Arcade 1988 Dos University of Maine at Fort Kent Epic Item collection

Poor clone of a classic

The classic arcade hit Pacman is not exactly short of a few loving tributes and blatant ripoffs, from the likes of PC Man to Packman to Fast Food. Many of these titles do nothing more than copy the original down to the last detail but just occasionally you get one which does at least try to do something a little different and such is the case here with Pacmaine. It's still not exactly a world-class game but for the obsessive collector of Pacman games, this one does at least offer a couple of neat twists on the formula. The goal, as ever, is to guide your little avatar around a series of mazes, gobbling away while avoiding ghosts. The difference here, and it is admittedly a small one, is that instead of the usual pills you're actually chasing A's and instead of being a pure exercise in racking up a high score, the actual intention of the game is to encourage players to go to college! Seriously, that apparently was the goal of the creators, the University of Maine, and which can be seen in the humorous names given to the ghosts, Goofoff, Chicky, Boozer and Junky, all of whom epitomise the bad habits of the worst students imaginable. Sadly however, these wannabe designers might have been better off spending their time actually studying or coming up with their own game ideas as in pretty much all respects, Pac-Maine is a huge waste of time. The visuals are crude in the extreme, lacking the charm and personality of even the worst Pacman ripoffs, while the gameplay itself offers nothing new over the original. Unless you're an avid collector of Pacman games, there's nothing to get excited about here and out of respect to a true innovator, you're better off sticking to the legend that began it all.

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