Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness

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Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness
Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness Coverart.png
North American PlayStation cover art
Developer(s) Namco
Full Fat (GBA)
Mass Media Inc. (N64 & DC)
Publisher(s) Namco
Distributor(s) Destination Software (GBA)
Engine Modified Pac-Man World engine
Platform(s) PlayStation, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, Game Boy Advance
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Maze
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer

Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness (ミズパックマン メイズマッドネス?) is a 3D, four-directional control (block-based) puzzle game starring Ms. Pac-Man. It was first released on the Sony PlayStation console, followed by release on the Nintendo 64 and Sega Dreamcast. Unlike the previous 20th Anniversary Pac-Man World, the player must follow along designated paths. It was well received for its simple gameplay, staying true to the original 'Ms. Pac-Man' game, but its multiplayer mode was at times heavily criticized.

Plot[edit]

Professor Pac learns that the evil forces have taken control of the Enchanted Castle, using black magic. The princess has vanished, and a witch named Mesmerelda is planning on stealing all four Gems of Virtue (Generosity; Truth; Wisdom; Courage) to control the "four wonders" (areas of Pac-Land). These four areas have enemies in them, and are blocked by mysterious force fields. Professor Pac creates a device called Pactrometer, which allows Ms. Pac-Man to go to these areas to recover the gems before Mesmerelda can get them first.[1] However, as the Professor is telling Ms. Pac-Man this, he gets sucked into a mirror by the witch, leaving Ms. Pac-Man with the Pactrometer. As she journey's through the areas she is helped by video messages that the professor placed in the Pactrometer, and by holograms of Professor Pac.

As Ms. Pacman gathers the last of the gems they are stolen by Mesmerelda. A battle insues, the witch is defeated and runs away, leaving behind a key.[2] Without the key Mesmerelda can't get to her into the castle, to reach her crystal ball, and thus can't use the gems.[3]

Ms. Pac-Man then returns to fight for the gems, and this times wins, regaining the gems. With them and the Pactrometer the witch's spell is broken, and Mesmerelda returns to her true form as the princess.[4] There is then a celebration for the Professor, the Princess and Ms. Pac-Man.

Gameplay[edit]

The player must navigate a series of mazes with Ms. Pac-Man. Along the way she encounters such obstacles as moving blocks, exploding boxes, and locked doors. To help her, there is 'Pac-Dot Radar' to locate missing dots the player will need before being allowed to reach the next section of an level. Placed about the maze are such devises as spring tiles (to jump over the walls of the maze, and sometimes on top of them); switches, keys, hearts to regain her health, and 'Power Pellets' used to allow Ms. Pac-Man to eat all the enemies in the area for a limited time.[5]

As the player progresses they must eat yellow dots scattered about each area, once they have eaten enough of these a door will open allowing them to reach a new section of that area. Each area has its own amount of dots, as well as snacks such as fruit and pretzels. If the player can get all of these, as well as reaching the exit of the areas they are rewarded with a 'Gold Star'. Once an area is beaten the player can also play it again for a Time Trial, 'Gold Star', and 'Gold Clock'. Earning enough stars will unlock various features such as 'Bouns Rounds' between some levels, and a 'Movie Player' to watch the games animated scenes.[6]

Each enemy and item that the player eats gives them more points, which can earn them additional lives, as well as allow them to unlock other features. After beating the games two bosses; the green 'Gobblin' a face like creature similar to Ms. Pac-Man, and the final boss 'Mesmerelda'. The player receives the 'Witch's Key' which allows them unlock various locations in the earlier areas. However, the game requires the player to beat the bosses twice, in order to see the game's ending.[7]

Multiplayer[edit]

The multiplayer mode allows up to 4 people to play simultaneously (although a player can play solo, verse three computer-controlled characters).[8]

There are three different multiplayer modes:

  • Dot Mania: Pac-Dots randomly spurt out of fountains and form lines around the paths on the maze. The first to eat 80 dots wins. If you are hit by a ghost you lose 10 of your held pac-dots and are returned to your starting corner.
  • Ghost Tag: All players play as ghosts. A Ms. Pac-Man icon will appear that allows you to turn into Ms. Pac-Man when you get it. Once you are Ms. Pac-Man eat Pac-Dots as fast as you can avoiding the other three ghosts. If you get touched by one of the three ghosts you are returned to your starting corner (though without losing any Pac-Dots) and the player who touched you becomes Ms. Pac-Man. As the ghost again go touch Ms. Pac-Man to change back. First to hold 50 Pac-Dots wins.
  • Da Bomb: A randomly chosen player will hold the bomb, which counts down from 30 seconds. Touch another player to give it to them. The person holding it when the timer expires dies and becomes a ghost, then being able to block the paths for other surviving players. The last one alive (as a Pac character, not as a ghost) wins.

