canonical article: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/3938/the_pacman_dossie...
I thought they were moving mostly randomly, when I was a kid starting to learn programming.
orange one is special, even in chase mode, it stops chasing you when it is close enough.
The main program would feed some values into a series of feedback loops and shifts to generate the waves before pushing them out the DAC. Game programmers would just play around with various vectors until they found something that sounded interesting.
The whole shebang ran in 2KiB of ROM firmware and 128 bytes of RAM. At 894 kilohertz.
This dude reverse engineered the 6802 code and translated it to C#. Pretty amazing:
Next time on our show we'll talk about the magic of palette cycling. Jarvis still uses this on his games to this very day. Kind of his signature now, right?
Even then it would be a poor journalist that wrote "Steve jobs creator of the iPhone." Jobs should be credited as the CEO of Apple. I won't even go into the larger issue of how keeping credit away from engineers was probably part of Job's anti-worker philosophies, some of which were made famous during the release of the "poaching" emails. Jobs probably didn't want to create more celebrity engineers and product managers like Andy Hertzfeld or Steve Wozniak who could challenge him and became thorns in his side.
As a side note, Toru really seemed to relish his new found celebrity in the 80s and seems overall like a fun goofball. If bored, you can do a lot worse than reading stories about him or doing a google image search for all the cheesy promotional photos he took in the 80s.
Interestingly enough, he was looking to create a casual game, especially one aimed at women:
INTERVIEWER: What was the thinking behind the design of Pac Man?
IWATANI: First of all, the kanji word “taberu,” to eat, came to mind. Game design, you see, often begins with words. I started playing with the word, making sketches in my notebook. All the computer games available at the time were of the violent type–war games and space invader types. There were no games that everyone could enjoy, and especially none for women. I wanted to come up with a “comical” game women could enjoy.
The story I like to tell about the origin of Pac Man is that one lunch time I was quite hungry and I ordered a whole pizza. I helped myself to a wedge and what was left was the idea for the Pac Man shape.
Don't get me wrong, nothing wrong with crediting engineers. But I the "auteur game" thing is still an outlier.
That said, if you are ever in the Chicago area I suggest you check out Galloping Ghost. It is the largest arcade in the US and they have over 500 arcade games and it is all free play. $15 gets you in the door and then you are free to come and go as you please throughout the day as long as you keep your receipt. My buddy and I would go and play Mortal Kombat II and NFL Blitz for 5 or 6 hours at a time.
More on topic, if you're in the area to check out Galloping Ghost, you can head a little ways Northwest to Schaumburg and go to the 257 restaurant, which is basically a Namco museum and has food, bowling, and a bunch of Namco arcade games and memorabilia.
Have they been around for a long time (i.e. are they profitable enough to stay open longterm)?
Didn't you ever see a cabinet that had a bunch of melted plastic around the controls due to people leaving their cigarettes there?
Hard to wrap my head around that sometimes, but it is what it is.
It's a small collection but some golden oldies.
Except those music dancing games are really, really good now. Jubeat, Sound Voltex, Pop'n Music, Taiko no Tatsujin, DDR.
> Mortal Kombat
There's a ton of good arcade fighters. Injustice and Mortal Kombat X if you like that style.
But I personally have a preference for Guilty Gear, Blazblue, Marvel vs Capcom, Killer Instinct. Other players prefer Tekken, Street Fighter 5, etc. etc.
Also, maybe MKI could be described as really simple, but I think by the time MKII and III came out that wasn't really true of those anymore.
I will remember Pac-Man as a game I put way too much time into. I will remember it fondly along side Wizard of Wor, Time Pilot, Mr. Do, and Sinistar.
Since then, however, some hobby developers have taken another swing at Pac-Man on the 2600. The 400/800 port still holds the crown but the following is an impressive difference in my opinion:
Owning an Atari computer was much more rare. The Atari computer line-up had real competitors and did not have monopoly status. They had to contend against popular products like the Commodore 64, Apple //, etc. By a lot of metrics, especially game quality and selection, the Atari computer was the poorer choice and the market simply chose against them. It didn't help that the Atari 800 was nearly twice the price of the C64. The C64 had a poorer color palette but could instead do more sprites and had more colors per sprite, which is something that favored gaming and pushed it more towards being a favorite with those who wanted a computer, but also something that could play games well.
 This was a Z-80A based console. The Z-80A is actually what the arcade PacMan ran on, so it was like an arcade machine that could take carts, in your home! Its an underappreciated gem that more or less got caught up in the great video game crash of 1983-1985 and hamstrung by various issues Coleco had including its long delayed computer based on this system called ADAM. By the time ADAM launched it couldn't compete and the Colecovision was more or less dead. Wonderfully enough there was a version ADAM that was just a cart you plug into your Colecovsion, but I think it also suffered from "too little, too late" as by then C64, PC, and Apple ruled the home market without much room for new players. Video below showing how some games were almost identical to their arcade equivalents:
As to the technicality, the C64 (August 1982) was later than the 400/800 (November 1979). By the time of the C64, Atari was building getting ready with the next XL line and the 800 was selling for a lot less than its 1979 price. Atari did not keep up with Commodore on price. The C64 was inferior because it didn't have the Jay Miner lead chipset. The fortunes of both companies changed as Commodore got the Amiga and Atari got the 520ST.
I should point out that Atari and Commodore outsold Apple. The Pet and VIC 20 were a sales monster and the C64 took over from their. When people say the PC took Apple's market share they are ignoring the fact it really took Commodore's and Atari & Commodore had already took Apple's. The Apple II being very profitable offset this.
I wish I had that 20(mumble) years ago when I was doodling Mario levels on my high school book jacket...
I'm not affiliated, and I'm not saying there aren't others that may be worth your money more, but I am absolutely convinced that he has the heart and mind in the right place when doing this, and it really shows. I'm hopeful to see where it will go and what he'll come up with after it's finished.
Hayao Miyazaki's work could not be replicated by an American and the same for Masaya Nakamura. Maybe another from the same culture that comes with it's unique cognitive patterns and world views. We should value our differences, it benefits us all in curious and unexpected ways.
People would gather around the game console if you were really on a roll, craning their necks to get a look...good times, good times.