Lots of museums in New York City offer interactive exhibitions where visitors can play with the installations and experience the sensory first-hand. But none were quite as geeky and awesome as this 3D Ms. Pac-Man game that takes up the space of an entire room — ceilings included. If you happened to be in the Big Apple this past month, a visit to the Museum of Art and Design in midtown afforded you the opportunity to take the widely-loved 8-bit game to a new dimension.
Created Keita Takahashi, the mastermind behind the wacky game Katamari Damacy, the playable 3D Ms. Pac-Man requires player to physically move their bodies as they play. As Ms. Pac-Man runs off one wall and onto the other, you’ll need to make the correct turns and keep your eyes on the other walls to ensure you don’t accidentally run into a ghost. Remember to watch out for the special fruits as well if you want to make the high score!
The installation is part of Babycastles Summit, a collaboration between the social video gaming group and Takahashi, to bring the arcade world to life size. Other exhibitions include a two-player controlled Super Mario Bros. that looks more like ball drop game for weight trainers, and Defender-style game that requires players to run from room to room to catch the movement of their characters on separate but connected computer screens. The latter takes side-scroller games to a literal level, and makes the game feel more interactive. Who wouldn’t want to jump into a ball pit after completing a level? Unfortunately, this option isn’t very doable in New York City-sized apartments for us gamers in the metropolis… which is why a day at the museum makes perfect sense.
If you’re visiting New York and want to learn more about video game history and some interactivity, don’t feel bad that you missed this summit. A short trip to the Museum of Moving Image in Queens also allows you to explore some background behind gaming technologies and play with vintage arcade booths. This is the same museum that, back in 2007, had an exhibition for a projector screen-sized Star Wars shooter game so you can certainly expect tons of nerdy fun no matter how many times you visit.
Check out the videos from Babycastles Summit, a giant adult playground, thanks to Kotaku.