High Horse Entertainment is a small studio born from the collaboration of only two developers: Jay Mattis and Timothy Rapp. The former boasts a past in the ranks of Treyarch, where he had the opportunity to work on Call of Duty: World at War and Call of Duty: Black Ops, while the latter contributed to the creation of the Guitar Hero online infrastructure, also participating in the development of Call of Duty 3 and Call of Duty: Black Ops 2.
After years spent in contact with the triple A productions, the couple preferred to veer towards new horizons, and so was born Disc Jam, a frenetic sports arcade clearly inspired by a classic from the past as Windjammers. Those who have a few more years on their shoulders will certainly remember with nostalgia the title of SNK dating back to the NEO-GEO era, which will soon be back on stage ,
with some graphic adaptation, on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. The concept of Disc Jam was born in just eight weeks and was presented for the first time with a prototype at the IndieCade 2015, one of the most popular festivals on the indie scene.
The feedback received from High Horse Entertainment was so positive that it led the studio to refine the basic mechanics of the game, while implementing a multiplayer mode both locally and online for up to four players. The final version is available from March 7 on PC and PlayStation 4, at a price of 14.99 euros.
Subscribers to the PlayStation Plus service, however, have the opportunity to download it, without additional costs, for the entire month of March.
Disc Jam is immediate and very entertaining, but for now it is still poor in content
PLAYSTATION TROPHIES 4
The Disc Jam Trophies are only twelve and are rather simple to unlock. Some concern the completion of the tutorials and the victory of a match in single and double, others include the conquest of at least one game in the shoes of each of the four characters available. The only goal that requires a little ‘more time to be completed, however, is what is expected to win at least 50 online meetings.
Just like the title from which it draws inspiration, Disc Jam is based on an imaginary sports discipline, combining in a bizarre way tennis and air hockey. Unlike what happened in Windjammers, where the camera was placed above the playing field, in this case the shot is located behind the player, as happens in the classic tennis games.
The contenders must throw a disk similar to a frisbee, with the goal of overcoming the opponent and hitting the wall positioned behind him; alternatively, however, it is possible to induce the other player into error, preventing him from recovering possession of the disk before the latter touches the ground.
To win a single frame you have to reach the threshold of 50 points, but the score will vary depending on the duration and intensity of the exchange that has just ended.
The game structure is on the whole quite immediate, however there are two tutorials available that allow to acquire further familiarity with the basic controls and the most advanced attack techniques.
The offensive strategies are full of solutions, since you can take advantage of the game of bank, resort to the lob or the short ball, or even fall back on the unpredictable shots of the dish to be scored with the pressure of the right or left of the pad trigger.
In addition to the strategy of attack and the need to steal the opponent’s time, just as it would be in a tennis match, what matters most is above all the speed of release of the disc. There are in fact three different execution speeds, which are marked by a trail of white, blue or pink; quest
‘The most successful part of Disc Jam is about the variety of possible interactions, which will be even more tangible after practicing in the field.There are for example Super Throw, loaded attacks that are activated after recovering a lob with the right timing, or after having parried a shot with the aid of a shield.
And if the offensive strategies play an important role, the defensive phase is no less thanks to the use of the slide. With due caution it is indeed possible to effectively cover the entire playing area and proceed to counterattack with continuity.
In summary, Disc Jam enjoys a more than convincing interaction, immediate in its basic structure but with margins of aging that go from the correct management of advanced techniques.