It’s been an exciting few weeks since our last update. We’ve announced our weekly playtest schedule, demoed Disc Jam at EVO, and most importantly made some exciting new changes to the game!
EVO Wrap Up
Our first EVO was an unbelievable experience. We were a bit nervous to bring our little indie game to the biggest FGC tournament in history. We knew this was a crowd of very intelligent gamers with high expectations and a deep understanding of competitive games. To our delight, Disc Jam received a very warm welcome. So warm, in fact, that we decided to hold a tournament on the second day of EVO which ended up being much bigger than we had planned for!
After 3 and a half hours of single elimination we finally had a champion! The late rounds were incredibly tense and we really enjoyed watching Hakeem “The Dream” win the finals in a 3 set thriller! Duncan was understandably crestfallen but all of the competitors displayed admirable sportsmanship and most importantly everyone had fun!
Demoing Disc Jam for 26 hours in 2 days was exhausting, but closing out EVO with a tourney of our own was a blast and we expect that we’ll see a lot of new players in this week’s playtest. So with that, let’s dive into the new mechanics!
If you’ve been chatting with us on our Twitch stream, you know we have been discussing streak-based mechanics for some time. The idea of rewarding players for perfect execution was something we have been kicking around and that’s what led to our implementation of JUICED. Put simply, three perfect throws in a row and your player becomes JUICED, which increases your throw speed as long as you maintain the streak.
So far, we’re very happy with this new mechanic because it rewards high level play without alienating novice players. At very high levels, winning or losing a point can often come down to the first person to miss a perfect throw. It introduces a nice layer of strategy as players lob or play their opponent into a slide to break up a perfect throw streak.
It puts more emphasis on executing the deflection mechanic as well since super throws also contribute to the JUICED streak. Work on those mix-ups and be sure to dial in your timing because even a missed perfect on kickoff can potentially cost you the point!
Scoring Bank Mechanic
Another topic of discussion on our channel has been scoring. We’ve been debating the merit of variable-point end zones for some time and we decided that lobbing to punish a player who is out of position should be just as valuable as scoring by throwing to the end zone.
Disc Jam is about moving your opponent around the court to create openings. You should be thinking 1-2 shots ahead to setup your chance to score and, unfortunately, that wasn’t reflected in how we were awarding points. It’s difficult to force your opponents out of position and aim for a particular end zone. As a result, it was often pure luck whether a goal ended up netting you 3 or 5 points.
To address this, we’ve added something we’re very excited about in the SCORE BANK! Now, all points are worth the same amount, but that amount increases as the point carries on. The value of the current point is displayed in the center of the net:
Starting with a base value of 5 points, each change in possession (each throw) adds 1 to the total value of the point, and sets are first to 50. In this new design, epic rallies are worth more than short flubbed points that end after only a few throws. As many of you have noticed, the disc speeds up over the course of the point. Now, the tension is higher than ever as longer points are more valuable with each throw. Nerves begin to crack as the disc is getting faster and the score bank creeps toward a game changing point value. Big momentum swings are happening and sets are playing out much more dramatically. Hop in some matches and let us know what you think!
Now let’s Jam!
Hopefully you enjoy the new mechanics as much as we do. Love it or hate it, we welcome and encourage your feedback so please let us know what you think on our forums or join the discussion live during our Twitch stream.