK sales office in America, about acquiring the rights to the film. However, by that point it was too late as the game had already become well known by its Japanese title "Ikari" among North American players after being debuted at an American arcade expo, leading to the deal falling through and the game being officially released as Ikari Warriors in North America.
Contributed by DrakeVagabond