I mentioned in a previous blog that I might make a blog about the Pac-Man World series. Like many, I've played a lot of Pac-Man games over the years in Arcades, on consoles, handhelds, PC, etc. But as great as traditional Pac-Man games are, there's one series of Pac-Man games that I've always appreciated because they both have traditional Pac-Man gameplay and successfully brought the character into 3D: the Pac-Man World series, consisting of three main entries, a racing game, and a remake for modern systems.
While I have played all three Pac-Man World games (and the racing spin-off, Pac-Man World Rally), the first one I played was actually Pac-Man World 2 on GameCube (also released on PS2, Xbox, PC, and Game Boy Advance). Each of them were released on various systems, with the first two even getting Game Boy Advance versions and the third game getting released on the Nintendo DS. Most recently, the first Pac-Man World has gotten a remake (titled Pac-Man World Re-Pac) for current game systems.
This blog will focus on most versions of the Pac-Man World games (including the GBA versions of Pac-Man World 1 and 2 and the remake of the first one), and why I like the series.
The Pac-Man World Series and Why I Like It
Originally released on PlayStation during Pac-Man's 20th Anniversary, and later for the Game Boy Advance, this was one of the first (but not the first) true 3D Pac-Man games. It has several nods and tributes to several Namco Arcade games, like Galaxian and Dig Dug. The game has updated versions of music from both the original Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man.
The GBA version has sprites and a side-scrolling/isometric view, but does its best to recreate some of the levels from the PlayStation version.
It's Pac-Man's Birthday, and he arrives home from work excited about his big day. But he finds that his house is a mess, and Ms. Pac-Man, Jr. Pac-Man and Pac-Baby, are nowhere to be found. All of the Pac-Man World games have their own villains besides the ghosts.
In this game, the main villain is a robot character named Toc-Man. He's gonna pay for capturing Pac's family and ruining his Birthday.
This game is a platformer. But like most other Pac-Man games, you still collect dots and fruit. You can throw the dots you've collected at enemies. Pac-Man has a few different moves, such as the butt-bounce (useful for defeating enemies and opening chests) and a rev roll (can be used to get up steep hills).
Collecting fruit unlocks doors which contain switches and letters that spell "PACMAN", giving you more to do in each level. Fruit can be out in the open and hidden in chests.
There's also a Chrome/Steel Ball power-up that allows Pac-Man to walk underwater and break open chests. This power-up appears in the sequels as well.
The ghosts make appearances in some areas of each level. Like other Pac-Man games, there are Power Pellets that can be collected and allow you to go after the ghosts. Even though this game has a larger emphasis on platforming, it still has some traditional Pac-Man gameplay and features.
One of my favorite features are the Pac-Dot Chains. After pressing certain switches, Pac-Dots appear forming a path. One of the dots is a red dot. If Pac-Man eats the red dot, he basically flies in a set path and follows the Pac-Dots. This allows him to reach items that are otherwise impossible to get, and reach other areas of a level. Pac-Dot Chains also appear in the sequels.
You can find Galaxians in the levels, which unlock doors that transport you to traditional Pac-Man mazes. Not much to say about these; the gameplay in these mazes is almost identical to the original Pac-Man game. The game includes several mazes, each with a different layout.
While in a maze, you can choose a close-up view that's right above Pac-Man or a bird's-eye view that shows the entire maze.
At the end of each level, you have the option to try your luck with a Slot Machine. Match three fruit to get 1 Ups. The Slot Machine can be skipped if you don't want to use it.
The game also included the original Pac-Man Arcade game, which would also appear in the sequels (despite having already been re-released on numerous Pac-Man and Namco Museum compilations, including Namco Museum Vol. 1 for PS1 and Namco Museum for PS2, GameCube, and Xbox).
Something that kind of surprised me about this game is that it has Widescreen support, which wasn't super common during this era (though there definitely were a handful of games that supported it, including many of the N64 games that were made by Rare). So if you happen to have your PS1 hooked up to an HDTV or a CRT TV that is widescreen, you at least don't have to put up with the game looking stretched (though it might still look jagged and pixelated, depending on the size of your TV).
