NYCC 14: Bandai Namco Games – Everything Pac-Man

To be up front, I’m not a big Pac-Man fan. I will play it if I see a random arcade cabinet somewhere, but I’m not one of those people that memorizes all the mazes and will argue whether or not Ms. Pac-Man is the superior game. My favorite thing about Pac-Man comes from Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (the film) and that’s about it. That said I’m not going to let my lack of enthusiasm stop me from telling others about their three, count them three, Pac-Man titles coming to the mobile game market.

Pac-Man and Friends

Pac-Man and Friends is in the vein of Candy Crush Saga in which there’s an endless map of potential levels and there’s different puzzles to solve for each level set. The big difference, other than the fact that you’re Pac-Man, is the friends. They’ve created more Pac’s and these ones come with abilities other than just eating pellets. The basic gist is still to eat all the pellets, but these different friends can help you achieve that with their powers. There’s still ghosts, but instead of chasing you they turn on and off and kill you when you mess up. To give the game credit, it’s actually pretty damn difficult. I played a simple level and died over and over because I thought I could rush it. It looked simple, but it wasn’t.

The controls are interesting because you can play the game more than one way. The default is tilting your tablet (it’s currently out on Android, but is coming to iOS) which will force you to be patient, but there’s things like the floating D-Pad as well. In talking to the developer he also mentioned that there’s no one configuration that will solve the puzzles the best. You will need to try different controls in order to succeed and that’s kind of interesting. Gamers don’t like to change their controls, but as he demonstrated to me you really can do better on certain levels with different controls. He showed me one with a D-Pad, but the one I played definitely worked better with tilt.

With the game coming to iOS they’re going to sell it for one price and give you a huge chunk of levels and infinite lives. Honestly I see that being better since I would be instantly frustrated loosing as many lives on the level I played. It should be out for Christmas so check it out if you’re into epic puzzle maps.

Pac-Man Championship Edition DX

If you loved Pac-Man Championship Edition DX for the console then you’re going to love the mobile version because Bandai-Namco has gone through to make it every bit as fun as the console/portable versions.

Again it’s set up with the endless map and challenges, but along the way you can challenge friends and play new versions of game types from the original game. There isn’t much else to say about this one, it’s not 100% new and that’s a good thing; but it has been carefully crafted for mobile gaming. The developers really understood what it was that the fan base loved about the console versions and made sure to make the mobile version every bit as fun.

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-Man only has one new thing going on, but it’s pretty damn cool and important. All month long for Breast Cancer awareness month there’s a new maze in the shape of the Susan G. Komen pink ribbon. This is the first new maze in Ms. Pac-Man’s long history so that alone is a pretty big deal. The game also has an option to donate from within the menus and post a blurb about your donation. Overall it’s a pretty cool thing that Bandai Namco Games is doing so it’s worth checking out if you’re a gamer looking for a way to give.

That’s about it for my Pac-Man coverage, but check out Namco Bandai’s site for more and keep an eye on the app market place for all three titles.