Review by KasketDarkfyre
"First it was tanks...now it's jets...and it's still crap!!"
When 3DO makes a game, for some sort of genre, they always try to milk the hell out of it and make some cash. Taking the same approach that Thunder Tanks did, War Jets takes the vehicle blasting, buildmnc/dastroying action to the skies but leaves all of the fun on the run way! There really isn't much to the game other than find a target, start shooting and blow the hell out of it, hoping that you get through several different missions without losing your jet. Pretty much picking up where Thunder Tanks left off, you can choose from several different types of planes, all of which have a slightly different attribute to them and blast through a surreal tournament in order to win a prize that doesn't make much sense. If you think of the long standing Colony Wars series for the original Play Station, with the different things that you could blow up, then you're pretty much looking at the same game, but without all of the fun.
With the several different jets that are under your control, you may find that one of them will suit your personality even though they are all pretty much the same in how they fly, how they fire and how well they take damage. Some of the best aspects of the game is the fact that not only do you force your opponents to go down in flames, but you can also blow up buildings around you to create more destruction! But where the fun ends, the annoyance begins, with several instances of the computer nailing you with excellent accuracy while you're floundering just to get a clear shot. The camera angles also make the game play hard as hell to deal with, because the aircraft never seems to stay stationary enough to get pinpoint accuracy and the battles can seemingly take forever. If you pile onto this the fact that there isn't anything that you can unlock, not even a good ending for any of the jet pilots, you'll find that you're flying solo through the one player game, and extreme boredom sets in after twenty minutes with the two player action!
Controlling your jets is a whole other problem that really shines through with the use of the barrel roll that doesn't quite do anything but totally confuse your line of sight and ultimately your position. When firing on enemy jets, they swoop and swerve without pause, while the jet that your controlling simply moves sluggishly around the stage trying to find a lock on the nearest target! It's pretty bare bones when you boil it down, with a firing button and a barrel roll, along with the up and down motion that you can take to follow your targets around and blast them.
Visually, this looks more like a Play Station game than it does a PS2 game, with the amount of draw in, jagged edges and several instances of location draw in that really show through even in the first few minutes of play! Explosions though are intense, and one of my personal favorites and blowing up a plane right before me, and then dipping down to take out a huge building in a smoldering pile of debris. Following along the same aspect as Star Fighter, you have the behind the jet view that only becomes confusing when the camera angle shifts in a different direction without warning and fails to right itself immediately in order to put you back on track!
The audio is poorly done, with the only real star of the whole audio track being the commentary in-between matches at certain points, and even that is few and far between to make any sort of impact on the ears. The music is an ear shattering crescendo of rock music that lags in the game like a muffler falling off a late model Pinto! Sound effects abound, you'll only hear the sounds of jets whizzing by you, gunfire and the ever present explosions will rock through the stereo speakers. However, when putting it altogether, it comes in as a headache causing mess that doesn't really help the game, but more or less put another nail in the coffin.
3DO has plenty of work to do in their action games when it comes to control, fun and a leveled difficulty. When you put all of the elements of the game together, and know that it is a continuation of the Thunder Tanks game, you'll want to see some improvement over that piece of trash. However, when you break the seal, power up the system and play them game, War Jets is a game that not only fails to deliver the goods, but piles on more dirt on the 3DO cash cow grave that they call action programming!
Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 10/26/01, Updated 10/26/01
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