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Jr. Pac-Man

Jrpacman

Developer: Bally Midway
Publisher: Bally Midway
Series: Pac-Man series
Genres: Maze
Release date(s): Northamericaflagsmall August 13, 1983
Arcade system Namco Pac-Man
Number of players One or two players
Input methods 4 way joystick

Jr. Pac-Man is an arcade game released in 1983 by Bally Midway. It could be considered the follow-up to Ms. Pac-Man.

Gameplay

The gameplay of Jr. Pac-Man is similar to that of its predecessors with a few differences. The maze is now two times the width of the display, and a virtual camera pans left and right along the maze to follow Jr. Pac-Man, sometimes resulting in the ghosts being off-screen. A total of seven mazes appear throughout the game, and unlike previous Pac-Man games, none of the mazes have tunnels that wrap around from one side of the screen to the other. Most mazes also have six energizers instead of four.

As in prior games, bonus items appear in each level, but they are now toys instead of fruit. They appear in the middle of the maze and bounce around for a while, but as a prize encounters dots, it changes them into larger dots that slow Jr. Pac-Man down (but are worth more points). If not eaten beforehand, a prize self-destructs when it encounters a Power Pellet and destroys them both.

There are also a few cosmetic differences: the main character is now Jr. Pac-Man; the orange ghost, called "Clyde" in Pac-Man and "Sue" in Ms. Pac-Man, is now named "Tim"; and the game's graphics and sound have been updated, including a lower-case anti-aliased font for scores and game text.

Mazejr

The original maze, which would normally scroll.

Scoring System

  • Pac-Dot - 10 points.
  • "Large" Dot - 50 points.
  • Power Pellet - 50 points.
  • Vulnerable Ghosts:
    • #1 in succession - 200 points.
    • #2 in succession - 400 points.
    • #3 in succession - 800 points.
    • #4 in succession - 1600 points.
  • Bonus Items:
    • 🚲 Bike: 100 Points
    • JPM Bonus Kite Kite: 200 Points
    • 🥁 Drum: 500 Points
    • 🎈 Balloon: 700 Points
    • 🚂 Train: 1000 Points
    • 🐈 Cat: 2000 Points
    • 🍺 Root Beer: 5000 Points

Intermissions / Acts

The game's intermissions center around the developing relationship between Jr. Pac-Man and Yum-Yum (the daughter of Blinky). This game features 3 intermissions, which are similar to the ones found in Ms. Pac-Man:

  • Jr Meets Yum-Yum: Jr. Pac-Man gets out of his house to play, and he sees Blinky alongside his daughter, Yum-Yum. He gets out of the yard to see Yum-Yum; Blinky, not accepting the potential relationship, tries to chase Jr. away. Ms. Pac-Man arrives to protect him by eating a Power Pellet, turning Blinky and Yum-Yum into blue ghosts, and Ms. and Jr. Pac go back in their house.
  • The Gift: Junior finds Yum-Yum standing on a bridge, and gives her a balloon as a gift. Yum-Yum politely accepts the balloon, but unbeknownst to them, Blinky is secretly spying on them through a nearby bush.
  • They Escape: Blinky gets out of the bush. As Yum-Yum quickly releases the balloon, Blinky tries to catch Jr. - but just as he is about to, Ms. Pac-Man comes again to protect her child by distracting Blinky, who starts chasing Ms. Pac-Man, while Jr. and Yum-Yum escape. They fall in love, surrounded by hearts.

Home Ports

Unlike Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man, which were both ported to practically everything, Jr. Pac-Man has only received three home console releases to date, for the Atari 2600, Commodore 64, and IBM PC. This is most likely due to both Atari going bankrupt in 1984, and Namco failing to secure the game's rights from Bally Midway, the game's original developers.

A prototype Atari 5200 version has also been discovered, and there is evidence a Jr. Pac-Man plug 'n play was in development at some point (the game's soundtrack can be found in debug menus). There are also homebrew versions for the Atari 7800 and Intellivision.

Play Online

These versions of Jr. Pac-Man are either listed in the public domain or are considered abandonware. Clicking the game title will lead you to a playable online version of it from archive.org (mobile compatibility may vary).

Trivia

  • Presumably to reduce costs, Jr. Pac-Man arcade machines were actually repurposed Mappy cabinets, with cheaply made stickers covering the original artwork; if said stickers are ripped, the Mappy characters can be seen underneath.

Gallery

Screenshots

Artwork