In 1980, Bandai Namco Entertainment Inc. released a little arcade game revolving around a pizza-shaped character eating his way through a maze, being chased by ghosts. They knew they had a good thing going, but they probably didn’t realize it would be one of the most beloved games of all time and a pop-culture icon. Now, over 40 years later, they teamed up with The LEGO Group to bring us an epic tribute to the original game. Join us as we chomp our way through the 2651-piece LEGO Icons 10323 PAC-MAN Arcade, which will be available June 4th and retail for US $269.99 | CAN $349.99 | UK £229.99.
The LEGO Group sent The Brothers Brick an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.
Click to WAKA WAKA WAKA!
More than 40 years ago, Toru Iwatani looked at a pizza with a slice missing, and a video game icon was born. Who hasn’t spent at least a couple of hours trying to eat up as many pellets as possible while on the run from Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde? Pac-Man is one of the longest-running and best-selling video game franchises in history. And LEGO artist Paul Hetherington has paid it proper tribute with this fantastic motion poster build.
Paul has made excellent use of LEGO to perfectly capture Pac-Man’s original 8-bit look. Everything from the maze to the ghosts looks like it’s been right out of my Atari. Extra special attention was paid to the logo up top. Not only do the letters perfectly capture the shape of the trademark font, but they’re framed in red and blue lines just like on the original arcade cabinet. Give a look at the poster in action below.
When I was a kid, the closest I ever got to a real arcade was the game room in the back of the local bowling alley. Dirty carpet, a change machine that wouldn’t accept my crinkled dollar bills, and neon beer signs illuminating the TMNT machine that I could never get a turn at. I always imagined that somewhere there were kids living it up in a real video game paradise, and Brick Grayson has brought that paradise to life. Just looking at it, you can hear the cacophony of music and laser fire and cries of “hadouken!” that must echo through the place. The choice of colors does a great job of implying neon without there being any actual lights. And I particularly like the Pac-Man and Ghosts on the side of the building made mostly from sausages. If I could just get inside, I bet I could finally take a turn as Raphael.
One of the things I love about writing for The Brothers Brick is that I learn something new with every article. For instance, I never knew the ghosts from the arcade game Pac-Man had names. Apparently, they do. In this creation by Mikael Montelius Inky and Blinky are featured. Inky is the blue one, Blinky the red one. Somehow LEGO is a great medium to make 2D Arcade Games come to life. One of the things that always amazes me is how perfectly the 2×2 curved slopes fit together to make a (half) circle. These pieces are used to create not only Inky and Blinky, but also our beloved hero Pac-Man. I’m also a fan of the use of dark blue and black tiles to create the maze on the floor of this creation.
Taking on an iconic character can be an intimidating prospect; it’s all too easy for people to spot when something isn’t quite right. But no such worries here, as Marin Stipkovic nails this LEGO version of Pac-Man. The shaping on display here on both figure and cherries is fantastic, especially for such small models. Pac-Man’s expression is wonderful, and accurate right down to the nicks out of the eyes. But my favourite part has to be the gloves — a spot-on recreation from the original using only a “handful” of parts (do you see what I did there?)