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Quick Look: Pac-Man: Championship Edition 2

Inside the heart of a true champion lies a sinister motive: ghost genocide.

Sit back and enjoy as the Giant Bomb team takes an unedited look at the latest video games.

Sep. 16 2016

Cast: Jeff, Brad

Posted by: Jason

59 Comments

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PurpleMoustache

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Edited By PurpleMoustache

First?

Edit: First! Disappointing to hear that this game seems bad.

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General_Mapache

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poperamone

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Edited By poperamone

Sigh

They Broke Pacman CE

The other games were perfection, the balance of each maze felt like you could achieve a perfect run, if you played well enough and the timing was always on a knife edge.

PLUS THAT INTRO MUSIC

Loading Video...

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hassun

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Edited By hassun

"The whole point of it was subverting the power balance of Pac-Man. It was letting you do the thing that you've never been able to do in a Pac-Man before."

Well I suppose being able to run into ghosts without dying is this game's take on that...

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Rhombus_Of_Terror

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@poperamone: Yeah I might have to play this game again.

-----

Christ I hate those ghost eating cutscenes.

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Kayrack

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Edited By Kayrack

These Changes seem not awful but its a bit sad to see the heavy and hard feel of the previous version gone....

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Crippl3

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To be fair on the music front, you can unlock a bunch of the music from CEDX like Re-Entrance and Pac-Steps.

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thebeardedfellow

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Got a Pix the Cat vibe from Pac bouncing into another maze. And Pix the Cat is pretty Pac Man CE adjace.

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katiedey

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Edited By katiedey

interesting how seemingly insignificant changes can make such a huge difference when it comes to whether a game "feels" good or not. hard to really communicate the reasons why this one so obviously appears less satisfying to play than the first 2 games, when all it's really doing is jacking up some variables. such a fragile balance!!

ps the OG CEDX+ is on steam for 10 bones & i grabbed it on sale recently for like $3

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DharmaBum

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Edited By DharmaBum

I don't mind them trying something new since those old games will always exist. Haven't put enough time into this yet to know whether or not it sucks.

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ShaggE

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@thebeardedfellow: Yeah, I'd say Pix is the "real" CE2. This one just seems to have made all the wrong decisions in changing up the formula.

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Vicious17

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Went back to play CEDX+ after watching this. Here to confirm that game is still amazing.

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lastly

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Is this esports?

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deactivated-5b85a38d6c493

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Don't fix what isn't broken.

EDIT: I just don't appreciate what they did to Pac-Man.

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Wandrecanada

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It looks like a good game but it's not CEDX+. CEDX+ is one of the best versions of Pac games I have ever played and I have kill screened Pac-Man on a single quarter (granted I was like 12 and in a hospital).

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Deathpooky

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Man this looks rough. You're just speeding like crazy and bashing your way through ghosts, which is not great to play or look at. The original had a great flow and looked amazing when you blasted through a level at top speed that this is lacking.

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crash331

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I dunno, I may get this anyway. I heard them talk about it on the podcast and was disappointed, but after seeing it in action, it still looks fun, it's just not like the old games. I have DX on my iPad, I wish it would get a PS4 release then I wouldn't mind having both.

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IThinkImASofa

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Edited By IThinkImASofa

Is it just me or does this game even LOOK worst than the first two? The lines are thinner and less glowy, less color... ugh

Ah its the 3d characters that are bugging me. I like the jumps though

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Elwood

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This just made me go back to the QL of Pac-Man CE DX to hear Brad's uncontrollable entusiame everytime the Ghost's got eaten :)

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aziridine

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Edited By aziridine
@katiedey said:

interesting how seemingly insignificant changes can make such a huge difference when it comes to whether a game "feels" good or not.

Makes me think of that "Art of Screenshake" presentation if anybody has seen that. Not saying that guy has all the right ideas, but its interesting how little elements can synergize together to give a game the right feel.

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zxlpx

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The support for Xbox One Elite controllers is broken on PC right now, which is probably why Jeff was having problems.

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zxlpx

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Edited By zxlpx

I am so disappointed in this game. DX is one of my favorite games ever. It's the only 360 game I 100%ed and I S ranked every course. I couldn't stop playing. This one I keep rage quitting on the annoyingly frantic ghost train sequences. I

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NoelVeiga

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Edited By NoelVeiga

Alright, heads up to people wary after this. Everything Jeff says was also how I felt... for maybe a couple of hours. And then this thing clicked. I think it was after I saw some of the replays in the top 10 leaderboards and understood how the scoring works. Now I'm into it and I'd say it sits between the original CE and the all time hall of fame greatness of CEDX.

The speed and lack of slo-mo are still tricky in a few courses where you have a lot of thin grids of squares, so lining up the intersection you want can be a matter of luck at times. But once you realize there is a lot less randomness to the new ghost mechanics than it seems at first you can get in the zone in the same way you did in CEDX.

I'm not sure I'm ever going to get into Adventure, though. It's a bad replacement for Time Attack in that it's still a time attack but it doesn't track your performance nearly as well and the fact that it culminates in eating ghost trains means it's too variable to be competitive.

