Videogame History: Pac-Man

Lately, I’ve been having the desire to play old videogames. Aside from those that are easily available online like Space Invaders and Asteroids, I have been enjoying Pac-Man. Unlike the other two games I’ve mentioned, Pac-Man is pretty much alive in other platforms like the X-Box Live.

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Like a true videogame fan, I dug up the history of Pac-Man and realized that it has been around since my parents were teenagers. I remember hearing a lot about the 80’s from my parents and this is one of the things they loved from the era. Since 1980, Pac-Man has been capturing the hearts of players fr0m Japan, to the US, to the rest of the world. Released by videogame giant Namco, the brains behind the Tekken and Soul series, Pac-Man was the front-runner of arcade games. In the 90’s it raked in approximately $2.5 billion as the highest-grossing videogame of all time.

But did you know that creator Toru Iwatani was inspired by pizza? I get his love for pie, but apparently, the two missing slices from a box resembled what would be Pac-Man’s shape. Aside from this, Popeye’s spinach-fueled strength also inspired Toru and his team for the Pac-dots. The maze and the ghost elements of the game were added to appeal to audiences other than teenage boys who spent most of their time in the arcade. The cute ghosts Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Clyde are an annoying bunch but I have to say that they are an effective addition to the game’s fun factor. What would the game be like without these apparitions chasing our hero all around the maze?

Like Pac-Man, it’s nice to know that the games we enjoy have a legacy. It reminds me that good things take time and last long. In the meantime, I’ll go back to playing my classic videogames. See you around!

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Hi! My name is Diana Wylde and I’m a 19-year-old Computer Science student from North Carolina. I love videogames and sushi. Though my parents are Danish, I have only been to Solvang, CA, USA’s “Little Denmark”. It’s my happy place. Visit this Facebook page to know more about me.


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