Double D Dodgeball feels like you’re playing dodgeball with a bunch of mutinous aliens from Space Invaders; who, tired of seeing wave after wave of their brothers marching to their deaths, go M.I.A. and play dodgeball, a game that the entire Alpha Centauri cluster can play in peace. Oscar run for sure!
If you’re not familiar with the rules of dodgeball, well, I’m a little sad for you. Two teams. Rectangular playing field split down the middle. Grab the balls. Use them to rape and pillage the other team. One hit and you’re out.
However, Double D has a much faster pace than a normal Dodgeball game. This exists in part because of the small playing area and one important rule change: no longer will catching an opponent’s ball cause him to be out, but it does give you the ability to return fire with a super throw. Plus, if you’re playing with East Coast rules, there is a second perimeter surrounding the playing area where eliminated players can still throw the ball when passed to, creating a crossfire dynamic that whips the game into a frenzy.
Double D’s visual style is a throw back to golden age of arcade games when you could actually meet attractive girls by playing video games (now you need a Wii for that). Its thumping electronic beat and neon lighting effects lovingly wave at Bizarre Creations brainchild, Geometry Wars.
You can use a few different units, including the Shooter, Catcher, Runner and the Glass Unit. The Shooter, Catcher and Runner units’ strengths are pretty self-explanatory. The Glass unit, well, he’s tricky and I haven’t quite figured him out yet, kind of like the weird pasty long-haired guy in Phys Ed class that didn’t look tough, but you knew he’d probably cut you if he got the chance.
There are also a variety of surfaces that you can play on, and not just unmanly stuff like the clay and grass of tennis. I’m talking plasma, ice, space, that can even have electrocuting edges that will send your alien straight to the pearly gates when touched. That’s assuming aliens believe in God…which is a 2 a.m theological discussion for another day.
Biblical Era Smacktalk DLC? Just kidding.
I’ll be eager to see how Double D Dodgeball plays when I can smack my friends in the face in 12-person matches via Xbox Live. Even though it’s retro alien themed, there were times when I really felt like I was in high school again. Unfortunately those memories involved me hugging the wall and the rest of my team eliminated, while the seniors had all the balls on their side.
Double D Dodgeball drops exclusively on Xbox Live Arcade in July for 800 Microsoft points.