PAC-MAN CHAMPIONSHIP EDITION 2 PLUS Launch Trailer | Switch
Who it Caters to
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 3 decades, you’re probably familiar with Namco’s iconic mascot Pac-Man. Before Mario jumped on the heads of those goofy goombas in order to save Princess Peach, you had the heroic Pac-Man who took the world by storm in the early 80’s with its unique approach to arcade gaming. When it made its arrival on the scene, it was being overshadowed by Taito’s incredibly popular Space Invaders franchise. However, Pac-Man gained a lot of attention and eventually overtook the throne becoming the more notable title that arcade junkies would swoon over. Fast forward to today and Pac-Man is still omnipotent, chomping away at ghosts in order to save the day, this time on Nintendo’s new platform. Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 Plus is an extraordinary title that brings a ton of excitement and challenging levels that will keep you playing for hours on end, much like its predecessors in the 80’s. You don’t have to be an 80’s baby to truly appreciate the Pac-Man series because the character is so frequently used that pretty much everyone recognizes the yellow hero. If you love a fast paced, over the top thrill then it’s safe to say that Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 Plus is the right selection for you.
What to Expect
Expect to invest a ton of hours into the game, as each stage grows increasingly harder and your objectives grow longer. Playing in handheld mode is certainly the way to go as you truly get to experience the Pac-Man hype as you race through every level to grab your rewards. You can run through the entire game by yourself or grab a friend to take part in the multiplayer side of things, where things can really get out of control. We, of course, mean that in a good way because Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 Plus is nothing but fun and you’ll find yourself constantly trying to beat every level on pro just to get more stars. We’ll get into the gameplay portion momentarily but to sum up what to expect, you have both a single and multiplayer experience to discover, a very long yet rewarding adventure mode as well as a pretty informative tutorial for those who aren’t familiar with the Pac-Man series. It’s the total package for any Pac-Man aficionado but an entirely fresh and enthralling experience for newcomers.
There really isn’t anything new in the sense that much of your approach towards the game is what you’d expect from any classic Pac-Man title. Your goal is to collect as many Pac-Dots as possible so that you can unlock the fruit reward in order to move on. The obstacle, however, lies in the four ghosts: Blinky, Pinky, Inky and Clyde, as each will try to prevent you from collecting Pac-Dots every time. So your mission is to out maneuver them and take out the random green ghosts to make your life easier. These green ghosts weren’t in the original series and are mainly just an added feature in Championship Edition, but they’re just as irritating to deal with if you aren’t careful. They stay isolated in one place and if you get too close to them, they’ll latch onto whichever of the 4 ghosts are nearby, which then turns these ghosts into snake-like targets. You’re able to eat the ghosts but after that they transform into bigger ghosts which can actually kill you if they’re able to trap you. So a lot of your strategy is formed around gathering as many Pac-Dots as possible, disposing of the green ghosts and collect the fruit reward in order to turn the ghosts purple.
While the ghosts are in the purple state you’re able to devour them entirely, which builds up a great deal of points for each one you eat. Once you eat all 4 and collect your final reward then you’ve successfully cleared that maze. In adventure mode, there’s a plethora of zones to clear, starting from 1-1. Each maze gives you the option to practice your strats before really taking things seriously, with a Normal, Hard and Pro option to choose from afterwards. Each difficulty will grant you with a number of stars and life total, with Pro being the most vicious. Normal mode gives you 2 lives and 1 star, Hard mode gives you 1 life but 2 stars, while pro gives you 3 stars and no lives at all. Each zone will require a certain amount of stars in order for you to move onto the next zone, so strategically clearing maps to gather enough stars is something to pay attention to. So for example, it’s best to sometimes attempt to clear the Pro difficulty so that way you can accumulate stars quicker and get to the boss faster. You don’t even have to clear the other stages if you don’t want to because you’ve already collected enough stars. The boss battle stages aren’t as hard as we thought they’d be but still require that you pay close attention to the formation of the Pac-Dots and to not get distracted by everything else that’s happening. The game is flashy in its visual department and so your eyes tend to get caught up in all the movement around you, but so long as you maintain focus you’ll be able to clear things no problem. The hardest part we found while playing was devouring the ghosts while in purple state because these things move a lot faster, and you’re unable to eat the tail portion (known as ghost trains) which actually blocks your path if you’re not careful.
Time plays a major factor in the game since it’s always against you, with some stages wanting you to grab as many Pac-Dots in something like 8 seconds. It’s certainly doable of course, but as mentioned before, your level of focus needs to be on point otherwise one small mistake can result in a failure. We have to admit, we got real flustered at times because when time is against you oftentimes the focus is placed more on the time than the actual objective itself. It’s a frantic race against time but such a thrilling ordeal that you’re constantly coming back every time to better your score from before, and collect every star on Pro difficulty to truly test your abilities.
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
With the multiplayer and score attack modes to keep you occupied along with the enormous single player content, Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 Plus is a title that you definitely don’t want to ignore. The merit about Pac-Man is that the game really has no ending and so there’s an infinite amount of value that’s conveyed every time you turn on the system. Never did we ever find the game to be a bore because every experience was better than the last, each zone presents new challenges to overcome and just all the flash and funky music keeps you entertained for a long time.
The only flaw (if we can call it that) that Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 Plus seems to have is that, it may come off as repetitive to some and that the boss battle stages aren’t as grueling as the main zone stages themselves. We often found ourselves clearing the boss stages relatively faster than the actual zone stages, but then again that just may be because we’re too good at the game. Newcomers may find the difficulty at times to be straining but we encourage you to keep going because we promise you things will only become more fun down the road.
Adventure Mode is extremely long and rewarding.
Score attack is a nice extra mode to level up your skills.
The multiplayer addition adds an exciting element to the Switch version.
Each zone is uniquely designed to create a fun experience every time.
May be repetitive for some.
Difficulty levels may prove a bit much, especially at pro.
Honey's Final Verdict:
Practice makes perfect and so we encourage anyone who decides to pick this title up to do so quite often, because it will be worth your while in the end. Hopefully our review made your decision a lot easier. Be sure to follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all the latest gaming news, as well as anime and manga. If you’re on Twitch then definitely give us a follow as we always stream the latest anime related titles in order to keep all of our otaku fans entertained.
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Author: Rob "NualphaJPN" B.
A passionate fan of gaming, writing, journalism, anime, and philosophy. I've lived in Japan for many years and consider this place to be my permanent home. I love to travel around Japan and learn about the history and culture! Leave a comment if you enjoy my articles and watch me play on twitch.tv/honeysgaming ! Take care!