I think the expectation for Windjammers 2 is still some of the highest out there. The first is obviously beloved by a small number of people, but still passionately so. Dotemu got the chance to port the original title to modern platforms, and the representatively that played with me let me know that getting in touch with the license holder is what opened up the opportunity to make this sequel. It’s a bit of a dream opportunity from folks that clearly adore the game, and after getting to play Windjammers 2, I can tell you, they know what they’re doing and they’re doing it right.
To be clear the demo I got to play was a very, very bare-bones demo here at PAX. It had two characters, one returning, one new, and both of them were the characters introduced in the announcement trailer earlier in August.
From there it was just, Windjammers. It was exactly what you’d want it to be, only in a totally new artstyle. I know there will be some hesitance going from the amazing spritework of the original to this newer, cleaner hand drawn style, but in motion it’s absolutely gorgeous. A lot of care was put into each animation and everything just speaks. It has character and charm coming out of it in all directions.
On top of this style evolution is the introduction of Super Moves. You have an EX Meter that charges throughout a given set or match, and once it hits its zenith you can press a button to unleash an over-the-top attack with a full charge up animation and everything. From there you can kind of direct your disk across the court, and while it can still be caught and beaten, the spectacle mixed with the control make it incredibly difficult to predict. It’s just the kind of flash that simply elevates Windjammers 2 visually above its predecessor.
I probed around with a few questions, but this is still pretty early, and the mechanics are generally holding the same but I’d expect some minor changes. I asked about big mode options, specifically 2v2, but they weren’t committing to anything quite yet. They care a lot about the balance, and want to make sure they get this right.
Right now all we know is Windjammers 2 is coming to Switch and PC sometime next year, and I can tell you it looks excellent.