The founder of the company that created "Pac-Man," Masaya Nakamura, died at 91 on Jan. 22, Bandai Namco confirmed on Monday.
Nakamura formed Namco in 1955. The game company later merged with Bandai in 2005. Pac-Man was created in 1980 by Namco engineer Toru Iwatani and went on to be played roughly 10 billion times in arcades, game consoles and smartphones.
Namco did not confirm the cause of Nakamura's death, citing his family's wishes.
The idea for Pac-Man's design came from the image of a pizza with a slice carved out. Nakamura reportedly chose the word "Pac," or "pakku" in Japanese, to represent the sound of the Pac-Man munching its prey.
Nakamura started with just two mechanical horses to his name.
Twitter quickly filled with tributes.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.