Windjammers is legit.
Windjammers might be a name readers are extremely familiar with. On the other hand, I myself had never really heard much about this game other than it’s a treasured older Neo Geo arcade classic, but what does that even mean for someone that never played it? I heard it was a sports game and personally I’m not really into the genre. To say I went in with trepid expectations is probably an understatement. So surprised to say, what I got from the game was totally unexpected.
That’s fighting sports
The idea behind the sport is simple. Two opposing players opposite of each other, appear on a court very similar to something ones found in tennis. Using what could only be described as a Frisbee on steroids, the two throw it back and forth trying to score points by getting it past the opposing player. It’s a really simply concept, and one that almost anyone can immediately understand. As the saying goes though, it might be easy to play, but it takes time to master.
Price I’d Pay: $14.99
Multiplayer: Two players on/offline
How long to beat: 30 minutes
While going back and forth like a game of insane turbo pong, players can do various things to trick the opponent. From delayed throws, curved angles, and even powered up moves. The accompanying graphical style along with the overdone super moves truly make this feel as something straight out of the 80’s, and rightfully so. Accentuated characters, colorful, bright, and yet each session can be super intense depending on the difficulty the AI is set to or how good an online or couch co-op player is. The best part about all this is even though the game is masked as a sports title, it truly feels like the back and forth people get from playing a fighting game. That back and forth, winning and losing, and coming through with a sudden victory adrenaline rush. It’s a great feeling, and no matter playing against the computers or a person, the rush is the same.
Going through the entire arcade mode offers a few levels of difficulty. Playing next to a friend and a crowd of onlookers is probably the best way to experience the game. Cheering on fellow players and if each one of them is good, the match can be exhilarating, even when just watching, let alone playing. If that can’t happen though, there is an online function, but unfortunately at launch seems to be plagued with hit or miss connections. Sometimes it would work, other times it wouldn’t. Hopefully this gets fixed as it’s the only blemish on an otherwise fantastic game.
A classic indeed
Coming into this without the nostalgia glasses is always an interesting perspective. Will a game that people have loved and wanted to see again resonate with a completely new player? In this case I believe due to the ease of play and how much simple fun the game can be, along with how intense the matches can ultimately get, this is a no brainer. It might be a relic of old arcade fun, but there must be a reason so many people love it, and it seems truly good gameplay mechanics don’t age if Windjammers is anything to go by.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.