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Pac Man

Icons of the Century

Well before Lara Croft began kicking butt, this little yellow guy from Japan ushered in the videogame era, taking the nation by storm in 1981. Pong hit the market first, but Pac-Man — with a permanent grin and boundless appetite — gave games a personality, appealing to arcade-addicted men and women of all ages.

In addition to numerous sequels, the original Pac-Man spawned an ABC cartoon, a hit song and even a breakfast cereal. More important, with more than 10 billion quarters spent on games, Pac-Man made it clear that there was a huge audience for interactive entertainment just waiting to be served.

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