2007 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: Computer & Video games

A screenshot from the original arcade version of the game, showing the ghosts in their starting positions at the centre of the screen and Pac-Man below. Four Energizers are visible near the corners of the screen.
Developer(s) Namco
Publisher(s) Midway ( Namco in Japan)
Designer(s) Toru Iwatani - Game Designer
Hideyuki Mokajima San- Programmer
Toshio Kai - Sound & Music
Release date(s) JPN October 10, 1979
NA October 1980, 1991, 1999, 2005, 2006
Genre(s) Maze
Mode(s) Up to 2 players, alternating turns
Platform(s) Arcade game, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Commodore 64, Game Boy, GBA, Intellivision, Mobile phone, MSX, NEC PC-8801, NGPC, NES, Sega Game Gear, SNES, ZX Spectrum, iPod, Xbox Live Arcade, Wii Virtual Console
Input 4-way joystick
Arcade cabinet Standard upright, mini-upright, and cocktail
Arcade system(s) Namco Pac-Man
Arcade CPU(s) 1x ZiLOG Z80 @ 3.072 MHz
Arcade sound system(s) 1x Namco WSG (3-channel mono) @ 3.072 MHz
Arcade display Vertically oriented, 224 × 288, 16 palette colors

Pac-Man is an arcade game developed by Namco and licensed for distribution in the USA by Midway, first released in Japan in 1979. Immensely popular from its original release to the present day, Pac-Man is universally considered as one of the classics of the medium, virtually synonymous with video games, and an icon of 1980s popular culture. Upon its release, the game became a social phenomenon that sold a bevy of merchandise and also inspired an animated television series and a Top 40 pop single.

When Pac-Man was released, most arcade video games in North America were primarily space shooters such as Space Invaders and Defender or Asteroids; the most visible minority were sports games (mostly derivative of PONG). Pac-Man succeeded by creating a new genre and appealing to both males and females. Pac-Man is often credited with being a landmark in video game history, and is among the most famous arcade games of all time. The character also appears in over 30 officially licensed games and sequels, as well as in numerous unauthorized clones and bootlegs.


The player controls Pac-Man as he moves through a maze, eating pac-dots. When all dots are eaten, Pac-Man is taken to the next stage. 4 ghosts roam the maze, trying to catch Pac-Man. If a ghost touches Pac-Man, a life is lost. When all lives have been lost, the game ends. During Pac-Man gameplay, lives are usually lost by "digging your own grave"; it is easy to situate Pac-Man within the maze so that escape from the ghosts is impossible

Near the corners of the maze are four large round power-up objects known as "energizers" or "power pellets", which provide Pac-Man with the temporary ability to eat the ghosts. The ghosts turn a deep blue and reverse direction immediately when Pac-Man eats an energizer, and they move more slowly while they are vulnerable. The ghosts are worth 200, 400, 800, and 1600 points, in sequence. The values reset back to 200 each time another Power Pellet is eaten, so it is advantageous for the player to eat all four ghosts on each pellet. If a ghost is eaten, its eyes return to the "ghost pen" where it is regenerated in its normal colour. (This may happen while the other ghosts are still blue, if the ghost is near the pen when eaten.) The ghosts flash white up to five times before they become dangerous again. The amount of time the ghosts remain vulnerable varies from one board to the next, but the time period generally becomes shorter as the game progresses. Starting with the 17th board (the 5th key), then continuing from board 19 to the end, the ghosts no longer turn blue at all, though eating an energizer still causes them to reverse direction. The 240 regular dots on each level are worth ten points each, and energizers are worth fifty points each. Additionally, prizes commonly referred to as “fruit” (even though several of them are not fruits) appear twice during each board just below the ghost pen — eating a fruit scores extra bonus points. The prizes change throughout the game, and their point values increase (see the table at right).

Pac-Man is awarded a bonus life one time only, at 10 000 points (the default setting; DIP switches inside the machine can change the required points to 15 000 or 20 000 or disable the bonus life altogether).

Fruits appear in the middle of the maze sometimes; Pac-Man can eat these for bonus points. As the levels get higher, the fruit score more points.


