Windjammers for the Neo Geo was a lovely little thing - a bright and summery frisbee-sport hybrid of tennis, volleyball and a fighting game. While it wasn't a huge hit in its own time, Dotemu have announced that they're working on Windjammers 2, due out on PC in 2019. While an improbable game to get a sequel, it's likely due to a resurgence of interest in the game across YouTube and streaming services. Despite its age, Windjammers is a rising star in the fighting game scene, too.
While the announcement trailer only gives us a peek at what is presumably the sequel's intro, the two screenshots released so far suggest that they're not straying too far from the original's design. Pixels has been swapped out for sharp comic book art, but the steep overhead camera angle remains unchanged. The aesthetic remains very late 80s/early 90s too, with big shoulder pads, big shades and a big palette of colours. It feels like summer, which is exactly how Windjammers should - something that the dark and desaturated imitator Disc Jam forgot.
And here's that other screenshot (click to embiggen), showing that the overblown super moves are just as daft and physics-defying as ever.
Dotemu are the prolific French emulation and retro outfit who recently published Lizardcube's Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap. I'm interested to see if Windjammers 2 catches on with the esports crowd, especially given its recent interest in the competitive fighting game scene. While it didn't get as much airtime as the main events, Evo 2018 included a Windjammers tournament, hosted by wrestler and Neo Geo devotee Austin Watson, better known under his WWE stage name Xavier Woods. If nothing else, he'll be happy.
There's no release date for Windjammers 2 beyond "2019", but the official Windjammers site should have more info soon.