May 22 2010
|22 May, 2010|
It has been 30 years since Namco launched Pac-Man. It is one of the earliest computer games to be launched and yet it is still doing extremely well today.
The game which has very limited chomping circle has undergone many remakes with about 50 versions that have been launched.
The company has licensed about 294,000 arcade editions of the original with the funky rock song “Pac-Man” going gold in March 1982. It also went on sell 2.5 million copies.
At the time of the launch of Pac-Man there weren’t many arcade games available with the demand for new and creative games far outstripping supply. Before the launch of the game, Namco was a small Tokyo based company offering rocking-horse rides at departmental stores.
In 1979 a young designer at Namco Toru Iwatani was asked to make a different kind of a game suing pastel colours that would appeal to the ladies. Iwatani called his team’s creation as Puckman. Realizing that American users would probably replace the P with an F it was renamed as Pac-Man.
At the time of the launch the company didn’t think that the game would be big hit. But it went to become the worldwide phenomenon that it is today. Atari had acquired the licenses to Namco games in 1978 decided to move on its Pac-Man license in late 1981.
Today, Namco is today one of the most recognizable video games in the US and according to the Guinness World Records 2010, majority of Americans can identify the yellow sphere ahead of Nintendo’s Mario.
The simplicity of the game has been the winner and has ensured its sustainability. The game didn’t need a manual to understand it. And that was the reason for its survival. Also the rules of the game were simple, the player has to navigate the maze, eat the dots and avoid the ghosts. The game also managed to draw a lot of female players as compared to other games this one did not involve shooting.