Freeway (video game)

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Freeway Cover.jpg
Designer(s)David Crane[1]
Platform(s)Atari 2600
Mode(s)1-2 player simultaneous

Freeway is an action video game designed by David Crane for the Atari 2600 video game console. It was published by Activision in 1981.

One or two players control chickens who can be made to run across a ten lane highway filled with traffic in an effort to "get to the other side". Every time a chicken gets across a point is earned for that player. If hit by a car, a chicken is forced back either slightly, or pushed back to the bottom of the screen, depending on what difficulty the switch is set to. The winner of a two player game is the player who has scored the most points in the two minutes, sixteen seconds allotted. The chickens are only allowed to move up or down. A cluck sound is heard when a chicken is struck by a car.


Freeway gameplay screenshot

David Crane came up with the game during the SCES in Chicago, when he observed someone attempting to cross Lake Shore Drive on foot.[citation needed]

The original prototype version for Freeway was titled Bloody Human Freeway. A few major differences to the finished product were: at start up, cars were already on the freeway instead of all being lined up on the right side; the score and Activision logo were yellow instead of pink; instead of controlling a chicken, the player controlled a man and instead of being forced down a bit when hit by a car, the character would turn into a streak of blood; pressing the fire button reset the game. There were some minor differences in the sounds used.[citation needed]


If a player scored 20 or more points on either Road 3 or Road 7 and sent in a photograph of the television screen, Activision would send the player a cloth "Save The Chicken Foundation" patch featuring the Activision logo and the stylized "running chicken" image from the game package.


Freeway was well received, earning an Honorable Mention for "Most Innovative Game" in 1982 at the Third Annual Arkie Awards.[2]:28


The Sega Genesis version of Action 52 features a version of Freeway that is very similar in gameplay style to the original. But instead of a chicken, the player controls a dog.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Giant List of Classic Game Programmers".
  2. ^ Kunkel, Bill; Laney, Jr., Frank (January 1982). "Arcade Alley: The Third Annual Arcade Awards". Video. Reese Communications. 5 (10): 28, 76–77. ISSN 0147-8907.

External links[edit]