Super Pac-Man Arcade1Up Partycade Review

If you’re into arcade games, you’ve no doubt noticed that Arcade1Up has started making affordable smaller-scale versions of full-sized arcade cabinets at a fraction of the cost of the originals. Continuing that idea, Arcade1Up has introduced a smaller form factor that’s meant to hang on the wall or perhaps on the back of the door in their Partycade format. The Partycade is basically the full-sized 17-inch LCD you’d find in their standard 3/4th scale machines, wrapped up into a smaller considerably condensed control panel and speaker box. Today we’re taking a look at the mightiest hero among them, the Super Pac-Man Partycade.

Super Pac-Man Partycade
Manufacturer: Arcade1Up
MSRP: $299.99

I wasn’t entirely sure how I’d feel about the Partycade, as I’ve already got both a 3/4 scale cabinet as well as a Countercade cabinet, I was afraid that the Partycade would feel rather unnecessary and slightly out of place. I was completely wrong. The Partycade is perfect for those who want the arcade experience but are most likely to play single-player. In my house, space is already extremely limited and since I’m usually the only person in my house interested in retro games, the appeal of multiplayer arcade cabinets is slightly lost on me. Turning to the Super Pac-Man, I found myself enjoying munching power pellets and breaking through key gates while gobbling fruits and striking fear in the hearts of ghosts while being a gigantic yellow chomping puck.

Not a fan of Super Pac-Man? Don’t worry, this Partycade comes loaded with ten games: Pac-Man, Super Pac-Man, Pac-Land, Pac-Mania, Dig Dug, Dig Dug II, Mappy, Rompers, Rolling Thunder, and New Rally-X. Rolling Thunder is probably the strangest game that appears in this collection since it’s a run-and-gun game, but it’s a fun game to play and a welcome addition to break up the monotony of the Pac-Mania (pun intended.)

While the screen itself looks great, there are a few minor caveats that keep the Partycade itself from being perfect. The controls are pretty janky, as the buttons are super mushy and the joystick feels like it’s got a slight delay like the controller encoder is just a smidge behind. It’s playable, but it’s noticeable and I’m not entirely sure if it’s because there’s a bit of a delay because of the fact that the Partycade uses an LCD panel while these games were originally played on CRT tubed monitors but something never quite feels “right” upon closer inspection. That said, a majority of people who never spent much time in the arcades as a kid won’t ever notice and it’ll be nothing but a great shot of nostalgia for them, and it’ll put a smile on people’s faces.

The Partycade comes with both hanging door rails as well as standing rails that can be mounted along the bottom of the sides of the cabinet that allow the Partycade to stand up on its own, but this is a device that definitely shines when mounted up on a wall to conserve space. If you have limited space like I do and wanted to build a somewhat impressive arcade, you could line up five or six of these things for a terrific little game room that takes up about as much space as three of the 3/4th scale machines side by side would take up, and you’d still have a ton of room underneath them which means you wouldn’t have to move them when trying to sweep or vacuum the floor.

At $299.99, these are a bit pricey for what you get but they are super cool. If you can get one for around $200-$250, they are a far better deal for the money and makes the Partycade feel like a lot more bang for your buck. Obviously the less you pay, the better these feel, so keep your eyes peeled if you’re interested because they are a lot of fun even with minor caveats.

Arcade1Up has multiple types of Partycades available on their website as well as on Amazon and other retailers for a suggested MSRP of $299.99 USD. This Arcade1Up Super Pac-Man Partycade was purchased by Niche Gamer for the purposes of this review. You can find additional information about Niche Gamer’s review/ethics policy here.



The Verdict: 8

The Good

  • Full sized screen on a small frame arcade that fits neatly on the wall or a table
  • Multiple games make the value of the arcade feel better
  • Games play decently well out of the box and the nostalgia puts smiles on faces
  • They go on sale often and so you can save money

The Bad

  • The joystick and buttons feel cheap and the buttons are too squishy
  • The timing on button presses feel a bit off and I'm not sure if it's the encoder or the conversion of going from CRT to LCD video


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