Arcade flyer for Gee Bee


Gee Bee gameplay

Gee Bee (ジービー Jī Bī?) is a ball & paddle game released in 1978 by Namco and designed by Toru Iwatani. It is Namco's first video arcade game and was released in the United States by Gremlin. Gee Bee was originally meant to be a game that women could play; however, Pac-Man would later use this idea as well, and the game originated from Iwatani wanting to make pinball machines, with Namco declining the idea. Gee Bee is considered one of the rarest arcade games ever made due to its poor sales and increasing popularity of games like Space Invaders and Asteroids. Gee Bee received two sequels in 1979, Bomb Bee and Cutie Q, which would later go on to be included in the Japanese release of Namco Museum Volume 2 in 1995.


The game combines Breakout with pinball machines (as mentioned above). Like many other Pong/Breakout games, the player uses the rotary knob to control the set of paddles on-screen. The player simply hits the ball back and forth at the bricks. Many pinball-esque features are presented, including spinners, roll-overs, pop bumpers and score multipliers. Gee Bee used strips of colored cellophane (used in cookie boxes), which many 1970s games used before Namco's own Galaxian in 1979, which used real RGB color.

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