Boxing (Activision)

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Boxing - 2600 - USA.jpg

Atari 2600 - USA - 1st edition.

Developer Activision
Publisher Activision
Published 1980-??-??
Platforms Atari 2600
Genres Fighting, Single-screen, Sports
Themes Sports
Multiplayer Simultaneous versus
Distribution Commercial

Boxing is a primitive boxing video game developed by Robert Whitehead and published by Activision in 1980 for the Atari 2600. You view a boxing ring from above and the goal of the game is to earn the most points by landing punches on your opponent's head. The player with the most points at the end of two minutes, or the first to 100, is the winner. The game can be played with two players or against the AI. Because the 2600 lacks two buttons, the arm you use to throw a punch alternates between each jab. The game was based on a title called Boxer developed by Mike Albaugh in 1978 which was never published by Atari.


Won?Yes. Beat the AI on equal difficulty settings.
FinishedMid 1990s.

This was not part of my family's initial collection of Atari games, so I didn't play it very much. I got it as part of a second collection around 1994. I didn't spend too much time with it, and, once I could defeat the AI consistently, I became bored of it. I'm not sure what happened to my game. it might be in my parent's attic.


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Best Version: Atari 2600

— This section contains spoilers! —


  • Although there is very little variation to the game, you can at least handicap superior players.
  • The game's AI is pretty good, a difficult feat on such weak hardware.
  • The AI uses a basic dynamic difficulty to keep the game challenging. If you develop too high of a lead, the opponent becomes more aggressive.


  • When you're playing the AI, you can't choose your boxer's color, you must play the white guy.
  • The best challenge you can hope for is to set your speed to slow, and the AI to fast. Once you're able to defeat the game this way, there is nothing left to do with it.


  • There is very little to the game. You see everything the game has to offer after a few seconds, and, after that, you're just honing your skills.


Box Art

Both the US and European releases use this box. Like other Activision titles, it accurately depicts the game in all its primitive graphic glory.



Game play.

Play Online

Atari 2600


Strong female character?FailThere are not women.
Bechdel test?FailThere are not women.
Strong person of color character?FailOne of the boxers is "black," though identical to the "white" boxer.
Queer character?FailThere are no clear queer characters.


Role Staff
Designer Robert Whitehead
Programmer Robert Whitehead


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