Ms. Particle-Man Ms. Particle-Man! Showing off all that Silverlight can! What's it like? Pretty good! Ms. Particle-Man! A fun little work from Picobots where the quest for the Higgs boson particle takes on the guise of a 1980s arcade game, Ms. Particle-Man is so aggressively science-geeky and displays such love for its inspirations, that nostalgia tripping is almost inevitable.
Ms. Particle-Man likes switching up its gameplay, so it's a good idea to play through the tutorial. Generally though, you move the Ms. with the [arrow] keys to collect sparking bits of energy. Going off one side of the screen will teleport you to the other. Avoid the flashing obstacles to stay alive, and build up momentum to make your way across the purple paralysis patches. Some levels feature gravity, and thus have more of a platform feel. During those, hit [spacebar] or [enter] to jump. Each set of levels features a final boss, where you must use an accelerator pads to collide with an elementary particle, all the while searching for that elusive Higgy B.
Ms. Particle-Man is one of the first works programmed in SilverLight to have the feel of a real game instead of an extended tech-demo. Depending on your opinion of flash, this is either a triumph or something that doesn't matter at all. Like they say, it doesn't matter what the talking dog has to say, it's the fact that he talks at all that's impressive. Of course, it helps that Ms. Particle-Man is a really enjoyable game. An inspired combination of Pac-Man, Secret Collect, and the entire avoidance genre, it has the hardcore challenge and cartoonish humor that would keep the quarters inserted for hours. Über-Sensitive controls, slippery platform corners, and a stingy distribution of lives mar the experience, but whenever the screen triumphantly fills with PARTICLE GET!, all is forgiven. Ms. Particle-Man works as both a game and a proof-of-concept for the platform, and when they meet, it's a happy land!