PacMan, the Story and the Strategy

The storyline of PacMan is one of the most basic storylines; PacMan is en route to see his darling, Ms PacMan when he unexpectedly gets trapped in a maze by his sworn enemy, Blinky, and Blinky’s 3 cronies, Inky, Pinky and Clyde. PacMan must defeat his assailants and escape the maze so that he can reach the arms of his love.

The gamescape is a maze. The player moves PacMan through the maze, gobbling pellets as he goes, as well as avoiding the 4 ghosts that are chasing him. If the ghosts catch PacMan he loses a life. When all his lives are lost the game is over. If PacMan makes it to through the maze without losing all his lives, a new level of the game begins. In each level the game moves a bit faster, and PacMan is up for more of a challenge.

There are also points to be won throughout the game. Occasionally fruit or candy appear in the maze. If Pacman eats them, he gains bonus points. At the four corners of the maze are dots known as “power pellets.” When PacMan eats these pellets he is able to defeat the ghosts. When PacMan has “powered up” the ghosts turn blue, reverse direction and begin to move more slowly. When PacMan eats a ghost, all but its eyes disappear. The eyes then head toward the ghost home in the center of the maze to regenerate. When a ghost regains its power it becomes its normal color and reenters the maze, working its way near to PacMan again.

Rudimentary as the game sounds, some strategy is needed to successfully make it through all the levels. For example, you must not let PacMan get cornered by the ghosts. The only way they can get his is if they cut off his escape route. And, if you want to use a power pellet, wait till you have at least 2 ghosts close enough to PacMan. You get more points when you eat more ghost, and have a limited amount of power pellets, so you need to make them count.

If you want to try your hand at the game you can play PacMan online for free. A simple web search will lead you to many websites offering the game—our research led us to Pac Xon. Some will require you to register and set up an account, others will just let you stop by and play. Find your favorite website and enjoy!