Welcome to the Pac-Man Museum+!

Welcome to the Pac-Man Museum+!  My name is Cary, and I’ll be your tour guide today.  Oh man, wouldn’t it be cool if there really was a Pac-Man Museum and I worked there?  I’d be in heaven.  Anyway, Pac-Man Museum+ is a collection of arcade and console games featuring Pac-Man.  Kind of like the Namco Museums, just with Pac only.  It’s available on most current consoles and PC, but I got the PS4 version because it was cheapest at 20 bucks.  Plus it was a physical version, which I always like.  Although I’m tempted to get it on Switch as well so I could have all those games portable.  And I hear it’s also on Xbox Game Pass as of this writing, so if you have an Xbox One or X/S, check it out!  All right, so come along with me on the tour of the 14 games on this collection!

So first of all, you may be wondering what the “Plus” is for in Pac-Man Museum+.  Well that’s because there was an original Pac-Man Museum back on the Xbox 360 and PS3.  I talked about it here way back when.  The main difference is this new version has more games.  The old game had less than ten if you don’t count the DLC.  But this new one has 14 games total.  Granted it’s not THAT much more, but a few good choices in extra games makes a world of difference.  The other big change is that when the original game came out, the Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures cartoon was still running, so in the game you could unlock items and characters to put in cartoon Pac-Man’s room.  Boy I’m glad that era of Pac-Man is over, because that cartoon sucked!  But in Plus, you unlock items you can use to decorate your very own Pac-Man themed arcade!  OK, so take a collection of games from my number one favorite game of all time (Pac-Man), and add decoration gameplay gimmicks from my second favorite game of all time (Animal Crossing), and that’s how you win me over, Namco.  Oh man, what if Namco made an Animal Crossing style game with their characters?  I’d never leave the house!  Anyway, let’s go over the games in this collection first now.


Not much can be said about Pac-Man that you can’t already read about on the Internet, so instead I’ll tell you about the first time I played Pac-Man myself. It’s actually the first arcade game I’ve ever played.  The first time I saw it was actually on TV. I was about five years old and my dad and I were watching the news. They showed some guys building these rectangular machines. I didn’t know what they were, but they were big and yellow, had a lighted part on top, and you put money in them. I first thought it was some kind of soda or vending machine as they were about the same size. But a few months later, my mom and I were grocery shopping at Kroger and at the checkout lanes; they had that same machine I saw on TV! I asked my mom if I could go look at it, and she said yes. Turns out it was a Pac-Man machine, and my mom gave me a quarter to try it. I was mesmerized at how you could move the little yellow character on screen, and I talked about the colorful ghosts, blue maze, and funny sound effects all the way home. I wonder if my mom knew what kind of monster she created that fateful trip. And that’s how I first played Pac-Man!

Super Pac-Man

This is actually the ‘true’ sequel to Pac-Man, as it was made by Namco. Even though gameplay-wise, there are better Pac games out there, Super Pac-Man is one of my favorite Pac-Man games. Why? Well, because it’s so bonkers, and because I’m really good at it. I usually try not to be boastful about my video game skills, because I know there are plenty of people who are way better than me. But with Super Pac-Man, I can say with confidence that I could probably either beat you at it, or at least hold my own really well. When I was a kid, the Wal-Mart near our house had a couple of arcade machines near the entrance (a lot of places did that back then). Some of those arcade games included Pengo, SkyKid, and Victory Road. But the game that was there the longest was Super Pac-Man. If we were there and I was being good, my mom would usually give me a quarter to play Super Pac-Man either before or after we shopped. Since we got a lot of groceries at that Wal-Mart, I played Super Pac-Man quite a bit and got really good at it!

Pac & Pal

This one was never actually released in the US, but it’s rumored there was a prototype called Pac-Man & Chomp Chomp that replaced Pac’s “Pal” with his dog from the 80’s cartoon show. Pac & Pal plays a lot like Super Pac-Man, in that you must flip cards to open doors in the maze to nab the fruit. But you have to watch out because a “Pal” can take the fruit and bring it back to the ghost’s hideout, never to be seen again. This Pal is round and green and has a bow on her head, and her name is Miru, apparently. Although the game calls her “Mil” but I think that’s a translation error.  There are also no power pellets. You eat things like Galaxians or Rally-X cars or trumpets and ‘shoot’ out beams or smoke or notes at the ghosts to get points temporarily. It’s a really odd one.  It’s not as much fun either, so in a way I can understand why it wasn’t brought to the US back then.


