Let Me Sell You On Pac-Man: The Survival Horror Game.

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#1 Posted by FateOfNever (1876 posts) -

So, a friend of mine sent me an image today which brings up a very important point in regards to Pac-Man (and also is relevant to the second part of this post); Pac-Man is a survival horror game.

Are You Going To Tell Me That This Isn't Accurate?
Are You Going To Tell Me That This Isn't Accurate?

Ok, so, there are two points here, one, Pac-Man is a survival horror game. Think about it. You're trapped in a maze (much like how most survival horror games are in maze like environments where areas are closed off and you have to find weird round about ways to get where you're going) while being chased by ghosts, while trying to collect all of the pellets. The ghosts are super terrifying most of the time because you can't do anything to them, you can only run (survival horror-esque), but, every now and then you can turn the tables on them via Power Pellets! But, like any good horror monster, they just keep coming back!

With my brief explanation of how Pac-Man is already a survival horror game, let me sell you on this idea - Remake Pac-Man, as a 3rd person survival horror game (that is more adventure game-y than 3rd person shooter.)

The above picture is the inspiration for this stupid and crazy idea. Pac-Man is actually a man on a space station, or a base on another planet or something, where he has to deal with these four ghosts that suddenly attack the station/building. Each ghost is unique - Blinky (red ghost) bled to death (thus a red suit) and kills people in as bloody of a way as possible. Clyde (orange ghost) burned to death and is still constantly on fire (thus a red suit) and spread fire wherever he goes and burns his victims to death. Inky froze to death and his suit is covered in ice and...you get the idea from the other two. And Pinky suffocated to death and will find ways to cut off the oxygen to areas (suit wouldn't need to be pink, but she would be female, and being able to cut off the oxygen to areas would be somewhat reminiscent of Pinky's 'ambush' nature from the standard Pac-Man games, and for that matter you could make little quirks like that applicable to all of the rest of the ghosts, by setting up how each one attacks the player; straightforward, getting easily distracted/wandering off, things like that.)

You wouldn't be able to stop the ghosts by any normal means other than to simply run away and find ways to potentially delay them (escaping to a different area, for example), but you could work in some kind of special medicine or something (the power pellet) that you can use in an emergency and will cause the ghosts to disappear from around you, but, they will still come back eventually and you only have a set number of them.

As for the objective of the game, you could be going around trying to salvage what you can from the station; maybe you need to make an escape but you have to gather enough food so that you can survive after leaving the station, or maybe that's how it starts, but then once the ghosts show up you have to start figuring out how to get rid of the ghosts.

The game could end in a ridiculous plot twist of Pac-Man actually being in a padded cell on earth and is just crazy and the ghosts are people that he has killed while having fits of insanity (but then they could leave you with one last moment of 'but maybe it IS all real and him in the padded cell is just the ghosts having defeated him in the REAL world and then you can't tell what is real and what isn't.)

By the way, I don't ACTUALLY think that this is something that should ever be done, because it would be awful, I just had this idea due to the picture and decided to share my super dumb idea so that other people can share in this... ....whatever the hell you want to call this dumb idea for a Pac-Man 'remake'.

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#2 Posted by MooseyMcMan (12563 posts) -

Pac-Man is the scariest of games. You can never win. Those ghosts just keep coming. FOREVER.

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#3 Posted by MikeGosot (3237 posts) -

This picture is my new wallpaper. But about your idea... No offense but... PLEASE NO! OH FUCKING MOTHER OF CHRIST NO!

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#4 Posted by Video_Game_King (36564 posts) -

I've always interpreted Pac Man far differently. I'd say how, but I want to save that for a future blog, when my drawing skills aren't utter shit.

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#5 Posted by buttle826 (256 posts) -

I am a studying game development, and this idea is not terrible. I like the idea of a super weird take on classic characters. Would you mind if I used this for a project for school?

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#6 Posted by Gamer_152 (14501 posts) -

Oh man, this was pretty good. It's like the Dead Space mod that's begging to be made.

