previews\ May 22, 2005 at 8:00 pm

Pac-Man World 3 - PSP - Preview

E3 Preview 2005

Pac-Man was the man at this year's E3. Gamers will see him in many of Namco's big fall releases, but the most significant will likely be the third chapter in his adventure series, Pac-Man World.

Due for release on every platform but the GBA and the Nintendo DS, Pac-Man World 3 marks the first time that the pizza-shaped hero teams up with his original nemesis: the ghosts. Both Pinky and Clyde will be playable. Their gameplay mechanics are unknown and the reason for this turn of events has yet to be revealed. It apparently has something to do with the new villain's plot to destroy the world.

Okay, so this won't win any awards for great storytelling. It will, however, earn accolades for its expanded gameplay. The worlds look larger, and the camera appears to be more versatile. Pac-Man's first adventure game was limited by developers' inexperience with 3D technology. Now that time has passed that's no longer a problem.

Namco has its work cut out for it, but so far gamers won't be able to notice a huge difference between the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable versions of the game. The developers are designing all five versions (PS2, PSP, Xbox, GameCube and PC) to be as close as possible. All versions will have the same content, and all versions are expected to be released at the same time. If any version is to have exclusive content, you can bet it'll be on the PSP.

Power-ups return to give Pac-Man an extra boost whenever he needs it. Collect fruit and enjoy the delicious taste of power-up smoothies. (It wouldn't be such a bad idea for them to start having these at E3.) Execute new special moves with all three characters, and let us not forget about the Pac-Dots, Pac-Chains and Power Pellets.

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