American Arcadia review: ingenious spy thriller is a can’t-m…

Trevor and Angela stand tall in American Arcadia.

“American Arcadia transforms The Truman Show into an interactive indie thriller you won’t want to miss.”


  • great retro future art style

  • entertaining story

  • strong leadership performance

  • clever puzzle platforming


  • Sometimes satire loses its focus

  • Chase scenes are repeated

Trevor Hills is a perfectly average guy. He wakes up every morning, follows the same routine, works on his boring desk job and goes home without any fuss. He’s the perfect all-American good guy – and it’s about to kill him.

This is the juicy base that fuels American ArcadiaLatest project from call of the sea Developer suddenly. The extraordinary puzzle-platformer takes gameplay ideas like moody genre classics limbo and casts him in a small-scale Hollywood spy thriller about the world’s dullest action hero. He’s not running and jumping from a serial killer or a giant monster, but something far more dangerous: a media mega-power that has decided his boring life isn’t that profitable anymore.

American Arcadia is a sharp dystopian satire that takes a dig at capitalism, Disney, and reality TV. imagine playable cross in the middle the Truman Show And fugitive, all dressed in 1970s retro-future style. Out of the Blue builds on that premise with clever gameplay that equally replicates the cinematic chase scenes and thrills of hacker flicks in colorful 2.5D. This is a small appeal to the common people who just wish they could be free from the inhumane corporate world.

under the Dome

When I was first introduced to this world American Arcadia, everything looks good. The opening moments introduce me to Trevor as he goes about his day-to-day in a place called Arcadia. I get a few quiet moments to soak in the intricately designed “city of the future,” a 2.5D metropolis that takes colorful inspiration from 1970s retro futuristic design, before I realize that my Everything around is a lie. It is revealed that Trevor is unknowingly the star of a giant reality TV show set in a city trapped inside a dome.

It works like an interactive combination the Truman Show, fugitiveAnd free boy ,

This is where American Arcadia descends into some juicy satire. A mysterious hacker named Angela informs Trevor that he is one of the least popular cast members on the show, because he is so boring to the audience. Since keeping an artist alive isn’t cheap, the megacompany running the show is planning to remove him permanently. It’s a sharp-witted premise that takes aim at how capitalism reduces people and workers to dollars and cents. This is especially resonant right now, as the video game industry is undergoing massive layoffs that have recklessly thrown thousands of developers out to sea. The modern workforce is beginning to feel as cutthroat as a TV show competition.

Some of those satire strings get crossed a bit during the surprisingly long adventure. Commentaries on reality TV culture are mixed with digs at Disney, a company that the game’s nefarious media corporation clearly appears to be emulating. Those two pieces don’t always fit together cleanly, but it happens. American Arcadia Paint a detailed picture of our country’s obsession with money, power, and consumption.

Trevor enters INAC headquarters in American Arcadia.
out of the blue

Even if it is thematically incomplete, the story is a compelling setup for a good old Hollywood thriller. It works like an interactive combination the Truman Show, fugitiveAnd free boy, average Trevor becomes an unwitting action hero as he tries to escape the dome. Credit here goes to Spider-Man voice actor Yuri Lowenthal, who turns Trevor into a lovable loser I can’t help but love. Lowenthal chronicles Trevor’s slowly increasing frustration, as each new twist about Arcadia reveals to him how little control he has over his life. By the end, he completes his transformation into a true everyman: a man who just wants everyone to leave him alone.

run and hack

To present my Hollywood base, American Arcadia Adopts an action-adventure setup that is similar to the game limbo, Trevor’s escape requires him to dodge guards with little confusion and do some fast-paced urban platforming during chase scenes. However, the added twist is that players also control Angela, who can remotely hack Trevor’s surroundings to help him escape. It’s a one-player co-op premise that works surprisingly well and paves the way for some ingenious moments.

…a smart espionage thriller with varied set pieces.

During an early chase scene, I see a guard coming down an elevator. She has a view of Trevor’s escape route through the clear glass, but there is a quick junction where the glass is covered. I get Trevor under cover and take over a security camera as Angela hacks the elevator just in time to block the guard’s vantage point. A later secret segment shows Angela moving between patrolling drones in a room, using them to stun wandering guards and clear a path for Trevor. Inventive moments like these bridge the gap between action and puzzles to create a smart espionage thriller with a variety of set pieces.

Some segments play even more with the format. At times, I take direct control of Angela as she infiltrates enemy headquarters in a full 3D, first-person perspective. In one early situation I had to hack a security camera by placing a dummy video feed right in front of the camera and writing down a door code to a locked server room. at its best, American Arcadia Lets me live out all my hacker movie dreams.

Angela gets hold of her phone while trying to help Trevor in American Arcadia.
out of the blue

There are plenty of creative gameplay ideas here American Arcadia It never ends completely, although it is spread thinly throughout its seven chapters. The chase sequences can get repetitive after a while, especially due to the somewhat inconsistent checkpointing that often took me back a bit more during difficult sequences where a little experimentation was required. However, my attention never wanders for long; There’s always another crowd-pleasing moment ready to boost the approval ratings back up.

And audience approval is everything American Arcadia, It is the metric by which a billion-dollar entertainment enterprise decides who is profitable enough to live and die. That lofty premise is frighteningly not far from our own reality, where hundreds of lives can be destroyed at the snap of a wealthy executive’s fingers. The city of Arcadia may seem like a distant dystopia, but the grim finale reminds us that the world outside its domed walls isn’t always better. We can just keep running and hope we eventually find our way.

American Arcadia Testing was done on PC and Legion Go.

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