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#7 Posted by RandomInternetUser (6805 posts) -


They should make a game that is exactly Pac-Man, but has a closer camera and an isometric camera view with characters like you described and crazy death animations. Man.

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#8 Posted by FateOfNever (1876 posts) -

@MikeGosot said:

This picture is my new wallpaper. But about your idea... No offense but... PLEASE NO! OH FUCKING MOTHER OF CHRIST NO!

You're saying you DON'T want Blinky, a blood covered ghost in a space suit chasing after you down a dark hallway, past the bloody corpses he's left in his wake before he stumbled upon you, just to shut yourself into a new, larger room where everything seems safe and then BAM! Pinky shuts off the air to the room, you're panicking, trying to figure out how to get air back into the room when suddenly Pinky slips through a wall in front of you and starts struggling with you, trying to physically choke you to death and needing to frantically pop a power pellet to 'dissolve' Pinky for the time being, giving you the time needed to return air to the room/or to find a way out of the room? It could totally be done psychological horror style, like in such a way where you're constantly left thinking "are these ghosts real or are they just in my head?" Like popping a power pellet to save yourself from Blinky and causing not only Blinky to disappear, but all of the bloody bodies he'd left behind to disappear for a time as well, returning an environment to 'normal' until the effects of the power pellet possibly wear off?

I kid though, like I said, this was kind of a crazy idea that came to mind when I was thinking about the image, and I recognize that it is a totally crazy idea that also sort of fits into that TANG movie category of "what the fuck did they do to the source material? who thought this Mario Bros. movie was anything resembling a good idea?" But it also seems kind of out there enough that I still think it is a fun idea despite knowing that it is something that I would groan at if I ever saw it actually come to creation.

Also, consider the imagery of an over the top horror commercial, like Dead Space, just to have the Pac-Man logo pop up at the end. Just think that imagery over for a moment.

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#9 Posted by mento (3782 posts) -

I figured this was going to mention the live Pac-Man from Club Dread. For some reason that's the first thing I think of when "Pac-Man" and "Horror" are used in the same sentence.

Honestly, you could take any classic arcade game and choose to frame it as a stark psychological sci-fi horror. Like the aliens that eat people in Defender, or the eerie silence of Asteroids. Or Sinistar. Hell, just remake Sinistar as a cockpit-view space-sim with a sufficiently colossal Sinistar chasing you around and bricks will no doubt be shat.

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#10 Posted by coakroach (2498 posts) -

Time for a gritty Pacman reboot.

It fits the gameplay and the aesthetic amazingly well, bravo good sir.

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#11 Posted by MikeGosot (3237 posts) -
@FateOfNever: Actually, i like to see these "gritty reboots", but usually they just make me think "Man, i could be watching/playing the original thing right now." and speaking about gritty reboots we all have seen how Bomberman Act Zero turned out. I would like to see this becoming a Mod for Dead Space like Gamer_152 mentioned, or something like that . 
Sorry for being the boring guy. But i will show you something that will make you smile: 
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#12 Posted by FateOfNever (1876 posts) -

And of course somewhere in the game you would need a Pac-Man arcade machine and a Pac-Man Fever call out. Or maybe that's the name of the game, Pac-Man Fever, and the reason the power pellets get rid of the ghosts is because the ghosts are tied to a sickness that the main character is suffering from, thus playing up a psychological horror aspect even more. While this would inevitably be a really awful video game, I'm actually thinking I'm half tempted to write a short story based on this idea now.

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#13 Posted by FateOfNever (1876 posts) -

@buttle826: Sure, go ahead. But...if it turns out you go on to make a bunch of money off of the idea somehow, I'mma want my cut.

@MikeGosot: That was pretty good, I got a kick out of it, in a cheesy 'really bad movie' kind of way.

@Gamer_152: You know, it would be kind of awesome as a Dead Space mod, you're right. So many of the elements are already there. Plus, seeing Isaac in a Pac-Man themed suit would be pretty sweet.

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