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For other uses of Ms. Pac-Man, see Ms. Pac-Man (disambiguation).

Ms. Pac-Man (ミズパックマン Mizu Pakkuman) is the second game in the Pac-Man series, released in 1982 by Bally Midway.

Gameplay Info

The goal of the game is to have Ms. Pac-Man eat all of the on-screen dots and avoid the attacks of the four ghosts. The gameplay follows the same premise as Pac-Man, although there are some key differences:

  • The game has four different colorful mazes that alternate. The orange maze appears in levels 1 and 2, the light blue maze appears in levels 3, 4, and 5, the brown maze appears in levels 6 through 9, and the dark blue maze appears in levels 10 through 13. Starting with level 14, the last two maze configurations alternate between each other every 4th level.
  • The Fruits are now cherries, strawberries, oranges, pretzels, apples, pears, and bananas, respectively. After the banana appears, the fruit prizes are chosen at random.
  • The fruit bounces around the screen instead of remaining stationary below the ghost pen, starting from one of the tunnel entrances and leaving through another if not eaten.
  • The intermissions have been changed to "Acts". The first one shows how Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man first meet, the second shows the two chasing each other around the screen, and the third shows Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man awaiting the arrival of Junior.
  • The orange ghost (originally named "Clyde") is now named "Sue".
  • The ghosts do not move in "scatter" and "chase" cycles as they did in the original game; Blinky and Pinky will move randomly and Inky and Sue will head for their "scatter" corners only during first behavior mode of a round. From there, while they will change direction occasionally, they will remain in constant attack.
  • There are no longer any paths that the ghosts cannot travel through.
  • Tunnels do not slow the ghosts down after Round 3.
Ms

The original maze.

Scoring System

History

Crazy-otto-recreation

Screenshot from a fan-made hack, recreating Crazy Otto.

Originally, Ms. Pac-Man started as an unauthorized hack of Pac-Man called Crazy Otto by General Computer Corporation, featuring a Pac-Man-like character with a blue eye and legs. To avoid another lawsuit with Atari (which they had previously received for creating a Missile Command hack), G.C.C. presented the game to Bally Midway for approval of release. Midway, impatient for Namco to release the then-upcoming Super Pac-Man, purchased Crazy Otto for their own release. Midway then changed a quantity of details from Crazy Otto, and renamed it Ms. Pac-Man.

As Ms. Pac-Man/Crazy Otto was developed and published without Namco's permission, Bally Midway was later forced to turn the rights over to Namco. Ms. Pac-Man was never released in any arcade form in Japan, and would not receive a Japanese home console release until 1990 on the Atari Lynx.[1][2]

