There's something to be said for those instantly recognisable game formats. The ones that constantly reoccur throughout time and across platforms. It's gratifying to know exactly what a game expects of you the moment you press the 'start' button.
And the games that do this to best effect nowadays are the ones that take familiar formats and alter them slightly - the fast-paced, ghost trail mechanic in Pac-Man Championship Edition being a prime example.
So, does 365 Arcade Pack 3-in-1 do enough with the age old block-breaker, Frogger, and Pac-Man formulae to warrant your time?Attack the block
The first of the three mini-games on offer in Arcade 365 is Wall Buster, which gives you a paddle and ball and asks you to beat down blocks at the top of the screen to clear each stage.
It's accessible and has smooth controls, unlike some block-busters in which seemingly unfair speed and unpredictable bouncing can drive you insane
That's not to say Wall Buster is easy, as such. Most of the challenge comes from trying to gather the game's collectibles, a series of letters to spell out the word CREDIT. By doing so you can earn an extra life.
A lot of the fun in Wall Buster is about risk-management. Do you play it safe and aim squarely at hitting the ball? Or do you reach over slightly, try to catch both ball and letter, potentially missing the ball and losing a life?
The problem with Wall Buster, and with the other games included in the pack, is that it doesn't provide anything new.Been there, played that
The other two games on offer are Path of Peril, an incredibly short variation on Frogger, and Maze of Doom, a slow and tedious vampire-themed take on Pac-Man.
Neither game does anything to sell itself to you as fresh or innovative, but both are undeniably playable.
While 365 Arcade Pack may seem to offer bang for your buck, the fact that each of its titles is a rehash of something done identically elsewhere means that there's very little to keep you playing. There's something to be said for its solid and familiar gameplay, but it lacks the twists necessary to make it really worthwhile.