Chomp and Roll with GPS-based Pacman Game


Last year, I sent a note to two GPS makers (TomTom and Garmin) asking if either company would ever consider building in games that made use of the location-based technology that gets us from one place to another. Neither replied.

Feeling sad and rejected, I let it go. Recently, while trolling for a new GPS app to replace my older-than-dirt car-mounted Magellan and my oh-so-modern iPhone GPS that seems to hate highways and loves guiding me to dirt roads, I found Waze.

Created by a group of smart guys in Isreal, the app combines the latest map updates (yes, even that one month old bypass near work which Google Maps still doesn't have), a social network that tracks traffic jams or speed cameras... and best of all, a game called Waze Pacman. YES, finally someone in the holy land heard my cries!

While the streets don't show Pac-man's infamous ghosts or floating fruit, users get to watch their moving vehicle eat on-screen pellets. There's one rule: you have to be the first Waze user to drive down that road since the first driver gets the pellets. Pellets are reset once a day so you can see if your daily road pellet munching days get better. Apparently some cretin had already road munched half the pellets on the way to my son's school. Just for the extra pellets, I actually drove on the side roads on the way back.

Sporting a unique look, social features that let fans add updates to maps, Waze might become the GPS version of Facebook.

Source: [Waze]