Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions

Send the Kids to Bed Early Because You are Going to Want to Borrow The 3DS for A Few Hours

What It Is

Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions is a collection of six, 3D games based on two of the most popular classic arcade games ever, Pac-Man and Galaga. Dimensions includes both original arcade games exactly as they appeared back in the old arcade days plus two classic editions of the original games—Pac-Man Championship Edition and Galaga Legions—and two brand new games developed exclusively for the 3DS.

The new games, Pac-Man Tilt and Galaga 3D Impact, fully utilize the 3DS’ 3D screen and motion-sensing, gyro-sensing capabilities. In Tilt, you literally tilt the 3DS to shift the game screen that you are trying to move Pac-Man through. In Impact, the 3DS becomes your space ship’s gun turret and you need to look left, right, up and down by physically moving the 3DS in each direction. Once you find the approaching alien ships, you blast them with your laser or tractor beam.

Why It’s Fun

There are tons of updated versions of classic arcade games available for current generation game systems. This is a trend that has been going on for a while, and after visiting E3 earlier this summer, I can tell you that the trend isn’t ending any time soon. Typically these retro-themed games either recreate the original arcade game or create an entirely new game that is completely different from the original except in name and characters. Dimensions has managed to recreate the classic game experience with some fun gimmicks (More on that in a minute.) and create two new stand-alone games that are logical extensions of the original.

The gimmicks mentioned above involve the original arcade games. Both Pac-Man and Galaga allow you to select one of three versions of the game including the stand-up arcade cabinet, sit-down table top version and a full screen option. The cabinet and table versions include the original arcade decals that surrounded the old game screen monitors and feature a 3D effect that gives the screen a feeling of depth and makes it look like you are standing in front of an old arcade cabinet or seated at the table game. The 3D screen even has that slight warping at the top of the screens that old arcade games had.

Who’s Going To Love It

Adults are going to love the nostalgia element of playing the classic games, which are sure to bring back memories of plunking quarters into machines and drinking Orange Julius drinks or whatever teenagers were doing in 1980. Kids of those 1980’s teenagers will also love playing all six games, which get progressively more challenging but should be easy enough for gamers as young as six to play.

What To Be Aware Of

The games are rated Everyone 10+ for “Comic Mischief” and “Fantasy Violence”. I have to question the ESRB ratings guidelines for that because I can’t image anyone finding Galaga or Pac-Man even remotely violent. As for the mischief, I guess the ghosts in Pac-Man could be called mischievous but don’t let the 10+ rating dissuade you from buying this game for a six-year-old.


There is a reason that these games have lasted for more than 30 years — you never get tired of trying to get to the grape level and beyond on Pac-Man.

Fun Scale

5 out of 5

It has to be fun or it wouldn’t be on Time to Play. But some games are more fun than others so here’s our scale: 1 is fun, 2 is a lot of fun, 3 is great, 4 is awesome and 5 is out-of-this-world!

Video Game Information

Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions
Publisher: Namco Bandai
Rated: Everyone 10+

System: Nintendo 3DS
Genre: Arcade/Action
Players: 1

SRP: $39.99
Launch Date: Summer 2011
Date of Review: August 3, 2011

*Rating determined by the ESRB


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