So yeah, worse than CEDX and way harder to get into, but there's a good game in here, or half of one, so if you're a huge fan of the series and have already lowered your expectations due to all the bad press, maybe check it out anyway. You may be pleasantly surprised if you give it a chance.

EDIT: Oh, and while the menu theme may be less cool, the BGM for the Championship II board you can hear in this QL more than makes up for it. I need that earworm for continuous usage stat.

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PurplePartyRobot

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Edited By PurplePartyRobot

Not sure I like being able to touch the ghosts without dying.

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Sessh

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This seems a bit weird, but I just loved the original game so much, that I'll still try this one out too.

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JayPB08

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I've been liking it a lot; it's just different, and I'd certainly prefer this than if they just did the same thing over again. Kind of bummed out that no one else is really enjoying it; I certainly like it more than 256, which was just boring for me.

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Salbert

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Surprised Pacman 2: The New Adventures didn't get brought up. Now THAT'S the game they need to bring back.

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nightriff

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Game is fine, not bad, not as good as dx. Had a high milestone to reach and it failed, but it's no hotline Miami 2 where within 5 minutes I knew I didn't want to play anymore.

Put 3 ish hours in and think I've had my fill, fine game that one should get on a sale, like mankind divided.

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swim_trunks

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watching this made me go ahead and get dx. i had it on ps3 when it first dropped but now im getting it on steam...seems like this was the intent behind this game. "you like this?! go grab the better version"

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zoozilla

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Sucks that Jeff was having issues with the PC version.

If I'm not mistaken, the PC version of DX had issues too - I'm pretty sure it could only run at 720p and didn't hit 60 fps consistently.

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AV_Gamer

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I don't like some of the changes, but this still looks like a solid Pacman game.

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Multisupermono

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Getting PAC-MAN Championship Edition DX+ right now!

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Gee_rad

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@brad: the reason they don't make a Ms. Pac-Man Championship Edition may be because of licensing issues. Ms. Pac-Man was originally a mod (or "speed-up kit", as they were called at the time) for the original Pac-Man arcade machine. The guys of General Computer Corporation who made it still receive royalties on arcade machines and console ports of Ms. Pac-Man. I don't know the details of the contract regarding new games based on Ms. Pac-Man, but it's at least plausible that having to deal with that gives them some hesitation.

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BBQBram

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Yeah I think I'll give this one a pass.

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mmarsu

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This Pac is wack!

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vhold

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If it weren't for this game being compared to its predecessor I think it would be highly praised.

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MachoFantastico

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Man what a disappointment, the original was so damn good.

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deactivated-5e6e407163fd7

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So what's the difference between Championship edition and DX+? Which should be gotten if you've never played one?

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RichieJohn

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Dot Gobbler CE

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BasketSnake

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2pac would've been easier.

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cikame

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They almost had something with that ghost eating animation, it's ok up to the point where you start to realise the effect looks kinda barren with just a few sparkles, some flashes, explosions and chunky sounds would help, and then the animation ends as if it was unfinished by cutting back to the board and Pac-Man just kinda softly lands on it, why not keep the camera on Pac-Man after he's eaten the ghosts, then he dashes back to the board and with a massive thud smashes back into gameplay, throw a filter onto the music or something which makes it skip or sound crazy because Pac-Man's such a badass.

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Dave_Tacitus

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Edited By Dave_Tacitus

Man, was I bummed with my first hour in this game. It's improving, but that's probably as I adjust to the ways of CE2 by unlearning DX+.

I'm not sure that I want to unlearn DX+, which I think is one of the greatest games ever made. There, I've said it.

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ConVox

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@sloppydetective: "I wanna take a bath in this game"

Loading Video...

Championship Edition was the first (2007) of the modern Pac-man games out of Namco. DX came out in 2010, and DX+ was additional content for DX in (2013). DX built on Championship Edition, but CE2 doesnt seem to have retained the best features of DX.

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gbrading

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There are only so many changes you can make to Pac-Man before it becomes not Pac-Man.

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RockGrumbler

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I like this game. I think the changes they made to the formula make it less necessary to restart a 5 minute run due to a death, and the bomb mechanic is actually useful. Watching the top tier runs, it looks more organic and less like you need a perfect execution. It's just a different game ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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rayne117

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About games not getting faster, you're just getting older. As a 22 year old, this looks like a speed-induced frantic mess. But I've always disliked Pacman ever since I was a wee lad.

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ToxicAntidote

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Of course a sequel should, and most likely will, be different.

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WynnDuffy

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@rayne117 said:

About games not getting faster, you're just getting older. As a 22 year old, this looks like a speed-induced frantic mess. But I've always disliked Pacman ever since I was a wee lad.

That makes no sense, Jeff's perception of speed is not going to have changed in 5 years.

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orborborb

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I still love the original championship edition but DX was boring because I never felt any sense of danger until the speed got so absurdly fast that it just became impossible to make the turns reliably.

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Trilogy

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Edited By Trilogy

I dunno, this doesn't look bad, just not nearly as good as DX which is a pretty high standard. That being said, I would rather go back to DX if I had a hankering for this style of pac-man.