The game was developed primarily by Namco employee Toru Iwatani over eighteen months. The original title was pronounced pakku-man (パックマン ?) and was inspired by the Japanese onomatopoeic phrase paku-paku taberu (パクパク食べる ?), where paku-paku describes (the sound of) the mouth movement when widely opened and then closed in succession. Although it is often cited that the character’s shape was inspired by a pizza missing a slice, he admitted in a 1986 interview that it was a half-truth and the character design also came from simplifying and rounding out the Japanese character for mouth, kuchi (口) as well as the basic concept of eating. Iwatani's efforts to appeal to a wider audience — beyond the typical demographics of young boys and teenagers — would eventually lead him to adding elements of a maze. The result was a game he entitled PUCK MAN. When first launched in Japan in 1979 by Namco, the game received a lukewarm response, as Space Invaders and other games of similar type were far more popular at the time.

The following year, however, the game was picked up for manufacture in the U.S. by Bally division Midway, under the altered title Pac-Man (see below). American audiences welcomed a breakaway from conventions set by Space Invaders, which resulted in unprecedented popularity and revenue that rivaled its successful predecessor, as even Iwatani was impressed with U.S. sales. The game soon became a worldwide phenomenon within the video game industry, resulting in numerous sequels and merchandising tie-ins. Pac-Man’s success bred imitation, and an entire genre of maze-chase video games soon emerged, but none equalled the original in profit or popularity.

Competitors and distributors were taken completely by surprise by Pac-Man’s success in North America in 1980. Marketing executives who saw Pac-Man at a trade show prior to release completely overlooked the game (along with the now classic Defender), while they looked to a racing car game called Rally-X as the game to outdo that year. The appeal of Pac-Man was such that the game caught on immediately with the public; it quickly became far more popular than anything seen in the game industry before. Pac-Man outstripped Asteroids as the greatest selling arcade game of the time, and would go on to sell over 350,000 units.


For the North American market, the name was changed from PUCK MAN to Pac-Man (actually closer to the original Japanese pronunciation) because puck was similar in spelling and pronunciation to a common English expletive, and vandals could easily change it. Both PUCK MAN and Pac-Man machines can be found throughout Europe.

A side by side comparison of the very different artwork styles between the Midway and Namco version.
A side by side comparison of the very different artwork styles between the Midway and Namco version.

When Midway released Pac-Man in the United States, the company also redesigned the cabinet's artwork, as the Namco-style artwork was more costly to mass produce, as well as being considered too stylish for the American market. PUCK MAN was painted overall white featuring multicolored artwork on both sides with cheerful Puck-Man characters in different poses while Pac-Man was painted yellow, with very simple and easy-to-stencil artwork on both sides and front.

The unique and original game design inspired game publishers to be innovative rather than conservative, and encouraged them to speculate on game designs that broke from existing genres. Pac-Man introduced an element of humor into video games that designers sought to imitate, and appealed to a wider demographic than the teenage boys who flocked to the action-oriented games. Many popular video games of the 1980s, including Q*bert, Donkey Kong, and Frogger partially owe their publication to the success of Pac-Man.

The Killer List of Videogames lists Pac-Man as the #1 video game of all time on its "Top 10 Most Popular Video games" list. Pac-Man, and other video games of the same general type, are often cited as an identifying cultural experience of Generation X, particularly its older members, sometimes called Baby Busters.

Fruit/Object Point value Board(s)
Cherries 100 1
Strawberry 300 2
Peach 500 3-4
Apple 700 5-6
Melon 1000 7-8
Galaxian flagship 2000 9-10
Bell 3000 11-12
Key 5000 13 and up


During the opening boards of the game, the linearity of the game's progression is interrupted by "intermissions" - humorous animated scenes featuring Pac-Man and the ghosts. There are three different intermissions:

  1. Blinky chases Pac-Man off the screen. Blinky reappears as a vulnerable blue monster coming the opposite direction, being chased by a giant Pac-Man. This intermission plays after Board 2.
  2. Blinky chases Pac-Man across the screen, but his pelt gets caught on a tack in the floor, and part of it is ripped off revealing his pinkness. This intermission plays after Board 5.
  3. Blinky, with the corner of his pelt sewn back on, chases Pac-Man across the screen. Blinky reappears coming back the opposite direction, pinked, dragging his pelt behind him. This intermission plays after Boards 9, 13 and 17.

Perfect play

A perfect Pac-Man game is defined as one where the player completes all 256 levels with a maximum point score and without losing a life. The first such game was verified by the Twin Galaxies Intergalactic Scoreboard on July 3, 1999. Billy Mitchell, of Hollywood, FL, achieved the feat in six hours. To attain the maximum possible score of 3,333,360 points, it was necessary for Mitchell to eat every fruit, every Power Pellet, every blue ghost and every dot for 256 boards without losing a single life.

