Ms. Pac-Man
◉ ◉ ◉ ◉ ◉(5/5: life-changing)
Midway (1982)
This is the best Pac-Man.

No joke, if I were to buy an arcade cabinet for my house, like a big man-child, it would probably be Ms. Pac-Man. If there's a cabinet at whatever dive bar I'm at, I will always put a quarter or five in. It's the perfect balance of action and aesthetics. It is a rare sequel that is better than the original. It is no wonder that it is one of the most popular games of all time.

There are a number of features that make this game awesome. The changing mazes is the easiest to spot. The addition of the moving fruit gives another target to aim for and increases the feeling of chaos of the game. The wrap-around side tunnels gave the maps a literal extra dimension. However, the best feature for me is the cutscenes. A little bit of story added to the hectic chasing gives you a little treat every couple levels. A jaunty tune and a clever, comedic respite from trying to survive. The Ms. Pac-Man scenes are just a step better than the original. I particularly like the second cutscene and can get there pretty reliably. So good.

The chase!

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Last updated: 07/12/2021
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