Pac-Man is one of, if not the, most well-known arcade game of all-time. Created by Namco and distributed in the U.S. by Midway, the game was released in 1980. 31 years ago, yes 31.
When the game was released, it was turning point for arcade games, spawning not only merchandise related to the game, but also an animated TV show and spin-offs, such as Ms. Pac-Man.
Why was Pac-Man so popular, remaining so to this day (yours truly played the game at an arcade last week)? Pac-Man was unique when released, as it was one of the first games which garnered mass appeal for both males and females.
One man, Toronto’s Jonathan Guberman, has taken Pac-Man back in time, creating Pac Machina, something he describes as:
“physicalization of a classic videogame: I’m building a playable, mechanical Pac-Man cabinet, called “Pac Machina” (subscribe to my RSS feed if you want to follow my progress!). Of course, essential to a Pac-Man game is Pac-Man himself, and Pac-Man isn’t Pac-Man if he doesn’t chomp. I needed a mechanism for that and it had to be as simple as possible (i.e. no servos or stepper motors). So, after some trial, error, and trigonometry, I built a clockwork Pac-Man.”
On his site Guberman describes the process of creating Pac Machina, with step-by-step images and the video below displaying how the game works.
Unfortunately he says that he may make one, and only one, of these machines, so if you want the one he creates, or a kit for creating your own, you may want to contact him as soon as possible.
Are you a Pac-Man fan? Do you prefer the original Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man or another derivative of the game?