Split-screen level

This game technically has no end; the player will be given new boards to clear as long as Pac-Man does not lose all of his lives. However, due to a glitch in the game, the right side of the 256th board is a garbled mess of text and symbols rendering the level unplayable. This occurs because of a bug in the subroutine that draws the fruit at the bottom of the screen that indicate the current level. Normally, at most 7 fruits are displayed, regardless of the current screen, but since the level number is stored in a single byte, level 255 ("FF" in hexadecimal) rolls over to 0 in the subroutine, and 256 fruit are drawn, corrupting the bottom of the screen and the entire right half of the maze. Enthusiasts refer to this as the "Final Level," the "Split-Screen Level," or simply as the ending. Although there are claims that someone with enough knowledge of the maze pattern can play through it, it is generally considered impossible to be cleared via legitimate means.

However, in December 1982, an eight-year-old boy named Jeffrey R. Yee received a letter from U.S. President Ronald Reagan congratulating him on a worldwide record of 6,131,940 points, a score only possible if the player has passed the Split-Screen Level. Whether or not this event happened as described has remained in heated debate amongst video game circles since its supposed occurrence. In September, 1983, Walter Day, Chief Scorekeeper at the Twin Galaxies Intergalactic Scoreboard, took the U.S. National Video Game Team on a tour of the East Coast to visit video game players who claimed they could get through the "Split-Screen." No video game player could demonstrate this ability. Later, in 1999, Billy Mitchell offered $100,000 to anyone who could provably pass through the Split-Screen Level before January 1, 2000; there is no evidence that anyone could.

Through tinkering, the details of the Split-Screen Level can be revealed. As playable through arcade game emulator MAME some ROMs of the game are equipped with a "rack test" within the DIP switches that will automatically clear a level of all dots as soon as it begins. This method not only makes reaching the long-mythical 256th board easier (thus making detailed analysis possible) but also allows a demonstration of what happens after the board has been cleared:

Because the right side of the map does not exist, Pac-Man and the ghosts can move freely throughout the right side of the screen, barring some of the garbled symbols which are fractured pieces of the maze. Other symbols also entail power pills, which must be eaten for the player to continue (unlike the unglitched boards, if Pac-Man loses a life, the pills on the right side of the screen will reset after being eaten). Because the maze fracture blockades are "placed" in many locations, it is difficult - if not impossible - to locate them all.

If the board is cleared, the game restarts from the first board without error, once again repeating through 256. However, while the power-ups and intermissions repeat from the opening of the game, the monsters will retain their speed and invulnerability to power pellets from the later boards.

Related games


Pac-Man is one of the few games to have been consistently re-released for over two decades. In the 1980s, it was released for the Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Atari 8-Bit Computers (400/800/etc.), Intellivision and Commodore 64, and the Nintendo Entertainment System (1987 and 1990). In the handheld world, it was released on the Game Boy (1991), Sega Game Gear (1991), Neo-Geo Pocket Colour (1999), Pac-Man: Special Colour Edition for the Game Boy Colour (1999), Apple iPods (fifth generation), Pac-Man Collection for the Game Boy Advance (2001), and it is unlockable in Pac 'n Roll for the Nintendo DS. However, it has been most widely distributed in Namco's long-running Namco Museum series, starting on the PlayStation in 1996 and continuing to this day on every major console (as well as the PSP and Game Boy Advance) with the 50th Anniversary Collection (2005). An Xbox 360 port was released via Xbox Live Arcade on August 9, 2006. Pac-Man is also available in its original form as part of the GameTap service. On September 12, 2006 a port was released for play on the popular iPod music player along with other arcade/puzzle games. Pac-Man was never ported to the Atari 7800 home video game system. However, there have been efforts to hack the pre-existing Ms. Pac-Man cartridge to create the original Pac-Man (as well as other Pac-Variants) for it .

