Here is a number that slipped my radar during E3 this year, and now that I have seen it, I really want to talk about it. Something to know about me – I loves me some fighter sim games. The Rogue Squadron games were my jam on previous consoles, save the third entry. That game had TERRIBLE third-person shooting segments that were just the worst. The Ace Combat franchise has a dear place in my heart. It is a game where they set it in an alternate universe so they don’t have to address real-world politics, but in a universe that has fighter jets in the same way that we do. Both myself and a girly-mate have loved these games. For her, it is serious wish-fulfillment. She always wanted to be a fighter jockey, but after a medical issue that has left her unable to speak, she can’t join up.
Now we have a new entry in this franchise, and it seems I am a little late on the bandwagon because they’ve put out other trailers before now. Well, I’m here now, and this new trailer has me all giddy inside. Let’s take a look.
We open on some dark, very Soviet-sounding music. I like it. We have a brief shot of a skyline with the sun, and it gets my heart pumping. This is gonna be good! It then takes us to a series of hangars, each with a different aircraft inside. This makes me happy for a couple reasons. For starters, they clearly want to show off how good their birds look, which is just fine by me. But this makes me wonder – am I gonna get to have a hangar where I can customize my bird? I really, really want that. These games are definitely more Air Force, but since I have a girly-mate who is near and dear to me in the Navy, I am hoping to customize my bird to show some Navy love.
Then we’re taken to some amazing shots of the terrain that I’m sure we’ll be fighting in, and a voice-over comes on to tell us about the score that’s coming in this game. Alright! Let’s do this! She says first that the unit we are with is a penal unit. Interesting. So, this nation is getting prisoners to fight for them? That is interesting. It’s an unusual premise. Seeing our birds on the move, and we learn that our character is a nameless new prisoner that this woman believes has a lot of potential. We also get to hear the commander of this squadron telling me how I have a call-sign for the air, and it’s my prisoner number. A grim situation. Getting more giddy. The birds take off, and we get to see them fly!
Some amazing shots of the sky from the cockpit of our bird, along with a kind of aircraft that is different than the ones we’re flying. A kind of sky fortress. That’s cool. I remember the old boss-fights in these games. This could be interesting. But we move to what everyone wants to see – gameplay of dog-fighting in the air. And this looks amazing! The visuals are so badass, and it feels like you are right in it. Some of these fights are at higher altitude, some of them are closer to the ground. The ones closer to the floor are the ones that freak me out. A place where altitude is a constant worry and you have to be aware of that and your enemy. Yes! I like it.
Meanwhile, we have another voice-over telling us that the slashes on the tail are indicative of our crime level, and that we can work them off over time. So, this nation gets prisoners to fight for them, with the idea being that if you do well enough, you get your freedom. Cool! Lots of things to like. One last shot of the base, and the person in charge telling us that we’re expendable. I’m in! Let’s get in there! As there are rumors that this game is delayed until 2019, I guess we have to wait until Gamescom to see more. I cannot wait!
This franchise has never been huge, but the following is loyal. As for me, getting another chance to jump back into the cockpit is just fine. Let’s do this!
So close, yet so far!