Trivia / Pac-Man

The Pac-Man video games:

  • Breakthrough Hit: For Namco. Pac-Man is their mascot because of this.
  • Creator Killer: The Atari 2600 port, despite decent sales, was reviled for being a poor port and was one of the games that led to the crash of 1983 and the crushing of Atari as a leading console developer.
  • Dub Name Change:
    • The game's Japanese title is "Puck-Man", named after Pac-Man's circular shape. However, the developers were worried that people would vandalize the cabinets and change the "p" to an "f". The Pac-Man name has stuck between all regions ever since.
    • The ghosts' names were originally Fickle, Chaser, Ambusher and Stupid, respectively, cluing the player in on thier patterns. However, the American release gave them non-indicative names for whatever reason.
  • Fan Nickname: "Ghosts" for the enemies chasing after Pac-Man; Namco has always simply referred to them as "monsters." The Atari 2600 version does call them ghosts in the manual, however. The TV show confusingly combines both names, calling them "ghost-monsters".
    • Interestingly enough, one of the cutscenes shows Blnky having his coat torn off by a nail, showing skin underneath, implying, yes, he's a monster.
    • Similarly, the big round dots that Pac-Man eats to turn the tables on the monsters/ghosts/ghost-monsters "Energizers" in the arcade. The LP record "The Amazing Adventures of Pac-Man" expands on this by calling them "energizer dots". They are "Power Pills" in the Atari versions, "Power Pellets" in the cartoon, which is actually closer to their official Japanese name: "Power Esa" (lit. "Power Food"). Moreover, Super Pac-Man officially refers to them as "POWER" pellets.
    • Ascended Meme: In the 3D games, they're now ghosts. It's sometimes implied that they're not ghosts, but living and made of flesh.
    • When Pac-Man has eaten enough dots, Blinky goes faster. Fans call this "Cruise Elroy", but no one seems to know why.
  • Follow the Leader: Pretty much every game console and home computer in the Second Generation Of Video Games had either an adaptation of this game available or some maze game that resembled Pac-Man. Magnavox's K.C. Munchkin for the Odyssey 2, however, was deemed so close to the original that it was pulled from the market.
  • Genre-Killer: The Atari 2600 port is one the low-quality, overproduced games that started The Great Video Game Crash of 1983
  • Market-Based Title: Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures is called Hello! Pac-Man in Japan.
  • Marth Debuted in "Smash Bros.": Despite Namco preferring to not speak about the unauthorized Bally Midway games (with the exception of Ms. Pac-Man, which was made official thanks to its success), that didn't stop their characters from appearing in official Pac-Man games. Japanese players would think that Junior got his beany propeller hat from Pac-Man 2, when he actually got it from Jr. Pac-Man, his starring role. There's also Professor Pac's appearance in Pac-Man World, when he originally came from Professor Pac-Man, minus the mustache.
  • Name's the Same: The name Pac-Man Arrangement can refer to one of two games: The original that was released in Namco Classics Collection Vol. 2 and the second alliteration in 2005 that first appeared in Namco Museum Battle Collection, also known as Pac-Man Remix in certain re-releases.
  • No Export for You: Of the original arcade games, Pac & Pal was the only one never released outside of Japan. There were plans for a localization (as Pac-Man and Chomp Chomp, with Miru replaced by Pac-Man's dog from the animated series), but it was cancelled.
  • Port Overdosed: Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man are two of the most widely ported games ever made, right up there with Space Invaders and Tetris.
  • Prop Recycling: The Galboss from Galaxian is one of the fruits.

The 1982 Pac-Man cartoon:

  • The Danza: Susan Silo played Sue. Likely either an inversion or a coincidence, as the name "Sue" had been used for a ghost in the Ms. Pac-Man video game (although it was simply Clyde from the original with a different name).
  • Follow the Leader: By Hanna Barbera standards, Pac-Man was another small village type show similar to The Smurfs. Mezmaron fills the Gargamel type role with the quest to do some harm. However the Pac-Family themselves adhere more closer to the sitcom style family ala The Flintstones and The Jetsons.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes:
    • Despite airing in 1982, the Hanna-Barbera series saw no VHS or DVD releases until January 2012, when the first season was released on DVD. The second season was released in September that same year. Both are available as manufacture-on-demand DVDs from the "Warner Archive" program, although they can also be bought via Amazon, eBay, and various other Internet auction sites.
    • In the 1980s, there actually were a number of VHS releases for the series...outside America.
  • Recursive Adaptation: An arcade video game called Pac-Land was released in 1984, which was a side-scrolling platformer that was clearly based on the cartoon. Inky's lazy eye and Sue's purple cloak and eyes survived into the design of the monsters in Pac-Mania. But Blinky retains his speed and aggressiveness, whereas in the cartoon he was an asthmatic coward. In the Pac-Man World games, however, the cartoon is mostly forgotten. There are only four ghosts, and Pinky is now female.
    • However, for some time after the release of Pac-Man Arrangement, Blinky's and Clyde's names were swapped around for some time, making Clyde the red, more aggressive, ghost and leader of the gang, and Blinky the orange and more laid-back ghost. This continued even into the second and third World games. Whenever or not this could be considered a homage to the cartoon or simply a mistake on Namco's parts is up to the viewer.