Atari 2600 cartridge
Atari 2600 cartridge

Namco has repeatedly re-released this game in arcades. In 2001, Namco released a 20-Year Reunion game that combined Ms. Pac-Man and Galaga in one cabinet. To play the original Pac-Man on this machine, move the joystick in this order on the "Press Start Button" that appears after one inserts one's coins: up, up, up, down, down, down, left, right, left, right, left. If done correctly, one should hear a sound, and Ms. Pac-Man will change colour. Press the Ms. Pac-Man start button, and one will be able to play Pac-Man. It should be noted that Ms. Pac-Man machines are far easier to locate in today's arcades than a dedicated Pac-Man. In 2005, Namco released a board openly featuring all three of the games on the 20-Year Reunion board in honour of Pac-Man's 25th Anniversary.

Namco's wireless division released a line of PAC-MAN games for the cell phone in 2002, starting with the original arcade version and following up with Pac-Man game extensions like Pac-Man Bowling and Pac-Man Pinball. This division (Namco Networks America Inc.) also launched a networked game, Ms. Pac-Man For Prizes, in 2004. Pac-Man mobile games are available on both BREW and Java platforms across major cellular carriers, as well as on Palm PDAs and Windows PC phones.

Atari 2600

The Atari 2600 version of Pac-Man was developed and published by Atari in 1982. It was the first port of the arcade game, Atari being the licensee for the video game console rights. Although Atari sold seven million units, out of a ten-million 2600-user base, this port may have been rushed to market and its quality was widely criticized. Atari, having manufactured twelve million cartridges under the expectation that the game would increase the number of sales of the console, was left with a large unsold inventory that had to be written-off, incurring in large financial losses for the company. This was one of the catalysts that led to the video game crash of 1983.


Port screenshots
Atari 2600 (1982) Atari 5200 (1983) Commodore 64 (1983) Intellivision (1983)
MSX (1984) NES (1984) SAM Coupé (1991) Xbox 360 (2006)


Pac-Man spawned numerous sequels, though none of them were as popular as the original. Of these, the most significant title was Ms. Pac-Man. Originally created as an unauthorized hack of the original game called Crazy Otto by a small group known as General Computer Corporation, it was eventually sold to Bally Midway without Namco's permission. Crazy Otto was actually seen in a photograph in Time magazine, mislabeled as the original Pac-Man. The game featured several improvements and changes from the original Pac-Man, including faster gameplay, more mazes, new intermissions, and moving bonus items. Some consider Ms. Pac-Man to be a superior game to the original, and even the best in the entire series. Eventually Bally Midway struck a deal with Namco to make Ms. Pac-Man an officially licensed sequel, although the American company continued to release several unauthorized spin-off games later on, such as Pac-Man Plus, Baby Pac-Man and Professor Pac-Man. These other titles were generally considered inferior and unimportant, serving to oversaturate the market for Pac-Man games.

Clones and bootlegs

Unauthorized "pirate" versions of the game were also created, most notably Hangly-Man (a mangling of "Hungry-Man"), one variant of which replaced the Pac-Man character with the head of Popeye. There was another hack of Hangly-Man called Caterpillar Pac-Man made in 1981 by Phi. In this game, one plays as a caterpillar, and the ghosts are replaced by four spiders.

Another popular clone game was Piranha, which replaced Pac-Man with a munching fish. The maze was replaced with a coral reef, and the ghosts were replaced with squid. (In an earlier variant, they were little more than ghosts with extended sprites for the tentacles). A brief reference to the game was even included in the Pac-Man TV series, when in an underwater scene, a fish is shown eating a ghost-squid.

Acorn's software division, Acornsoft, released an exceptionally accurate clone of Pac-Man called Snapper for their BBC Micro and Acorn Electron home computers. After allegedly receiving a sternly worded cease and desist letter from Atari, Acornsoft modified the game, changing the maze layout and character graphics.

A game called Pacdude has also been released as freeware. It is almost a Pacman clone, but with a few differences. It is available to download via the official site at

In addition, soon after the release of the original Pac-Man, many other maze-themed video games entered the arcade market ( Make Trax, Thief, Lady Bug and Mouse Trap being the most prominent). In the home video game market, K.C. Munchkin was actually withdrawn after Atari successfully sued its creator, citing its imitation of the Pac-Man characters as blatant and undisguised.

Several handheld versions were released in 1981, most using VFD technology. The playability of most handheld games of this age was limited by today's standards, since each ghost and Pac-Man position was represented by an immovable fixed-cell character that lit up accordingly. Game titles included the following:

  • PacMan by Tomy
  • PacMan2 by Entex
  • Pac-Man by Coleco. As the official adaptation of the game, Coleco Pac-Man was shaped like a miniature Midway arcade cabinet.
  • Epoch Man by Epoch— LCD-based, this game can be seen in National Lampoon's Vacation (1983) in Russ's hand.