Various demos of Pac-Man World were shown at E3 or released to the public before the full game was released. I have one of them. For footage of this demo, see my video above. The game was originally known as "Ghost Zone" early on.
This was a good start to the Pac-Man World series, and can still be fun to play. A remake was released for modern systems (shown later in this blog).
The Game Boy Advance version is pretty true to the original PlayStation version, though it is missing several levels and the music, while basically the same, is low quality and has a very low sampling rate.
However, I do like that the game's opening was redone to something more suitable for the GBA and that the game has save files like the PS1 version (though they're saved to the cartridge, rather than a Memory Card). The original Pac-Man game is not included in this version, which isn't really a big loss since it had already been released for the GBA in Pac-Man Collection (and later Namco Museum 50th Anniversary).
As mentioned above, the GBA version uses sprites for the characters instead of polygons. And it has side-scrolling and isometric views. However, the PS1 version is mainly a side-scroller (occasionally having the view behind Pac-Man as you move to other sections of a level). Because of this, the developers of the GBA version were able to recreate the levels from the PS1 version and the layouts, for the most part, are pretty similar.
Pac-Man still has most of his moves from the PlayStation version, such as the butt-bounce, the rev roll, throwing dots, swimming, and grabbing ledges.
The Chrome/Steel Ball power-up is also included, allowing Pac-Man to run underwater and break open chests.
The GBA version, while obviously stripped down, is actually pretty decent overall. It was decent for those who hadn't played the PS1 version, or those who wanted a handheld version of the game. Too bad the same can't be said about the GBA version of Pac-Man World 2, as you'll notice below.
Pac-Man World 2
The first Pac-Man World game I played, and my favorite game in the trilogy. For years I've had it for GameCube, though I've since also added the Japanese release of the PS2 version to my collection.
I found out about the game on Nintendo's website in 2002, and remember watching a video of it. The first Pac-Man World wasn't released for the N64, so I was a little surprised that Namco decided to release the sequel on the GameCube. Then again, the GameCube uses discs and was easier to develop for than the N64 so that may have something to do with Namco's decision to release Pac-Man World 2 on a Nintendo console. The PS2, GameCube, and Xbox versions were re-released in 2003, as Greatest Hits, Player's Choice, and Platinum Hits games, respectively. Player's Choice copies of the GameCube version include Pac-Man Vs. The GameCube version of R: Racing Evolution also includes Pac-Man Vs.
Though I eventually bought Pac-Man World 2, I rented it numerous times. Even in 2007, five years after the game was released, I went to a Hollywood Video and rented the game one more time. I still have a flyer from this store that I got in 2003.
After defeating Toc-Man and rescuing his family in the first Pac-Man World, Pac-Man relaxes at home. The ghosts arrive in Pac-Village, and take Golden Fruit from a tree in the center of the village. This releases a villain named Spooky, who had been imprisoned under the Tree for a century. Pac-Man wakes up the next morning and is told the news by Professor Pac. He now has to travel all over Pac-Land to get the Golden Fruit back and defeat the ghosts and Spooky.
This game mostly ditches the side-scrolling view from the first game (though there are some side-scrolling sections in certain levels) and is mainly viewed from behind (and sometimes above) Pac-Man along with linear levels similar to Crash Bandicoot (though in this game, you can move the camera 360 degrees around Pac-Man).
As with the first Pac-Man World, the game is a platformer but you still collect Pac-Dots and fruit like in traditional Pac-Man games. You can also collect Tokens, which unlock Arcade games (more than just the original Pac-Man). Ghosts appear in some sections in the levels and can be defeated with Power Pellets as usual.
Pac-Man also has some new moves: he can do a flip kick, and shimmy across ledges. He still has most of his moves from the first Pac-Man World game, like the butt-bounce and rev roll. Unfortunately, the flip kick move was not included in Pac-Man World 3.
