Offering both a blast from the past and something entirely new, Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions for Nintendo 3DS is filled with six individual games; Classic Pac-Man, Pac-Man Championship Edition, Galaga Original, Galaga Legions and two new titles exclusively for this bundle – Pac-Man Tilt and Galaga 3D Impact.
Perhaps the most exciting game in this package is Galaga 3D Impact, an on-the-rails shooter that plays in 3D. To play the game, you have to hold the 3DS in front of you and move it to point the cross-hairs in the very same direction. Should your arms tire of constantly moving to face your latest batch of enemies, camera movement can also be achieved by using the 3DS circle pad. Simply holding down the A button allows you to shoot a rapid fire laser at oncoming enemies. Holding down and releasing the B button enables you to fire up the tractor beam, therefore capturing the enemy with any luck. Captured enemies give you access to weapon power-ups, of which there are many.
The player can also gather emblems for bonus points and batteries to recharge the shields as they zip through the levels. The levels are well made and enjoyable to play through, if a little on the difficult side, especially when it comes to boss battles.
The other new game, Pac-Man Tilt, thrusts Namco’s pill popping friend into a side scrolling rainbow environment filled with florescent stars. Guiding Pac-Man across a selection of moving platforms and posting him through some punk pink tunnels is just the beginning to this exciting experience. Using the gyroscope functions, the player works their way through some 25-odd levels, collecting pills and avoiding ghosts. Everything has to be carefully planned out from the moment you leave to roll off the edge of a platform, to working out the distance as you ping yourself from springs, to bashing through walls. Popping in a power pellet enables Pac-Man to sink his teeth into one of the ghosts and cause enough damage for them to evaporate right in front of your eyes. There’s plenty of fruit around each area, if you fancy topping up your score and getting some extra points. Pac-Man can also travel in bubbles in order to reach some of the higher areas, as long as you’re quick because they simply disappear after a certain amount of time and you may find your Pac-Man falling straight into the path of another ghost.
Playing Pac-Man Tilt is quite a blast. The similarities between this game and the classic Sonic games are quite obvious, but it adds something new by using the gyroscopic controls. By itself, it would be nothing really to write home about, a short-lived distraction. But when packed with five other games, it really is quite good.
The other four classic games are exactly what you would expect, re-worked versions of the original games especially for the 3DS. Classic Pac-Man and Galaga Original are both your classic versions of these games, offered in an arcade cabinet on the top screen. Pac-Man Championship Edition offers a few twists on the classic formula with a time limit and interesting level design. Galaga Legions also offers something a bit different, with psychedelic graphics and much more challenging gameplay.
By themselves, the six games included in this package would barely raise an eyebrow. But by putting them all together in a neat little package, Namco Bandai have created something that both retro gamers and those looking for something new can enjoy. There is even a short animated Pac-Man movie, which can be watched in 3D, included on the cart, which is a nice added bonus.
Every gaming platform should have their own Pac-Man and for the 3Ds is comes in three different forms, with three other games included as well. For fans of the yellow pill-popper that own a 3DS, this is a must have purchase. But for those who are not really bothered about retro gaming, they must decide if the two new games included, both of which could have been released as downloadable titles, are worth the cash outlay. It’s a nice collection, but not a must-have title.