New halftimes allow for strategery and narrative drama
While I’ve been busy adding game customization options and redoing the character selection screen, I ended up going down the rabbit hole a bit and added a long-desired feature to Super Slam Dunk Touchdown: Halftimes!
Halftimes had been planned from the beginning, so this is a big step towards completing the quick match gameplay. Before a game, players can set the length of each Quarter. Players can optionally add Halftimes as well. This way you could play one 5 minute, uninterupted match, or play a 3 minute match consisting of 3 one minute Quarters, separated by 2 Halftimes.
Halftimes give teams a chance to plan their strategy better against their opponents by changing their player types mid-match. If your team is getting completely spanked, it might be time to reconsider your “all basketball players” policy and add some better brawlers to the team. If your team is winning, maybe defense is going to be your plan for the last quarter.
Additionally, the natural narrative of the game can be delivered in hastily-printed “quarterly” newspaper headlines. Classic arcade titles like Paperboy and Rampage used newspaper headlines to great effect, and they work well here too (as long as nobody questions the logistics of writing, printing, and delivering a newspaper shortly after the end of the Quarter).
The newspaper can say things like “AWAY TEAM PULLS AHEAD 3RD QUARTER” and “SCORE STILL TIED UP”. The idea is to convey what happened, what changed if anything, and not just a report of the score. Additionally, we can begin to use the in-game statistics to choose an MVP. This could be a weighted analysis of points scored, passes completed, ball-carriers clobbered and possibly new concepts like tracking assists and rebounds.
If you already have the game from the super-early Groupees bundle, look for Halftimes in the next game update! If you don’t have your hands on the game yet — it will be coming soon to Humble and Steam early access.