One gameplay difference between this game and the first Pac-Man World, is the addition of Inline Skating and Ice Skating. There's also a water level that has you riding in a Submarine (called a "Pac-Marine"), shooting Torpedoes at ghost's ships and mines (the Pac-Man version of the World Wars, I guess). In the Submarine level, there's a Gun which makes it easier to shoot at ghosts and mines than the regular Torpedoes that the "Pac-Marine" has. There's also a Smart Bomb weapon that wipes out everything that's currently on the screen (except Pac-Man and his "Pac-Marine").
Like the first Pac-Man World, there are Galaxians in the game that take you to several traditional Pac-Man mazes. Each one has a different layout, as well as portals that warp you to the other side of a maze. As with the mazes in the first Pac-Man World, you can choose a close-up view or a bird's-eye view.
Pac-Man runs in most of these mazes, but he skates in the Blade Mountain maze just like in the actual level. I thought that was a nice touch. Unfortunately, Pac-Man doesn't wear his roller skates while in the Haunted Boardwalk maze (the actual level of which features inline skating).
There's an Arcade that contains four games and a Jukebox, which are unlocked with Tokens that are hidden in the levels. The games included are Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man, Pac-Mania, and Pac-Attack (originally a console game).
Pac-Mania looks like it's based on the PS1 version from Namco Museum Vol. 5, as the score info is on the right (instead of the top like the original Arcade version) and the title screen has the year 1997 on it (which was the year Namco Museum Vol. 5 was released).
Pac-Attack is a port of the Namco Anthology version from Namco Anthology 2 for PS1, and has different music and graphics than the SNES and Genesis versions.
There's also a Pac-Man World 2 machine in this Arcade. When you complete mazes in the levels, they become unlocked and can be played in the Arcade. The first maze (Canyon Chaos) is already unlocked at the start.
The Jukebox features most of Pac-Man World 2's soundtrack, though some music tracks are not included.
A Museum can be unlocked after collecting 150 Tokens. It has a slideshow of Pac-Man World 2 images from during the games development, like concept art.
The official Pac-Man World 2 site was one of the game sites I visited often in early 2000s, and also mentioned in my gaming websites blog. There was a Flash Game playable on the site, as well as Jukebox that allowed people to sample some of the music from the actual Pac-Man World 2 game.
Last year, I bought the Japanese release of Pac-Man World 2. Only the PS2 version was released in Japan, though the GameCube version also got a PAL release.
It has the same difficulty adjustments that were made to the GameCube version and later copies of the American PS2 release, such as Pac-Man only losing one piece of his health meter if a ghost touches him and the safety net that was added near the beginning of the B-Doing Woods level.
The GameCube version of Pac-Man World 2 has an exclusive music track that plays during the cutscene before the first snow/ice level (Ice River Run). The PS2, Xbox, and PC versions just play the music from the actual level during that cutscene. This music track is not included in the Jukebox that's in the Arcade.
The Game Boy Advance version, as expected, is basically a different game. It has fewer levels, compressed audio, no unlockable Arcade games (even though they're mentioned on this screen), and password saves (even though the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World game has save files). The graphics don't even look to be on par with the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World, and look more cartoony and generic. This version came out in 2005, only a month before Pac-Man World 3 was released. It was not developed by Namco but by a company called "Full Fat", which also developed the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World. Not sure why they bothered, or why a GBA version couldn't be released in 2002 when the console versions were released. But it doesn't surprise me that Pac-Man World 2 was released on the GBA three and a half years after the PS2 and GameCube versions, because the GBA received quite a few watered-down versions of Pac-Man games released for other systems.
The GBA version actually has basically the same soundtrack as the console and PC versions. No really, the music sounds like it's from the other versions just shorter and lower quality (the sample rate is very low, like other Pac-Man games on the GBA).
The game is a side-scrolling platformer and has an isometric view, like the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World. It has fewer levels than the console and PC versions, and they have different layouts. Unlike the console and PC versions, there are no water levels in this version (there's water on the level select screen, but no underwater levels). Some of the levels in the game play the music from the water levels in the other versions.
While the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World has redone cutscenes (instead of videos) to better suit the GBA, the GBA version of Pac-Man World 2 just uses pictures of the cutscene videos from the console and PC versions. Some of them cutscenes have text, while others are just pictures.
