Pac-Man and Galaga Dimensions

PacManGalageDimThis affordable, quality game collection includes two brand new Pac-Man and Galaga games specifically tailored for the Nintendo 3DS, PAC-MAN Tilt and Galaga 3D IMPACT. The collection also contains the famous classics and two reboots, PAC-MAN® Championship Edition and Galaga® Legions. The Galaga games pits players against endless enemy spaceships and creatures while Pac-Man gobbles up everything in sight while avoiding colorful ghosts.

Six solid games in one collection featuring all ages appeal in every player skill set yearning for the space shooter Galaga and platform based Pac-Man. The nostalgic arcade experience strengthens this collection the best as these two famous game franchises represent the basic essentials. These games show why the franchises are famous for a reason while developers make high efforts with the two new Galaga and Pac-Man games specifically for Nintendo 3DS play where players tilt the system while using the smooth circle pad control. The touch screen options have basic functionality, largely  in the menu choices, so they don’t play a huge role into the gameplay.

These games satisfy hardcore gamers with high replay value and difficult challenges while casual players can easily enjoy the pick-up-and-play accessibility. Fast reaction times and unique spatial skills improve player chances for a high score. Player save data can be reset by holding the A,B,X,Y,L and R buttons when booting up the game from the Nintendo 3DS system’s home screen. New players can try the new 3D games first, but might find the previous four useful to understand basic concepts and goals.

The classic Pac-Man and Galaga arcade versions let players change among different arcade machine views which often reduces the graphics. The smaller handheld screen offers great portability with sharper visuals due to the size reduction. Veterans can revisit their familiar moves, short falls, and victories while novices can create their own. The optional 3D effects enhance the view.

Pac-Man Championship Edition, a.k.a. Pac-Man C.E. was previously released on Xbox Live Arcade in 2007, then on mobile and PlayStation Network. This game has online leaderboards, several maze environments, and a timed Score Attack mode. Pac-Man Championship DX, the 2010 follow-up to this Pac-Man C.E. game, would have been a great addition, but is a likely candidate for the next version of another Dimensions game collection.

Galaga Legions also features online leaderboards and was previously was released on the XBLA in 2008. This Galaga iteration features dual guns movable in any direction – an ideal mechanic for fast pace fun. Players new to the Galaga franchise can take advantage of the neon colored hint lines that mark the spot of each incoming enemy wave.

For the new Pac-Man Tilt game, the yellow hero grows arms and legs to traverse through environments in a roller coaster type control scheme. As the title suggests, players tilt the 3DS for movements while pinball flippers and bright color flashes throughout gameplay also enhance this kinetic experience. Basic elements like the antagonistic ghosts and game changing power pellets remain while a new point system incorporates medal acquisition, which also leads to special bonus levels. Pac-Man’s circular physical properties also create some entertaining moves gauged by a gold tilt meter. This game has checkpoints, springs, various obstacles, and bigger sized ghosts amid side scrolling environments that could have used a more distinctive color contrast amid the individual elements.

The new Galaga 3D Impact game has excited shoot ‘em up action where players fly automatically through space while changing their target view. Weapons include bombs, missiles, basic blasters and tractor beams that beam up enemies. Using the tractor beam also unlocks weapons. Defensive weapons include the force field (R button). This game has the best visuals in the collection.

Each game stands on its own beyond the typical “mini game” status while the entire compilation provides a memorable progression through the franchise leading to the two new games, IMPACT and TILT. Fans can also enjoy a bonus video preview of the Pac is Back animated television show directed and produced by Marvel’s Avi Arad (originally aired on Nickelodeon). Solid recommendation (*** out of four stars).

Copyright © Michael Siebenaler

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