Everyone loves a fun, relaxing, and easy to play game. And one of those iconic games is Pacman. Or some of you might know it as Puck man if you are from a European country. Well, let us talk a bit about this beautiful piece of art.
History Of Pacman
Contrary to what many might believe, Pacman was not released in 2010 for the first time. Instead, Pacman had been developing since early 1979, and it took nearly a year and 5 months for the game to be completed.
Atari created it under the leadership of a young, 24-year-old Japanese employee named Toru Iwatani. Back then, handheld gaming was almost non-existent, and you could mostly play games in arcades; however, the problem was that these arcades only featured violent shooter games and the likes, which caused them to become a hangout spot of mostly boys; some were very rowdy as well. Iwatani wanted to increase the popularity of his games while also making arcades much more appealing to women and couples. He thought doing so would improve the atmosphere of arcades and the popularity of his plays.
The Name Of Pac-man
To do this, Iwatani had to do some thinking; he came up with the idea of a circular living being chasing food, which is said to have stemmed from him seeing a pizza with 2 pieces missing, forming a mouth, exactly like what we today know as Pacman. Iwatani came up with the name ‘Pakku-man,’ a pun for the Japanese word ‘Paku-paku tabers,’ which refers to the sound created by eating while smacking your lips.
The idea of chasing food came from Iwatani wanting to appeal to women, who he thought might be attracted to eating desserts and other sweets. Besides this, Iwatani and his team’s main goal was to make the game appear as non-violent as possible while also trying to appeal to the masses.
The Enemies | Ghosts
As for the ghosts, Iwatani wanted to make the spirits all have separate identities and personalities. Still, his boss wanted them all to be indistinguishable from each other and in the same color, red. However, Iwatani gained the support of his colleagues, and their boss eventually gave in to their wishes. Now the team had 4 ghosts in mind, Inky, Pinky, Blinky, and Pokey, also known as Clyde.
All 4 ghosts had their distinct personalities and strategies; Inky was the most dangerous, who is light blue, as Inky has a mix of all ghosts’ methods. Pinky, as the name implies, pink in color, has a more shy personality as Pinky tries to cut you off by going around and finding new paths. Blinky, the red one, follows your trail but speeds up as you eat more dots. And Clyde, the orange one, has a strategy of confusing the player by chasing you, then scattering and not chasing you anymore.
The Release Of The Game
After a lengthy period of a year and 5 months of development, Pacman was released in Japan in 1980 and soon became the highest-grossing arcade game of 1980, kicking space invaders off the throne. In 1981, it was released in America and quickly became the highest-grossing arcade game in 1981 in America.
In different areas, Pacman is known by other names. In Japan, it is known as Pakku-man, while in Europe, it is known both as Pacman and puck man, but in America, it’s mostly known as Pacman. This is because back in 1980, before releasing the game to America, Namco, the gaming company which created Tekken 3, and its executives were afraid people would vandalize its name, puck man, and create an obscene word, so they changed it to Pac-man.
Pacman In 2022
The 30th anniversary was in 2020 if we’re talking about the Japanese release, or 2022 if we’re talking about the worldwide release. To honor this, Google released its version of Pacman, with a beginner level, absent in the original game. To play this version, all you need to do is enter ‘Pacman’ in Google’s search bar and press enter, and you will land at the doodle where you can play Pacman. This is the same case for mobile devices, as you can play Pacman the same way on them, as long as you have Google Chrome on it; for gameplay, you use arrow keys on computers and swiping gestures on mobile phones.
Nowadays, you can play Pacman anywhere, it has had an immense impact on gaming, and it is pretty quickly the best-known game, as well as being among the best-rated games.