ACE COMBAT: ASSAULT HORIZON
PS3 (also on Xbox 360)
believe I can fly, I believe I can touch the sky“...
Oops, Mister Kelly fail now...
OK, type something usefuller time. The Ace Combat series has
always straddled the arcade/simulator highwire, but not enough to
court those that bolt at any mention of the abbreviation ‘sim’.
Assault Horizon appears determined to change that, and succeeds.
Press ‘go’ and you’re instantly hurled into an action-bulging
dogfight over a Miami so yum-looking that squinting can make out
Michael Weston and Fi squabbling*. Soon the franchise’s newest
weapon appears – ‘DFM’, or in English, ‘Dogfight Mode’. Suck a bogey
into your sights that isn’t of the pick and flick variety and you’ll
have a nanosecond to jam both triggers and zoom in on their tail.
Maintain focus long enough and blam ’em so hard they won’t be found
until returning Earthwards as space junk long after we’re compost.
That’s just the ‘hello and welcome’ preamble, there’s heaps more.
The 2015-set story involving rogue Africans and Russkies kicks in.
Cue more jetfighterishness, where flying high isn’t just a super-fun
movie, but prudent strategy. Next? The biggest new thing, where that
last bit’s shitty advice...
Choppers are go, and they’re a wholly different controlly kettle of
swish. More strategy’s required to avoid becoming floor pie, with
keeping low imperative whilst ducking and dodging to avoid more fire
than at a caveman science exhibition.
Things start coolly difficulty-wise, but heat quicker than you can
scream “Mr Cruise, come out of the closet”. With fucktonnes
happening, it’s often challenging to fulfil the game’s demands. Some
options flit onscreen so briefly that the Flash would have trouble
complying. Tweak some and lock onto the frenetic pace though –
persistence will pay - and you’ll get an oft-frustrating but
engaging arcade-influenced fly-‘em-up (CoD: Shoom?) that’s pretty… (ducks) ace.
*This is, of course, total bullcrap, but it does look quite