“Weird sports” games have been growing in popularity over the past year, with #IDARB and Rocket League drawing considerable attention for the wrinkles they add to classic sports like basketball and soccer. But what if superpowers and a bit of pinball get thrown into the mix? That’s exactly what WarpBall aims to deliver, provided developer Unruly Attractions gets enough community support.
“WarpBall is a futuristic sports game set in a world where teleportation has completely changed how we play football,” developer Nathan John says. “One restriction is that players are unable to teleport while in possession of the ball.”
As shown in Unruly Attractions’ gameplay demonstration, this means that players are forced to constantly pass the ball to their teammates or risk the defense swarming around them and causing a turnover. Customization is also key, as characters can use a number of secondary abilities, including “phasing,” which briefly turns the player and ball invincible as the opposing team attempts a steal. Other abilities include “phase-shot” which makes the ball temporarily unblockable, “snap-back,” which seems to function much like Tracer’s rewinding ability in Overwatch.
But this isn’t just “soccer with superpowers.” A number of pinball-style bumpers are also scattered throughout each arena, opening up the opportunity for bank shots and deceptive passes. Now everyone can bend it like Beckham!
Unruly Attractions says that the game is currently ready to enter a closed alpha state, with a prospective release window of early next year. The team is currently using Square Enix’ “Collective” service to gauge player interest, and the game’s webpage includes a poll on game features, and the ability to share your thoughts directly with the developers.
WarpBall is currently planned for release on PC, Mac, Linux, and Xbox One. Square Enix will consider backing the game through crowdfunding based on the feedback it receives.