Namco may try and hide it, but Pac-Land is really based on the early 80’s Pac-Man cartoon show. Has the same music and everything. They even changed some of the graphics in the US version to make it look even more like the cartoon. Pac-Land is a 2-D platformer, and it came out a full year before Super Mario Bros. (and looks better graphically, too). But that’s not to say it’s better than Mario’s game. I never really liked Pac-Land because the controls were very stiff. And in the arcade, it had no joystick, just buttons. They toted the button only scheme would simplify controls, but it really didn’t. So while Super Mario Bros. may have gotten 2-D platforming right, it certainly wasn’t the first one ever.


I was pretty excited to see Pac-Mania in arcades because there hadn’t been a new Pac game since 1984, and this came out in 1987-1988. For the time, Pac-Mania had cool 3-D isometric graphics, a catchy soundtrack, and a neat new gameplay mechanic: you could jump over the ghosts! It’s actually one of my favorite Pac games to this day!  The version of this game on this museum is the Japan version, so no stage select or high score name entry.  Why not put in both versions, Namco?


Initially, I was pretty excited for Pac-Attack, too, as it was the first new Pac-Man game since Pac-Mania, so that was like a five year plus timespan. Pac-Attack was not an arcade game, but a console title for the SNES, Genesis, and handheld games at the time. It was a Tetris-like puzzle game, but unfortunately, it wasn’t very good. But did you know that Pac-Attack is just a reworked version of an earlier arcade Namco puzzler called Cosmo Gang: The Puzzle? Earlier, Namco released a mechanical light gun game called Cosmo Gang where you shot at aliens who would creep from the top of the field to capture some boxes on the bottom. If they brought all the boxes back to their spaceship, you’d lose. I know they brought that to the US, because I remember playing it somewhere a long time ago. They made two video games with the Cosmo Gang characters. One was a Galaga-like game called Cosmo Gang: The Game, and the other was the aforementioned puzzler. I don’t think those appeared in the US, though. Cosmo Gang characters appear in other games, like Dig Dug Arrangement (arcade), and Point Blank 2.

In Pac-Man World 2, you could collect hidden tokens that would unlock classic Pac-Man games you could play, and one of them was Pac-Attack. However, the cool thing was it was the Namco Anthology version of Pac-Attack! On the PSOne, Namco in Japan released a few Namco Anthology titles. They were like the Namco Museums, but featured console titles with original and updated versions of those classics. The Pac-Man World team put the improved Namco Anthology version of Pac-Attack on Pac-Man World 2, which is a much better game than the one we’ve seen on other collections. That was actually the coolest part of Pac-Man World 2, and why I feel the PMW team really cared about the games they made. I wish Namco would’ve put the Namco Anthology version of Pac-Attack on Pac-Man Museum+!


This is another console game.  It was on the SNES, Genesis, Game Boy, and PC.  You play as Pac-Man who has been sent back in time by the Ghost Witch, which turns him into a Pac-Boy with shorter arms and legs.  It’s a 2-D platformer with emphasis on item usage, as you can collect things like a rope for swinging or a hammer for breaking things.  Unfortunately, this game is not very good as the controls are too squirrely and there’s this weird jumping mechanic where your first jump is dinky but the second time you jump it’s twice as high.  But in a way, I’m still glad it’s on here because I never had the console version of this game, just the PC one because it was cheaper.  So I’ll be glad to spend some more time with this one.  Plus, even though it’s not a very good game, it made me think of other 16-bit games I liked, and that was one of my favorite eras of gaming, so at least there’s that.  Did you know Pac-In-Time wasn’t originally a Pac-Man game?  It was first a European game called Fury of the Furries, and Namco had now defunct Mindscape change some of the graphics and music for it to be Pac-Man instead.  Not sure what they were thinking, but it’s true!

