Knockout City to Deliver Multiplayer Dodgeball Combat

Have we ever actually had many dodgeball games in the history of gaming? There was Super Dodge Ball, mini-games in other titles like Bully, and the occasional indie title like Stikbold or Robot Roller-Derby Disco Dodgeball. But Velan Studios — the developers behind Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit — have apparently been obsessing over new play experiences and want to see if they can develop an intense and enjoyable multiplayer experience over the simple mechanic of throwing and catching balls. And that has led to Knockout City, a team-based multiplayer “dodgebrawl” title that made its debut during today’s Nintendo Direct with the trailer seen below, featuring several fake game characters discussing how they’d like such a game.

The latest in the EA Originals lineup, Knockout City sees teams of three, four or groups of free-for-all players duking it out with dodgeballs in various ways, using everything including fake throws, trick shots and special balls such as bombs and cages to defeat your opponents. Heck, you can even ball up and have teammates fling you at the opposition if low on ammo, especially since teamwork is encouraged, even to be point of being able to craft your own crew with customizable logos and gear alongside several individual outfits. Players will have to rely on their own expert timing in order the catch anything thrown at them or to dodge in time, though, and be wary of any obstacles in each arena.

First impressions of Knockout City are already arriving, with a preview event for the game having been held yesterday. Unfortunately, due to various technical difficulties, our hands-on time with the game was limited and was marred by some lag that we didn’t have time to fix. The general experience was still promising, however, with a unique approach to the traditional team-based multiplayer action, an impressive style and nifty timing-based combat. Luckily, we’ll have another chance to try it out during the game’s Closed Beta this weekend, which you can sign up for at the game’s official site. But if you want to wait for the console versions instead, Knockout City will also be a limited-time free trial when the game launches for all major platforms (with cross-play and cross-progressions across all systems) on May 21.