Little Pacman and I are old friends, and we remained that way for many years. He like Mario has been my ongoing pal for several gaming generations. The little yellow guy and I have had many a good times together and have many memories that range from my living room to the arcade. Now it is time to reflect on this and why he has remained my pal for so long.
Pac-Man simply put it is a game while thirty years old, is quiet frankly as intense and as fun as it was when I first played it many years ago. This game has aged perfectly, no doubt in my mind, and that is why he has remained my pal for so long.
The reason I bring this is up is that I have again spent much time with this little guy lately. First and foremost I own several ports of the original game, including a port each on my Xbox 360 and my PS3. Second there was this nice little game that came out called Pac-Man Championship Edition DX. And my how I have spent time on this as while it still has that simple formula that Pac-Man followed this game reinvents it to some degree while keeping that simple essence still there, proving that Pac Man can with Stand the test of time.
Pac Man as we all know is a simple concept, but it was that simple concept that made it with stand. You must escape ghost and than eat all the dots on the screen. Sure it may sound repetitive, but thanks to excellent programming, you had everything from different speeds to lessened power up levels that made Pac Man with stand that enemy we called Monotomy that sadly some games from that time era did not suceed in surviving.
So with that being said, than why is it that some games age well and some donot? Why do some games that are older than another in its genre age well? Well that is something I got to thinking about and I think it ultimatley depends on a number of factors. I think of course you think of games that have gameplay mechanics that have aged well and then there are those that age fine in terms of gameplay but graphically they donot.
Another game that is an interesting speciman in terms of aging for me is Doom. Doom sure may not have full angle aiming I guess, but damn that game is just purely playable. It is so intense, so fast, and at times just damn hard that it is to me one of the most intense games around to this day. Now lets go forward four years from Doom, to another FPS that is considered important to the genre. That game is Goldeneye, which brought the FPS successfully to consoles. Oh yes many many hours with friends were spent with this game, but sadly....the game has not held up. Why? Goldeneye if you played it feels choppy and slow. It just feels too slow compared to other FPS, and even those on the time. Let us also add that other FPS on the N64 such as Perfect Dark aged fine, but Golden Eye, yeah again it just did not age well due to its slow based gameplay. Something like Doom holds up better.
I guess the samething can also be said about Super Mario Brothers compared to say Super Mario 64. Of course the argument could be said that SM64 was the first in 3D and was an experiment? Well SMB was also an experiment. but imo that game was just far better than SM64 as that it did not feel as rought as SM64 did.
So really do games age because of our perceptions, or do we oversee their flaws at times and let nostalgia take over? Whatever it is, the aging of games are an interesting thing to talk about. Whats your take on this matter?