Classic Ms. Pac-Man[edit]

The original arcade version of Ms. Pac-Man is freely playable as an option on the main menu, similar to how the original Pac-Man arcade game was freely available on the main menu of the 20th Anniversary Pac-Man World game. This was not included in the Game Boy Advance version.[9]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 80.17% (PlayStation out of 12 reviews)
73.77% (Nintendo 64 out of 6 reviews)
72.30% (Dreamcast out of 10 reviews)
54.50%[15]
Metacritic 73%[17]
Review scores
Publication Score
AllGame 4/5 stars (PlayStation)[10]
4/5 stars (Nintendo 64)[11]
3.5/5 stars (Dreamcast)[12]
3/5 stars (Game Boy Advance)[13]
Electronic Gaming Monthly 8.16 out of 10 (Nintendo 64)[14]
Game Informer 7.5 out of 10[14]
GameSpot 6.9 out of 10 (Dreamcast)[19]
6.8 out of 10 (Nintendo 64)[20]
6.5 out of 10 (PlayStation)[21]
6.5 out of 10 (Game Boy Advance)[9]
IGN 8.3 out of 10 (PlayStation)
7.6 out of 10 (Dreamcast)
7.5 out of 10 (Nintendo 64)[16]
NGC Magazine 72%[22]
Nintendo Power 8.3 out of 10 (Nintendo 64)[18]
Moby Games 4.1 out of 5 (Playstation)[23]
4.0 out of 5 (Dreamcast)[24]
3.7 out of 5 (Nintendo 64)[25]

The reception for Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness was mainly positive. IGN stated on the Nintendo 64 review "The simple gameplay of Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness makes it an ideal choice for young kids", and also adds "However, solid gameplay and some great extras will interest us "older kids as well". GameSpot gave this game a rating of 65% for the PlayStation and Game Boy Advance, 68% for the Nintendo 64, and 69% for the Dreamcast, saying that "While Maze Madness may be overly easy for experienced gamers, the younger crowd and inexperienced gamers should have loads of fun with the game."[27] The multiplayer mode received less favorable Nintendo Power, stated "The multiplayer mode stumbles,"[18] while N64 Magazine gave it a much harsher description. "The Multiplayer mazes are viewed from three-quarters angle — and the blurry visuals make it all but impossible to see what's going on." They also continue comparing the tag games as being "ruined by the fact that the chasers move twice as fast as the other players." Their final comment on the 'Multiplayer' mode is simply "Terrible."[22]

Cancelled sequel[edit]

There was originally supposed to be a sequel to this game for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube called Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness 2, but it was quietly cancelled for unknown reasons.[28]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. p. 2. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  2. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. pp. 105–106. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  3. ^ Namco, Mass Media Inc., Full Fat (September 8, 2000). Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness. Namco. "Mesmerelda: My key! Awh! I can't get to my crystal ball, and the gems are useless to me without it." 
  4. ^ Namco, Mass Media Inc., Full Fat (September 8, 2000). Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness. Namco. "Princess: I'm sorry, I never meant to hurt anyone, but I was under the spell of a evil witch. You broke the spell and saved me. Thank you!" 
  5. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. pp. 3–7,. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  6. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. pp. 4, 8, and 9. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  7. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. pp. 106, 135. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  8. ^ Daniels, Chip. Ms. Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. (Platform: Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation ed.). Prima Games. pp. 9–11. ISBN 0-7615-3046-0. 
  9. ^ a b Frank Provo. "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Review and Statistical ratings of Game Boy Advance". GameSpot.com. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  10. ^ Kyle Knight. "Ms. Pac-Man: Maze Madness - Synopsis and Stats". Allgame. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  11. ^ Brett Alan Weiss. "Ms. Pac-Man: Maze Madness - Synopsis and Stats". Allgame. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  12. ^ Jon Thompson. "Ms. Pac-Man: Maze Madness - Synopsis and Stats". Allgame. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  13. ^ Jon Thompson. "Ms. Pac-Man: Maze Madness - Synopsis and Stats". Allgame. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  14. ^ a b c "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - All Review Articles: Site". Game Rankings. 2012 CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, Stats for PS, N64, DC, GBAs". GameRankings. CBS Interactive Inc. (Game Boy Advance out of 4 reviews). Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  16. ^ IGN staff. "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Statistical ratings". IGN.com. IGN Entertainment, Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Statistical ratings". Metacritic.com. 2012 CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  18. ^ a b Nintendo Power 138. Nintendo of America format=magazine. November 2000. p. 122. 
  19. ^ Tim Tracy. "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Review and Statistical ratings of Dreamcast". GameSpot.com. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  20. ^ Tim Tracy. "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Review and Statistical ratings of Nintendo 64". GameSpot.com. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  21. ^ Tim Tracy. "Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness - Review and Statistical ratings of PlayStation". GameSpot.com. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  22. ^ a b N64 Magazine (48). Future Publishing format=magazine. December 2000. pp. 64–65. 
  23. ^ Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, PlayStation vcersion. at MobyGames
  24. ^ Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, Dreamcast. at MobyGames
  25. ^ Ms. Pac-Man Maze Madness, Dreamcast. at MobyGames
  26. ^ Martin B Staff. "Ms PacMan Maze Madness: PSone Review" Statistical ratings of PlayStation". Absolute-Playstation.com. Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  27. ^ Tim Tracy. ""Ms. PacMan Maze Madness Review" for Dreamcast version". GameSpot.com. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2012. 
  28. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KRu_74Jbxes