Midway Releases Ms. Pac-Man as an Unauthorized Sequel
Ms. Pac-Man is an arcade video game produced by Midway as an unauthorized sequel to Pac-Man.
It was released in North America in 1981 and became one of the most popular video games of all time, leading to its adoption by Pac-Man licenser Namco as an official title. This game introduces a female protagonist, new maze designs and several minor gameplay changes over the original game.
The gameplay of Ms. Pac-Man is largely identical to that of the original Pac-Man. The player gathers points by eating dots and avoiding ghosts (contact with one loses a life). Power-pellets or energizers change the ghosts, which reverse their course and can be eaten for bonus points. Fruit bonuses can be consumed for increasing point values, twice per level. As the levels increase, the speed and difficulty increase as well.
There are, however, some notable differences:
* The game has four different mazes that appear in different sets of colors. Most of the new mazes have two sets of warp tunnels.
* The ghosts' behavior patterns are different and include semi-random movement, precluding the use of pre-set patterns to beat each level.
* Instead of appearing in the center of the maze, fruits bounce around the maze, entering and leaving through the warp tunnels. Once all fruits have been encountered, they appear in random sequence rather than the last fruit repeating.
* The orange ghost's name is Sue, instead of Clyde.
* The three intermissions have changed to follow the developing relationship between Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man (from when they first meet to having a stork drop off their baby).
As in Pac-Man, the game has a bug in the subroutine that draws the fruit, which renders the 256th level unplayable. However, the game also has other bugs that cause it to crash or become unplayable much sooner, making it impossible to reach the 256th level without an emulator.