WOTH: Platinums #21 & #22 – Arcade Game Series: Galaga & Dig Dug

The first video games I associate with my childhood mainly come from the shareware hard disks found at computer swap meets. I’d be taken around there, find a few to pester Dad to buy for me, then ask nicely (read: whining) for him to install it on our trusty MS-DOS home PC. Those games ranged from the ported classics, such as Frogger or Rockwell, to the (at the time) newer games like Wacky Wheels, or Rise of the Triad.

I never encountered any versions of Galaga or Dig Dug, however. Playing these as part of the Arcade Game Series collection was quite a new experience, given they were before my time. Sure, I’d seen probably countless knock-offs of the originals. Certainly regarding Dig Dug, Rockwell had similar mechanics and felt like a modern take on it.

So what was it like spending a few days as an 80’s kid?

It felt great to meet the grandparents of contemporary games – while playing them, you could think about how the very basic mechanics evolved over time to become what they are today. The old shoot but don’t get shot of Galaga, and the strategic path-finding of Dig Dug really had given rise to countless current game mechanics and designs.

But, of course, there was the distinct feeling of out-datedness. The very discrete responses when giving inputs from a modern controller is the most jarring – especially when, say, you try to turn while going in one direction, and the game cannot recognise the input until your sprite lines up with the row it’s turning into, often resulting in no recognition or even turning back towards an enemy. Little things like that, however, didn’t phase me in the long run. Given these were relatively short experiences, it was something I could easily put up with.

Regarding platinum difficulties, these two games are ranked pretty similar to the Pac-Man games. As long as you appropriately abuse the game-saving exploit offered by PS Plus, you’ll be fine. You may get frustrated with the longer trophies, such as Rambler (destroying 1000 spaces in one game) for Dig Dug, or getting perfect scores on 5 of the Galaga levels, but after following a few Youtube guides, the platinum trophies should come to you in 3-4 hours each.

Currently playing:

  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (PS4)
  • Amnesia: Memories (PS Vita)
  • Little Deviants (PS Vita)
  • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel (PS4)
  • Borderlands 2 (PS4)

WOTH: Platinum #16 & #17 – Arcade Game Series: Pac-Man & Ms. Pac-Man

I was never any good at classic arcade games.

I was a 90’s kid, and for the most part, I missed out on the very 80’s experience of going down to the local arcade and spending a few coins for some 8-bit entertainment. Instead, my first gaming experiences came from the Sega MegaDrive, and the original Playstation.

What I’m trying to get at, is this; I absolutely sucked at Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man.

The main reason I picked these up as part of the Arcade Game Series Collection, was because I had heard they were pretty easy to get, and they were super cheap – maybe $8 all up for 4 easy platinum trophies. But throughout the relatively short experience, at about 4 to 5 hours each game, I was immensely frustrated. I would have been infinitely more frustrated, if it had not been for two saving graces that I know many others used to it’s full potential.

First of all, the game was “modernised”, in the sense that when you run out of lives, instead of starting all the way back at level 1, you could choose where to start, from levels you’ve already beaten. Oh – and you can give yourself a couple of extra lives. Very handy when you are a ghost magnet like myself. These modern spins on the game were very handy for reaching the later stages you need to beat for some trophies.

Second, Playstation’s ever-so-useful game save backup feature was abused to the full extent. The hardest trophy in the game – eating all 4 ghosts with each of the 4 super pills in one stage – would have taken forever if I hadn’t cheekily saved the game state after each successful feast from a super pill. The amount of time it takes to quit the game, re-load the former save and try again, eventually became the major source of frustration.

I lumped Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man in the same entry, because the trophies are near identical to each other, and present the same troubles. The only real difference gameplay-wise, is that in Ms. Pac-Man, the layout changes every couple of stages or so.

If you love your retro gaming classics, or are good at these kind of games, then there are some easy platinum trophies up for grabs here. Otherwise, just abuse the same “exploits” as I did, and you’ll begrudgingly get there.

Currently Playing:

  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (PS4)
  • The Wolf Among Us (PS Vita)
  • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel (PS4)
  • Borderlands 2: (PS4)
  • Lemmings Touch (PS Vita)
  • Arcade Game Series: Galaga (PS4)

What trophies are you hunting this weekend?