When the little ditty plays at the beginning of a game of Pac-Man, it has a way of transfixing a person into a competitive world of eating dots and chasing ghosts.
The mini arcade games, from The Bridge Direct, tap into the muscle memory of adults and introduce kids into the retro world of classic games, including Pac-Man and Space Invaders. The hand-held games are true to the original that many have learned to love.
Picking up the bright yellow box of Pac-Man brought me back to my middle school days of visiting the orthodontist. While my mom chatted with the receptionist for an hour, my sister and I would compete to see who could get the highest score on the Pac-Man game the tooth doctor had in his lobby. It was the perfect distraction from the mind-numbing pain of getting my braces tightened.
I’m not quite as proficient as I once was at maneuvering the joystick through the maze of ghosts, but it didn’t take me too long to remember the best route. As for Space Invaders, my orthodontist didn’t have that game so I wasn’t as familiar, but it didn’t take long for me to constantly feel the need to beat my high score.
Both games offer the classic sounds of an arcade that consume you until you realize you haven’t looked up in 25 minutes. But, they also come with volume buttons, so if kids don’t care to hear the whomp whomp chomp of Pac-Man or the invasion of the mystery ship in Space Invaders, then the sound can be completely turned off.
Pac-Man offers two different modes of play, which are “eat the dots” and “chase mode.” If you’re going to play the classic “eat the dots” mode, I suggest leaving the sound on because it can be difficult at first to differentiate on screen when it’s safe to go after the ghosts and when they become mean again.
The compact games are fairly lightweight and simply take two AA batteries. They are perfect for kids to play in the car while traveling or for adults to snag when they’re in the passenger seat.
Whether it’s to welcome kids to the world of some of the original video games or to transport adults back to their childhood, the mini arcade games are great for all ages.