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Ms. Pac-Man (Atari 7800)

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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.6
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5 point score based on user ratings.

Trivia

1001 Video Games

The Arcade version of Ms. Pac-Man appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Board game adaption

In 1982 Milton-Bradley released a board game adaptation of this video game.

Ghosts

While three of the ghosts returned from the original Pac-Man game, the orange ghost (Pokey/Clyde) was made female, and given the nickname "Sue". Sue was later depicted as a purple ghost, first in the animated series, then in later versions of the game. Sue is also named after the sister of original General Computer hacker Doug Macrae.

Launch game

Ms. Pac-Man was one of the "Fabulous Eleven" launch games for the Atari 7800.

Title

Once her initial leggy incarnation as Crazy Otto had been shelved, Ms. Pac-Man went through a baffling array of name changes: Pac-Woman was eventually vetoed by female employees of Midway, and revised to Miss Pac-Man -- until someone noticed that animated inter-scene depictions of the male and female Pac-Men getting together and producing a child now illustrated a bastard birth out of wedlock. From there, it shuffled to Mrs. Pac-Man and, at the last minute (within 72 hours of the production line startup of the original coin-ops) finalised as Ms. Pac-Man.

TV series reference

The game is referenced in season 5, episode 18 (Meet the Quagmires) of the animated TV series Family Guy. Peter Griffin, one of the main characters, is shown playing the arcade game of Ms. Pac-Man is 1984. The following conversation ensues:

Woman: Wow, you're really good at this game!
Peter Griffin: Yeah, I've logged a lot of game hours on Menstrual Ms. Pac-Man.
[in the game, we see Ms. Pac-Man eating her way across the screen, with 4 ghosts following her. Suddenly she turns toward them]
Ms. Pac-Man: WHAT?! WHAT?! [the ghosts quickly run away]
Blinky: Geeze.
Clyde: Nothing.
Sue: Bitch.

Unauthorized release

The arcade game Ms. Pac-Man was not created or authorized by Namco, who holds the original license. The idea behind this game was to make an upgrade for Pac-Man called "Crazy Otto", developed by General Computer Corporation (GCC). GCC approached Midway Manufacturing about buying the upgrade, which Midway did. Midway (Namco's American distributor) then altered Crazy Otto to make Ms. Pac-Man.

Midway (a division of Bally, at the time) released Ms. Pac-Man (unauthorized), but after a year they passed the rights of the game and character to Namco so that Namco would not sue them or withdraw their licensing agreement.

Unfortunately, Midway did not learn its lesson and created a number of other unlicensed versions of Pac-Man (like Pac-Man Plus, Baby Pac-Man and Jr. Pac-Man), which caused Namco to finally withdraw their agreement.

Awards

  • Game Informer Magazine
    • August 2001 (Issue 100) - voted #9 in a Top 100 Games of All Time poll
  • Retro Gamer Magazine
    • (Issue 46) - voted #15 in a “Top 25 Atari 2600” Games poll
Information also contributed Guy Chapman, Klaster_1, LepricahnsGold, Pseudo_Intellectual, and Sciere

Contributed by PCGamer77 (3027) on Jun 30, 2004. [revised by : Alaka (30605) and FatherJack (40279)]. -- edit trivia