Pac-Man 30th anniversary marked by Google Doodle

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From the Daily Telegraph:

Google’s first ever interactive doodle allows people to play Pac-Man on the search engine’s home page, to mark the game’s 30th birthday

Google has transformed the home page of its search engine in to a game of Pac-Man. The usual Google logo has been replaced by a playable version of the popular 1980s video game, in which small yellow Pac-Men must travel around a maze, gobbling up dots while trying to avoid the ghosts. Shapes within the maze spell out “Google”.

Web users can still perform a search through the Google home page, but those who want to play the game have to click on the “Insert coin” button.

Google said it had commissioned the doodle, its first ever interactive illustration, to mark the 30th anniversary of Pac-Man’s release. Google said the launch of Pac-Man marked “a significant moment in popular culture”, and said that web users had 48 hours to “re-live the nostalgia” of the 1980s by playing the game on the Google site.

“To pay the homage that Pac-Man deserves as a ground-breaking innovation in the gaming world, Google equipped the doodle with many unique characteristics from the original Pac-Man game,” said a Google spokesman. “From preserving the distinct personalities of the ghosts Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde, to re-creating programming bugs from the original game, like a ‘kill screen’ on level 256, Marcin Wichary, a senior user experience designer at Google, and our resident Google doodler, Ryan Germick, remained as faithful to the spirit of Pac-Man as possible.”

Google has a long history of altering its home page doodle to mark significant anniversaries and events. A recent series of mysterious doodles, designed to celebrate the birthday of HG Wells, sparked a wave of conspiracy theories online. The birth of Samuel Morse was marked by the Google logo appearing as a series of dots and dashes.

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