Arcade Paradise VR Interview: New Version’s More Of A Sister Game Than A Port

Developers are determined to bring the game to as many players as possible after the Meta release.

Story Highlights

  • Arcade Paradise is a business simulation game that was released on August 11, 2022.
  • The VR version was launched on Meta Quest on April 25, 2024.
  • We spoke with Andreas Firnigl, Game Director of Arcade Paradise VR, over an email interview.

The highly innovative title Arcade Paradise, renowned for its amalgamation of business simulation and arcade minigames, has finally been released on Meta Quest. Given how well the original game’s concept worked in a VR setting, this release was something we all anticipated. 

Even so, this has left us with many questions regarding how Nosebleed Interactive — the developer — will support the original game and its recent VR version with additional updates. With these questions in mind, we spoke over an email interview with Andreas Firnigl, CEO of Nosebleed Interactive and Game Director of Arcade Paradise VR.

Arcade Paradise VR
Thump-A-Gopher Minigame From Arcade Paradise VR – Image Credits: Wired Productions.

Could you introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your work on Arcade Paradise VR?
Andreas: Hi, I’m Andreas Firnigl. CEO at Nosebleed Interactive and Game Director of Arcade Paradise VR.

A VR version was something that seemed like an obvious next direction for the game, and I know it was something that you considered even in the early pitch document. So, did you always add new content to the original game while keeping in mind how it may be translated into VR?
Andreas: You’re right in terms of the initial idea and how it might one day translate to VR, but for the most part, we didn’t ever let this determine how we went about making stuff. It was all really just about making a fun game. Stuff like using a PDA for the pause menu, which translates really naturally into VR, was more of a happy coincidence. All our games are about building a tactile, immersive world where stuff feels right. So because we were doing things in first person, it felt good having an old-school Palm Pilot and a Windows 3.1/95 style PC for menus. It just happens that these work really well for VR too.

What were some of the challenges you encountered when building the VR version? Any aspects of the original that you had trouble transforming?
Andreas: Originally we thought we might have issues with performance. The Quest 2 is an absolutely great bit of kit, but the original game was built for modern consoles and at the time, we didn’t do too much optimisation on the art side, as it was running at locked 60 frames per second even on Switch.

When we came to make Arcade Paradise VR, we needed to do a fair amount of reworking of the graphics. Jordan, our artist, did an absolutely fantastic job. In a lot of cases, it’s been optimized so efficiently that we actually have higher resolution textures and more detail in the VR version than we do on the console version for “hero items” such as the arcade cabinets!

But aside from optimisation, one of the things that took the most time was getting the fully immersive controls and interactions to feel really nice and natural.

Originally, we did prototype fully immersive controls for everything, with virtual joysticks and so on, and they kind of worked okay for some games, but for others, it was a bit like playing a game on mobile with virtual sticks when you have a perfectly great controller sitting there, right next to you. That’s what’s so great about the Meta touch controllers. You have a whole host of input options.

The way we approached it was to look at what existing games or gameplay activities would be elevated by immersive controls and concentrate on those. So, stuff like washing clothes, where in the original game you’d just hold a button, we spent time making that feel good, allowing the player to throw baskets over to the machines or lob clothes into machines from a distance. We also fully reworked the system that got the most criticism in the original game – losing laundry rank for carrying on playing games. We’re really happy with that change.

With this in mind, games like table football, air hockey, thump-a-gopher and any activities like opening safes, etc, that were kind of button-press proxies for something you’d do for real, were targeted first. We ended up reworking a lot of the more physical games, too, and they feel so much more natural in VR than they did in the original game.

With more traditional arcade games like a twin-stick shooter (Zombat 2), it really made no sense to use virtual controls. Some of the arcade games are quite twitchy, and for those, the sticks on the touch controllers are the best way of playing! We looked at each game and activity and figured out what was the most fun way to control them. I think we’ve struck the balance well.

Arcade Paradise VR
K.O. Champ Minigame From Arcade Paradise VR – Image Credits: Wired Productions.

While the idea was always there, how long has this update been in actual development?
Andreas: Arcade Paradise VR has been in active development for about a year and a half. While a fair amount of the arcade cabs and the story remain the same, we’ve fully reworked a lot of the game, adding new content that can only really work in VR and adjusting a lot to make the most of the hardware. We think of the game as a sort of sister game rather than a port.

Although the idea of online multiplayer has been dropped due to the development cost and benefits, is it something that you may reconsider if enough players demand it?
Andreas: We’ve investigated online multiplayer a few times during development, but it really does add a lot of time onto the schedule. A lot more than people realize I think. In the original game, a lot of the Arcade games (about 40%, I think) offered couch multiplayer. I don’t have a lot of statistics on this, but anecdotally, I don’t think it was a feature that people were particularly interested in. The game really feels like a single-player experience.

If we were to invest in a multiplayer game, I think I’d rather design it from the ground up as something people play together. That said… if there’s a huge demand for it and it makes sense, I’d love to do it.

Do you have any plans to bring the VR version to other platforms like PC VR or PS5 VR?
Andreas: We’re focussing on launching the Meta Quest version right now… but, it’s safe to say that we’re excited to bring our virtual rags to arcade riches game to as many players as possible.
Arcade Paradise VR
Smoke Em’ Minigame From Arcade Paradise VR – Image Credits: Wired Productions.

Now, with the release of the VR, how will you balance adding content to both versions of the game?
Andreas: Great question. For now, we’re really focused on Arcade Paradise VR and getting that into players’ hands, as well as making ongoing improvements with player feedback. That said, we have a lot of ideas that could work across all versions of the game.

Has working on Arcade Paradise and its VR version, which contains a myriad of arcade mini-games, given you an idea of what you want to develop next? If so, could you give us some hints?
Andreas: Well… We have a billion ideas… but we’re actively prototyping the next Nosebleed game, and so far, people seem to be very excited by it. All our games learn from what we’ve done before… I guess follow us on X (formerly Twitter) to keep up to date with what we’re up to.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the readers? Something we haven't touched upon yet.
Andreas: Ever heard of the IMANOK code?… ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A…

YouTube video

Arcade Paradise is a business simulation game developed by Nosebleed Interactive and published by Wired Productions. It was released on PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC on August 11, 2022. The game became available on Meta Quest on April 25, 2024. We thank Andreas Firnigl for answering our questions and Anastasia Denisova for helping us.

Did you find this helpful? Leave feedback below.

Thanks! Do share your feedback with us. ⚡

How can we make this post better? Your help would be appreciated. ✍

Subscribe to our newsletter and get up-to-speed gaming updates delivered to your inbox.

We don’t spam! Read more in our privacy policy.

Subscribe to our newsletter and get up-to-speed gaming updates delivered to your inbox.

We don’t spam! Read more in our privacy policy.

Mudassir is a seasoned journalist with a passion for uncovering the stories behind our favorite virtual worlds. Armed with a trusty notepad and a keen curiosity, he dives headfirst into the gaming industry's most exciting personalities. His knack for insightful questions and his ability to connect with developers and gamers alike makes his interviews a must-read. While on the lookout for the next person to interview, Mudassir keeps himself busy by writing news surrounding the gaming universe. Experience: 4+ Years || Senior Journalist || Education: Bachelor's in Psychology.

Related Articles

Join Our Community

Enjoyed this article? Discuss the latest gaming news, get expert help with guides and errors, and chat about all things gaming on eXputer Forums and Discord Server. Connect with fellow gamers who share your passion by becoming a part of eXputer's community.