Chris Oberth

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Chris Oberth
Born(1953-05-17)May 17, 1953
DiedJuly 14, 2012(2012-07-14) (aged 59)[1]
Known forGame programmer

Christian H. "Chris" Oberth (May 17, 1953 – July 14, 2012)[1] was a game programmer who created early titles for the Apple II family of personal computers, handheld electronic games for Milton Bradley, and games for coin-operated arcade machines published in the early 1980s. Though not a hit in arcades, Oberth's 1982 Anteater for Stern Electronics was an influential concept, cloned by a number of developers for 8-bit home computers, including Sierra On-Line (as Oil's Well). The following year he wrote his own home version as Ardy the Aardvark (Datamost, 1983).

Oberth's first commercial games, Phasor Zap (1978) and 3-D Docking Mission (1978) for the Apple II, were published by Programma International, a company which also published games from future arcade game designers Bob Flanagan and Gary Shannon as well as rejecting the first effort from Mark Turmell.[2] His next thirteen Apple II games, in addition to Phasor Zap and 3-D Docking Mission, were published by The Elektrik Keyboard, a musical instrument and computer store in Chicago where Oberth was head of the computer department.[2]


Programma International [3][4]

The Elektrik Keyboard 1978-79 [3][4]

Milton Bradley 1979-80 [3][4]

  • Light Fight
  • Finger Bowl
  • Sky-Writer
  • Alfie

Stern Electronics 1981-83 [3][4]

Datamost 1983

Microlab 1984

Epyx 1985

Mindscape 1987-88, 1990 [4]

Gametek 1992

Incredible Technologies 1995-1997 [4]

Electronic Arts 2001



  1. ^ a b "Christian H. Oberth Obituary: View Christian Oberth's Obituary by Chicago Tribune". 2012-07-16. Retrieved 2012-12-06.
  2. ^ a b Smith, Keith. "Programma International - Coin-Op Breeding Ground". The Golden Age Arcade Historian.
  3. ^ a b c d e Hague, James (2012-07-16). "The Giant List of Classic Game Programmers". Retrieved 2012-12-06.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Interview with Programmer Christian Oberth (Part 3)". Retrogaming Times Monthly. No. 27. Retrieved 2012-12-06.
  5. ^ a b "Interview with Programmer Christian Oberth (Part 2)". Retrogaming Times Monthly. No. 24. Retrieved 2012-12-06.
  6. ^ "Crypt". Gaming History.