If you woke up this morning thinking, “I hope somebody invents a new way for me to waste even more time on the Internet!”, well, then you just got it.
Next time you go to Google Maps to educate yourself on geography, you may instead find yourself playing a classic arcade game, and leaving without even coming close to completing the task that you started with.
The online mapping service now lets users play Pac-Man — on any street they want to in the entire world.
If you look up directions, you’ll see the option in the bottom-left corner. One click and you’re off. The familiar yellow devourer, the little orbs and the villainous ghosts suddenly appear.
Obviously the neat factor is that no two sections of street is the same. You can play the game in the area you live in, or any other location you have some type of attachment to, and it’ll always be different. The world is your board game. Literally.
Blogs are already pointing out the best places to play, ranging from Boston, Massachusetts to Saigon, Vietnam.
I can’t even imagine how much effort it took to accomplish this. Without a doubt, It’s a coding phenomenon of computer science. But, like, who actually needs this?
There’s zero educational value, it’s not the slightest bit constructive, and if anything, it actually detracts from accomplishing the act of looking up directions. Google Maps Pac-Man actually inhibits our productivity.
And I know you can say that about anything — online gaming is easily accessible. But not when you’re actually trying to procure information. It would be like if Wikipedia suddenly added falling Tetris blocks to its pages.
It’s cool as shit. I get that. And it also fits Google’s M.O. of being extremely creative and fun. But I think the novelty wears off pretty quickly. I also think Pac-Man is one of those games that’s entertaining for about the first 12 seconds, and then it becomes redundant and stressful.
You know how you have that recurring nightmare where you’re constantly being chased, and no matter how much you try to escape, you’re inevitably going to get caught? No? That’s just me? Well, that sucks.
Anyway, that’s exactly how I view Pac-Man. You’re perpetually on the run and you’re not really even aiming to accomplish anything besides accumulating arbitrary points.
I think what’s kept the game so popular through the years is not only its simplicity, but the cuteness and harmless nature of the characters. Had Pac-Man been some type of ball-eating grasshopper-looking creature, I don’t think it would have been as beloved.
But if you’re an avid fan of the game, then congratulations, this news is probably one of the most exciting things you’ve ever heard.
You’ll also probably never learn how to get anywhere again for the rest of your life.