Happy National Pacman Day!
Ahh....Pacman. Perhaps nothing typifies the 80s arcade experience more than the three holy P's: Pizza, Pepsi, and Pacman.
Dinner date for two? Heck yeah!
Pacman is one of the elites of the arcade, pizza joint, bowling alley, bar, dive, and more as it is one of the most successful cabinets that has ever been made. Released in May of 1980, by the turn of the millenium is was estimated that more than 10 billion quarters had been slid into Pacman machines alone (not counting spinoffs such as Mrs. Pacman, Baby Pacman, Super Pacman, and Professor Pacman) netting an estimated $2.5 billion dollars in plays alone. Adjusting for inflation and adding in the sales of the physical units, software releases, and merchandise, Pacman has netted an estimated $10 billion dollars for its parent company, Namco.
The titular character, Pacman, was originally said to be designed after its creator, Iwatani, saw a pizza missing a slice, but that is only half-true, with the character design also coming from the Japanese character for mouth. Pacman is, perhaps, one of the most recognizable video game characters of all time. Throughout the 1980s, he was everywhere; from television to supermarket shelves, you couldn't go most places without seeing Pacman.
(He even got his own dance!)
(And a hit song you could dance 'The Pacman' to!)
Pacman's impact on cultures throughout the world is unquestioned, with imagery, sounds, and gameplay still present to this day in video games, music, movies, television, and more.
(Heck, he is even featured in the introduction to the 2020 Toyko Olympics)
Pacman is still present to this day, with his second cartoon still going strong on television, and games still being released on modern consoles, that still experiment with the gameplay and strategies that have made Pacman a game that has endured across generations, decades, and the planet.
And, on April 3rd, 1982, Atari declared the day to be National Pacman day!
(A holiday I can get behind)
So, power on the old console, and give our friend the yellow puck a play or two, get some za, and swig some pepsi!