You can now play PAC-MAN and Galaga in Facebook Messenger for some reason

Having been ported to every other platform known to human science, Pac-ManGalagaSpace Invaders and numerous other classics of the early-to-mid Eighties are heading to Facebook. Instant Games is Facebook’s newest attempt to court the gaming market and is available in both your news feed and Facebook Messenger smartphone app.

Instant Games is currently in closed beta and Facey haven’t announced any launch details just yet so it may or may not be appearing at your end right away, but if you want to check it out you can tap the controller-shaped icon above your message text box to pick a game to play with friends. You can watch this maddeningly corporate video to find out more about how it works.

The list of games currently runs 17 titles, including a few titles like Words with Friends and Shuffle Cats that have been on the platform for a while now. The more interesting titles are the old Bandai-Namco, Taito and Konami classics. Here’s the full list:

  • PAC-MAN (BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.)
  • Galaga (BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.)
  • TRACK & FIELD 100M (Konami Digital Entertainment Co., Ltd.)
  • Words with Friends: Frenzy (Zynga)
  • Shuffle Cats Mini (King)
  • EverWing (Blackstorm)
  • Hex (FRVR)
  • Endless Lake (Spilgames)
  • Templar 2048 (Vonvon)
  • The Tribez: Puzzle Rush (Game Insight)
  • 2020 Connect (Softgames)
  • Puzzle Bobble (TAITO CORPORATION / Blackstorm)
  • Zookeeper (Kiteretsu)
  • Brick Pop (Gamee)
  • Wordalot Express (MAG Interactive)

This is far from Facebook’s first foray into gaming on their platform, with the current system allowing for individual apps within Facebook itself. There are those of us who still shudder when reminded of the Facebook Gaming fad of the late-2000’s, a dark time that saw millions of accounts sag under the weight of endless FarmVille requests. Instant Gaming will be the first time Facebook has truly been able to find a way into the mobile gaming space. How the user base responds remains to be seen.



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David Smith

David Smith is the former games and technology editor at The AU Review. He has previously written for PC World Australia. You can find him on Twitter at @RhunWords.