The first Pac-Man arcade machine was created by game designer Toru Iwatani. He was casually eating a pizza when suddenly the yellow pellet-munching gobbler came to form (mentally anyway). At the time of Pac-Man’s creation Namco were attempting to create a videogame star which would appeal to both men and women alike. Coupled with the fact that we all like food- a timeless success was born spawning a number of sequels. Any game fan would be surprised to see how many Pac-Man arcade machine titles there were at the videogame’s heyday (so brace yourself).
Pac-Man Arcade Machine Titles
There was: Pac-Man (1980), Ms Pac-Man (’81), Super Pac-Man (’82), Pac-Man Plus (’82), Baby Pac-Man (’82), Professor Pac-Man (’83), Pac & Pal (’83), Jr Pac-Man (’83) and Pac-Land (1984).
So let’s look at a couple of more obscure titles (which weren’t authorised by Namco themselves and eventually severed their partnership with Bally):
This was intending to capitalise on the quiz market however the title didn’t go down too well with the public due to the game’s slow nature and over-saturation of the maze genre at the time. Apparently only 400 units were shipped out to customers, with 300 of them being converted to Pac-Land cabinets which makes original Professor Pac-Man arcade machines exceedingly rare.
A title which garners a lot of curiosity. The game is a hybrid of Pac-Man at the top and a traditional pinball game at the bottom. In a nutshell, Pac-Man has to munch his way through a maze, then drop down to the pinball playfield for a limited time. The connection between the videogame and the pinball section was notorious for causing problems.
Jr Pac Man
Out of the 3 titles, Junior Pac-Man is more akin to the original title , although there are some noticeable differences. The game is now twice the width of the vertically orientated screen, Clyde from the original roster of ghosts has been replced by Tim and there’s a new love interest for the beanie wearing Pac-Man Jr in the form of Yum-Yum who is the daughter of Blinky (crikey- the back-story is getting more complicated than Tekken)
I hope you’ve enjoyed our light-hearted but informative look at Pac-Man over the years.