As mentioned above, it also uses password saves instead of save files. Clearly, "Full Fat" didn't put as much effort into this as they did with the GBA version of the first Pac-Man World.
The worst thing about these passwords, though, is that some of them are invalid. I am not making this up. After beating the last two bosses, the game GIVES YOU PASSWORDS THAT DON'T WORK. I played through this version of the game a few years ago (2018 or so) and still have some of the passwords that I wrote down. Still disappointed about the useless passwords the game sometimes gives.
Some ideas and features from the console and PC versions are in the GBA version. Most of Pac-Man's moves are included as well, such as the flip kick and rev roll.
The GBA version also gives Pac-Man another move called the rev roll jump. You hold the B button to charge it up like the rev roll, hold right, then release the B button and hold A. This allows Pac-Man to jump farther, and reach ledges. The GBA version requires the player to use this move often, as many levels have several gaps.
Galaxians also appear in this version. However, they don't transport you to mazes. Instead, they unlock mazes that can be played in Pac-Village.
This version has four mazes. Unfortunately, due to a glitch, the fourth maze doesn't unlock even if you find and collect all of the Galaxians. These mazes lack excitement. Other versions have multiple viewpoints for the mazes, while this version has a close-up view only. You can't see very much, and sometimes you can't react quickly enough if you run towards a ghost that isn't shown the screen until you're right in its face. The isometric view is part of the problem, especially when you're moving down. There's a hidden time limit for these mazes. If you don't collect all of the dots within a certain time, the screen goes black and you go back to Pac-Village. Same thing happens even if you do collect all of the dots.
The GBA version has an exclusive boss battle not in any other versions. This is the Tree boss from the Ghost Bayou level in the console and PC versions. In those versions, he is defeated by making it to the end of that level. In the GBA version, Pac-Man has to fight him.
Like most of the other versions, the GBA version of Pac-Man World 2 was not released in Japan. Probably for the best. I wouldn't say it's a terrible game, but by 2005 a GBA version was irrelevant. If a GBA version of Pac-Man World 2 really needed to be made, it should've been released in 2002 along with the PS2 and GameCube versions instead of in 2005 only a month before Pac-Man World 3 was released.
Pac-Man World 3
The final game in the main Pac-Man World trilogy. It is very different than the first two games. It was the first Pac-Man World game not developed by Namco, but rather a U.K. development studio called Blitz Games. And unlike the first two, no version of Pac-Man World 3 was released in Japan (not even the PS2 version).
I read about Pac-Man World 3 and watched videos of it in 2005 on IGN. The footage I remember watching showed the first two levels in the game. I was excited that a sequel to one of my favorite games on the GameCube was being released. I watched the Trailer video on Namco's website, which I remember also playing on the TV's at some stores when the game was released. In November 2005, on or near the game's release, I went to Future Shop. While their GameCube shelf was full, there were only two copies of Pac-Man World 3. At least I found the game.
It's Pac-Man's Birthday again, and both Ms. Pac-Man and Junior greet him when he arrives home. However, Pac-Man suddenly vanishes and is transported to an unfamiliar Landfill. He is contacted by Orson, a ghost who controlled the Toc-Man robot in the first Pac-Man World. Two of the ghosts, "Blinky" (who is supposed to be named Clyde) and Inky, were captured and "Spectral Monsters" have taken over. So Pac-Man must go on another adventure and rescue Inky and "Blinky" (Clyde).
The biggest difference with this game compared to the first two Pac-Man World games, which is noticeable almost right away, is the fact that Pac-Man talks. And he's pretty chatty during several cutscenes, and even a little during gameplay. Another change is that Pac-Man has more moves: punching, climbing up fences, and swinging from poles. New power-ups were added as well, like the Super Butt-Bounce which wipes out all nearby enemies, while others like the steel ball return.
The other major new feature is that you can play as two of the ghosts in certain sections of some levels: Pinky and "Clyde" (Blinky). Pinky can make hidden platforms visible and solid so that Pac-Man can cross huge gaps to reach other areas of a level. Clyde/Blinky can defeat Spectral Monsters, as well as make a loud noise that can break open certain walls or knock down certain objects that Pac-Man can use to cross to over to another part of a level.
