Both index fingers started hurting when I read the news: The man whose company gave Pac-Man to the world died last week.
Masaya Nakamura was 91. His company, Namco, was formed in 1955.
In 1980 the company developed a video game designed by engineer Toru Iwatani that showed a yellow, pizza-shaped character eating dots and evading cartoon ghosts throughout a series of mazes. The character was missing a pizza piece and got its name for the sound it made while chomping through its scenes.
According to an article on Fox News – who I trust implicitly with anything other than Donald Trump updates – Pac-Man has been played more than 10 billion times and is the Guinness World Record holder for a coin-operated game.
At least 1,000 of those games are mine, mainly during guys-only evenings at the Kindersley Hotel, where it cost 25 cents per game and a group of us had memorized successful patterns to send our Pac-Man through the first five stages.
We played so much we became ambidextrous after developing Pac-Man finger. On each hand.
Thanks, Mr. Nakamura. Best $250 I ever spent.