Home Ports

  • Android
  • Apple II
  • Atari 400/800/XL/XE
  • Atari 2600
    • Mazes are slightly different than the original.
  • Atari 5200
  • Atari 7800
  • Atari Lynx
    • Features a unique set of mazes not found in other versions.
    • A new intermission titled "Bus Stop" was added.
  • Commodore 64
  • Commodore VIC-20
  • Famicom/NES
    • Two versions were released. The first was in 1990 by Tengen, which added many new mazes and options, in addition to a two-player cooperative mode (see this page for more information). A different port by Namco Hometek was released in 1993, which is commonly considered inferior to Tengen's version.
      • The Tengen 1990 version adds an ending after Level 36.
      • The Namco 1993 version features different colors for the mazes than the original game.
  • Game Boy
  • Game Boy Color
    • Released as Ms. Pac-Man: Special Color Edition, which also included Super Pac-Man.
    • Same port as the original Game Boy version, only colorized.
  • Game Boy Advance
    • Two versions were released, which were included in Namco Museum and Namco Museum 50th Anniversary; both compilations have the game emulated slightly differently from each other.
  • GameCube
    • Three versions were released. The game was included in Namco Museum and Namco Museum 50th Anniversary, and was featured as a bonus game in Pac-Man World 2.
  • Game Gear
    • Features different colors for the mazes than the original game.
  • Handheld LCD Games
    • Many different handheld LCD games have been released, the earliest being the Orlitronic "shaped" handheld from 1984.
    • The ports included greatly vary between units. The majority of earlier systems took creative liberties when porting the game, and feature many differences when compared to the original. Later consoles (such as the MGA "Classic Arcade" version) are much more accurate conversions.
    • Most Ms. Pac-Man LCD games are in black-and-white, but a handful were in color.
  • IBM PC
    • Supports CGA composite mode for additional colors.[3]
  • iOS (iPhone, iPad, etc.)
  • iPod Classic
  • Mobile
  • Nintendo 64
  • Phillips CD-i
    • Included in Arcade Classics.
    • Similar to the Tengen releases, featuring many options and a two-player cooperative mode, in addition to many new mazes (which are exclusive to this release).
    • Features different colors for the mazes than the original game.
  • PlayStation
    • Two identical versions were released, which were included in Namco Museum Vol. 1 and Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness.
  • PlayStation 2
    • Three versions were released. The game was included in Namco Museum and Namco Museum 50th Anniversary, and was featured as a bonus game in Pac-Man World 2.
  • PlayStation 3
    • Three versions were released. There were two PS one Classics versions: Namco Museum Vol. 3 and Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, both of which feature the original game. It was later released as paid DLC for Pac-Man Museum.
  • PlayStation 4
    • Released as a standalone digital release titled Arcade Game Series: Ms. Pac-Man.
  • PlayStation Portable
    • Three versions were released. The game was included in Namco Museum Battle Collection (Namco Museum 1 in Japan); it was not included in the Korean release of the game. There were two PS one Classics versions: Namco Museum Vol. 3 and Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, both of which feature the original game.
  • PlayStation Vita
    • Two versions were released via PS one Classics: Namco Museum Vol. 3 and Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, both of which feature the original game.
  • Plug 'N Play TV Games
    • Many different Plug 'N Plays featuring Ms. Pac-Man have been released (see this page for full list), the earliest being Ms. Pac-Man Collection from 2004.
    • The original systems were released by Jakks Pacific, and featured a port very close to the arcade version. Consoles from the 2010s onward were from different manufacturers, and often feature the Namco 1993 NES version.
  • Pocket Player (My Arcade)
    • Included in the Ms. Pac-Man Pocket Player.
    • Features the Namco 1993 NES version.
  • Sega Master System
    • Features all modes and options from the Tengen 1990 NES version, in addition to overhauled graphics.
    • Features different colors for the mazes than the original game.
  • Sega Genesis/Mega Drive
    • Two versions were released. The first was a single-cartridge version, which features all modes and options from the Tengen 1990 NES version, in addition to overhauled graphics. A different port was later included as a bonus game in Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures; here it was rebranded as Pac-Jr., a modified version of Ms. Pac-Man that slightly changes the mazes and stars Jr. Pac-Man.
      • Pac-Jr. is similar to the Namco 1993 NES version of Ms. Pac-Man, but features slightly updated graphics and a high-score table.
  • Sega Dreamcast
    • Two identical versions were released, which were included in Namco Museum and Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness.
  • Super Famicom/SNES
    • Two versions were released. Ms. Pac-Man was included as a bonus game in Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures; unlike the Genesis port, it does not change any aspects of the original. A different port on a standalone cartridge was released in 1996, which is nearly identical to the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive port.
      • The Pac-Man 2 version is similar to the Namco 1993 NES version, but features slightly updated graphics and a high-score table.
  • Tabletop Arcade Machines
    • Many different tabletop arcade machines have been released, the earliest being the Coleco Tabletop from 1983.
    • Following the Coleco Tabletop, no other tabletops were released up until the late 2010s. More recent consoles often either feature the Namco 1993 NES version (ex: Ms. Pac-Man Micro Player) or use a custom port loosely resembling the arcade version (ex: Arcade Classics - Ms. Pac-Man).
  • TI-99/4A
  • Wii U
    • Released for the Virtual Console in Namco Museum (Game Boy Advance).
  • Windows PC
    • Numerous conversions were released, from Windows 95 to Windows 10. The earliest of these were Microsoft Revenge of Arcade and Namco History Vol. 3, both from 1998.
    • Due to the more powerful architecture of computers compared to consoles at the time, all ports were straight emulations of the arcade version, with little to no differences (the only exception being the bonus version included in Pac-Man World 2).
  • Xbox
    • Four versions were released. A single-disc version was released, often referred to as the Xbox Live Arcade Disc (although the cover just says "Arcade"), which was intended to be a demo for the Xbox Live service. The game was included in Namco Museum and Namco Museum 50th Anniversary, and was featured as a bonus game in Pac-Man World 2.
  • Xbox 360
    • Three versions were released. The game was released as a standalone digital release through the Xbox Live service. It was also included in Namco Museum Virtual Arcade (in which it is the same as the Xbox Live version). It was later released as paid DLC for Pac-Man Museum.
  • Xbox One
    • Released as a standalone digital release titled Arcade Game Series: Ms. Pac-Man.
  • ZX Spectrum

