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Pac-Man: Birth of an Icon

Publisher Cook and Becker is proud to announce its gorgeous, hardcover retrospective, the first-ever history of PAC-MAN. The book, PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon, is available worldwide.

Full of historical imagery, concept designs, marketing photos and more, the book examines the game’s design philosophy and origins through the artists, designers, developers, and other creative teams who brought PAC-MAN to life.

This new non-fiction book will journey from creator Toru Iwatani's "pizza slice" inspiration to the game’s incredible success in arcades and beyond. The book also dives into PAC-MAN’s unprecedented impact on pop culture, with more than 40 new interviews from key players around the world.

A Full History of PAC-MAN

With untold stories, new details, and archival imagery, PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon showcases the franchise’s complex history from Tokyo to Chicago to Boston, unpacking the stories of video game industry stalwarts Namco and Midway Manufacturing.

The book PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon is written by Arjan Terpstra (writer of our Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary Art Book) and Tim Lapetino (author of Art of Atari and other books), and made in close conjunction with BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.

“I’m thrilled to share the work we’ve done in digging deep into the history of PAC-MAN,” said co-author Arjan Terpstra. “We were given access to many of the original Namco team members who made the game what it is, and I’m excited to tell their stories. Whether you’re into video game history, art, or just the stories behind pop culture, there will be something in this book for you.”

“The history of PAC-MAN is also the history of the golden age of video games,” remarked co-author Tim Lapetino. “PAC-MAN’s origins also happen to run through my hometown of Chicago, and I’m very excited to be able to tell some of the stories that have been hidden until now. It’s about time to shed light on what PAC-MAN and its creators have meant to video games and the larger entertainment landscape.”

“It is a great honor that the 40-years’ history of PAC-MAN is now turned into a beautiful book and will soon be published by Cook & Becker," Yutaka Fuse, Head of Licensing and Branding at BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc. adds.

"Cook & Becker did a wonderful job of going deeply into the early days of the video game industry. We would like to show a special respect to the detailed research they had to do to realize this book. We hope this book will provide video game fans insight into the innovation and creation behind the industry’s history.”


The book PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon will be available in three separate editions: The Standard hardcover edition, a limited Collector's Edition, and an even more limited Collector's Edition signed by PAC-MAN creator Toru Iwatani.

Standard Hardcover Edition:
    • The PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon book
    • 300+ pages of full-color history, design, and imagery.
    • English text
    • Hardcover/dust jacket.
    • Contains a fascinating bonus text, the first English-language translation of PAC-MAN creator Toru Iwatani's memoir, PAC-MAN's Method.

Collector's Edition:
    • The PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon book
    • A unique box and PAC-MAN shaped slipcase, celebrating the visual history of PAC-MAN.
    • Includes an exclusive PAC-MAN arcade token.
    • Includes a limited, brand-new 7” vinyl pressing of the 1981 smash hit "PAC-MAN Fever" by Buckner & Garcia!
    • Limited to 2,000 copies.

Collector's Edition (signed)
    • Everything included in the Collector's Edition.
    • Personally signed by PAC-MAN creator Toru Iwatani.
    • Limited to sixty (60) copies.

PAC-MAN: Birth of an Icon is officially licensed by BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.


BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc. is a Japanese video game production and publishing company.
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