Texas Instruments released a clone called Munch Man for the TI-99 home computer line in 1982, in which the player lays down a "track" (or "links", in Munch Man parlance), as he progresses through the maze instead of eating pills – a change made by TI to avoid possible lawsuits from Midway.

In 1981, Leisure and Allied released Ghostmuncher/ Galaxian. This game was a dual bootleg of Pac-Man and Galaxian. One could change the game with the Dip Switch. In this bootleg, the colors, sounds and names of the ghosts have been changed. The "Galaxian" bootleg is also sped up significantly.

Data East released Lock'n'Chase in 1981. Here Pac-Man was replaced with a thief stealing coins from a bank vault. The Ghosts were replaced with police, and the thief could temporarily block passages with doors. A popular port of this game was released for the Mattel Intellivision in 1982.

In the 1990s, Microhard/Magic Games released Funny Strip. This was a maze game and a clone of Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man featuring nudity.

Also in the 1990s, Best Before Yesterday released a game called Maniac, which merged Pac-Man with the game of hangman against a time limit. One notable feature was the turbo boost, temporarily making Pac-Man go faster. Upon acquiring this turbo boost, the phrase "Thunderbirds are go!" would be heard. Another feature was added background music.

In 1992, Creative Dimensions released a Pac-Man clone called CD-Man. CD-Man ate dots and ran from enemies such as spiders and sharks.

In 1993, Christophe de Dinechin wrote a Pac-Man clone for the HP-48 series of calculator.

In 1995, SemiCom released Hyper Pac-Man , a clone similar to Pac-Mania with some Bomberman-style elements. This was followed up by a sequel called Twinkle ; in this version Pac-Man is orange and wears sunglasses.

In 1999, ESD released Multi Champ Deluxe. Multi Champ Deluxe is an adult-oriented multi-game system in which the player chooses a girl and then one of six games, with the object being to win the game to save the girl. The games include a clone of Pac-Man.

In 2000, Genie released Puckman Pokemon which teamed up Pac-man and Pokémon. Player 1 controls Puckman and Player 2 controls Pikachu's head.

eGames has released several 3D clones of Pac-Man, including 3D Maze Man, 3D Chomper, and 3D Ms. Maze. These were made without license, and prompted a lawsuit including Hasbro, Atari America and Elorg. The games have not been discontinued as a term of the settlement.

Grandpa Pac-Man was an unofficial sequel created by Lafe Travis Games for the PC, and is available as freeware. Grandpa Pac-Man has 13 mazes to master, 12 intermissions, and 30 different prizes to gobble up.

In 2003, an open source Pac-Man clone called Njam was released. The source code is freely available under GPL license, and besides regular gameplay it features two multiplayer modes where players can play either together or against each other. It also has networking support, so up to four players can play simultaneously. The game is available on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and many other operating systems.

DirecTV's new interactive channel, Game Lounge, features a game called Hot Wheels Monster Truck Smashdown. A red monster truck takes the place of Pac-Man, and other monster trucks replace the ghosts, but otherwise, the game plays very much like regular Pac-Man.

Topfield Digital Set Top boxes also feature a Pac-Man clone game, along with a clone of Tetris and a clone of Brick as part of their extras included in their menus.

Non-video games

In 1982, Milton Bradley released a board game based on Pac-Man and another based on Ms. Pac-Man. Several other pocket games and a card game were also produced.

A group of students from the Computer Science department of Simon Fraser University had developed a "life-sized" Pac-Man system, using laptops and cell phone tracking to track the location of the dots, ghost, and the Pac-Man. It has become a regular activity of Computer Science Frosh Week, and is usually played in Downtown Vancouver.

Pac-Man is also available to download and play on 5th-generation iPods.

Pac-Man in popular culture

A great deal of Pac-Man merchandise was marketed in the 1980s, from t-shirts to toys to hand-held video game imitations to pasta. There was also the aforementioned Saturday morning TV cartoon called Pac-Man. This show, based on the game, was produced by Hanna-Barbera and lasted two years, from 1982 to 1984. It was also the basis for a Pac-Man Christmas special titled Christmas Comes to Pac-Land. In the series and the special, the "nicknames" given to Pac-Man's enemies in the game — Blinky, Pinky, Inky and Clyde — became their official names, and Sue was a new ghost, colored purple. They were led by the evil Mezmaron, who employed them in his plots to raid the Power Pellet Forest.

