First Advisor

Ellie Harmon

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Computer Science and University Honors


Computer Science




Video games -- Marketing, Video games -- Psychological aspects, Video games -- History




With the social, cultural, and economic influence of video games, it is important to examine why they have become such popular forms of entertainment. Particularly, why certain franchises have continued to persist among the growing industry. Two notable franchises are Pac-Man and Street Fighter, which are also most frequently discussed in scholarly texts. I supplement a literature review with an analysis of marketing texts to illuminate a series of shared factors that help explain both games' popularity despite the apparent dissimilarities of their content. First, my work helps us look across multiple scholarly papers to create a bigger picture of each franchises’ success. Second, my work compares across genres as a way of developing a framework that helps us understand both games' success. In my literature review, I found three factors that contributed to the games' success: The Revolution, elements that brought new revolutions to the video game industry, Gameplay Mechanics, elements within their gameplay that contribute to the players' experience, and Relatability and Involvement, elements that allow players to become more involved with their gaming environment and elements that are relatable to them. These factors not only help us better understand the successes of both Pac-Man and Street Fighter, they could also be used in the future to analyze other games, and develop future games.


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