Bandai Namco teams up with Ars Electronica festival for Pac-Man exhibition

Bandai Namco has announced a collaborative Pac-Man project in association with Austrian electronic arts festival Ars Electronica.

The iconic video game character was one of the key attractions at last month’s festival, where he appeared in a number of prototype and experimental experiences designed to test possible new areas for the character going forward.

Key among them was the dedicated Pac-Man exhibition designed to promote education. The family-friendly ‘EduCreation Lab’ featured a timeline of Pac-Man’s major gaming moments and encouraged parents and children alike to work together to solve puzzles and take on new challenges and educational possibilities.

The publisher’s Japanese and European teams also created a special Microsoft Hololens version of classic Pac-Man called ‘Pac in Town’ that let gamers play Pac-Man in their surroundings, as well as a new table-top Pac-Man called ‘Pac-Connect,’ which let multiple versions of the Pac-Man character meet in-game and introduce themselves in real life.

Finally, a new Pac-Man experience was created in the festival’s Deep Space 8K screening room called ‘Funguage’ where players could send messages to the Pac-Man universe in a language inspired by emoji.

Lee Kirton, UK marketing and PR director and chief Pac-Manofficer EU, said:Pac-Manis an icon, and the first ever video game character that has made millions of people happy for almost four decades. The character has an incredibly rich history since 1980 and it’s fascinating how history, music, fashion and cultures have changed over the period, yet the character remains the most known and loved by people of all ages.

"History has changed so much in nearly 40 years and there is an incredible story and world-records that are associated with the character, so as an entertainment company we are thinking much broader, as well as how our famous character can support education, social interaction and help the future with new technologies and experiences. We have great games, a great character and a rich history and it’s a great opportunity for us to explore new prototypes to support a positive future.”

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