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Surprising Pre-Pacman Game
Good one! I used to play that all the time when I was a little boy with my Atari 2600: http://www.atariage.com/software_page.html?SoftwareLabelID=144
I forgot the name of that game, so I had to do a search on MameDB. As I said, there were several similar-looking games that are listed from the same year, so I'm not sure which came first.
However, in my search for the game, I didn't notice ANY games that seemed to have a notable "character" in it. It could very well be that PacMan is the first game to make the "characters" a central part of the game (the enemies even had nicknames!). I did see a "Lupin III" game that apparently predated Pacman, but the graphics and gameplay looked too primitive to emote any character, seemingly relying on the players' familiarity with the book and cartoon series...
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