What’s better than playing Pac-Man? Playing Pac-Man with 99 other people, battle royale style!
Battle royale video games have been around since the early 2010s, but only in recent years has the genre exploded in popularity. Player Unknown Battlegrounds (PUBG) was the first battle royale video game to break into the mainstream and attract millions of players around the world. But it was Fortnite that really launched the genre into the stratosphere. Chances are, you have played a game of Fortnite or know someone who has.
Because of an unparalleled success, dozens of games have tried to copy the battle royal style from shooters to action-adventure games. But the trend has also affected the pillar games of the video game community. All-time classics such as Pac-Man, Tetris, and Super Mario Bros. have all had a battle royale spinoff. Here is how they did it:
In a regular Pac-Man game, there isn’t technically a way to win the game. You stop playing after you lose all your lives. The concept works slightly differently in Pac-Man 99. The game, which is a Nintendo Switch Online exclusive, sees you play against 99 other Pac-Man players in an online battle royale arena. The goal is to be the last Pac-Man standing. Whenever you eat a ghost, that ghost will be sent to another player in a form of a jammer Pac-Man that slows player movement when hit. There are also sleeping ghosts where when you eat one, it forms a train behind the bigger ghosts and when you eat a ghost, it will send a flurry of jammer Pac-Man to other players. You also have power-ups and specific targeting strategies at your disposal as well.
Released back in February 2019, Tetris 99 is a free online battle royale version of Tetris available to those who have a Nintendo Switch Online membership. The goal of the game is similar to the classic one where you have to move falling blocks called Tetriminos (yes, that is what they are called) to complete horizontal lines in an increasingly fast manner and the last player standing wins. You can send Garbage Blocks to other players to make it hard for them to clear lines. There is also a team battle mode where up to four teams fight against each other until only one team is left standing.
Super Mario Bros. 35
Originally revealed during the Super Mario Bros. 35th Anniversary Direct, the game was only available from October 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021. In this battle royale spin on Super Mario Bros., you play against 34 other players where every match is made up of a random collection of levels from the original game. At the start of each match, you only have 35 seconds on the timer so you needed to defeat enemies to increase your time. Defeating enemies would also have caused them to appear at the other players’ level and vice versa. You could also collect coins to buy power-ups to help you in-game.