bulby33's Pac-Man Championship Edition DX (Xbox 360 Games Store) review

A successful evolution of the Championship Edition series.

It’s almost foolish to think that Pac-Man—Namco’s legendary mascot that’s one of the most well-known icons of the gaming industry—is still somewhat relevant in 2010. But it’s definitely nice to see them still care about his legacy despite the fact that the franchise hasn’t seen a good Pac-Man game since 2007’s original Championship Edition. It’s even more of a surprise when you actually get down and put some time into Championship Edition DX and consider how well-made the product is, and ultimately how completely addicting it is, too.

The original Championship Edition put a real emphasis on being a more modern, easy-to-get-the-hang of Pac-Man game for newcomers and veterans alike, all wrapped up a Geometry Wars-like neon light visual presentation. DX is fundamentally similar but features enough crazy additions that feel much different. This time the idea is to run past sleeping ghosts rather than avoiding them altogether. Waking them will result in those little buggers chasing you down, and the idea is to try and get as many ghosts chasing you as possible. Then, once you eat a power-up randomly scattered throughout the maze, you can eat ALL OF THE GHOSTS in a steady line until they’re all gone.

Eating the ghosts while you’re emitting your power-up is the way to rack up points pretty easily, though, you still gain additional points for eating your way through lines of dots and fruit. Eating a fruit will spawn more dots on the other side of the maze which then unlocks more if that fruit is eaten as well. There’s also many different settings to change the style of game, too. Say you want to do a 5-minute score attack, but you want to start on beginner rather than on expert. Well, you can. Same goes with nearly every other mode in the game, too.

 Colourful as HELL.
The thing is, though: Namco put a lot of time and effort in this product than you might think. It’s especially noticeable in the game’s amazing attention to detail through every mode. When ghosts creep closer to Pac-Man the game comes to a slow-down, bullet-time-like pace where you can quickly move out of the way, plus the addition of bombs in dead-end situations let’s you continue without the game coming to a sudden halt—both ingenious ideas. The game’s presentation can also be changed from a myriad of Pac-Man’s past visual themes like the original Arcade game, and Pac-Mania.

Everything about Pac-Man Championship Edition DX is pure polish. The games electrifying soundtrack gives off a phenomenally intense mood and the game’s smooth performance let’s you play the game with flawless controls in the plethora of mazes and game modes. The game’s energy is so likable that getting addicted to its amazingly fun gameplay style isn’t just easy, it’s impossible not to. In addition, trying to beat your friend’s high score makes you come back for more each and every day. I don’t see how Pac-Man can get any better than this.
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