David Patrick Crane (born 1953 in Nappanee, Indiana, United States) is a video game designer and programmer.[1] He is the creator of Pitfall! which become one of the best selling Atari 2600 Game.

History Edit

Crane originally worked in the field of hardware design for National Semiconductor[2]

He went to college at DeVry Institute of Technology in Phoenix, Arizona and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology degree in 1975. Crane started his programming career at Atari, making games for the Atari 2600. He also worked on the operating system for the Atari 800 computer. 

After meeting co-worker Alan Miller in a tennis game, Miller told Crane about a plan he had to leave Atari and found a company that would give game designers more recognition. From this meeting, Crane left Atari in 1979 and co-founded Activision, along with Miller, Jim Levy, Bob Whitehead, and Larry Kaplan. His games won many awards while he was at Activision.

Crane maintained that the Atari policy of relying on mangled adaptations of arcade games would result in a glut of cheap, unappealing games, which became one of the contributing factors to the Video Game Crash of 1983. He believed instead that tailoring new games to the strengths and weaknesses of the 2600 machine would have yielded positive results. The reasoning was that while the new games would have lacked the instant-promotion of an already-known name, word of mouth among video gamers, being a young and highly-social group, would have gradually made up for it if the game was good.

In 1986, Crane left Activision to co-found Absolute Entertainment with Garry Kitchen. Crane said that he left because the newly appointed CEO of Activision, Bruce Davis, offered a pay cut with the promise of a vaguely worded incentive program. Although Absolute was based in New Jersey, Crane did all of his programming at his home in California. With Absolute, he was known for David Crane's Amazing Tennis and A Boy and His Blob: Trouble on Blobolonia, a successful NES title following the adventures of the protagonist and his companion, a shape-shifting blob. In 1995, Absolute Entertainment was dissolved.

In 1995, Crane co-founded Skyworks Technologies as the organization's Chief Technical Officer.

And in 2012, Crane launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a game called Jungle Adventure. The goal was not reached.

References Edit

  1. Covert, Colin. "Meet David Crane: Video Games Guru". Atari Magazine. Atari Magazine. Retrieved 7 November 2010.
  2. Interview with David Crane by Good Deal