Get Ready to Game Like It’s 1999
When looking back at the Fifth-Gen console era, 3D platformers and classic games making the jump to 3D were one of the defining staples. Platformers were utilizing the new hardware while beloved icons were embracing the power of the new technology. One such title from this era was Pac-Man World for the PlayStation.
It comes with great joy to know that this beloved classic has been remade. Pac-Man World Re-Pac is a remake of the beloved classic for the PlayStation 4. It attempts to upgrade the classic experience for both new fans and old-school gamers.
I’m gonna be honest with you, I didn’t grow up playing the original. I had a Nintendo 64 and all my friends who had a PlayStation were more interested in playing GoldenEye 007 or Mario Kart 64. Thus, I’m not gonna be looking at Pac-Man World Re-Pac from a nostalgic point of view. Instead, this review is gonna be from the perspective of someone playing it overall for the first time.
Return to Ghost Island
Players take on the role of the titular character who must embark on a quest to save his family. They have been kidnapped and held prisoner on Ghost Island by Toc-Man (aided by his ghost minions). Pac-Man must venture through the island, overcome challenges and rescue each one of his loved ones.
If you ever played a video game from the early 90’s then all of this is familiar. Your family / love interest / friend is kidnapped by the villain. Players embark on a quest to save them. It’s not the most original story but it was standard for the time. While it can’t be praised for depth or creativity, it does get points for the nostalgic elements.
The gameplay is standard, players will traverse through numerous worlds. They must overcome a series of obstacles and challenges to complete. However, the fun is not limited to just beating the level. Players could go back to beat their previous score or find all the collectibles. This just adds to the game’s overall replay value (something one has to admire about games from this era).
If you’re new to Pac-Man World, not to worry as it’s very welcoming. The tutorial easily explains everything about the gameplay. Controls are simple to understand and the overall experience isn’t brutal.
At first glance, it may not look like the Pac-Man you played in the arcade. Thankfully it has left plenty of enemies, worlds plus elements that have defined the series. Visually, it has been done right with its colorful world and cartoonish details. Complementing this world is the killer soundtrack that perfectly sets the overall tone.
As someone who grew up playing Super Mario 64 but has moved on from Nintendo consoles, a game like Pac-Man World Re-Pac is welcoming. Even though it was not part of childhood, it does remind me of those good ole days.
Pac-Man World Re-Pac has several issues but they can all be boiled down to being a byproduct of its time. 3D platformers were a staple of the Fifth-Gen era, but they aren’t remembered so fondly. Even beloved classics had issues from some level design to camera angles. This game was no exception and the remake reminds you of it.
To its credit, most of those issues have been somewhat alleviated. They are not bad compared to the original or other titles of the time. They are still present to either a minor degree or are still an inconvenience to the player (such as the camera angle).
Pac-Man World Re-Pac is a reminder of what the glory days of 3D platformers were like with little of the irritation. This remake will take you back to the past (regardless if you played the original) in all the right ways. Fans of retro games should also give this remake a try as it presents the best of 3D platformers from the 90’s with little of the annoyances.
Disclaimer: FortySeven Communications provided the game used for this review.
This review is the critique and thoughts of one writer. If you want to see how other critics felt then check it out on OpenCritic.
8Bit/Digi is an independent media outlet that provides an insight into the gamer community of the San Francisco Bay Area.