A rhythmically flowing arcade shooter and a psychedelic visual explosion of color, Akka Arrh captures all of the fun of the golden age of gaming and delivers it in an updated, modernized package with vibrant, dreamlike visuals. Read on for my review of this newly unearthed and updated Atari arcade game for Xbox.
About Akka Arrh
A cascade of words, colors, shapes, and sound flows around your turret as you desperately fight off swarms of inbound attackers.
If enemies penetrate your perimeter, you must zoom into close-range combat and beat them back, adjusting to a completely different perspective in the blink of an eye.
Welcome to Jeff Minter’s Akka Arrh.
Akka Arrh combines the intrigue of an incredibly rare Atari arcade prototype with
the unique creative vision of Jeff Minter to deliver a wave shooter that is insanely fun
Akka Arrh drips with Minter’s sense of humor, his love of psychedelic color and
light, and his ability to flat-out create games that are a joy to play.
Akka Arrh is the name of your star cannon, which you control from a fixed turret called
the Sentinel. Your mission is to keep enemies from penetrating the Sentinel’s perimeter. If
they slip through, you zoom into the lower field and take them out. Once cleared,
zoom back out and continue defending.
This is pure arcade bliss, where you’ll get thrown directly into the action. Combos, high
scores, and survival are the only goals here.
Create massive chains of enemy explosions and rack up ammo for precision shots to keep
a combo and your rings (or life force) protected. Lose them all, and it’s game over.
Akka Arrh is visually stunning. I have never seen a game like this one. It is reminiscent of arcade classics like Tempest and more modern-day masterpieces, such as Geometry Wars. However, the visual style and unrelenting wave of colors and movement in Akka Arrh is something else. There is an accessibility option to tone things down, but I prefer the total visual onslaught that this spellbinding game has to offer.
The sound in Akka Arrh is surprisingly sparse. With a game that looks as wild as this one, you’d think the soundtrack would be out of this world. Instead, Atari opted for an ethereal, atmospheric tapestry of music, perfectly fitting the space setting of Akka Arrh. Not being bombarded by an endless stream of loud sounds makes for a more immersive experience, so Atari made the right call regarding the music.
Tinged with Jeff Minter’s sense of humor and prolific graphical style, Akka Arrh is the visionary showcase of his love of hypnotic color and light, combined with his ability to create pure arcade bliss. Players will blast through swaths of enemy waves while manning the titular Akka Arrh, a suped-up cannon just begging to be unleashed.
Akka Arrh is nothing like what I expected but in all the best ways possible. It is a trippy shooter that was almost never released many years ago. Featuring 50 levels and multiple modes of play, I’m glad this arcade classic that never was has finally seen the light of day. It is a worthy addition to the iconic Atari library of video games, and every gamer should check this out.
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