Electron Dance
10Apr/190

Dabbling With… Balloonbound

The eighth episode of a short series on games I discovered at EGX Rezzed 2019.

Balloonbound from Awkward Silence Games is an in-development local multiplayer game. This is a competitive game where your goal is to pop your opponent's balloon so they plummet to their death.

I had a blast with this. Oh yeah, I played this a lot. Somehow the quirkly physics combined with environmental randomness such as other balloons and weapons added up to something rather special. Your basic arsenal is an infinite supply of DEADLY PAPER AEROPLANES which you can throw with great force if you charge up the shot. You also have at your disposal a lethal KICK.

I can't be sure, but if you were a consistent loser, it seemed the game would kit you out with a more powerful weapon instead of DEADLY PAPER AEROPLANES, like a GUN WITH BULLETS. This really isn't a game about different weapons. The weapons almost seem incidental when you have two naked wimps kicking at each other's balloon ineffectually, floating up there in the clouds. Weapons often make the rounds come to an end quickly, but they seem more for comedic value than tactical. One of my opponents got a water gun at one point which didn't seem to puncture my balloon but was really annoying. But then I got a flamethrower and he was literal toast. That was my favourite moment.

There's a slight issue where the playfield refuses to scroll beyond a certain limit and the two players were permitted to drift off the edges of the screen. When this happens, you don't know where they are and what they're doing. It wasn't clear why the game imposed this constraint but hopefully that'll be dealt with in the final release.

(Note: Awkward Silence Games is Dean Moynihan who wrote One Chance, a game which Electron Dance touched on many, many moons ago.)

From the itch.io page:

BALLOONBOUND is a fighting game about a bunch of dudes floating around in their undies throwing paper airplanes. Coming in 2019.

Features:

  • Local multiplayer death match: Last man floating
  • Fast paced, balloon based combat
  • A bunch of weapons
  • Unpredictable  weather
  • Customizable characters and balloons
  • Naked dudes

Interested in other games I've dabbled with? Check out the series index!

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