The Pac-Man Syndrome

Pac- man was created by Toru Itwani and licensed by
Namco. The game was centered on an old Japanese folk
tale.

The object of the game was simply to move through a
maze, while gobbling the dots and avoiding ghosts. Pac
Man was a tear away success spawning a cult in its
wake.

It was picked up for production in the US by Midway.

Pac-man was a nice breakaway for gamers bored with an
extreme dose of space invaders. The game soon went on
to strip ?Asteroids? as the greatest selling game of
all time.

Game play

The player maneuvers the protagonist through a maze
eating dots. The game proceeds to the next level once
all the dots are eaten.

There are four ghosts which roam around the maze
trying to catch Pac-man who is the character
maneuvered by the player. If the ghosts touch Pac-man,
a life is lost.

The game ends when no lives remain.

At the corners of the maze there are four power ups.
These power-ups render Pac-man a short-timed ability
to gobble up the ghosts.

Once a ghost is eaten, it returns to the ghost pen
where it is revived. The regeneration time for the
ghosts shortens as the game advances through the
stages.

Despite the seemingly randomness movement of the
ghosts, their nature is strictly deterministic. This
allows experienced players to devise precise patterns
of movement that enables them to complete levels
without being caught ever.

The simplicity of the game and the adrenaline rush it
created, when a ghost came near transformed this game
into an addiction. Unofficially, it is the most played
game of all time.