Review by SilentLine04

"Ace Combat for the Pc"

This is one of those titles that you pick up an play right after watching your favorite Aerial Combat flick like Stealth or Top Gun. With simple pick up an play controls, great graphics and a decent storyline you have the making of a great game.

Game play 8
Ok first things first, if you are a die hard flight sim player, you will probably hate this game for its simplicity an flight dynamics. If you like games like Ace Combat 4 or 5 for PS2 or Freelancer for the pc then your in for a real treat. This game is not about a 500 page manual an 200 plus hours of training just to learn the correct sequence to start the engines an get the jet off the ground. Its about taking a 2 min in game tutorial an knowing every thing you need to know to send terrorist forces to the great beyond in a fiery ball of graphic splendor in 1 of 3 kick you in the seat military aircraft. Guys if you can get past the fact that this is not a sim your in for a seriously good time. the physics are decent an never yank you out of the suspension of belief. An the action is very fast paced. This is the perfect title for weekend jocks who just want to blow something up to get in an have fun with. I docked it a few points because of game length an the lack of any landing scenes what so ever. least they could have given us a cut scene or something after a hard fought mission. but thats just petty gripes.

Graphics 8
This game is by all means drop dead gorgeous. Some elements look a little dated but its more because the graphic engine an techniques the Dev's use seem to be more suited for a tv then then a pc monitor. The area of flight is a bit more contained but the trade off is a much more involved an detailed environment. fly close to the water an there is a jet spray produced by your engines. Fly close to the ground an the player is rewarded by rich urban landscapes with traffic an vehicles going about their business. The enemy combatants are also equally impressive ranging from helicopters to jets to drones. There is a overall polish to this title thats just not common among your garden variety $20 dollar titles. An finally the 3 jets that you get to fly are absolutely beautiful they are a mix of modern an fantasy. In fact it would not be too far of a stretch to imagine these kind of craft showing up a something secretly in development and brought to public light a few years from now. Any one who has seen the hit movie Stealth (well not so much a hit as a good movie) can tell that the developers enjoyed the movie too, they seemed to have borrowed more then a few design cues in the jets an there functionality. (folks this isn't a bad thing) And probably the most startling thing that will stand out to you is the speed of this game. Its awesome everything moves at a great clip an when you pass another aircraft you really get that flying by the seat of your pants feeling that you just don't get in the Ace Combat games or the currant flight Sims on the market.

Sounds 7
The sounds in this game are a little hard to judge. On one hand every thing thats here sounds nice. The whoosh of other aircraft as they pass yours, Missiles zipping off to there target, Explosions gunfire. Even the music though forgetful is perfectly suited for the title. Even your jets computer voice which is an obvious Stealth rip off was very surprising to hear. So whats missing. Its the little things like radio chatter an a few other ambient sounds where on there own seem like nothing but when you don't have them, there sorely missed. my only other real complaint is the sound of your engines. They sound a little tame. And if there is one thing Hollywood has learned its that sounds can make or break a title, The Developers should take note.

Controls 9
This has been a long time coming. simple mouse an keyboard controls for a flight game. If you have played Freelancer or some of there console Star Wars Star fighter games then you'll be right at home here. Every thing is butter smooth here. How ever if you are a die hard Sim player you probably won't enjoy the streamlined an simplistic control scheme. The only time you will really mis the traditional control set up is under heavy extreme maneuvering where the mouse just gets too clumsy but the extreme maneuvers i'm talking about is really not even suppose to be possible anyway so no harm no foul.

Overall 8
So what you have is a Development house that have finally made peace with the fact that there are only two types of flight games: Arcade Shooter or Sim Combat. And after straddling the line with limited success in there previous installments They finally made peace with the Arcade Shooter that they really wanted to make. The small footprint on your hard drive will also please a lot of users clocking in at just over 700-mb. Testament to the fact that you don't need 4+ gigs top make a great playing game. The developers are even confident enough to give a full game timed demo available on-line. Most desktop jockeys will be pleasantly surprised. If you love games like Ace combat an wished there was a Pc equivalent your dreams have been answered.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 09/17/05


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