Wednesday, January 13, 2010

iPhone Game App Review: Pac-Man Championship Edition

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The original Pac-Man was released in 1980. Endless versions and spinoffs have assaulted our senses since that fateful year. Pac-Man Championship Edition first appeared on Xbox Live Arcade as a download in 2007. The original creators, Toru Iwatani and Namco, played a role in this remake and it shows, as the quality is high and gameplay tight.

Atmosphere/Graphics/Sound): A. Typical Pac-Man, but with some pleasant updated retro flashing colors and engaging eighties arcade audio. It's hard to improve on an original but just a few tweaks have made for a great experience.

Replay Value: A. The developers have done Pac-Man justice. This game is essentially a multitude of minigames which, after each victory, unlocks another game. The collection as a whole is amazing, with or without an expansion pack. As you unlock more levels each one becomes more challenging, yet not painfully irritating or repetitive.

Controls: B. Rarely is there a perfect control scheme for the iPod, but with four different control options you should find one that suits you. At times maneuvering tight corners can be frustrating while operating under the time constraints of some levels.

Originality & Intangibles: A. People may scoff at another Pac-Man game but this game is simply amazing fun. The variety of mazes and gameplay is reminiscent of the classic Atari 2600 Maze Craze (in a good way). Addictive is too often used to describe handheld games but this game can truly be habit forming.

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