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Pac-Man gobbles its way through Google Maps

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Blinky and Pinky on the Champs Elysees? Inky and Clyde running down Broadway? Power pellets on the Embarcadero?

Leave it to Google to make April Fools’ Day into throwback fun by combining Google Maps with Pac-Man.

The massive tech company is known for its impish April Fools’ Day pranks, and Google Maps has been at the center of a few, including a Pokemon Challenge and a treasure map. This year the company was a day early to the party, rolling out the Pac-Man game Tuesday.

It’s easy to play: Simply pull up Google Maps on your desktop browser, click on the Pac-Man icon on the lower left, and your map suddenly becomes a Pac-Man course.

Twitterers have been tickled by the possibilities, playing Pac-Man in Manhattan, on the University of Illinois quad, in central London and down crooked Lombard Street in San Francisco, among many locations:

Google says the game is also playable on mobile devices in certain cities. But don’t wait, because the company says the game “will only be around for a little while.”

Who cares about rush hour? When those dark red lines of expressways and thoroughfares can be festooned with Pac-Man dots, it’s a good reason to stay late at work.

Although your computer mouse is no substitute for a good ol’ arcade joystick.

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