Another difference is that each level has multiple music tracks. As you get further into a level, the music changes. Music can change during cutscenes and other music tracks play during gameplay depending on the situation, such as when "Spectral Monsters" (this game's ghost enemies) appear.
Pac-Man meets up with Orson in the second level, Banni Wastelands. He needs Pac-Man's help rescuing Inky (the blue ghost) and "Blinky" (the orange ghost, who's name is supposed to be Clyde). "Clyde"/Blinky (red ghost) also needs rescuing later in the game.
Before leaving the second level, you get to play around with a Toc-Man. The goal is to break the targets by swinging its arms. The Toc-Man can also spin around, which can be useful for destroying multiple targets. You get to use this Toc-Man again during a battle in a later level.
The main villain in this game is Erwin, a scientist. In my opinion, he's the worst of the main villains in the trilogy.
Like other games in the trilogy, Galaxians can be found in this game and transport you to traditional Pac-Man mazes. This has features from Pac-Man Arrangement, such as dash arrows and a power-up that allows Pac-Man to be in two places at once. Each level in the game has a maze with a different layout, but none of them have the layout from the original Pac-Man. After you complete a maze, it becomes unlocked and can be played by going to the extras menu on the title screen.
A demo of Pac-Man World 3 on a Namco Transmission demo disc for PS2 (included with SoulCalibur III) has a maze with the same layout as the original Pac-Man maze, but it went unused in all versions of the full game.
Like Pac-Man World 2, this game has a Museum. In this game, the Museum is not just a slideshow of images and you can move Pac-Man around. There's the original Pac-Man Arcade game (again), a board that features a timeline from the original Pac-Man game to Pac-Man World 2, a TV that includes an interview with Toru Iwatani (the man who created Pac-Man), and cards featuring images of the characters in Pac-Man World 3. There are Collector's Cards and Statues in the levels, which unlock cards in the Museum. Collecting all of the fruit in a level also unlocks cards.
A demo of Pac-Man World 3 was included in a Namco Transmission demo disc for PS2, included with SoulCalibur III. Check out my video of it (above). It has a lot of differences compared to the released game, like the option to switch between Pac-Man's power-ups and a shop that wasn't included in the released game. The visuals also look a little different too, with darker lighting in some sections.
I remember Nintendo Power had a contest in 2005 that included all of the Pac-Man games and Namco Museum collections released in that year for GameCube, Game Boy Advance, and Nintendo DS. It also included a 25th Anniversary edition of the original Pac-Man Arcade game. I still have the issue of Nintendo Power that featured this contest (issue 195, Sept. 2005, Shadow the Hedgehog cover).
Pac-Man World Rally
A racing game spin-off, released in August 2006. It was already announced on Namco's site around when Pac-Man World 3 was released. It was released on PS2, GameCube, PSP, and PC. An Xbox version was planned, but not released. Like Pac-Man World 3, it was not released in Japan. Unlike Pac-Man World 3, the GameCube version of Pac-Man World Rally was only released in the U.S. and Canada (only the PS2 version got a PAL release). It would be the final Pac-Man World game until 2022, though a sort of sequel to this game titled Pac-Man Kart Rally was released for mobile devices in 2010. Also like Pac-Man World 3, Pac-Man World Rally was not developed by Namco (which had merged with Bandai by that point). It was developed by a company named Smart Bomb Interactive.
Though I read about the game in 2006, I didn't play it until 2007. In the early/mid 2000s, I often went to a Hollywood Video and rented games. I went there so much, that the owner eventually allowed me to request any games (for then-current consoles) that I wanted. I sold my original copy of Pac-Man World 3 and wanted to play it again, so I requested it. I guess the owner couldn't find it, so he got Pac-Man World Rally instead (GameCube version). Which was fine by me, because I hadn't played that game yet.
