Arcade Spirits is a romantic visual novel that follows an alternative timeline where the 1983 video game crash never occurred. It's 20XX and you've just started a new job at the Funplex game arcade. Who will you meet along the way? Will you find the romance you're seeking?
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Release Date:
February 12, 2019

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Download Arcade Spirits Demo

Arcade Spirits Demo

Available: February 12, 2019


Recent updates View all (17)

January 16

Calm Before the Storm

Been some time since our last developer blog post. Honestly? Not much to report, since we wrapped up the game and are just waiting for the release. But we're not TOTALLY resting on our hopefully-arriving-in-the-future laurels. Let's recap and discuss the doings and goings on.

Pre-orders are up, as indicated in this handy chart. My recommendation is, which has both the normal game and soundtrack+artbook bundle at a discount, and gets you both a direct download and a Steam key. If you don't wanna pre-order, that's cool, we'll be having an identical launch week discount on Steam itself.

Aenne (co-author), Steph (Iris's voice actor), Molly (character artist) and special guest Jacob (voice director) are all going to be at PAX South 2019 this coming weekend! We're going to have our most elaborate booth to date, with comfy seating and a fun environment. We'll have shirts and actual pre-order game codes on sale there, so drop on by to play the demo, chat with the devs, and have a grand 'ol time. We'll also be participating in the Houston Gaymers pre-show party Friday at 8pm.

Press will be getting their hands on review codes and working to get you advance notice of how amazingly awesome our game is (hopefully) towards the end of this month. If you're press and want to get in on the fun contact for more information.

And finally... Feb 12, we release. And then we wait and see.

Because if we're a success, if we can break even and then some... I've got biiiig plans for an Arcade Spirits II. Since I've got an unexpected and unwelcome surplus of time on my hands I've been doing preproduction work on it, in hopes that we take off like a rocket and the project is greenlit. So tell your friends, tell your enemies, and thank you for your support!
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December 30, 2018

The Prerelease Postmortem

It's been some time since I did a rambly developer blog update about our actual progress on the game. Today I'd like to do one of those, effectively wrapping up our game in a neat little bow, as we're going to be sending it off to be certified and prepped for the February 12th launch. (And we'll be launching at $20 for the game and $25 for game plus soundtrack and artbook. Details here.)

But first, let's recap the Developer Spotlight series, shall we? All these lovely people contributed to Arcade Spirits:
Hats off to you all for two and a half years of hard work. I've chronicled the ideas leading up to those two and a half years on the blog -- that's not what I want to talk about today. I want to talk in hindsight, as we're into the last days of this project. We're moving into 2019 and moving away from post-production, and it's a good time to take stock.

As my first true indie game project -- I don't think MS-DOS shareware from the 90s counts -- I wanted to make this as professional as I possibly could. We funded art, music, coding, and all the support needed to really make this game soar. It's a passion project, riding no particular trend, digging into subject matter rarely explored in visual novels and using interactive storytelling in ways we haven't seen very often in the genre. Everything we wanted to do, specifically to make the sort of game we wanted to play... we did it. And soon, we release it to you.

Since it's our first project, well, there are some shortcomings. I can be honest about that. A more in-depth character creator would be great, having stricter narrative consistency would be great, and we didn't plan on voice acting from day one meaning our scenes weren't always structured in a way that accommodated it. The fifth identity trait ("Basically") was never quite what I wanted it to be. Behind the scenes, files and code could be structured better, making it easier to write and less prone to errors. These are all great lessons to learn moving forward, all things we're taking into account for future games, should we get to make them.

But a lot of other things went spectacularly well. I wanted this to feel like an 80s workplace sitcom -- and it does. I wanted romance to be at the heart of the game, but not drive every single decision you make -- and there's variety here. I wanted to support and include as wide an audience as possible, every person no matter who they are -- and we've done that without sacrificing anything. I craved a game that spoke to wistful nostalgia without being entirely trapped within it, which was respectful of arcade culture but understanding of the modern era -- got it. And lastly, I wanted to tell a tale of hope and optimism in a dark time, where one could achieve their dreams if they were pragmatic about it and didn't give up. I believe we did that.

So. Some things we could've done differently. Some things we got *chef kiss* spot on. And overall, I'm damn proud of the work we're about to release into the world. Will it soar? Will it sink? That's not for me to say -- that's for you to say. If it soars, then we are ready to take these lessons and make something bigger and brighter, a game which explores player choice and narrative in new ways. If it sinks, I can still say with pride that I did what I set out to do. Few people can say they truly chased their dreams.

We still have a month and a half to go, so things are pretty intense for you right now, in anticipation. I get that. For me, we're winding down, we're packaging up and shipping things out... and I feel a kind of melancholy, letting this finally go. A bit of anxiety for how it will be received. But above all, happiness. We did this. And soon, we'll be able to show you.

Thank you. As I always say, if you're reading these words, you're farther down the rabbit hole than you expect -- most people don't chew through developer blog posts, don't engage this deeply. You, however, are here with us. And for that you have my gratitude.

So, who's ready to quarter up on February 12th? You got next.
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About This Game

Arcade Spirits, a romantic visual novel, follows an alternate timeline set in the year 20XX where the 1983 video game crash never occurred. After a turbulent work history, you are granted employment at the Funplex, a popular arcade, home to a host of unique personalities and customers. Where will this new-found employment take you? Who will you meet along the way? Will you find the romance you're seeking?

  • Design your own character from the ground up - pronoun, hairstyle, skin tone, hair color, eye color and more are completely customizable and are reflected throughout the game in both gameplay and artwork!

  • With roleplaying-based choices, you will be able to grow your personality and relationships in any way you desire; Friendship, Platonic or something more intimate! Work hard and build the relationship you desire with a total of seven romanceable characters!

  • The Identity Identifier System, or IRIS, can track your relationship statuses with all characters throughout Arcade Spirits as well as your personality traits, from Quirky, Steady, and Kindly, to Gutsy and Basically.

  • Everything you choose in Arcade Spirits, from your relationships to your personality, your crisis management moments, and a myriad other decision will have an effect on the future of your arcade!

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 1 GHz Intel or AMD Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX or OpenGL compatible card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    • OS: Windows Vista or above
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.6 or later
    • Processor: 1 GhzCore 2 Duo
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX or OpenGL compatible card
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.7 or later
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Processor: 1 GHz Intel or AMD Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX or OpenGL compatible card
    • Storage: 100 MB available space

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