Pac-Man in the News, 1982

Most of the video, via Patrick Scott Patterson, is from a PM Magazine feature on the youngest kid competing in the “world’s largest Pac-Man tournament” at Milwaukee County Stadium, but there’s also some rare footage of workers assembling Pac-Man cabs at the Midway manufacturing plant. (It’s not actually the largest Pac-Man tournament; the “largest” refers to the size of the stadium screen on which onlookers watched the games.)

The kid qualifies for the tournament by beating his brother on the Atari 400/800 version of Pac-Man at the local computer/game shop. His dad makes an interesting point about early video games: not even the best players could beat them. You just saw how far you could get and how many points you could rack up. The save game feature, as I’ve said before, changed games and gamers forever.

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