Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures Review

Posted: May 25, 2015 in Game reviews
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Pac-Man Ghostly Adventures Title Card

Pac-Man is one of the most iconic video game characters of all time. He’s even older than Mario and Donkey Kong. When it comes to my experience with his games, I have not played any of his games except for the arcade classic. I have seen his recent television show and I think it’s ok. It’s nothing terrible but it’s nothing special either. I don’t think some episodes are suited for the 21 minute run time and it does use some outdated 90s catchphrases. The game I’ll be looking at today is based off this television show. So just like Sonic Boom, I’m looking at a video game based on a television show based on a video game. Is this game on the same quality as Sonic Boom or will it be a diamond in the rough?

pacman_and_the_ghostly_adventures_5_raw

Story

Lord Betrayus, the leader of the ghosts Pac-Man fights, has stolen a giant freeze ray that Sir Cumference (there’s a lot of puns like that), a kooky old inventor, has invented. So it’s up to Pac-Man to travel to the Netherworld and get the freeze ray back.

pacman story

The writing is on par with the television show but I will say that the last third does bring something completely out of left field that it feels like the creators thought that the main plot wasn’t enough to fill the game’s running time. The story isn’t anything special anyway so let’s move on to the gameplay.

Gameplay

The game plays as a 3D plat former. You use the left analog stick to move about and the right analog stick to move the camera. The X button is used to jump and double jump, the square button lets you chomp ghosts or use a berry ability, the circle button is used for certain berry ability and the triangle button lets you stun ghosts by scaring them as well as use more berry abilitys. The HUD has a hit point meter, your scare ghost meter and your life count.

pacman gameplay 2

The goal of the game is to proceed through each level and get the fruit at the end of the level. Along the way, you’ve got to conquer platforming challenges and chomp as many ghosts as you can. If you lose all of your lifes, the only real consequence is being booted back to the school hub-world. You’ll see little yellow orbs called global energy and you need to collect as many as you can because collecting enough of them will unlock new stages. It doesn’t happen all the time and don’t worry it’s nowhere near as bad as the sun and moon medal hunting in Sonic Unleashed. Every time you eat a ghost, you get eyeballs and collecting enough of them will earn you an extra life. There is also food scattered throughout the level which can restore your health and if you can find any cherry pies, you get an extra life. You can also find tokens which let you play the mini-games in the hub-world and there are these rainbow slime balls that give you an extra hit point if you collect enough of them, but you need about 20 in order to get it. There are six worlds to travel through and even though each of them do have their own gimmick and challenge your plat-forming skills in different ways, the last third of the game has you revisit two of the same worlds you already played through. They have different level designs and levels but this just feels like they wanted to add unnecessary run time to the game.

pacman gameplay

Throughout the levels, you will also find power berries which gives Pac-Man a variety of different abilities and behave similar to the power ups in the 2D Mario games. There’s the ice berry which allows Pac-Man to freeze enemies, the chameleon berry which allows Pac-Man to eat ghosts without moving forward from a long range, turn invisible and swing on poles, the fire berry which allows Pac-Man to throw fireballs, the magnet berry which has a ghost magnet and allows Pac-Man to walk on metal surfaces, the rubber berry which allows Pac-Man to jump higher and wall jump, the granite berry which turns Pac-Man into a giant scary rock ball and solve certain puzzles to proceed through the level and the balloon berry which inflates Pac-Man with tons of air and you need to let air out of him to cross over to a faraway platform until you run out of air. Now while some power ups are used to help defeat certain types of enemies, the enemy variety isn’t very good. Some ghosts do have different tactics and can only be defeated with a certain berry, but all of them go down with just one chomp and the big ones go down with two chomps.

pacman powerup

At the end of most of the worlds, you will fight boss battles and most of them are pretty easy once you manages to notice their pattern. The only bosses that gave me any kind of trouble was the gold toothed rock giant because it can be hard to hit his side teeth and the ghost cook because I can never predict the pattern of his grill platforms.

pacman boss

When you are not traversing through the levels, you roam around the hub world which is Pac-Man’s school. This hub world is actually pretty good compared to other hub-worlds because it’s small, it has recognizable landmarks and you can earn extra global energy when you don’t feel like backtracking through levels to collect more. It’s not also where you can talk to characters from the show, but you can also play these arcade mini-games which you can unlock when you collect enough certain types of fruit from the levels. You also need coins to play them so be on the lookout for those. These mini-games consist of you riding fruit based vehicles to either blast ghosts, rescue citizens or reach the end of the level. There’s not much point to playing them besides getting a high score and beat as many levels as you can.

pacman mini game

Graphics

The aesthetics are pretty spot on from the television show. The environments are nice and colourful and the character models are spot on, only you know with a lower polygon count.

Music

This is an odd case where the soundtrack isn’t bad but it’s not particularly catchy or memorable so it’s pretty difficult to talk about. Then again it could be because I haven’t played the game enough. The voice acting gets mixed feelings from me. Sometimes it’s good but we can get some pretty bad deliveries. The strange thing is that they only got the voice actor who voices Pac-Man on the show. I don’t know why they didn’t get the other voice actors but whatcha gonna do?

Control

The control is reliable, but there can be input delays when it comes to swinging on poles. The balloon power up can control pretty awkwardly mainly because Pac-Man needs to be facing the other way in order to move forward and Pac-Man falls like a rock after he’s run out of air.

Final thoughts

I don’t know if I can recommend this over other 3D platforming games such as Super Mario 3D World and Crash Bandicoot, but for what it does this game is actually pretty good. The power ups are pretty neat, the levels are designed well enough and it does follow the television show well. There isn’t much replayability to be had after you beat the game but I still think it’s worth checking out.

Final rating: 7/10

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