The makers of the 1982 Disney feature-film Tron sneaked a tiny Pac-Man into one quick shot when Sark is ordering the tanks to be sent out, giving the character a movie cameo appearance in effect.

A Pac-Man-inspired set of crop circles is located near Grazely, Reading, England, viewable by satellite imaging. Map at Google Sightseeing

In the video game-oriented webcomic Penny Arcade, Gabe is almost always seen wearing a yellow shirt with a black outline of Pac-Man. Other strips reveal that his room is decorated with Pac-Man sheets and matching curtains, and his car's license plate reads "PCMNFN" (Pac-Man Fan). Mike Krahulik, the Penny Arcade artist who uses Gabe as an alter-ego, actually has a tattoo of Pac-Man eating pellets around his arm.

VG Cats, another video game webcomic, also uses Pac-Man in one of its logos. The logo is identical to Pac-Man; however, it is colored blue instead of yellow, and has a cat-like tail added to it, along with tiny cat-like ears atop it.

The 2004 movie Club Dread featured a live version of Pac-Man played on "Coconut Pete's" tropical island, in which four bikini-clad girls would chase one man through a hedge maze; drinking from a cup of alcohol was the equivalent of a Power Pellet. Other characters dressed in costumes resembling the various fruit pieces of the game.

Pac-Man appears as a character in the Drawn Together episode " Gay Bash". In a comic twist, Ms. Pac-Man is revealed to actually be Pac-Man himself, but in drag.

In "Weird Al" Yankovic's music video for " White & Nerdy", flares arranged in the shape of Pac-Man are shown in the background of some scenes.

In the animated series Class of 3000, on the episode The Hunt for Red Blobtober, there is a Pac-Man like screen with the kid's heads. After the scene, Philly Phil pulls grapes out of the hole. Also, Eddie makes the classic "Wakka wakka wakka" noise.

Pac-Man is shown for almost thirty seconds at high speed in the 1982 cult movie Koyaanisqatsi.

Other video games

Namco often puts the characters of Pac-Man into their other games, as actual opponents or subtle references. Some of the most prominent uses include the Ridge Racer series of games and Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune. In addition, similar to Namco x Capcom, Pac-Man appears as a statue in Tales of Symphonia, and also as a part of alternative costume of Presea that is based on the Namco character Klonoa. In another Tales game, Tales of the Abyss, playable character Jade Curtiss's main outfit has a belt with a buckle shaped like Pac-Man. Because of this, the Pac-Man appears to be eating the belt holes, much like an in-game Pac-Man eating dots. Talim's 1P costume in Soul Calibur II and III both feature a Pac-Man emblem on her necklace.

Pac-Man is a playable character in the Mario Kart Arcade GP and Mario Kart Arcade GP 2 games; in fact, Pac-Man is one of the first non-Nintendo characters to appear in a Nintendo game. Ms. Pac-Man and the red ghost Blinky are also playable. Klonoa, a Namco character, always wears a blue cap with a little Pac-Man on it. Curiously, this mark was erased in Namco x Capcom, in which Pac-Man's only appearance is as a statue in a single stage.

Pac-Man made a guest appearance in Kick Man (1981), also once known as Kick. The object of Kickman was to catch falling balloons on the head of a unicycle rider. In some levels of the game, a Pac-Man might descend and, with his familiar sound effects, eat the already-caught balloons for bonus points. Ghosts appeared as well in higher levels.

Anna Kournikova's Smash Court Tennis featured Pac-Man as a secret unlockable character. He looked exactly like his 3D render. To unlock him, the player had to complete the Times Square court under "Street Tournament" six times.

In Wolfenstein 3D (1992), there was a secret level that was a remake of one of the mazes in Pac-Man, complete with Pac-Man ghosts that would chase the player. They could not be killed. The dots were replaced with treasure items and the power pills were replaced with extra lives.

In Baten Kaitos, Pac-Man appeared as a card/weapon that was unlocked by performing a combo involving fruit.

A carving of Pac-Man eating a pill, along with a ghost from Pac-Man, could be seen in the fighting game Mortal Kombat.

In Jak III, when Daxter needed the codes to get into the KG Sky Factory, he went through a Pac-Man-like game to get the codes.