Pac-Man Arrangement Arcade Version

Oh man I am so glad this game is on here, as it’s another one of my favorite Pac games.  Back in the mid 90s, Namco made some arcade games with three classics you could play (Galaga, Rally-X, Dig Dug, Mappy, Xevious, and Pac-Man) spread across two volumes.  You could play the original games or Arranged versions of those games with update graphics and other improvements or tweaks.  Pac-Man Arrangement had better graphics and sound, plus a two player option.  Even the dots were animated!  There were new power-ups for you, but also for the ghosts!  There was a new ghost they added here who was yellow and wore glasses.  In the US he was oddly named “Kinky” but in Japan he was “Kinzo.”  The version of the arcade game on this museum is the Japanese version, so that’s how I know that.  Anyway, he starts out of the ghost hideout blue so you can eat him, but if he touches another one of the ghosts, he’ll give them a power-up. Blinky grows horns and can charge after you.  Pinky grows rabbit ears and can jump closer to your location.  Inky gets sunglasses and can create a mirror image of himself.  And Clyde gets fat and poops out dots.  It’s really a lot of fun and I played it a ton in the arcade and I’m glad it’s been on a few home collections as well, including this one.

Pac-Man Arrangement Console Version

I’m really glad they differentiated between these two versions.  Some say they’re the same game, but they’re really not.  Originally, this Arrangement was made for the PSP.  It has bright, toy-like graphics and some of the elements from the arcade Arrangement came over, but it’s still a different game.  There is no “Kinky,” and the ghosts don’t get power-ups this time.  It’s fine, just no where near as good as the arcade one.

Pac-Man Championship Edition

I’m also really glad this game is on here because it’s another one of my favorite Pac games.  In fact, this game was the reason why I got an Xbox 360 in the first place!  It’s a little disappointing that other versions of this game aren’t on here as well, like the DX version or the sequel.  But I like the original the best anyway so I’m still happy.


So on the Wii, Namco released a couple of arcade collections called Namco Museum Remix and Megamix.  They had a few classic arcade games as well as updates of some classics that feature enhanced graphics and sometimes even motion controls.  And they all squeezed Pac-Man in there somewhere.  Yeah even the Galaga Remix game had Pac-Man rolling around a slide in space as you shot down Galaga bugs by aiming the Wii remote at the screen.  Anyway, Motos was originally an arcade game where you moved a spaceship around a playfield and tried to bump enemies off the stage.  So it was kind of like bumper cars in space.  In Pac-Motos, you do the same thing except you are Pac-Man bumping objects off the stage.  You can sometimes get tickets that you can use on the next round to power you up, but otherwise it’s kind of the same game.  It’s still fairly fun, though.  Not sure why they couldn’t add other “remix” titles from the Wii collections on here, like Rally-X Remix or Gator Panic Remix.  And yeah, they had Pac-Man in those ones, too.

Pac N Roll Remix

On the DS, one of the Pac-Man games that came out for it was Pac N Roll.  You used the touch screen to roll Pac-Man around like a track ball as you rolled Pac-Man around the top screen, eating dots and avoiding ghosts and obstacles.  They made a remix version of it for the Wii collections, which just added motion controls.  This is the same version except without the motion controls.  You just use the control stick to move Pac-Man around.  It’s an all right game.  Kind of a mix of Super Monkey Ball and Marble Madness mixed with Pac-Man.  My personal favorite DS Pac-Man was Pac-Pix, where you drew pictures of Pac-Man and they would then come to life and eat the ghosts.

Pac-Man Battle Royale

When this first came out in arcades, I tried to look everywhere for it.  It took nearly a whole year before I finally found it.  And now it’s in nearly every arcade I go to!  It uses a lot of Championship Edition’s assets to make a four player competitive Pac-Man game where you all run around the maze, eating dots and avoiding ghosts.  If you eat a power pellet, you can eat the other players as well!  Whoever is left standing at the end of five rounds, wins.  It’s an all right game, but honestly, Pac-Man Vs. is a much better multiplayer experience.  Too bad that one’s not on here.  Supposedly, Namco just released a new version of this game in arcades called Pac-Man Battle Royale: Chompionship Edition, but I haven’t seen it yet.