The game's main mode is the Circuit mode. The tracks are divided into Cups, like the Mario Kart games. Winning a Cup unlocks another Cup. There is a Retro Cup that includes tracks based on other Namco Arcade games, such as the original Pac-Man and Galaga. The final Cup is the Rally Cup, which is similar to the All Cup Tour in Mario Kart: Double Dash!! in that you race on all of the games tracks in one Cup. The difference with Pac-Man World Rally's Rally Cup is that each track is only one lap, while the All Cup Tour in Double Dash!! has the full number of laps. Another difference is that in the All Cup Tour in Double Dash!! you race most of the tracks in a random order, while in Pac-Man World Rally's Rally Cup you race on the tracks in the same order. The console and PC versions have fifteen tracks, while the PSP version includes an extra track based on Dig Dug.
There are several characters to choose from. You can play as Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man, Junior Pac-Man, and the ghosts. You can play as the villains from the three main Pac-Man World games (Toc-Man, Spooky, and Erwin). There is a new Pac-Man character named Pac-Devil. And there are characters from other Namco games: Pooka and Fygar from Dig Dug, and "The Prince" from the Katamari games. The PSP version of the game also includes Dig Dug and Mappy. Every character has a different vehicle. Unlike all of the other Pac-Man World games, Blinky (the red ghost) and Clyde (the orange ghost) have their correct names (their names were swapped in the main three games).
The game, like a lot of other Kart racing games, plays basically like Mario Kart. You can get items, and throw them at other racers or drop them on the track. Unlike several other kart racing games (like Diddy Kong Racing and Crash Nitro Kart), though, this game doesn't have very many original features and it doesn't have a whole lot of content. There are Pac-dots that can be found in each of the tracks. Collecting Pac-dots fills up a meter. When this meter is full, you can transform into a Pac-Mobile. This causes the other characters to turn into ghosts, allowing you to eat them which turns them into eyes. After a few seconds, everyone turns back into their normal selves. Eating ghosts gives you points. Getting a certain amount of points in each Cup unlocks items (these are mentioned in the manual).
Some of the unlockable items include a Galaga ship, and an Ice Dragon named Siria (who is from Dragon Spirit, a Namco Arcade game from the '80s).
Like most of the Mario Kart games, you can do power slides or drifts that you can charge up and then get a boost. This takes less skill than Mario Kart 64, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, and Mario Kart: Double Dash!!. In those games, you have to wiggle the N64 and GameCube's Control Sticks (or move the GBA's Pad in Mario Kart: Super Circuit) to charge up your power slides/drifts. In Pac-Man World Rally, you only need to keep holding the jump button down. This causes your vehicle to drift, which charges up automatically while you're holding the button down. Interestingly, this less-skilled version of drifting would be used in later Mario Kart games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. Pac-Man World Rally also has a drift meter that fills up whenever you drift. When the meter is full, you can press the X button to shield yourself for a few seconds which both protects you from items the other racers throw at you and gives you a speed boost. You can save these shields if you want, and the meter empties once it's full. This allows you to fill up the meter again and get another shield. You can get and save up to three shields per race.
There is a Battle mode, like in the Mario Kart series. There are four Battle arenas (the PSP version has more), which have themes taken from the race tracks (lava, haunted, canyon, etc.). You can pick the amount of computer-controlled characters (you can't have very many if multiple players are playing). There are five different Battle games to choose from:
Deathmatch - You get points everytime you defeat a player or computer-controlled character. You can set the amount of points required to win. Whoever reaches that amount of points first is the winner.
Free For All - Simlar to Deathmatch, except there's a time limit (which can be changed). Whoever has the most points when the time runs out is the winner.
Last Kart Driving - The last player remaining is the winner.
Binge - Collect the fruit scattered around the arenas. Whoever gets the most fruit wins.
Classic - Collect Pac-Dots. Like in the main Circuit mode, a meter fills everytime you collect dots. When the meter is full, you can transform into the Pac-Mobile. There are three rounds in this Battle game. Whoever collects the most dots by the end of the third round wins.
The Battle mode has silly fruit versions of real weapons, such as a Pac-Dot Gun (Machine Gun) and a Watermelon shooter (shoots seeds like a Rail Gun).