In Top Secret!, a map showing the protagonist's travel through Berlin changed into a Pac-Man game.

In The Simpsons, Mr. Burns plays a generic version of Ms. Pac-Man.

In the section "Raiders of the Lost Arcade" of the Futurama episode " Anthology of Interest II", the Planet Express Crew and 'General' Pac-Man went through a Pac-Man maze. During this Dr. Zoidberg ate various in-game items, including the key, the dots (which he said tasted like stale marshmallows), the fruit and Phillip J. Fry (who was okay because he "had another guy"). Pac-Man was inadvertently killed by laser fire from Space Invaders. Fry asked Amy Wong to tend to the Widow Pac-Man.

In an episode of Family Guy they showed a flashback of when Ms. Pac-Man broke up with Pac-Man and the ghosts try to cheer him up by letting him eat them, but he was too depressed to acknowledge them, instead sitting silently, staring ahead and smoking a cigarette.

In Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story, a Family Guy movie, Brian is telling Stewie to get the fruit in a Pac-Man game. Stewie then replies with, "I can't get the fruit, there's a ghost right there!"

Games featuring Pac-Man

Screenshot of the level Pac-Box for Descent 3.
Screenshot of the level Pac-Box for Descent 3.

  • Sky Kid (1985): Along with Inky, the Special Flag from Rally-X and Pooka from Dig Dug, Pac-Man appears as one of the hidden Namco characters who appear sometimes after blowing up an enemy unit. He is worth 1000 points if picked up.
  • Sky Kid Deluxe (1986): Pac-Man's role is exactly the same as in the original Sky Kid.
  • Ordyne (1988): After buying a stock bomber from Miyuki Chan's shop or winning one from Dream Co., Ltd., Pac-Man will sit on the front of Yûichirô Tomari's or Sunday Chin's ship, held in place by a green claw. He sucks in all the enemies' shots and spits them back out at them. The more shots he sucks in, the bigger he becomes and the more powerful the shots he spits out will be. Only one player may have this special weapon at a time.
  • Tinkle Pit (1993): After getting the powerup which looks like Pac-Man's face, the nameless protagonist will turn into Pac-Man and all the enemies will turn into ghosts for a short time. He can eat them for bonus points.
  • Tekken (1994) and Tekken 2 (1995): If the Number of Wins indicated by option is set to Fruit and one wins 40+ fights in Arcade Mode under two players, Pac-Man will appear as an icon.
  • Soul Edge (1995): Pac-Man stands on top of the Namco logo after the announcer says the company's name as the camera zooms in on the logo and him over a white background.
  • A mod for Doom II was created that could change all of the enemy creatures to Pac-Man characters. All other features of the game remained the same.
  • Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean: Pac-Man is a magnus that can be obtained by combo-ing a large amount of fruit magnus. The version of Pac-Man from Pac-Land can be obtained in a similar way.
  • Ridge Racer Type 4 features a racing team called the "Pac Racing Club" with cars decorated with the Pac-Man name and character. Also, upon unlocking every single car in the game, the player unlocks a Pac-Man car which is essentially a giant Pac-Man as he appears in Pac-Man World on wheels with an engine in the rear.
  • Ridge Racer V features a Pac-Man race (unlocked when the player drives 3000km total) in which the player races as Pac-Man in a little red roadster against the 4 ghosts on mopeds. If the player wins, they also unlock the ghosts to race as in Time Trial, Free Run and Vs. modes.
  • Ridge Racer (2004): Features a grueling Pac Man boss race on a normal Ridge Racer track, after beating Pac-Man one unlocks the Pac-Man car.
  • Baten Kaitos Origins (2006): Pac-Man is a magnus given to one to take care of by Quzman. He will eat any magnus that is around him, forcing one to 'trap' him between inedible magnus. After eating a certain number of magnus, he will transform into Pac-Land and eventually Pac-Mania.
  • A level for Descent 3 multiplayer was created as a tribute to Pac-Man, Pac-Box.
  • A Guild Wars boss named Glamron uses a skill called "Pac-Man." This skill enables Glamron to rush directly into players it encounters.
  • Blast Corps (by Rareware) had a pac-man tribute secret level featuring pac-man styled game play in a maze where one used the games bulldozer to light beacons in the same way pac-man eats dots.
  • Ridge Racer 6 has a car in the Special class which is Pac-Man in a spaceship with a speed display shaped like Pac-Man.
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