Back in 1980, Namco created a loveable character named Pac-Man who, over the last 36 years, has become a staple in gaming history. With such a simple concept, Pac-Man has stood the test of time as a game that is easily accessible by all, no matter the age or skill level. Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 is an edgy but true to form take on the classic that adds its own addictive spin.
The traditional rules of eating small pellets and not touching the roaming ghosts are long gone. Here, this intense Pac-Man adventure involves eating pellets to fill your energy bar – store enough energy and the fruit will appear in the centre of the map. Gobble the fruit, and you’re transported to the next map. Touching ghosts no longer results in your untimely death; bumping into ghosts several times will make them angry – and angry ghosts will chase you until they either kill you or calm down. And this time ’round, Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde aren’t the only ghosts in town – minion ghosts awaken when Pac-Man gets close. Minions attach themselves to the regular ghosts, creating super-ghost-chain that, if you can gobble it all down, will reward you with big points.
Points, just as in the traditional classic, are the name of the game. Here, the clock is your enemy, as staying alive feels easier this time ’round. It’s relatively easy to avoid ghosts, bumping into them to move them out of the away and then escaping their angry rage is a challenge, but not an insurmountable one. Pac-Man’s death isn’t really the issue – but the timer is. With each level, you are up against the clock to progress as far as you can before the timer reaches zero.
The clock’s not the only change – an array of different maps each showcase some of Pac-Man’s new abilities. The traditional maze is joined by maps consisting of long straightaways, while others focus on Pac-Man’s new found ability to jump. Warp jumps allow Pac-Man to catapult himself across a section of the board for an easy escape, or simply offer a quicker way to get around. Bomb jumps are a simple button push away, allowing you to fly from anywhere on the map back to that starting point to collect the newly spawned power-pellet, quickly turning the tables on your aggressors and causing havoc amongst the ghost to whom you were once prey.
Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 introduces two new modes – Score Attack and Adventure. Score Attack is exactly as you would expect – simply score as many points as you can as quickly as you can, while facing a range of different maze types, numbers of enemy ghosts, and other tweaks, such as speed of movement. Adventure mode sees you face a series of different maps, before facing a large scale boss fight – here the theme is simply ‘survive as long as possible and get as many points as possible.’ It’s a neat spin on what we know as Pac-Man, but not a game changer.
In fact, Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 is at it’s best when it focuses on its arcade roots – scoring points. The challenges against the clock are fun, but playing the game this way just lacks the flare of eating pellets and ghosts like its going out of style. It’s just not as much fun.
Besides the typical fun you would expect from a Pac-Man game, the visuals and music are incredible. The game constantly makes you feel like you are at a rave party. How much fun could a game be when it’s still true to roots laid down 36 years ago? The answer is a lot – Namco has done an amazing job. Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 feels like both a brand new game and an interesting twist on a classic.
Although not suited to longer play sessions, with a thumping soundtrack and fast game play Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 is a great party experience for the family.
Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 is available now from the Store, priced £9.99.
Are you picking up this new and intense Pac-Man experience? What are some of your Pac-Man memories? Let us know in the comment section below!
A modern day spin on a timeless classic that's fun for the whole family!
You know what to expect when playing a Pac-Man game but Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 ramps it up with modern day mechanics and revitalized feel. Namco has done a great job changing major mechanics and still making it feel true to its roots. Longer gameplay sessions may be lacking but with this new spin on an old classic, you won’t be let down striving for a high score.