Platform Reviewed on: Nintendo Switch
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC.
A Pac Man game release in 2018? That was unexpected. Truth be told, I have never been a fan of this particular game, but i will try to be as objective to you as possible nonetheless. Even when i was a lot younger, i thought that it was too simplistic for my taste. The premise is simple; You are a yellow round ”thing” with a huge appetite that constantly chews while moving, trying to eat as many dots as he can while evading ghosts of different colours. Apart from some minor changes to its gameplay the same formula since the 80s has been applied here as well. There is nothing entirely new to the mix. And do not tell me ”it is a puzzle game, how can it have a plot??”. Check Catherine on PlayStation 3 and you will see what i mean.
Taking into account that this is a puzzle game, the graphics while simplistic, serve their purpose for the most part. The stages are 2D maze-like structures that get progressively more and more difficult. All of them have mostly the same futuristic backgrounds and after some time, they get repetitive. Ghosts and Pac Man himself are designed quite good and add to the humorous character of the game. What i liked the most were the sequences when Pac Man eats a ”caterpillar of ghosts”;the screen zooms in and shows him chewing each and every one of them while the points you get rack up on screen. However, these small ”cinematics”, while exhilarating, they soon get repetitive after some sessions.
This is one of the strongest sectors of the game. Techno music is mostly used as the main soundtrack of the game , which goes along well with the fast paced action. You will start feeling your adrenaline levels rising listening to those rhythms while simultaneously navigating rapidly through the mazes. Furthermore, there are some sound effects that are recycled from the original Pac Man games, managing to strike a chord of nostalgia.
In general, the gameplay is quite simple. Pac Man controls generally easily using Joy Con’s analogue stick, however you will find some difficulties when trying to manoeuvre tight turns. Pac Man has also the ability to ”apply” brakes in order to pause his continuous movement. Moreover, he can use a bomb that sends him automatically to the starting point of the level, a skill very useful when surrounded by ghosts.
In almost every level, your main objective is to eat as many yellow dots as you can in order to fill up a meter. When this one is filled up, you have to eat a larger dot that sends you to another more complex level of ths stage you are in. In some levels, you become the hunter and you have to eat as many ghosts as you can in order to raise your score. By awakening sleeping ghosts, these form a chain that can be eaten all at once in order to raise your score sky high. Towards the end of the stage, you reach the boss of the stage, where you just have to jump and hit him some times to send him to oblivion.
There is a 2 player mode as well, where you have to team up and cooperate with a friend in order to do exactly the same things, with the only difference being that to get from one level to the other you have to make the 2 Pac Mans ”kiss” one another upon eating all the yellow dots.
Initially the game is quite fun but, after some time spent completing missions with almost the same structure, i thought i have seen pretty much everything and i stopped playing. As a 2 Player experience it is very good if played in short bursts, but you will eventually get bored nonetheless.
Value for Money:……7
The game is not that expensive, since i only gave 20 Euros on Day 1 of its release to buy it. There is a lot of content and fun to have here for Pac Man fans and for people who are generally fond of simpler video games. For more experienced players that are generally searching a more complex puzzle game experience, you should try Overcooked.