BOSTON – In the future, the only sports that matter are Frisbee-based. French studio DotEmu has taken it upon themselves to build a sequel to the cult-classic Windjammers game from 1994. Windjammers 2 (coming to Nintendo Switch and PC later this year) is hoping to capture the magic of the original, and it seems like it’s on the right track.
Windjammers is a mix of tennis and ultimate frisbee. Each player is attempting to get a disc past their opponent into the colored goals behind them. You bounce the disc off walls or perform tricks to throw off your opponents.
Point totals vary depending on where the disc ends up. The red goals behind the players are worth 5 points but harder to score then its yellow counterparts which are worth 3. If lobs end up on the ground, you get two points.
The early build of Windjammers 2 showed off four characters, each of whom move and play differently and have different power moves. One of the new characters is a husky wrestler-looking dude who moves incredibly slow whose disc throws and power moves are powerful and overwhelming. Once he commits to going into a direction there is no going back. Other characters will vary in speed and size. Knowing the ins and outs of each character will keep you from being surprised during your match.
The biggest gameplay change from the original Windjammers is the inclusion of the slapshot. It’s a charge move that actually can deflect the disc away, which is great to guard against power move disc throws. My opponent opted for the strategy of trying to lob the disc over my head whenever I moved up too far. I was able to counter with a well-timed slapshot.
Windjammers 2 matches are exciting and flashy thanks to the game’s hand-drawn animation and retro-futuristic art-style. Each power move has bombastic effects like flame trails and sparkles. Fans of classic Windjammers will feel right at home, and the changes seem smart and not too disruptive to the status quo. DotEmu has been pretty tight-lipped on any online features or modes, but you can count on Windjammers 2 making a splash in the competitive scene.