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Pac-Man 256 is an updated version of the mobile game Pac-Man 256, for PC and consoles. The concept is identical to the original game: it is a 3D endless maze game that combines the maze mechanics of the classic Pac-Man with the endless environments while being chased by a persistent threat. Pac-Man needs to be guided through a maze with a fixed width and an endless vertical distance with a lay-out randomized for each session. The game is shown from a slightly diagonal view instead of top-down and the camera sometimes zoom in, making the gameplay resemble a 2D game more. The goal is to score points and survive as long as possible while being chased by a glitch that eats up the maze. The glitch is shown as a garble of code and moves at a consistent speed at the bottom of the screen or out of sight as Pac-Man attempts to outrun it. There are sometimes also small glitches in the regular playfield. The title refers to the map 256 glitch of the original arcade game where upon reaching level 256 the right side of the screen turns into a mess of letters and numbers while the left side remains normal. It is referred to as the kill screen or the split-screen level and it is impossible to beat.

The game uses many elements of the classic Pac-Man gameplay. He can move in any direction where there is a passage and eats dots for points. There are also some exits to the left and the right of the maze to appear on the other side. By eating many dots in succession, without halting or following a broken trail, a combo can be built up and Pac-Man's speed increases. Fruits can be eaten for score multipliers. There are different types of ghosts with different behaviour in the maze and these need to be avoided, sometimes also by returning when the glitch is not too close. Some ghosts are asleep and only wake up when Pac-Man is nearby. At certain sections the colour of the game environment changes. Regularly there are power pellets that turn the ghosts blue and allow Pac-Man to eat them. There are also many other types of power-ups such as a tornado that advances and removes ghosts, a laser that toasts them, a cherry bomb, a freeze ray, a stealth mode, turning Pac-Man into a giant that eats everything etc. These are picked up in the levels. A single collision is immediately fatal and ends the game, unless certain power-ups are used.

Just like the original version power-ups are unlocked gradually and can then be added to a loadout so a maximum of three per game. Coins collected during runs can be used to upgrade the power-ups multiple times, enhancing their effects. While the original title was a free-to-play version with in-app purchases, this is a commercial title. That means there is no longer a second, premium currency to upgrade power-ups, advertisements, waiting times or paid power-ups such as coin doublers. By completing tasks additional coins can be earned next to finding them in the levels. These missions include using certain power-ups, getting a long combo, eating certain fruits and so on. Additional coins are also provided every now and then.

There are now different environments acting as skins for the levels, Pac-Man and the enemies, which is entirely new for this version. The included variants are Classic 80's (original Pac-Man look), The Grid, Crossy Road (based on Crossy Road), Robotz, CEDX (based on Pac-Man: Championship Edition DX), The Office, Go Karts, Garden, Pac-Mania (based on Pac-Mania) and Shuffle. This edition of the game supports a new multiplayer game mode with up to four local players working cooperatively on the same field.


Pac-Man 256 Windows Selection screen for the game variants
Pac-Man 256 Windows Pac-Man is caught.
Pac-Man 256 Windows With this power-up you leave behind a trail of flames that kills all chasing ghosts.
Pac-Man 256 Windows The Grid variant

Promo Images

Pac-Man 256 Screenshot
Pac-Man 256 Screenshot
Pac-Man 256 Screenshot
Pac-Man 256 Screenshot

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Critic Reviews

GameSpew Xbox One Jul 01, 2016 10 out of 10 100
Worth Playing PlayStation 4 Aug 05, 2016 9 out of 10 90
MondoXbox Xbox One Jul 09, 2016 8.5 out of 10 85
Retro Gamer Android Sep 10, 2015 8 out of 10 80
XboxAddict Xbox One Jun 27, 2016 8 out of 10 80
MAN!AC PlayStation 4 Sep 06, 2016 75 out of 100 75
Push Square PlayStation 4 Jun 26, 2016 7 out of 10 70
Gaming Nexus Xbox One Jul 14, 2016 7 out of 10 70
Video Chums PlayStation 4 Jun 30, 2016 6.7 out of 10 67
411mania.com Xbox One Aug 15, 2016 6.5 out of 10 65


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Contributed to by 666gonzo666 (66247) and Sciere (801732)