Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-ManThe Game: As the bride of that most famous of single-celled omniphage life forms, your job is pretty simple – eat all the dots, gulp the large blinking dots in each corner of the screen and eat the monsters while they’re blue, and avoid See the videothe monsters the rest of the time. Occasionally various fruits and other foods will bounce through the maze, and you can gobble those for extra points. (Atari, 1983)

Memories: Oh, God. If there’s a genre of video game that suffers most pathetically at the hands of Atari’s non-centering 5200 controllers, it’s the maze game. And Ms. Pac-Man is among the worst victims of the 5200’s joysticks: you could wind up smacking into a wall, unable to move before those three ghosts nailed you from behind. (Actually, that sounds pretty bad.) Continue reading

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-ManSee the videoThe Game: As the bride of that most famous of single-celled omniphage life forms, your job is pretty simple – eat all the dots, gulp the large blinking dots in each corner of the screen and eat the monsters while they’re blue, and avoid See the TV adthe monsters the rest of the time. Occasionally various fruits and other foods will bounce through the maze, and you can gobble those for extra points. (Atari, 1983)

Memories: Some people were surprised when, after the stunning success of the Ms. Pac-Man arcade game, Atari announced that it would be bringing the latest member of the Pac-family home. After how the first game had turned out, why bother? Continue reading

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-ManThe Game: As the bride of that most famous of single-celled omniphage life forms, your job is pretty simple – eat all the dots, gulp the large blinking dots in each corner of the screen and eat the monsters while See the videothey’re blue, and avoid the monsters the rest of the time. Occasionally various fruits and other foods will bounce through the maze, and you can gobble those for extra points. (Atarisoft, 1983)

Memories: Introduced at virtually the same time as Atarisoft‘s TI edition of Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man looks and sounds slick – and has the same odd issue with slightly sluggish controls that seem to lag a little bit behind what’s happening on the screen. Continue reading

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-ManThe Game: As the bride of that most famous of single-celled omniphage life forms, your job is pretty simple – eat all the dots, gulp the large blinking dots in each corner of the screen and eat the monsters while they’re blue, and avoid the monsters the rest of the time. Occasionally various fruits and other foods will bounce through the maze, and you can gobble those for extra points. (Atarisoft, 1983)

Memories: The early days of the IBM PC – which had, at this point, been on the market for two years – saw numerous software publishers trying to second-guess the PC’s position in the market. IBM’s a tech giant for businesses, but will this thing take off in the consumer market? If so, do we market entertainment software for it? Is it even suited to that sort of thing? And the answer to those questions, in 1983, was…well, maybe? Continue reading

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-ManThe Game: As the bride of that most famous of single-celled omniphage life forms, your job is pretty simple – eat all the dots, gulp the large blinking dots in each corner of the screen and eat the monsters while they’re blue, and avoid See the videothe monsters the rest of the time. Occasionally various fruits and other foods will bounce through the maze, and you can gobble those for extra points. (Atari, 1984; released circa 1987)

Memories: I know I keep repeating this theme in the Phosphor Dot Fossils coverage of the Atari 7800, but the Tramiels did their new company – and gamers everywhere – a grievous disservice by putting the 7800 on ice until the NES was on top of the world. Continue reading

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