As conversations come up on the Doomsday Discs Discord Server we try to take them seriously. But that doesn’t mean that all conversations are focused on traditional, pro-level disc development. Sometimes crazy “what if” conversations arise. And sometimes fun ideas come out of those conversations. It was thus that the idea of an oversized driver was introduced into a conversation. What if there were a driver the size of an Innova Condor? At one point, the prototype was displayed on the Doomsday Discs Twitter feed, and there were questions that came up:
“What’s the point of this?”
“Who would throw this and how would it be effective?”
“Soo does what? What is the theory?”
Yeah, those are good questions. But until the bigger, heavier driver exists, who would know the answer to those questions? Would it be advantageous to throw a 200 gram driver with a 24 centimeter diameter? These are things that need to be known before the world comes to an unceremonious end.
THE REASON TO MAKE A DISC
So, we turned to one of our experimental manufacturing partners that knows nothing about disc golf and just does whatever we ask. We provided some specs and asked for a 3-D model to create the mold. However, we needed the disc to be run in premium plastic, which is heavier than base plastic, and that meant there were limitations. Though we wanted a 12-speed rim (like a Destroyer), once the huge flight plate was modeled, it became obvious that the disc would always run too heavy with such a wide rim. We did not want it to be over 200 grams. So, the rim was made smaller, more like a 6-speed or 7-speed (like a Leopard instead of a Destroyer). The metal was cut and test discs were injected just to see if the target weights could be achieved and the shape was correct.
After a few weeks, a pair of prototype discs reached our hands for testing. The instant reaction when seeing and picking up the disc was one of surprise and astonishment. Even though the difference in size may seem minimal to a layman at a glance, to a disc golfer it seems like your eyes have malfunctioned when you see a driver so much bigger than the norm. We instantly had to jump out of our chairs, exit the bunker, and go to the nearest field to throw the thing around. It was a lot of fun to test out the disc, even though its performance seemed unpredictable at first. It flipped when thrown hard because the rim is not very wide (like overpowering any neutral fairway driver) but the disc still hit the breaks and faded sooner than anticipated. There were several times when we’d try to get more distance and declare, “there we go…that one’s gone!” Then the disc would lose momentum and drop with a sudden fade-out.
Admittedly, the questions came up similar to the ones from the social media conversations. Who would throw this disc and why? But the more we threw it, the less we cared. It was just fun. We figured out its characteristics and could start to predict where it would land. It was almost like a driver version of a Land Mine in that it felt like you had thrown it far, but it hits the breaks and settles down, making it less likely to overshoot a tight landing zone. Then one of our associates known as Postapocalyptic Peasant made the statement that brought us back to reality.
“If anybody can find a reason to throw this disc, it will be Team Doomsday.”
Yes, it was always for the team. It was because somebody dared to ask “what if?” So, we ordered an entire prototype run to get some in the hands of our team members before the holiday season. We’re always in a hurry. You never know when the factories will shut down, when the shipments will forever find a home in an abandoned warehouse, when the supply will go down with the ship, or when there’s only a handful of disc golfers left to explore the reshaped surface of a scorched earth. So, let’s do it! Let’s give them what they want. Whether they need an oversized driver or not, they should have it. Why? Because they wanted it. If they can’t find any other reason to have it other than the sparkle in their widened eyes when it comes out of the box, or the smile and laughter as they first give it a chuck across the fairway, that will be enough. That’s why it was made.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
There had been some initial conversation about what the name of such a disc would be. Big Bertha became a favorite, both because it fit the concept of an oversized disc, but also because it would be for the Munitions Line and the “Big Bertha” was a name of an old, German howitzer. We kept that name until a little Google search showed results of a Big Bertha driver being a golf club by a famous manufacturer, Callaway. So, we had to toss that name aside and start again. We’re currently considering names that Team Doomsday members suggested, like Megaton, Bunker Buster, The Device (as in, Doomsday Device), EMP, etc. There are always a lot of name ideas. Soon enough, we’ll settle on a name. TEAM DOOMSDAY will be happy to try something bizarre. Some will laugh for a few throws, some will make it a part of their game, and no doubt many outsiders will shake their heads in disgust that anybody would bother to throw such a monstrosity. But in the end, we feel like there will be plenty of people saying, “Wow, you have one of those massive ____________ drivers? Can I try it?”