Arena is a sports game which features six disciplines, including Long Jump, High Jump, Javelin, Shot Put, Pole Vault and the Hundred Meter run. Up to four players can compete in the events, but not playing at the same time, but in a hot-seat mode. Control is like in other sports games: you have to gain speed pushing the joystick in a perfect rhythm, and pushing the trigger at the right time, i.e. to start jumping in the Long Jump and High Jump discipline.
Unlike other games of the genre, humor is not getting short, as a referee is constantly pestering at you, making sarcastic comments if you fail to reach very good results. Most events are visually presented on several screens which are flipped (not scrolled).