Pac-Man 256

This was originally a mobile game made by the same folks who did Crossy Road.  I even reviewed it here.  It’s one of the better mobile Pac games so it’s no surprise that Namco had them do a console version.  So as you may know, when you get to maze 256 in the original Pac-Man, the maze glitches out and the game ends.  So in Pac-Man 256, you are constantly moving forward, eating dots and ghosts in the maze while the glitch slowly moves forward and you must keep one step ahead of it.  So it really is like a cross between Pac-Man and Crossy Road.  I didn’t get the console version because I already had it on mobile, so I’m glad it’s on this collection as well.

And those are all the games!  I’d like to talk more about the arcade you can design, though.  As you play the game, you’ll earn coins you can use to either play other arcade games or buy furniture for your arcade.  You can also get mini achievements by playing the games to unlock new furniture.  But even though you have to use these coins, you’re never in any danger of running out, as you always earn more coins by playing the games anyway.  You can place a vending machine in your arcade to buy more stuff, or a jukebox so you can play music you unlock from the different arcade games.  You can also unlock floors and wallpapers (I love how one wallpaper looks like the maze from the Atari 2600 version of Pac-Man).  Another thing you can put in your arcade is a Gashapon machine where you can buy figurines to display as well.  These figurines include Pac-Man characters, the ghosts, fruit, and gold and silver variations of each one.

So that leads me to one of the problems I have with this game.  Of course I know that Namco can’t really release some of the Pac-Man games to this collection because they didn’t make them, like Professor Pac-Man, Jr. Pac-Man, and Baby Pac-Man.  There’s another glaring omission which you probably know, but we’ll get to that in a bit.  But even so, you can still unlock figurines of those characters!  They change the names of them a bit, like calling them Professor Pac, Pac-Boy, Pac-Sis, and such.  Pac-Man’s dog is here, too, and he was originally named Chomp Chomp from the cartoon, but in this game they call him Pac-Buddy!  Oh man, copyrights are weird!

So of course the glaring omission on this collection is Ms. Pac-Man.  But that’s because Namco technically doesn’t have the rights to this game.  I won’t go into the whole story here, as this blog is getting long enough, but they even took the trouble to edit Ms. Pac-Man’s sprite in the games she’s in here so she doesn’t look like Ms. Pac-Man anymore.  So in games like Pac-Land, Pac-Attack, and Pac-In-Time, they gave her a purple brimmed hat instead of a bow, and now she’s called Pac-Mom.  So is she Pac-Man’s Mom or the mom of Pac-Man’s kids?  There’s even a figurine of her, too.  It’s crazy.  On one hand, the people who do have the rights to Ms. Pac-Man, AtGames, should just let Namco have the rights to Ms. Pac-Man, as Namco would make much better use of her than they would.  But on the other hand, whatever amount of money AtGames would want, Namco should just pay them to get the rights to Ms. Pac-Man, as they’ve already made billions of dollars from that, and would continue to make billions in the future.  But what do I know?  I’m just a dumb Pac-Man fan.  There is one game where they forgot to change Ms. Pac-Man’s appearance, but I won’t tell you which one it is!

I do wish some other console games would’ve been on here, too, like Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures, which was a really unique one.  But Ms. Pac-Man was in that game as well.  Other problems I have with this collection is that you can’t choose how many lives and other options in each game, you can only buy furniture you’ve unlocked via achievements, they only use the Japanese versions of the arcade and some console games, and I hear the Xbox version has input lag.  But otherwise this is a great collection and has a lot of Pac-Man games I love.  So thanks for taking the tour with me of Pac-Man Museum+.  What are your favorite Pac-games?  –Cary

One Response to “Welcome to the Pac-Man Museum+!”

  1. Yeah, the Xbox version has some bad input lag in some of the games. CE and Battle Royal have this fuzzy/blurriness to them. Which seems strange when the X360 CE is totally backwards compatible with the newer Xboxes and is perfect. Was reading the Switch version has the same issues. Just feels like a lazy cash grab. I was really looking forward to this, too.

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