Pac-Man And The Ghostly Adventures Hands On & Why Pac-Man Turns Into A Chameleon

By Spencer . June 14, 2013 . 5:30pm

Namco Bandai is making another Pac-Man platformer and Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is based on the upcoming animated series from Avi Arad. The E3 demo takes place at the very beginning of the game where colorful ghosts took over the city and it’s up to Pac-Man to… umm… eat them. Pac-Man’s main attack is a lunging bite and eating ghosts earns Pac-Man googly eyes. I asked a representative from Namco Bandai what the eyes were for, but he said he couldn’t explain that yet.


The level had a trail of yellow pellets which are called “power berries” in the cartoon. This change was made to show Pac-Man is a healthy eater, but oddly enough hamburgers and wedges of cheese found in the stage recover Pac-Man’s health.


Eating power berries fills up Pac-Man’s power meter. When it’s full, Pac-Man can scare ghosts which makes them turn blue and run away. The main reason to use the scare move is to stop ghosts from pestering Pac-Man. Ghosts attack by teleporting and burrowing where Pac-Man stands and if you don’t move when you see a red light underneath Pac-Man’s feet you lose a heart. Enemies are easy enough to defeat, but in some areas there are so many ghosts that they act as a nuisance.


Power berries show players the “critical path” or where they need to go to clear the level. Stray from it and you might find collectables like a green pellet that turns Pac-Man into… a chameleon. Does anyone remember Chameleon Twist? No, well Pac-Man’s chameleon power up is kind of like that. Chameleon Pac-Man can shoot out his tongue which gives him a long range attack and use it to swing from poles.


The intro level takes place on a floating city with disappearing platforms. I hopped over to a rooftop and new green ghosts spat a glob of goo on a Pacitizen. To rescue her, I used Chameleon Pac-Man’s tongue to gobble up the flying green ghosts then ate the Jello-like goop. With the girl freed, a fishing line-like switch appeared which Pac-Man triggers by biting it. Eww…


As I continued through the stage, I rescued another Pac-girl and hopped past a few more vanishing block paths. A representative explained this was only one world and the first level of Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures. They aren’t showing too much of the game, including the voice acting, because they are waiting for the cartoon to premiere on Disney XD. Pac-Man has more powerups to be revealed and you’ll see Pac-Man’s new buddies in the game (but they won’t be playable).


There was one issue I noticed when playing Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures. The camera can be clumsy. When I was walking around a tree blocked it and completely covered Pac-Man. This happened twice so I just got in the habit of manually moving the camera with the right analog stick. Fortunately, none of the vanishing platform parts had objects that occluded the camera.


Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is slated for release this fall on Wii U, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. A 3DS game is also in development, but it’s different from the game I played and appears to be more like a side-scroller.

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  • Highasthesky

    Don’t improve on the original concept and make a completely different game. Whatever i guess.

  • artfv95

    The third picture looks a bit suggestive.

    • evilkaz

      “I’m going to tongue puch your fart box”

    • Spirit Macardi

      I think it’s the perfect analogy for the game x3

    • Juan Andrés Valencia

      When Namco wants to make us think about Pac-Rimjobs you know their game’s in trouble.

    • Kitestwinblades

      It’s from an octopus sausage bento….
      Who am I kidding… I cant defend this picture.
      Pac-man has been eating ghost for over 3 decades now xD
      The game could be fun, but seeing Pac-man in the 3rd dimension makes things awkward fast. Even in reality.

  • Spirit Macardi

    I think it’s about time someone took Pac-Man behind the shed and gave him the Old Yeller treatment…

    Seriously Namco, why do you persist in trying to keep him around? Especially for stuff like this that bears no resemblance to the original game. I get that he’s your mascot, but since that’s the case isn’t it better to simply remember him for what he was and not this bizarre abomination he’s become?

    Not to mention his recent games have sold like crap (Pac-Man Party ended up in the bargain bin faster than Duke Nukem Forever), yet they still keep being made even though low sales has been Namco’s given reason for NOT continuing multiple series under their wing. And this game looks like it’s far more costly to produce than something like Klonoa, especially when you factor in voice acting (which, since it’s an American cartoon, likely uses Union VAs), full 3D graphics and environments, and the fact that there’s a different game with the same name being developed alongside it for handhelds.

    I just can’t wrap my mind around this. Either this is the most elaborate act of corporate trolling ever, or the people at Namco are seriously that f***ing dumb.

    • Pac-man Championship Edition DX for PSN and XBLA is one of the best modern arcade-style games in recent memory, imo. Just because they make some crappy games about him doesn’t mean it’s not possible to still make great modern Pac-man games. Pac-man World, as well as Pac-man Versus, while much older now, were also games I found very enjoyable. Hell, many people still have a blast playing the original, just like with other arcade classics like Tetris and Breakout. There’s no reason to make Pac-man to go the way of Crash Bandicoot and the like…

      • Spirit Macardi

        Those arcade ports and CE versions are just fine. They work within the established formula and remember the character as he should be. Games like this… don’t. It hardly even qualifies as the same series anymore.

        He can still be a mascot or a figurehead for the company, but I don’t think I’m letting out any big secret in saying that his best years are long behind him and he’ll never again be as relevant as he was in gaming’s early days. It’s best that Namco realize that and start spending money on franchises with untapped potential instead of altering and mutating this one to try and make it “modern.”

        • Pacman Championship Edition DX wasn’t just a port or a re release though, it was a completely modern update based on the original idea, creating basically an entire new game, much like what games like Tetris DS or Space Invaders Extreme did for their respective franchises.

          I just don’t think such great games like this would happen without the developers experimenting and looking for new ways to refresh classics like these, as well as use classic ideas to create entirely new games and experiences.

          • Spirit Macardi

            Again, this sort of thing works. Nothing’s being drastically changed, it’s just expanded in scope.

            Games like Pac-Man party fail because they put the character into completely different games where he doesn’t belong, while the CE titles work on simply making the original formula more fun. They’re also far less costly to produce and likely make more money. That’s the entire point I’m getting at.

            If Namco wants to keep the character around, then they should know the limits of the franchise while also treating it with respect. They also shouldn’t treat the franchise like it’s the only horse in the stable, since they have many more that they could call upon to do the jobs they’re trying to alter Pac-Man for.

  • Which version did you play? How was the framerate? 30 or 60fps?

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    You guys know, i actually think here, chameleon is actually a good power up for Pacman here after all, Pacman is all about eating lol.^_^

    Who knows, we will see a frog upgrade also for Pacman? or other animal which is famous for their eating method?^_^

  • DuskSharkEX

    >healthy diet

    B-but Professor Pac said that ya don’t need a diet! (Well, he only said that to Ms. Pac-Man in Maze Madness…)

  • Krisi92

    PLEASE don’t include him in the next Super Smash Bros. Please.

    • Fahd Al Zarooni

      What will you do if the include Pac-Man in the next Smash Bros. game?

      • Krisi92

        Nothing, but I’ll be a bit upset.

        • Fahd Al Zarooni

          Me, I will be THE HAPPIEST PERSON ALIVE… (^0^) /

          • Krisi92

            Why? Sure, he’s a classic, but he’s also really boring. I mean shat possible interesting moveset could he have? I don’t think too many. Plus he didn’t have too many great games either. Pac-Man World for the GBA, for example, was possibly the worst game I’ve ever played.

  • I have fond memories of chamleon twist.. I’d love a new one >.< Especially since I doubt this power up basically turns the game into chameleon twist (I might have to seriously consider this one then, lol).

  • Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is based on the upcoming animated series from Avi Arad.

    So… The villain (Along with the Ghosts) is this guy again?

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