Arcade Paradise

An arcade paradise

I have no idea why I bought this game. It's not a game I knew about nor is it the type of game I typically seek out. Truthfully, it's the type of game I would have naively expected to pick up in a bargain bin years from now. I mean seriously...spend time doing peoples' laundry and pass the time with an arcade game or two? Sounds awful to me. However, Arcade Paradise is far from bargain bin value. It's a charming, colorful retro-inspired game that lets you run your own arcade – a fantasy that certainly has passed through the minds of gamers my age at some point in their life.

Games galore

In Arcade Paradise you take on the role of Ashley, a teenager who inherits her family's laundromat and decides to turn it into an arcade. The objective is simple: get money, invest in arcade machines, rinse and repeat. That is until you find yourself investing in site renovations, and financial opportunities, and advertising, and much, much more, all with the intent on growing and popularizing your arcade. Perhaps what stands out most to me about Arcade Paradise is the sheer amount of content available. There's over 30 different arcade machines to unlock and a multitude of upgrades to purchase. In no time at all, you'll find yourself sinking dozens of hours into the game. And in the end, you're left with a pretty badass arcade filled with playable, addicting games to keep you coming back.

Mini games is the game

The arcade games themselves are one of the standout aspects of the experience. There's a variety of games available to play. From classic arcade games similar to Space Invaders and Pac-Man to more modern games that mimic the likes of Flappy Bird and Crossy Road, there's something for everyone. They brilliantly break up the main gameplay loop and add seemingly infinite variety to your experience. The game, and the games within the game, is all simple and intuitive in terms of controls, making it easy to pick up and play. Don't let that fool you, though. They do become more complex, often leaning on quick reflexes and precision timing, which makes it gradually more challenging and more engaging.

Nothing more, nothing less

While Arcade Paradise is an enjoyable experience overall, it's not without some flaws. One of the largest issues it has is its lack of depth. The arcade games are awesome, but much like in real life, there comes a time where you've outplayed them. That's not to say you beat them, but you're willing to move on. There's not a whole lot of variety in the gameplay itself once your love with the machines wears away. It does reach a point where you might find the game feels repetitive. You also might find some of the AI to be especially frustrating which might limit you're library of favorite machines to play, resulting in an eventual lower total play time. However, neither of these complaints should sway you from having a go. I met the same end with the likes of Animal Crossing and Stardew Valley, but they're still phenomenal games worth playing.

⭐⭐⭐⭐ : Good

Overall, Arcade Paradise is a fun and surprisingly engaging life sim that's well worth checking out. Its vibrant visuals, addictive gameplay, and task-oriented nature makes it a game that anyone can find joy in. It's a dose of nostalgia, a drip of a dream, and just the right amount of new married with retro. Don't pass it up.