LEGO Icons Pac-Man Arcade Review

LEGO and Bandai Namco have teamed up to turn a Pac-Man-style arcade cabinet into a LEGO set. We were sent the set by the manufacturer. We have since assembled the set and in this article we discuss the best details we came across.

Construction fun

The LEGO Icons Pac-Man Arcade is a set that consists of 2651 bricks. That makes it a hefty set, selling for a suggested retail price of €269.99. With a price of 10.18 cents per brick, that’s pretty average. To build the set, you’ll need to set aside several afternoons or evenings. The arcade cabinet is not assembled overnight. On average, the set takes about four to six hours to build. Since I sometimes had to record video footage in between, I think it took me six hours rather than four.

We can divide the Pac-Man Arcade into three parts. The largest of these is the cabinet itself, which we can surely call the showpiece. You start the build by building a loose block on which an enlarged Pac-Man is being chased by two ghosts. On the back of the block, after building, you can find a button, which Pac-Man uses to change direction. This makes Pac-Man the hunter. This is just one of the cool details found in the LEGO Icons Pac-Man Arcade set. It works through a clever technique that involves twisting the characters with a rubber band on the inside of the structure. In addition to this part, the set contains other parts that are cleverly conceived, as well as fun to build.

The last part of the set is a small diorama, which includes the minifigure from the set. The rest of the diorama consists of a platform containing an arcade cabinet, chair and gumball machine. The LEGO Icons Pac-Man set comes with only one minifigure. That’s a bit few, but there didn’t have to be that many more given the theme. A nice touch is that the tray can be attached to the inside of the larger arcade cabinet, as a kind of extra easter egg when you open the cabinet at the back.

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Stickers sticking

When building the large arcade cabinet, we soon discover that there are quite a lot of stickers to paste, but there are also some parts that already have a Pac-Man print on them. The stickers are sometimes very small and therefore not the easiest to stick. In addition, you have to remember to stick them the right way. This sounds obvious, but there is a small wheel that displays the high scores on the cabinet. We hadn’t looked quite carefully the first time, so there were two giant little stickers stuck in opposite directions. Fortunately, we realized it soon enough, so it can still be fixed. Still, then, attention to detail is important for this set.

The system on the inside of the arcade case is very cool to build, as is the detached block with Pac-Man and the ghosts. The case of the arcade cabinet consists of considerably large blocks, so you can actually put it together in no time. The inner part really requires some attention. The only drawback to building the inside is a part that requires you to assemble the same part 64x times. This made building that a little less interesting, but otherwise it was a fairly thorough set.

Moving parts

This is mainly due to the “chain” on which Pac-Man and the ghosts sit. As a result, the screen of the arcade cabinet really seems to move, even though there is no real game playing. I have already seen some mods online where the screen of the LEGO set is replaced with a real screen, which does allow you to play Pac-Man with it. Now, fortunately, the set is already cool and quite advanced compared to what we are used to. Most LEGO sets don’t have as many moving parts as this one.

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One of the stickers in the arcade cabinet is pasted over a window, which is eventually placed in front of a luminous brick. I think this is the showpiece of the Pac-Man set and is supposed to represent a sort of slot where you normally throw the coins into a real cabinet. Of course, no real coins have to go in it now, but this one lights up like a real arcade cabinet does. The creator of Pac-Man was himself a big fan of pinball and took inspiration from it when making the first Pac-Man arcade cabinets. So this is also reflected in this wonderful set.

Full of details

The fact that the button can be pressed that allows the arcade cabinet to light up is due to a rubber particle placed under the button. Those same rubber parts can be found on the arcade stick found in the center of the cabinet. As a result, the stick moves almost like a real arcade stick, missing only the “clicking” sound.

So the coolest thing about this set are the endless details found on the arcade cabinet. We just briefly mentioned this part with the stickers, but the customizable scoreboard is another one of those parts. With a turn of a gear wheel, you can choose which highscore should be displayed on the cabinet.

I think that because of all this kind of retro detail, this set serves excellently for experienced gamers to put on display, for example in a home office or a gaming room. It will already bring up nostalgic feelings when building it, and after all, that’s what you end up buying a set like this for.

The LEGO Ideas Pac-Man set will retail for a suggested retail price of €269.99 and is among other things available here from LEGO itself, where the set earns 2025 Insiders points.

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