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Air Combat games

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Back in the day, I played a game called

and yesterday I showed this video to my friend's son (who's in his early teens). My friend's son plays a game on Steam called War Thunder and when he saw European Air War he said it was like "the first War Thunder game". Another air combat game that I liked is
of it). What I appreciate in these games is the focus on detail. In European Air War, when you were killed you lose the game and it shows a letter from the air force with your name on it, the letter that gets sent when someone is killed and the family is notified. Depending on whether you were flying as German, British or American, the table and room would be decorated differently, if I remember correctly. In Secret Weapons the menu theme has black-and-white photographs and they are attached to a document with paperclips (similar to European Air War). In War Thunder the menus are really polished and modern which I think is terrible! Ever since the games industry sold out, everything has been about polish and having a modern UI. Wolfenstein The Old Blood is based entirely in the 1940s and although they show detailed images in the main menu and on the game's cover, it isn't actual game graphics, it's an artists impression, which gives a nice quality.

War Thunder features air combat but it's one of those free-to-play games, with an optional campaign so I don't believe it'd have the quality of Secret Weapons, which was made by Lucas Arts, by the way (studio now deceased). Lucas Arts included bonus videos in Secret Weapons, which included a brief interview with the guy who made the sound track and also an interview with a WWII veteran who was a B-17 gunner. Interviewing the B-17 gunner may not be what made the game great, after all it's bonus content, but it's clear that Lucas Arts had a historian on board, a lot of effort went into the "feel" of the game, and attempts to make it somewhat accurate. Secret Weapons Over Normandy was released in 2003, two years after Star Wars: Star Fighter. In Secret Weapons you could cheat and fly an X-wing and use it to shoot down BF-109s and Hurricanes which was entertaining until you realise it isn't fair. The coolest thing about Secret Weapons, besides cutscenes and dialogue, is the number of missions and bonus missions, you can also upgrade planes.

Around that same time in the early 2000s there was a game called Crimson Skies which I think I played only once, perhaps it was a demo. Crimson Skies was partly promoted as an Xbox Live game and I didn't get broadband until 2006, and not until 2007/2008 at my dad's house. Back then the best plan was 10GB a month and that cost an obscene amount at the time. The most recent air combat game I've read about is Air Conflicts: Pacific Carriers but I never played it. I just looked up air combat games and found a video "Top 10 Air Combat Games" by Mojo on Youtube, I'll look at that. Even if there are some half-decent air combat games I still feel that this genre has been pushed down.


Update: Wow I've nearly watched 3 minutes of the

and already I've seen 2 titles from 2009-present that I never even heard of. Back in the 90s, Nintendo 64 had an air combat game as one of its flagship titles ;) Edited by jeffnz

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I forgot to mention

which is also by Lucas Arts. I've been watching some of the play-through and the graphics are pretty good I reckon. The explosions don't look too terrible and the lack of lighting effects doesn't bother me. The visual effects are pretty good, they have a sparking effect when your laser hits an enemy ship, then an explosion when the enemy ship is critically damaged, then it loses control and crashes. Destroying an AT-ST leaves a husk (the legs) that you must not fly into. They even had soldiers on speeder bikes on some missions. The coolest thing in Rouge Squadron is probably the variety of ships you can fly, and also the different missions and planets. They have a mission on Cloud City and other missions on moons, volcanoes and lush green planets with posh cities. After the game's release you could download extra content, they added a Naboo Starfighter when The Phantom Menace came out. I can't recall anything else. There were bonus missions: Beggar's Canyon Race, Deathstar trench run, and Battle For Hoth. I think those were included on the game's disk.


Rouge Squadron's final mission (not including bonus missions) is "The Battle Of Calamari" where the empire uses huge hover ships that cruise over cities, vacuuming up and obliterating anything underneath. This storyline is after Return Of The Jedi. I haven't seen the new films, in fact I never even watched episode 3, so I'm not sure what the story is but there is something in the new film/game that shows a world that looks like Calamari. I'm not sure if Rouge Squadron is 100% canon but it talks of the empire still being strong under a leader who replaces Darth Vader (post-Return Of The Jedi).

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You really have no idea about Star Wars.

Also no the Naboo starfighter wasn't something to "download". It's a game from 1998 dammit! You just put in a code and it unlocks the ship. The code/ship was there from the start, just the code was released after the movie.

Also if you don't have the code you only have an X-Wing for most of the game.

Also no Factor 5 is not Lucas Arts. It was mostly just published by Lucas Arts.

Edited by Lauren

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Hahaha you know everything, about everything. :P I wonder if Lucas Arts got the game engine to keep, or perhaps they made Starfighter and Secret Weapons from scratch?


Factor 5


Rouge Squadron - reception and sales


The V wing was cool, with those tracking missiles that destroyed everything!

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