Akka Arrh Review (PS5) | Push Square


If the visual insanity of Jeff Minter’s wild Akka Arrh slipped you by last year when it released, you’ve got a fresh opportunity. We rather enjoyed our time with the PS4 version when it launched, so we were more than happy to dive back into a next-gen port of the vibrant, exhilarating retro title. The core gameplay experience is untouched and virtually identical to that of its PS4 counterpart, but there is one game-changer afoot: PSVR2.

While the VR doesn’t turn Akka Arrh into a transcendent experience in the same way as going from 2D to 3D on a game like Rez Infinite, it does absolutely enhance the experience. One problem we previously had with the title was that in later levels when things start to get crazy, it can be exceedingly easy to lose track of enemies and get flustered. This cascade of failure could artificially increase the challenge of the experience, which was no slouch on the difficulty front to begin with.

The VR helps to make the experience more digestible. It’s a very similar design approach to the way Enhance games tackled Tetris Effect. The VR doesn’t fundamentally alter the experience, but rather it adds depth. Slain enemy point totals fly at your face now rather than feebly trail off-screen, powerups explode across your field of vision, and transitioning between the two levels of the map is more engaging. These are all things present in the PS4 version of the release, but the added depth and the scale with which these things occur absolutely add a new layer of enjoyment.

All the other facets of the experience remain as excellent as they were previously: the rhythmic gameplay and sound design are exquisite, the use of colour is wildly engaging, and the performance is as stable as ever.

So, the PS5 version of Akka Arrh winds up being a solid port that is very selective about what to add to the experience. And as it turns out, choosing to add VR was the right call.

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