PAC-MAN Championship Edition 2 Hands-On: PAC-ing Plenty of Heat, And Soon


 

Pac-Man CE2_game-boxBandai Namco has kept Pac-Man relevant for decades in all sorts of games, but that speedy yellow dot-gobbler is always best when things are simplest. PAC-MAN Championship Edition 2 does an excellent job at blending old and new gameplay elements that allow classic fans to dive in and play while giving newbies an actual fighting chance to keep up on the scoring front.

Some hands-on time at the company’s recent NYC event revealed a game that’s faster and more frantic than the first installment, adding new modes, fixing up a few things and overall, making for a guaranteed thrill ride experience that’s going to be hard to put down.

boss_01 

Releasing digitally on Sept. 13th for $12.99 on PS4, Xbox One, and PC (via Steam), the game will “PAC”-in several modes for solo or competitive play, all featuring flashy, energetic visuals that riff on the classic arcade game flawlessly. During my ten minute session and plenty of minutes watching people dive in and play with the same “no way!” grins on their faces on a PS4 build, it was clear as a bell that the game would be a total smash when it drops next month. The non-stop action handles like a dream using the PS4 pad, so you don’t need to fret that the game needs an arcade stick. In fact, the game handles so well that I’d bet a nickel all those moms or dads who were PAC-MAN players that don’t play many modern games, but have a console or PC in the house for the kids just might get a bit scared their kids can now keep up with them in a competitive game.

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Time Attack and Adventure Mode offer up their own sets of challenges, and the while the very idea of tutorial stages to play a PAC-MAN game may seem horrifying to some stalwarts, what’s here works exceptionally well in getting everyone up to speed. New maze types and some massive boss battles in Adventure mode plus the crazy train Ghost Train stuff in the main mode will keep this one in play stacks even when the inevitable third installment arrives at some point. All I know is some of us will be taking a sick day or hoping for a rainy weekend after the game launches so we can have an excuse for staying home in our PJ’s grooving on a bit of CE2 action. Er, I’m speaking in CLEARLY hypothetical terms, of course.

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Stuff You Miss When You’re Not Paying Attention #214

Pac-Egg 006 (Custom)
 

Um, Happy Belated Birthday, Pac-Man! As I’ve been busy with some stuff here, I missed the big day for this classic arcade character. But my breakfast a few days back reminded me to check and yup, he’s a year older. Anyway, YES the photo is upside down because I just noticed that it looks as if that eggy-veggie thing I made has got an eye and eyebrow when it’s flipped that way. Okay, so I never said I was perfect. Well, at least ol’ Pac won’t come after me because I forgot to get him a card or bake a cake. He’s cool about that (or so I hear).

PAC-MAN Comes to Android Wear – Your Watch Now Has Retro Classiness!

Android Wear PAC-MAN Watch Face 

Got an Android Wear Watch? Good. Like Pac-Man? Even better! Bandai Namco Games has just released a cool PAC-MAN Watch Face now available to download to Android Wear smartwatches for $0.99 via the Google Play store. Yes, you should buy it, as it’s an instant attention getter and even better, the safest way to enjoy the classic character on a device while walking down the street.

As it’s not a game, but a fun watch face that has Pac munching away the minutes as he makes his way ’round the dial, you don’t need to worry about anything but looking stylish as you strut your stuff. Of course, if you get stopped by someone wanting to check out that buck you’ve spent, just let them know that it’s not an interactive addition to your wrist. That and poor Pac would probably go kooky if he was doing nothing but looping in a tiny circle or rectangle all day eating dots without a single ghost to munch. Hey, everyone needs a hobby, right?

Pac-Man Museum: Namco Bandai’s Fast Moving Fossil Still Rules.

 
I can’t recall a year since 1980 that Pac-Man wasn’t playable on something so it’s good to see Namco Bandai keeping things rolling along with this latest collection that focuses exclusively on everyone’s favorite power pellet chomping, ghost chasing (or avoiding) round yellow hero. PSN, Xbox Live Arcade (February 25) and PC via Steam (February 26). You know you want to play even if you’re not a gamer. Hey, EVERYONE is lousy at Pac-Man until they suddenly get really good at it from playing too much. And if you don’t think that will happen, a ha ha ha… you’ll see. You’ll be dreaming of colorful ghosts and those oddball sound effects soon enough.

Hands-On With Pac-Man Championship DX: Dot’s Entertainment (And How!)

Pac_Man_Championship_DXAs an old fogey, I can’t recall a year not going by since 1980 without playing a Pac-Man game. Granted, I’m sure a lot of other people can say that, but it’s pretty incredible that the dot-munching, ghost avoiding/chasing character has held up for over 30 years. Of course, next to the arcade classic, the best ways to play a good game of Pac-Man these days is by hopping online and getting in some quality time with the excellently addictive Pac-Man Championship Edition on the Xbox 360, which is finally getting a content upgrade soon in the form of Pac-Man Championship Edition DX. The original game was an Xbox 360 exclusive, while DX made its Windows 8 debut earlier this year. Pac-fans old and new will LOVE this one for its spin on the classic game, the funky HD neon visuals and the lighting fast pace of the game that’s bound to keep you playing ’til the wee hours…

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Applied Design @MoMA: Playing Games in Public Reveals Some Issues…

 

Well, that darned “ringer” Pac-Man machine with the funky joystick was ONE problem and bad enough for an old gaming salt like me to come up against, grrrr. But I’ll have to kick myself harder for being SO supremely lame at vib-ribbon when I have it here and used to play it quite a lot. Granted, it HAS been a few years since I picked up that PSOne import, but still… I think someone messed with the controller, as the card next to the exhibit was off a bit. Well, the good thing was everyone who played it had problems as well. I at least managed to make it to the end of the second area on one attempt… and of course, I wasn’t filming or being films when it happened… bleh.

 

Pac-Man Is Harder Than It Should be @MoMA’s Applied Design Show…

 

Yes, it’s the Namco arcade classic, but the version at the show is a bit lame because the joystick isn’t too responsive. Er, tilt your head or watch this on a mobile phone for best results. Anyway, I kept sucking hard at the game but it wasn’t ALL my fault. Right after I got my paws on this machine with the funky as hell joystick that made for QUICK losing battles against Pinky, Blinky, Inky and Clyde, Local NY1 News Tech Beat reporter Adam Balkin stepped up and… proceeded to be as bad as I was at the game. Well, everyone I saw play this didn’t last long, but I think that’s planned in the exhibit in order to keep that ONE guy or gal really good at the game from being a total jerk and play for hours on those free credits…

 

 

Hmmm… I should have given Adam my business card, but eh, we’ll meet again at some point…