Pac-Man is getting its very own themed restaurant next year in Chicago.
Dubbed Level 257 after the kill screen of the classic arcade game, publisher Namco Entertainment seems to be going for a very peculiar flavour with this somewhat nutty proposition. Level 257's official site described the upcoming eatery as "a high-end, 180-seat restaurant presenting fresh, chef-prepared dishes."
The publisher boasted that Level 257 will contain "fantastic comfortable bars and lounges with fire pits, giant red leather booths and a separate sports bar [that] all feature a wide selection of craft beers, sommelier-curated drinks, specially-selected wines and cocktails."
So far it sounds bewilderingly fancy. Then Namco noted that it will also include "16 boutique retro-styled bowling lanes with smart technology, table tennis, pinball machines and our Lost & Found games parlour with original arcades alongside exciting new titles, plus custom-built game tables and free-to-play board games."
But hey, just because arcade parlours and "sommelier-curated drinks" haven't typically gone together before doesn't mean that they can't.
"Level 257 seeks to explore Pac-Man's impact upon our society and pop culture, reminding us all of the importance of play in our lives, while facilitating our desire to relive those times when beating the next level was the most important thing in our world," Namco said in its announcement. "All while indulging that which we love now - great food and drink with our friends and family."
The Chicago Tribune noted that Level 257 will launch next May for Pac-Man's 35th anniversary.
Amazingly, this isn't the most bonkers thing Namco has done with the Pac-Man brand recently. At Pac-Man's 30th Anniversary party Marvel Studios founder Avi Arad announced a desire to make a Pac-Man cartoon dealing with "real-life issues" and "social causes" of the 21st century.
Let's just hope Level 257 is better than the Dark Souls cafe.