Friday, 10 June 2016

Nerdversity Reviews: Pac-Man Ball (Arcade)

Pac-Man is a pop culture phenomenon. Starting with his arcade game in 1980, Pac-Man has been the subject of games, cartoons, a song and loads more. The game has been ported to many different formats over the last 30 years. In 2003, Namco released a new type of Pac-Man game.

Pac-Man Ball was released into arcades in 2003 by Namco. it has been met with critical acclaim from fans and players. The game itself is a mix of coin pusher/dozer and Puzzle Bobble. So lets see the playfield.

Putting in coins at the bottom launches them from the top, where these pinball type flippers move side to side. 

In the middle of the playfield is this monitor, where the secondary game is. If a coin falls through one of the slots underneath the monitor, then it activates the game. In this game, matching two of the same fruit causes them to vanish. Getting a chain puts more coins on the main playfield, which is still a coin pusher. If they don't match, then they just bounce off each other and fall onto the floor, where they can still chain together and get more coins. Getting a Pac-Man ball will instantly get rid of all types of fruit it touched. If it lands on a strawberry, all the strawberry balls vanish. This can also lead to chains.

Now, this is where many fans might say it gets too unfair. At both sides of the playfield are these large empty containers. This is where coins fall, the object is to try and push them into the main tray at the front. However, these side trays, that have Pac-Man on them, contain the coins which drop out when the player gets a chain. 

The machine can be found in arcades across the globe. If you find this one in an arcade near you, I wouldn't hesitate to put a few coins in and have a quick game. Sure the payouts are crummy, but really, it's less about the payouts and more about the experience on this one.