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Down Home Gamin' - "Oh, you've got a deadly game of cat and mouse going..."

On 04/03/2024 at 01:31 PM by SanAndreas

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Early 80s video game technology had come a long way since Pong and Computer Space, but there were still limitations on how realistic graphics could be. Therefore; a lot of game designers drew on classic animation for inspiration, since the slapstick action and visuals were much more achievable with the technology that was available. Mario, for example, was inspired by Popeye.

These three games were inspired by classic cat and mouse cartoons like Tom and Jerry, and by similar anime in Japan, and tried to capture the antics of animated cats and mice trying to outwit each other.

Featured games:

Mappy (Namco)

Mouser (UPL)

Mousetrap (Exidy) 

Fun fact: Mousetrap had its own song on Buckner and Garcia’s album, “Pac-Man Fever,” and the Colecovision version was one of that system’s signature titles.



Cary Woodham

04/04/2024 at 08:17 AM

Here's some interesting facts you might not know about Mappy.  You know how we have slang terms for police officers like 'cops' and whatnot?  Well they do in Japan, too.  One of their slang terms for police is "mappo," and that's how they got the name Mappy!

Here's something I learned fairly recently.  While Namco is best known for their arcade games, they've also dabbled in other amusements like robotics.  There's the Chuck E. Cheese style PicPac Robot Band and the toy dinosaur "Wagyan" for instance.  Both of those robots even appeared in games later on.  But did you know that Nyamco and Mappy did NOT first appear in the arcade game?  They were first robots!

In Japan in the 80s, a popular competition was to program robots to go through a maze.  Namco first entered the foray with a robot cat named Nyamco.  The next year they made a Mappy robot with a needle on its tail so it could pop balloons in the mazes, too. That's why in the bonus stages in Mappy, he pops balloons there as well.  After the arcade Mappy was released, Namco made some smaller toy robots of them as well to sell to the public.

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