The Atari 2600 version of Jr. Pac-Man, released by Atari in 1986, offers a unique adaptation of the original Bally Midway arcade game. Unlike the original version, which features horizontally scrolling mazes with escape tunnels, the Atari 2600 version of Jr. Pac-Man has mazes that scroll vertically and does not include escape tunnels. Despite these differences, the Atari 2600 version of Jr. Pac-Man remains a faithful adaptation of the original game in terms of gameplay and overall experience.
In Jr. Pac-Man, players control the titular character as he navigates through various mazes, eating pellets and avoiding ghosts. The objective is to clear each maze by eating all the pellets while evading the ghosts that chase Jr. Pac-Man. Power pellets are also available, which temporarily allow Jr. Pac-Man to eat the ghosts for bonus points.
The Atari 2600 version of Jr. Pac-Man retains the core gameplay elements of the arcade version, providing an enjoyable and nostalgic experience for fans of the Pac-Man series.
Jr. Pac-Man gameplay
The core gameplay of Jr. Pac-Man similar to its predecessors. The player controls the eponymous Jr. Pac-Man (who wears an animated propeller beanie), and scores points by eating all of the dots in the maze, while four ghosts (Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Tim) chase him around the maze and attempt to kill him. Eating an energizer turns the ghosts blue, briefly allowing the player to eat them for extra points. Once the maze is cleared, a new maze is presented and the gameplay continues.
The mazes are now two times the width of the monitor and scroll horizontally. A total of seven mazes appear throughout the game, and five of them have six energizers instead of four, but none of them have tunnels that wrap around from one side of the screen to the other.
Bonus items (such as tricycles, kites, and balloons) appear in each round, starting above the ghosts’ lair and moving around the maze as in Ms. Pac-Man. As an item encounters dots, it changes them into larger dots that are worth 50 points instead of 10, but they also slow Jr. Pac-Man down more than regular dots. If an item has been out for long enough and encounters an energizer, it self-destructs, taking the energizer with it. When Jr. Pac-Man dies, the larger dots disappear; if there are only a few left, they revert to their original size.
The between-level intermissions show the developing relationship between Jr. Pac-Man and a small red ghost named Yum-Yum who is apparently the daughter of Blinky.