Gaming legend Bill Cravens passes away

Kevin Kelly
K. Kelly|04.19.07

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Kevin Kelly
April 19, 2007 12:02 PM
Gaming legend Bill Cravens passes away

You always hear about the guys who create the games, or the ones who rack up the high scores, but you rarely hear about the people who toil behind the scenes to bring you the gaming experience. The unsung heroes of the video game realm.

Bill Cravens, who for years worked as a distributor of coin-op games and was responsible for helping to haul the industry back to its feet after the arcade crash of the 80s, and during the slump of the 90s, was one of those heroes. He sold some of the first Pong games, and distributed games like Mr. Do, Super Punch Out, Final Fight, Street Fighter and Golden Tee 3D (to which bar owners around the world owe him a giant debt of gratitude for).

In a fitting tribute while he was still with us, Bill's name and picture were painted on one of the backgrounds in the original Street Fighter game. If you ever saw this and wondered who Bill Cravens was, now you know. Bill passed away recently during his sleep, and he will be missed.
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