Remembering Masaya Nakamura, the "Father of Pac-Man"

Pac-Man - as released by
Midway for the US market
Pac-Man is an incredibly simple game which has more than stood the test of time both as a game and through its extensive merchandising.  It is the sort of IP which many seek to emulate but few have followed successfully.

In 2016, the website US Gamer named Pac-Man the highest grossing arcade game of all time (its spin off game, Ms Pac-Man came in at number 4).

Anyone who has played the game will not be terribly surprised - it is a very addictive game.

Today Pac-Man and his ghostly nemesis are as
likely to be found in fashion stores as games
- the above all come from Anya Hindmarch
Mr Nakamura did not develop Pac-Man himself (that honour is reserved for Toru Iwatani) but he did make Pac-Man possible.

He established Nakamura Amusement Machine Manufacturing Company (better known as Namco) in 1956.

The company started as two mechanical horse rides on a department store rooftop but went on to become one of the leading pioneers in the video game industry.  Pac-Man is one of the company's most famous creations but by no means their only game.
Fun fact: The shape of Pac-Man
was apparently inspired by a pizza with a slice missing.

Pac-Man's popularity was fuelled by the fact that its non-violent maze/puzzle structure was at odds with most other Street Fighter style arcade games of the time and, significantly, this led to it having broad appeal with both male and female gamers.

Pac-Man has become something of a cult figure both within and outside the computer gaming world.  Mr Nakamura, as Pac-Man's "father" was essential in making Pac-Man happen.

Mr Nakamura was an honorary advisor at Namco's successor business, Bandai Namco until his death at the age of 91 on 22 January 2017.
Remembering Masaya Nakamura, the "Father of Pac-Man" Remembering Masaya Nakamura, the "Father of Pac-Man" Reviewed by Rosie Burbidge on Tuesday, January 31, 2017 Rating: 5

1 comment:

Sally Cooper said...

Thanks for including this in IPKat !

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