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Pac-Man is 30

24 May

On 1980 May 22, the Japanese video game manufacturer Namco released a new game that was invented by their employee 岩谷徹 (Toru Iwatani).

The game was called 「パックマン」 and was written as “Puckman” in the English alphabet in Japan.
On that day thirty years ago, the game was released at only one video game arcade (ゲームセンター) in 渋谷 (Shibuya, Tokyo).

The game was given the name 「パックマン」 because 「パック」 (“pakku“) or 「パックパック」 (“pakku-pakku“) is the word Japanese use to describe chewing (click here to read a post I wrote that describes this word and other like it in the Japanese language) and the point of the game is to maneuver the yellow Pac-man character around a maze and eat every dot in the maze without running into any of the four ghosts that run around the maze at the same time. There are four strategically-placed “power” dots that temporarily turn the tables and allow Pac-Man to eat the ghosts.

It was probably decided to use the letters “Puckman” to write the game’s name in Japan because “pakku-pakku” sounds similar to “puck-puck“…at least when said with a Japanese accent.

Anyways, this game was an instant success in Japan and caught the attention of “Midway” game manufacturer in America and a deal was struck to bring 「パックマン」 (“Puck-Man“) to the U.S.
But first, Midway decided, the name should be altered before kids in America vandalize the machine to make the “P” in “Puck-man” look like an “F”.

So, “Pac-Man” was introduced to America in the early ’80s and became a part of America’s pop-culture almost instantly.

Just like most kids in America (and probably other countries too) in the early ’80s, I was obsessed with Pac-Man for awhile.

It’s hard to believe that it’s already been thirty years since Pac-Man was first introduced to the world!

I heard that Pac-Man was recently added to the “Guiness Book Of World Records” for being the most readily recognized video-game character around the world even today.

Even the Google search engine changed their logo temporarily to honor Pac-Man‘s 30th anniversary.
Click here to try the Pac-Man game on the Google website. Click the “Insert Coin” button the site, a game starts then use your keyboards arrow keys to move Pac-Man around the maze.

Samurai Blue ガンバレ!

24 May

First of all, my blog reached the 400,000 hits point today. At the current rate of over 2,000 daily hits, my blog should reach the half-million hits mark by late July.

Thank you to everyone who visits my blog.

+++++

Do you like サッカー (soccer)?
Personally, I don’t care for it much…but I know the “World Cup” is like the “Olympics of Soccer”.
The World Cup is an international championship soccer competition and it’s very popular around the whole world (except America ;) ).

The 2010 World Cup is scheduled to begin on 2010 June 11. But currently there are some kind of “pre-World Cup” international soccer matches going on.

Tonight the Japan soccer team (nicknamed: “Samurai Blue“) is scheduled to play a game against the Korean soccer team in Saitama, Japan.

Ad for Japan's "Samurai Blue" team's soccer match against Korea this evening.

Here’s an Adidas Japan TV commercial for the Samurai Blue / World Cup:

ガンバレ日本! (Good luck Japan!)

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