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ⓘ Namco Museum Essentials is a 2009 video game compilation developed by Cattle Call and published by Namco Bandai Games for the PlayStation 3. The collection incl ..




Namco Museum Essentials
                                     

ⓘ Namco Museum Essentials

Namco Museum Essentials is a 2009 video game compilation developed by Cattle Call and published by Namco Bandai Games for the PlayStation 3. The collection includes five Namco arcade games from the 1980s, alongside an exclusive Xevious sequel, Xevious Resurrection. Player progress is rewarded with stamps, which could be redeemed for virtual items in the now-defunct PlayStation Home service. Stamps also award points when collected, used to unlock extra features such as wallpapers.

The ".comm" in the games Japanese title is thought to stand for "community", based on the games online functionality. To help promote the game, Namco Bandai set up a custom PlayStation Home hub space featuring a demo of the game. Upon release, Namco Museum Essentials was met with a mixed to positive reception from critics; although it was criticized for its small game library and lack of multiplayer in most of the games, reviewers praised the emulation quality, unlockable extras and presentation. It was removed from the PlayStation Store on March 15, 2018.

                                     

1. Games

Namco Museum Essentials consists of six games - five of these are Namco arcade games from the 1980s, while the sixth, Xevious Resurrection, is exclusive to this collection. The arcade games allow the player to start on any stage the player had previously been to, as well as featuring a score attack mode where the player is to gain as many points possible before dying. In-game options allow the player to change the number of lives and border artwork. Multiplayer is excluded from each game, with the exception of Xevious Resurrection.

By completing certain objectives in each of the games, players are rewarded with stamps that were redeemable for items in the now-defunct PlayStation Home service, such as shirts, hats and arcade cabinets; the game includes over 50 unlockable items. Stamps also award points when unlocked, which can increase a players account level; reaching new levels can also unlock items such as wallpapers. Online leaderboards are also present, allowing players to view scores from other users around the world as well as from friends. Players also have access to a sound test and the ability to record a friends progress.

                                     

2. Development

Namco Museum Essentials was published by Namco Bandai Games for the PlayStation 3. Development was outsourced to Cattle Call, and titled Namco Museum.comm for its Japanese release - the ".comm" believed to mean "community", in reference to the games online services. To help promote the game, Namco Bandai created a custom PlayStation Home hub area, which was also used to promote their other digital-only games - players could unlock additional items for their PlayStation Home upon visiting the space and could also play a demo of Essentials, which was titled Namco Museum BETA in Japan. The game was one of the earliest titles to utilize PlayStation Homes rewards system. Essentials was released in Japan on January 29, 2009, in North America on July 16, 2009, and in Europe on April 1, 2010. The game was pulled from the PlayStation Store on March 15, 2018.

                                     

3. Reception

Upon release, Namco Museum Essentials was met with mixed to positive reviews from critics. Although criticism was drawn towards the small game library and lack of online multiplayer, praise was given to the games presentation, emulation quality and unlockable extras. It holds a 64/100 on Metacritic and a 66.25% on GameRankings.

In their review, IGN called the overall presentation "top-notch", praising the games use of PlayStation Home and bonus content, which they noted added replay value to the games. Push Square stated that the unlockable extras and leaderboards "brings the classics into the 21st-century", as well as praising the emulation quality. GamePro complemented the addition of the stamp system, claiming that it gave the game more depth.

Despite this, reviewers were critical of the small game library and lack of multiplayer. GamePro criticized the game library for being too small and lacking any updated visuals or features, as well as criticizing the lack of multiplayer and" unnecessarily large” large file size. Similarly, IGN expressed disappointment that multiplayer was excluded from the games except Xevious Resurrection, as well as being critical of the small game library. Although GamePro disliked the games price point, advising readers to "choose wisely" before purchasing, Push Square contested this, saying that it was "worth the chance" to fans of Namcos game catalog.