Pac ‘N’ Roll
WHY DO OASIS order soup at a restaurant? Because you get a roll with it. That’s not an attempt at humour, it’s just something we heard. Okay, rubbish attempts at opening statements aside, here’s Pac ’N Roll! It’s a bit like Pokémon Dash!
Using the DS’s touch screen you roll Pac Man about collecting his yellow pills and avoiding ghosts, while navigating platforms and making all sorts of wrong turns through the mazes. You control Pac Man by using the touch screen to roll him in the direction you want using the stylus and your frantic rolling is transferred to the Pac Man on the top screen. Roll, roll, roll. Roll Pac Man to the left and he goes left, it’s all very innovative, even the story – the evil Golvis has taken over Pac-land, turned everyone into balls and wants to take over. But! Pac Man is out to stop him and his band of silly named ghosts with his various rolling abilities. (‘Various’ rolling abilities? There’s really only one way to roll really.)
In each mission you have to roll about collecting the pills and tackle the tricky platforming bits. You can stop Pac Man from falling off ledges quite handily and this is a Good Thing because there’s so many things trying to knock you off. From moving platforms to jump squares and panels that speed you up there is a lot for yer Man to contend with. Don’t worry the big ball of Gouda can collect power ups such as the armour which prevents him from being blown off the higher ledges and the feather cap which makes you floaty-light for getting across the larger gaps. And then you get the themed levels. Levels with themes! Like sweets or lava, some have racing sections to complete within a time limit while navigating spike and things that through you off course.
But then you sit back and realise that there are much better games out there to play than piffling about with this rather boring release. God we’d rather play a bit of Zoo Keeper than continue rolling Pac Man about. It’s not that it does anything specifically wrong, it is what it is after all, but when it’s just what it is and not much more, it leaves feeling a bit let down. Even the original arcade game seems so dated that after turning a few corners you switch it off.