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Hang-On Arcade Game Creator Honored

Fri, 11 Feb 2011

If you grew up in the ’80s and spent some a lot of time in arcades, you’re probably familiar with the game “Hang-On”. Released in 1985 by Sega Enterprises, motorcycle racing game  “Hang-On” broke ground by using a motorcycle-shaped seat as a controller. Players raced a virtual motorcycle on a track, leaning on the plastic motorcycle to steer the in-game bike.

Hang-On’s creator, game designer Yu Suzuki, is being honored by the video game industry with the Pioneer Award at the 2011 Game Developers Choice Awards. Suzuki created many games in his career, from fighting game “Virtua Fighter” to adventure game “Shenmue”, but his first big hit was “Hang-On” which spawned a sequel in 1986′s “Super Hang-On”.

The Pioneer Award recognizes an individual “responsible for developing a breakthrough technology, game concept, or gameplay design at a crucial juncture in video game history, paving the way for the many developers who followed them.” Suzuki will be presented the award March 2 at the San Francisco Moscone Center during the Game Developers Conference.

“To develop this game,” Suzuki once told G4TV, “I rode on motorcycles a lot. When we came up with the prototype (for the arcades), I would ride on that prototype bike for hours and hours every day.”

Check out the video after the jump of the “Hang-On” arcade machine, as well as another Suzuki creation, “Out Run”

By Dennis Chung

See also: Ducati vs. Honda vs. Suzuki: MotoGP porn, Ultimate Trackbike 2: Dunlop's GSX-R1000, Haslam's first WSB win immortalised in paint.