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Pac Man Video Game Launch

Updated: May 21, 2020

Forty years ago, on May 21, 1980, Pac-Man was released by Namco in Japan. The development was directed by Japanese Video Game Designer, Toru Iwatani and a nine man team. Iwatani wanted to create a game that could appeal to women as well as men, because most video games of the time had themes of war or sports. Although the inspiration for the Pac-Man character was, reportedly, the image of a pizza with a slice removed, Iwatani has said he also rounded out the Japanese character for mouth, "kuchi". The in-game characters were made to be cute and colorful to appeal to younger players.

Outside Japan, the game was published by Midway Games as part of its licensing agreement with Namco America. The original Japanese title of "Puck Man" was changed to Pac-Man for international releases as a preventative measure against defacement of the arcade machines by changing the P to an F. The player controls Pac-Man, who must eat all the dots inside an enclosed maze while avoiding four colored ghosts. Eating large flashing dots called power pellets causes the ghosts to turn blue, allowing Pac-Man to eat them for bonus points. Here is a brief History of the development and launch Pac Man:

Pac-Man was a widespread critical and commercial success, and has an enduring commercial and cultural legacy. The game is important and influential, and it is commonly listed as one of the greatest video games of all time. The success of the game led to several sequels, merchandise, and two television series, as well as a hit single by Buckner and Garcia. The Pac-Man video game franchise remains one of the highest-grossing and best-selling game series of all time, generating more than $14 billion in revenue and $43 million in sales combined. The character of Pac-Man is the mascot and flagship icon of Bandai Namco Entertainment and has the highest brand awareness of any video game character in North America. Here are seven things You Didn't Know About Pac Man:

The Story of Pac Man on the Atari Home Video Game was inferior to the Arcade Game and far from the success they had hoped:

Here is the full Evolution of the Pac Man Game Play from 1980 all the way up to the present day:

The Pac-Man character and game series became an icon of video game culture during the 1980s. The game is considered by many to be one of the most influential video games of all time. It's title character was the also first original gaming mascot. The game also established the maze chase game genre, it demonstrated the potential of characters in video games.

It increased the appeal of video games with female audiences, and it was gaming's first broad licensing success. A wide variety of Pac-Man merchandise has been marketed with the character's image, including t-shirts, toys, hand-held video game imitations, pasta, and cereal. The Pac-Man animated TV series produced by Hanna–Barbera aired on ABC from 1982 to 1983.

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