Joycity is proud to announce that we are inviting gamers to try a closed beta version of our multiplayer street basketball game, 3on3 Freestyle for PS4. We could not be more excited to have passionate gamers test our game and give us feedback, but before you go and sign up for the closed beta, we would like to tell you the story of how we put the game together.
At Joycity we have been developing online multiplayer basketball games since 2005. Iit has been an incredible experience to develop 3on3 Freestyle with a community of users from all around the world. However, when we decided to bring 3on3 Freestyle to PS4, we wanted to challenge ourselves to build a truly authentic street basketball game experience for everyone.
We wanted to approach this theme from two perspectives. The first from someone who plays pickup basketball games on the street and the other from a veteran of sports games. To authentically capture the desires of both, we went on a global journey to meet gamers all around the world and visit renowned street basketball courts to watch and interact with street basketball teams, players, and fans. Diving in deep, we went directly to landmark courts in cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, and New York and got right into the street basketball action at each location.
After spending months on the road at the courts, our development team took their observations and interactions back to the office, and used them to build the authentic characters, settings, features, and gameplay of 3on3 Freestyle. We also stayed in touch with numerous street basketball leagues and teams to keep the conversation going throughout the process of building the game.
Part of making the game authentic was replicating the diversity our game designers saw on the street basketball courts in the U.S. To do this, we made no two 3on3 Freestyle characters the same in appearance/physicality, playing style, or story. Each character in the game has their own signature moves and tricks inspired by the incredible action we witnessed using the arcade-style controls.
Another authenticity we wanted to capture that we viewed in the field was the diversity of the street basketball squads balanced with all different kinds of players. Inspired by this versatility and strategy, the teams in 3on3 Freestyle are built like the real street basketball teams which can be comprised of a speedy ball handler, a rangy swing man with lockdown defensive skills, and a powerful rim protector to protect the paint.
We also wanted for gamers to be able to utilize these diverse characters for in-game strategy. To make this happen, we inserted an in-game substitution feature where you can swap out one character for another during gameplay. With this feature, a lockdown defender character can be swapped out on the fly for a sharp-shooting three-point specialist if that is who you think best suits the situation.
3on3 Freestyle supports online multiplayer to play with friends, but sports gamers told us there was still something more that they missed in the current sports game landscape. They shared with us that they fondly remember when they would invite friends over, share pizza, and play sports games together all day.
To satisfy this nostalgic desire, we built a local co-op online multiplayer feature into 3on3 Freestyle. Now gamers can gather with their friends at their homes and play online multiplayer as a team much in the same way a street basketball team would connect and get together on a court to play a few games.
3on3 Freestyle is still an arcade-style game in its core, but we wanted to do more than infuse the essence and inspiration that we got from the people we met and the games we watched. That’s why we invited legendary story writer Evan Skolnick to shape the characters and the world behind its appearance. Evan worked hand-in-hand with our team to make sure the stories of each character were not just authentic and compelling, but also inspire gamers to push their avatar towards street basketball greatness.
The characters in 3on3 Freestyle aren’t just unique in appearance and gameplay either. Their actions and play styles are all designed based on their story, their hometowns, and their passion. This does not just show up in the game play and design detail either. Each player has their own personal story which is unlocked as they progress through the game. The one-of-a-kind jerseys we observed these teams wearing also inspired us to create a personalized jersey feature we think gamers will fall in love with.
With the bulk of the development of the game finished, we are excited to move along and release a closed beta of 3on3 Freestyle. We would like to invite gamers to test out the closed beta version of the game so they can provide us with their feedback to improve upon the most authentic and enjoyable final version of the game. We are offering a limited number of exclusive closed beta downloads and in-game rewards for beta testers who are willing to participate.
Our development doesn’t stop there though. We are planning updates of the game to be released on a monthly basis. We will also be offering a free PS4 theme and exclusive discounts on items such as logos, clothing, and accessories for PS Plus users.
We could not be more excited to have gamers begin testing our game so those interested in being exclusive closed beta testers of 3on3 Freestyle should visit the 3on3 website to sign up and start playing. 3on3 Freestyle will launch on PS4 in Q4 2016.