Head On

From Sega Retro


Head On.png

Head On
System(s): VIC Dual
Publisher: Gremlin/Sega, Sega
Number of players: 1-2
Release Date RRP Code
Arcade (VIC Dual)
¥? ?
Arcade (VIC Dual)
$? ?
Arcade (VIC Dual)
DM ? ?
Arcade (VIC Dual)

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Head On (ヘッド-オン) is a 1979 arcade game, developed and published by Gremlin/Sega.


In the game the player controls a car, picking up dots in a maze (pre-dating Pac Man by a year) while attempting to avoid the rival cars which attempt to crash into you. There are five "lanes" which you may only cross at four different points on the map, however there is an acceleration pedal which will allow you to avoid the enemy car with more ease.



Head On was later twinned with Alpha Fighter and Space Attack, forming one arcade cabinet with a control set for each game.

While not as successful as Taito's Space Invaders, Head On was notable enough for other manufacturers to want to create their own versions. Unlike Taito, however, Sega issued licenses for the game, meaning many variants were actually authorised (though several still weren't). Versions of Head On were released by Irem and Sammy, as well as the following:

  • Runaway (ランナウェイ) (Sandenshi)
  • Head On Game (ヘッドオンゲーム) (World Vending)
  • Rolling Clash (ローリングクラッシュ) (Nihon Bussan)
  • Char Chase (カーチェイス) (Lejac)
  • Head On N (ヘッドオンN) (Nintendo)

Ports of the game in one form or another also appeared on the Commodore 64, Apple II, and VTech Laser-VZ, though none are thought to be licensed by Sega.

Head On would be followed by Head On 2 and Car Hunt, which share very similar gameplay but feature different maps. The game was included in 1997 as part of Sega Memorial Selection Vol.1 for the Sega Saturn, as well as part of the Sega Ages 2500 series on the PlayStation 2.

The hardware used for Head On would later be cloned and used for an arcade game by Denki Onkyo named Heiankyo Alien. Gremlin would later make a retooled version of Heiankyo Alien titled Digger.

In 1990, Tecmo released a port to Nintendo's Game Boy console in Japan. They brought it to the US the following year, changing the name to Power Racer and removing Sega's name.

Magazine articles

Main article: Head On/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

HeadOn VICDual US Flyer MiniVideo.jpg
VIC Dual US flyer

HeadOn VICDual US Flyer.pdf

VIC Dual US flyer
(Upright, 1 Player)

HeadOn VICDual US Flyer 2P.pdf

VIC Dual US flyer
(Upright, 2 Players)

GeeBeeHeadOn Arcade US Flyer.pdf

VIC Dual US flyer (with Gee Bee)

HeadOn VICDual DE Flyer.pdf

VIC Dual DE flyer
HeadOn VICDual IT Flyer.jpg
VIC Dual IT flyer

Photo gallery

Physical scans

VIC Dual, US
HeadOn VICDual US Manual.pdf


Head On games or clones
Head On (1979) | Head On 2 (1979) | Car Hunt (1979) | Counter Run (1988) | Dottori Kun (1990) | Head-On (2001) | Sega Fast Lane (2002)
Head-On (Game Boy) (1990)