The rise of the arcade boom in the early 80’s began thanks to a game that initially no one was really overly excited about. So the game no one at the company thought would do much ended up turning the arcade into an event and brought video games into the mainstream.
It’s hard to explain to people who weren’t there just how huge Pac-Man was when it came out. They were everywhere and there was always someone playing it if not a line of people waiting. It was truly an event. As a young kid I was fascinated by it and no doubt is what began my lifelong love of video games.
Pac-Man was also the the first game that started merchandising tie-ins. Everything you can think of had Pac-Man on it. I had a few things (including Pac-Man bedsheets!) and it was really fun to see it. I used to have a Pac-Man magazine filled with ads for all kinds of things. I’m hoping I can find it in a box somewhere.
To this day I love all things Pac-Man. I have the game on my iPhone and if I see a Pac-Man arcade game anywhere you will hear me gasp. It quickly takes me back to a time when the magic of the arcade was starting and we all knew things were going to be different thanks to the little yellow ball.
*In the beginning of the G4 channel days it was truly a video game haven and they had so many great shows. One I loved was Icons and one of my favorite episodes was on Pac-Man.