Broken Arcade was designed to be played with a Sony Dualshock 3 control using the HTML 5 Gamepad API. The game can also be played using a keyboard; however, because it was designed around the controller, playing it on the keyboard will not yield the full, intended experience. Broken Arcade was designed to explore the use of controls in the video game experience. It takes the knowledge of the controller and how it fits into the gaming experience that is inherent in every players mind and shatters it, encouraging the player to re-think the role of the controller in their gaming experience. Throughout the course of the game the controls used by the player to perform all of the in-game actions will change, sometimes only slightly, and at other times, quite drastically.
To encourage the player to focus on the controls each of the game levels is modelled after a level from a well-known classic video game.
The first level, modeled after Super Mario Bros. world 1-1.
The second level, modeled after Castlevania level 1.
The third level, modeled after Cutman's stage in Mega Man.
The final level, an amalgamation of elements from all of the previous levels in a red, Virtual Boy-esque hue.
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