Home | E2 | Conversations with a Nigerian Bank Scammer


David Crane




Born in Nappanee, Indiana, David Crane struck gold in Silicon Valley as the first celebrity game designer. He cofounded Activision and created the Atari 2600 hit Pitfall. He was the first star in an entertainment industry that had no stars.


Crane went to school at De Vry School of Technology (the Phoenix, Arizona branch). He worked for National Semiconductor in 1975. Crane met Atari employee Alan Miller while playing tennis and Miller got Crane to jump ship for Atari in 1979. Crane helped design the Atari 800 operating system as well as games like Outlaw, Slot Machine, and Canyon Bomber.



Eventually Crane, Miller, and other Atari engineers grew tired of the anonymity, lack of status, and generally crappy treatment and formed Activision.


Atari was not pleased its previous employees were now its competition and sued Activision for $20 million, charging conspiracy to appropriate trade secrets. They settled out of court. Besides Pitfall, Crane wrote the Ghostbusters computer game and the innovative Little Computer People. He also wrote A Boy and his Blob for the 8-bit NES.


Today Crane works as Chief Technology Officer for Skyworks Technologies, Inc., a company he helped cofound.


Complete Works


Outlaw  (2600, 1979, Atari) aka Gunslinger

Slot Machine  (2600, 1979, Atari)

Canyon Bomber  (2600, 1979, Atari)

Atari 800 Operating System, with Al Miller and Larry Kaplan (1979, 800, Atari)

Dragster  (1981, 2600, Activision)

Fishing Derby  (1981, 2600, Activision)

Laser Blast  (1981, 2600, Activision)

Freeway  (1981, 2600, Activision)

Grand Prix  (1982, 2600, Activision)

Pitfall  (1982, 2600, Activision)

Decathalon  (1983, 2600, Activision)

Pitfall II: Lost Caverns  (1984, 2600, Activision)

Ghostbusters  (1984, C64, Activision)

Little Computer People  (1985, C64, Activision)

Transformers  (1986, C64, Activision)

Skateboardin'  (1987, 2600, Absolute Entertainment)

Super Skateboardin'  (1987, 7800, Absolute Entertainment)

A Boy And His Blob  (1989, Absolute Entertainment)

The Rescue of Princess Blobette  (1990, GameBoy, Absolute Entertainment)

Amazing Tennis  (1992, SNES, Absolute Entertainment)

Toys  (1993, SNES, Absolute Entertainment)


-- Karl Mamer






Home | E2 | Conversations with a Nigerian Bank Scammer