The Canyon Crusade Battle arena has things relating to beta versions of the game, such as clouds and a waterfall. The picture of Canyon Crusade on the track selection screen shows clouds and a waterfall, but they're not included on the race track version in the Circuit mode. A screenshot of the Canyon Crusade race track from an earlier version of the game is shown in the manual, and also shows clouds.
The game doesn't just take features and mechanics from the Mario Kart games. If you press the jump button just as you jump off a ramp or boost, you'll get a boost when you land. This is from Crash Nitro Kart.
The controls in the GameCube version are almost identical to Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, except the button you use to throw items is the L button (in Double Dash!!, you can press either X or Y to use items). The GameCube version has both Progressive Scan and Widescreen support, and has a clean look even on HDTV's. I happen to have the GameCube's Component cable, and am able to play this game in Progressive Scan.
While Pac-Man World Rally was the first Pac-Man racing game, it wasn't the first racing game Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man appeared in. Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man are also in the Mario Kart Arcade games (Mario Kart Arcade GP and Mario Kart Arcade GP 2). I actually had a chance to play Mario Kart Arcade GP 2 at a Chuck E. Cheese last winter, and the first one at a nearby Arcade earlier this year. Both of these games were part of a collaboration between Nintendo and Namco, and run on the Triforce hardware which is similar to the GameCube's hardware. As a result, both Mario Kart Arcade games have similarities to Mario Kart: Double Dash!!.
There are some differences between each version of Pac-Man World Rally. As mentioned above, the PSP version has some extra tracks and characters. However, it has the worst performance: it runs at a slow and choppy framerate, there are only six racers at a time (compared to eight for the console and PC versions), and the multiplayer modes can only be accessed with multiple PSP's and copies of the game.
The PS2 and GameCube versions are pretty similar, but the PS2 version only allows up to two players while the GameCube version allows up to four. The GameCube version also has a slightly cleaner and more vibrant look than the PS2 version (which looks a bit duller, but not by much). The PC version looks the best, runs at a smooth framerate, and has the fastest load times, but only allows one player to play.
I'd say the GameCube version is the best overall, though the PSP version might be worth getting for its extra content. But it really depends on whether you're just going to play by yourself, or with friends and/or family.
Pac-Man World Re-Pac
A remake of the first Pac-Man World was released for modern systems in 2022. It has basically the same story and gameplay as the original. Level layouts are also pretty similar. Pac-Man's moves are mostly same, including throwing Pac-dots, butt-bouncing, and doing a rev roll. The music is also mostly same as the original PS1 version. The biggest difference, of course, is the upgraded visuals. The menu sound effects are from Pac-Man Museum+, released only a few months before.
Like Pac-Man Museum+ released earlier the same year, Ms. Pac-Man was changed to "Pac-Mom"...
...and Junior Pac-Man is now "Pac-Boy."
The FMV's/video cutscenes have been redone. Pac-Man's family is captured in different ways than the original. Also, Pac-Man's Birthday Party is now outside. In the original PS1 game, his party was inside his house.
Since the Switch is less advanced than other modern systems, the Switch version of Pac-Man World Re-Pac has an extra option for resolution and performance modes. In "Resolution" mode, which is the default, the game runs in 1080p but the framerate isn't very smooth. In "Performance" mode, the resolution is reduced to 720p but the framerate is improved. This extra option seems to only be available with an update, as I noticed before downloading the update the option wasn't there.
Could Pac-Man World 2 and Pac-Man World 3 be getting remakes in the future? Guess we'll see. The reception for Pac-Man World Re-Pac has been mostly positive.
MegaMan52 blog #24 completed.
Pac-Man's 3D games may not be as good as the 3D Mario and Sonic games and some may not consider them as good as the 2D Pac-Man games, but the character still made a successful transition to 3D and each game of the series was memorable and worth playing. Even Pac-Man World Rally manages to be decent. I still have every Pac-Man World game (along with many other Pac-Man games), as they remain some of the most fun 3D games I've ever played. Certainly better than Pac-Man Party for Wii (though I kind of like that game too).
Edited by MegaMan52
Fixed typos and added pictures and videos