The fun part of this pacman variations is that you have an excuse to run in a pacman/ghost costume through the town.
The original pacmanhattan game is played by ten people in an area of 6×4 blocks around the Washington Square
with one pacman and 4 ghosts. Additional each of them is supposed to have an controller (on contact by phone)
who keeps an eye on the board while the first 5 players run through the streets.
That way the pacman knows always where the ghosts are but the ghost don’t know where the pacman is.
Except when pacman touched a power pellet, located in the corner of the playing field,
then the ghosts know in which quarter he is.
That seems to me pretty similar to catching Mister X, only with the problem that when you know where pacman is he can not be caught for two minutes because of the power pellets.
Because the pacman player is also dressed in a big yellow ball (and the ghosts have colorfull ghost costumes) it is also easy to others down the street.
The goal for the ghosts is to catch pacman, and the goal for the pacman is to run the board until all of the dots are eaten to accumulate as many points as possible
In the orignal pacmanhattan game points are not only rewarded for each dot (30 Points ) but also for each ghosts (200 points) So to reach a good highscore it might even pay off for pacman to chase a ghost.
for more details check out http://www.pacmanhattan.com/
What could be improved for Pervasive Pacman?
I think the game shouldn’t be played in downtown but in a suburb.
There are less pedastrian to be avoid. Also the GPS coverage and the mobile coverage (for data connection) are better so that seperate controllers/generals are not necessarily needed.
Instead of 10 people you would need only 3-5 Players in the street
An app for smartphones could be written to track the position of pacman (for counting the dots) and the position of the ghosts. Then everybody could see the position of all ghosts.
The app would allow to setup a map before the game, by walking along the streets and dropping dots and power pellets. It would also be possible for user to start a game together on a selected map. Of course the app would show the map with the ghosts during the game. The app for playing a map should be free and only an app to draw a map would cost a bit. (Or should it be the other way around?)
If there would be better mobile coverage in the midwest of teh states you could even play pacman games by driving with cars on the street grid between the fields in kansas.