PAC-MAN WORLD Re-PAC is a remaster of the original 1999 game and was remastered by Now Production and published by Bandai Namco. It was released to consoles and PC in August 2022.
It’s Pac-Man’s birthday, and all of his family and friends have gathered together to help celebrate with him and eat some delicious cake! But when an evil robot, known as Toc-Man wants to imprison Pac-Man, he gets all of the old ghosts to do it for him. So Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde go to Pac-Man’s house, mistake everyone for him, and just end up capturing EVERYONE, so when Pac-Man gets home, he notices everyones gone and gives chase to the ghosts!
Now the first thing I will absolutely say is that this game is a great 1:1 remaster of the original game. I haven’t played the original in so long, but I was immediately transported back to the first time I played it, and I loved it. I loved the levels, I loved the world’s, I even loved the boss fights that were just weird levels. But considering the game is very old, there is no real story to it. So it’s just an old school platformer.
The platforming part of the game is still unfortunately a little rough around the edges, even with the remaster. Pac-Man doesn’t have a double jump ability for example. Instead he bounces on his butt to sort of jump higher. When you get to edges of platforms he’ll mantle onto them so you can pull yourself up, but this didn’t work sometimes and I’d just find myself falling. Or when you’re jumping from platform to platform, you don’t get a shadow at your feet, so you just have to hope for the best.
My least favourite mechanic is the spin. Sometimes you need to clear gaps in levels, and you have to do a spin roll to roll over the gap. Depending how far you are from the jump when you spin, determines your height and length of the jump. Sometimes I’d make the jumps, sometimes I wouldnt. It was all absolutely random and it caused so many deaths! Heck there were a few parts in the game where you had to roll up hills, and you just got enough clearance before Pac-Man stopped rolling! So I just broke it most of the time and booty bounced my way up. Unless of course that’s how you were supposed to do it.
My favourite level for silly design was easily the boss of the space themed world. Instead of your standard fight, you instead get to play through a level in the form of Galaga. So you’re thrust into a vertical shooter, with enemies flying at you, while you shoot them down, and grab any power up you can find. It had me smiling the whole time. The rest of the levels were sort of themed for their specific areas, but none stood out to me too much, as they all felt kind of basic. But not every game has to have amazing level design to be fun!
When you’re not working through the levels, you can play a little side mode called “Maze Mode”. This puts you into a maze of your selection, that corresponds to the theme you want. Unfortunately some of them are locked and you unlock them by finding them in the levels of the main game. When you find and beat them all, you unlock Marathon Mode, which lets you do all 36 mazes back to back, and let me tell you, this was so boring! I had over a hundred lives when I did this, so I didn’t stress at all!
When you beat the game, you unlock the original Pac-Man. I tried this for a bit, and it feels great. There was no input delay or anything and you can play in two player mode, with each player alternating upon death. But man did I forget how much I suck at the original game. I never made it past round four. For the people who can make it to round nine, there’s a nice shiny platinum in it for you!
- Fun Boss Levels
- Original Pac-Man
- Perfect 1:1 Remaster
- Marathon Mode Is Boring
- Platforming Is Still Rough
- Level Design Is Meh
As great as this remake is, I wish it would’ve had some improvements, especially when it comes to the platforming. But this is a worthwhile remake and includes some great unlockables. Well worth it for Pac-Man fans!