NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1 (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Athanasios 10.07.2020

Review for NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1 on Nintendo Switch

Retro bundles are all the rage nowadays, giving new gamers and old-school lovers the chance to get a taste of the medium's humble, yet very powerful beginnings - and no collection can feel complete without NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1, as it includes some of the most popular golden classics ever made, like Pac-Man, Dig Dug, and Galaxian, in all their NES glory. Here's a look on what it has to offer.

First things first: this is a purist-friendly collection that doesn't alter the games on offer one bit. Also note that this is a bundle of NES ports, not arcade games. It provides a couple of optional settings, but, right out of the box, you receive the original 8-bit experience. Concerning the settings and features, it's possible to choose between a couple of typical visual modes, like zoomed, 4:3, dot-by-dot, full screen, and can toggle anti-aliasing and scan-lines on and off. Don't like the borders on the sides? Cool, just pick a different "wallpaper," or disable borders altogether.

The face buttons are divided between simple A and B, and auto-fire A and B, and players can also rewind the action to a previous time, although not as gracefully as other retro-collections, where players simply press a button, and make the clock tick backwards. As expected, there are also four save slots that can be used to record progress. It's weird that there aren't more here, but these aren't exactly 40-hour epics. After all, if you want to capture your high score, you can always do that: capture it!

Screenshot for NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1 on Nintendo Switch

Long story short, this is a great collection - but a small one, sadly. There simply wasn't any reason to divide 22 titles between two volumes. It feels like a cheap, money-making tactic, more than anything else. What about the games, though? Are they any good? Well, hits or not, this is a mixed bag. First there are timeless classics like Pac-Man, Dig Dug, and Galaxian, but the rest aren't really that great, with somewhat forgettable shooters like Xevious, Dragon Spirit, and Sky Kid, and finally boring, and even flawed action titles like Mappy, Druaga, Dragon Buster, and the cute version of Splatterhouse, Wanpaku Graffiti.

The only new addition is Pac-Man Championship Edition, which is basically the demastered version of the original game, but with 8-bit visuals. While in no way a decent excuse for the price this collection carries, this is a very enjoyable take on Pac-Man. It takes place in one, never-ending "level," that keeps on changing, with the action being quite adrenaline-pumping due to the speed of it all. The only two flaws? No online leaderboards to compare scores, and a somewhat high sensitivity when using the analogue sticks of the Joy-Con instead of the arrows. All in all, a fine bundle, but one in definite need for a discount.

Screenshot for NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1 on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

There are many, many ways that NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES Vol 1 could be better, but as a whole, fans of retro gaming will definitely love this. Apart from the greedy idea of separating 20 super-old games between two collections, the only thing really holding this back right now is its price. So, put it on your wishlist… and wait.


B.B. Studio


Bandai Namco





C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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