A handful of Ms. Pac-Man ports by Atarisoft to other systems were planned, but were never released. These include the ColecoVision, Intellivision, BBC Micro, and IBM PCjr.[4]

Homebrew versions of Ms. Pac-Man have also been released for the ColecoVision and Intellivision.

Other versions

There are many variations of Ms. Pac-Man that are fundamentally the same as the original game, but feature several differences that make them stand out. These games include:

Namco Museum port

Similarly to Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man also saw a Namco Museum port in 1996. This version, like Pac-Man, used the source code from the original game and was perhaps the most frequently ported version for quite some time. Some things about it were changed however, and this version sees all of the applicable changes Pac-Man had, plus:

  • Blinky and Pinky do not move randomly during the first behavior mode; they head to their original "scatter" corners as they did in Pac-Man.
  • Furthermore, the "scatter" and "chase" cycles are restored in the game.
  • The tunnel slowdown effect does not occur until a ghost reaches middle of the tunnel (in the original game, they are slowed down at the entrance).
  • The tunnel slowdown occurs in all rounds.
  • Most of the sound samples have their pitch raised.
  • The background sound effect does not change as the player gets closer to finishing the maze.

Play Online

These versions of Ms. Pac-Man are either listed in the public domain or are considered abandonware. Clicking the game title will lead you to a playable online version of it from archive.org (mobile compatibility may vary).

Trivia

  • Starting in 2006 after a court case, General Computer Corporation began to receive expensive royalties from Namco for most Ms. Pac-Man re-releases, including arcade machines and home console/mobile ports. This has led to (Bandai) Namco practically abandoning using the Ms. Pac-Man game altogether. However, some re-releases occur through the following loopholes:
    • Releasing an arcade machine with no coin slot/set to Free Play
    • Releasing the game as downloadable content
    • Using a proprietary format classified as a "toy"
  • This is the first Pac-Man game not to be developed by Namco.
  • There is a glitch where if a coin is inserted directly as the machine is turned on, the maze will be dark blue instead of orange. This will reset if Ms. Pac-Man loses a life.
  • In the game's prototype stages, Ms. Pac-Man had long brown hair and a yellow bow, which was eventually changed to the iconic red bow with only a tiny tuft of hair. This seems to have been a last-minute change, as it carried over into the cartoon series.
  • The GameCube version of Pac-Man World 2 includes Ms. Pac-Man as a bonus game; however, this version features an odd bug, where the mazes all use the same color scheme as each other. This does not apply to the PlayStation 2 and Xbox versions of the game.
  • Blinky and Pinky moving randomly at the start of each round is achieved by them being programmed to randomly target each of the original four "scatter" corners of the maze.
  • The SNES version of Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures feature Ms. Pac-Man as an unlockable game; however, the Genesis version features Pac-Jr., a modified version of the game with Jr. Pac-Man as the main character. This was because a single-cartridge release of Ms. Pac-Man was already on the Genesis, and they did not want the unlockable version hurting sales.

Gallery

Screenshots

Machine and Box Art

Character Artwork

External links

References

  1. http://tk-nz.game.coocan.jp/gamedatabase/software/DB_ATM_LX1989-1991.html
  2. https://stat.ameba.jp/user_images/20190802/22/ponyponyex/b0/91/j/o0962130014520398913.jpg
  3. https://www.mobygames.com/attribute/sheet/attributeId,29/p,4/
  4. http://www.digitpress.com/faq/atarisoft.htm
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