E3 2011: Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions Preview Hands-On

We check out a couple of classics and a couple of new ones in this portable compilation.

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The best thing about classic games is that they never get old--no matter how many years have passed since their release. Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions is coming to the 3DS later this year, packing six games onto one cartridge. The original Pac-Man and Galaga serve as nostalgic refreshers for longtime fans of the two series, and it's still fun to gobble ghosts, as well as shoot down ships. Two other games are much more recent. Pac-Man Championship Edition and Galaga Legions appeared on Xbox Live Arcade a few years ago and trapped players in their clutches for dozens of score-chasing hours. And finally, two new games round out the package. Pac-Man Tilt and Galaga 3D Impact offer new takes on the two series.

Because we've already reviewed the other included games, this preview will focus on the two new efforts. First up is Pac-Man Tilt. This side-scrolling platformer has as much in common with Sonic the Hedgehog as it does Pac-Man. When you tilt the system to the side, you roll up into a ball, and you can leap through levels at warp speed in this spherical form. There are ramps to launch off of, pinball flippers to shoot you further, and tricky jumps to land. And don't forget the pellets. You earn points by eating these, and there are power pellets to make short work of ghosts. It's tricky coming to grips with the controls, but this looks like another fun entry in the always-expanding franchise.

Galaga 3D Impact is even more fun. In this, you pilot the turret in a ship from a first-person perspective and use the gyroscopes in the system to aim at passing ships. It's a cool twist to the formula, and it's a lot of fun to take shots at your attackers while you scan the skies. You have a tractor beam in addition to your standard beam blast, and this lets you steal weapons from your enemies. This a great twist to Galaga that was lots of fun, even in the early going.

The final piece of this package is online leaderboards. The whole point of high-score games in the first place is being able to brag about your best efforts, so having the option to share makes this package even better. Stay tuned to GameSpot for more information on how Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions turns out.

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