What Is Arcadegeddon?
Let’s start with the premise. It all begins with Gilly, a lovable arcade owner whose business becomes threatened by Fun Fun Co. Despite the cute name, this ruthless corporation wants to bring Gilly’s Arcade down and uses a virus to infect his most beloved arcade game. You and your buddies won’t stand to see the last arcade standing go belly up like this, so you decide to take the fight to Fun Fun Co. by zapping into the game to take on the virus.
You’ll begin Arcadegeddon by creating your custom character (which can rock over 700 cosmetic combinations), then make your way to Gilly’s Arcade. This hot spot serves as the game’s primary hub area. From here you can link up with friends, check the global leaderboards, purchase gear, accept gang challenges (more on that later), among other diversions. After a brief tutorial, you’re ready to bring the fight to Fun Fun Co.
Gerritzen describes Arcadegeddon as easy enough for anyone to quickly pick up and play but difficult to master, much like the classic arcade games that inspired it. Players battle their way level to level either alone or with up to three friends, blasting apart enemies in third-person combat using a variety of firearms, both conventional and absurd, while completing objectives such as capturing points or destroying designated targets. The game is run-based in that you and your friends have one shot to progress through a world’s many levels as far as you can.
It didn’t take long for me to feel at home with Arcadegeddon’s combat thanks to its comfortably tight gunplay. Blasting apart gun-toting robots packs a satisfying punch. I also enjoyed the dodge roll, which can be used offensively to plow into enemies and send them flying backwards. On top of this, I got a kick out of using a running slide to trip up enemies or gun them down John Woo-style.
While completing run after run is the name of the game, Arcadegeddon reduces repetition with its procedurally laid out rooms. Levels are randomly rearranged, so while you may recognize a certain area, don’t expect to explore it in the same order. As players get further in a run, the difficulty tiers rise organically to perpetually stack the odds. IllFonic wants to continually challenge players, believing that the drive to get better and earn greater rewards is what ultimately keeps them returning to a game over and over.
To that end, the truly skilled/masochistic can also spend coins to increase the challenge themselves by visiting a terminal between rounds. This is a one-way street, though; you can’t lower the difficulty, so make sure you and your squad agree on the change. Or jack it up without their consent because you’re a greedy jerk. Regardless, the promise of more cash and rarer loot could be worth the effort.
Getting further also fills up a meter that opens a boss battle. When unlocked, players can choose to take on this foe at any time, but losing the fight forces players to earn their way back in all over again. My squad took on Fun Fun Co’s CEO, who sicced waves of enemies on us while shielding himself in a protective bubble that we had to shatter before dealing real damage. After a tense, back-and-forth battle, we managed to best the dastardly businessman and were rewarded with high-quality weapons and cash.