What is Bread?: A Windjammers Story
What is Bread? A simple question that led to a Windjammers money match. A match for a Hardee’s Big Chicken Filet Sandwich at Anime Weekend Atlanta 2016 between myself and a friend. It was a first to 10, but I lost 7-10 though. So what does this have to do with anything? Well, it has to do with Windjammers. The game is getting a remaster for PS4 and even had the possibility of being at this year’s Evolution Championship Series, the largest open fighting game tournament in the world.
Windjammers was originally released in 1994 for the Neo Geo cabinet. It’s similar to a pong type or air hockey type game. It used to be available on the Wii Virtual Console, but was pulled in 2013 after the rights were obtained by Paon following the original developer’s, Data East, bankruptcy.
In Windjammers two people face each other, whether its Player v Player or Player v A.I, and each try to throw a disk into the other person’s goal. Each area of the goal has different sections that are worth more points. These parts are either 3 or 5 points, with a disk hitting the ground being worth 2 points. The goal is get 13 points before your opponent, which wins you a match, with a player needing two matches to win the set.
There are 6 characters in the game, each coming from a different nation and each have different speed to power ratio. Speed correlates to your character movement while power means your character can throw harder. In addition your character can catch hard throws without being pushed back as far.
The controls are simple: you move, have a dash/throw button and a lob button. You can curve your throws by doing quarter-circles or just use the up and down on the stick to throw your disk accordingly. The dash is used to quickly catch throws and knock them into the air for a power shot. When a disk is in the air, walk under it, and your character will strike a power pose. You can mash the throw button to make it throw harder and use the stick to influence its direction. However, the input on the direction is minimal since each character has a unique power throw.
The other option, however, is to mash the lob button to do an overhand lob. This is actually hard to combat and catch, and almost guarantee a push back if they try to catch. The power throws are able to push the opponent back if their strength is not enough to catch it outright. If your character is pushed back at the goal, they can pushed inside the goal which does count as far as points go. Rallies between skilled players get really hype because the disk just keeps getting faster until it eventually turns into just two players exchanging super throws.
With Sony confirming the remaster for PS4, with no release date yet, and confirming that they would fund Windjammers tournaments, the game is about to come back. The Windjammers community will, hopefully, be revived, shout-outs to the 3 guys who play on FightCade all the time though.
I’m so excited for more experiences like the “What is Bread” rivalry when Windjammers hits PS4. I’m excited for playing online against others, besides on FightCade. Most of all, though, I am excited to compete in Windjammers tournaments so I can grow as a player. Well, not only to grow as a player, but also to enjoy the community. For all the flak that FGC players give each other, almost every community has a sense of brotherhood, and I’m ready for that. Overall, I’m just ready for Windjammers.