View Full Version : Tango Reviews Wings of Prey

24th June 2010, 01:25 PM
I've only been playing this game for a few days and I'm not entirely sure I enjoy it. I think this might have something to do with the fact that my laptop isn't man enough to deal with the graphics so it's currently running on medium with no AA and on a reeealy low widescreen res. Well, not too low but low enough to make your desktop look strange when it randomly crashed and you have to go buggering back to the Task Manager to close the sodding thing. Again, this is probably due to my laptop being a total woman and I can't get my awesome PC back from the place I stayed last (with my uncle) as there is nowhere to put it...

Anyway, back to reviewing the game and NOT talking about my frustration of not having my PC. What can I say about it though? It was kind of like playing Birds of Prey (Reviewed for the DS) but it actually works this time. This game really was intended for the console market, it's got that feel that you really should be playing this with a 360 controller. So I did. That's right readers I played a flight sim with a controller... I tried desperately to play it with a stick but it's just not possible. The movements feel off, for those of you that like your serious flight sims, this will be a shock to the system. The controls are strange because the aircraft don't behave like they did in IL2. Maybe this is a good training aid for the upcoming Storm of War as they said that the flight models will be hyper real with only minimal stick input needed or you'll stall-out and die. It seemed like every time I wanted to break from some dozy 109 that had crept up on me, I'd stall, spin and struggle frantically with the controls to right myself. This was frustrating, I'd gone into this thinking that they's behave like IL2 Aircraft, how wrong was I? Very. Either way, I found that once I had that 360 control in my hands, the game became a lot better.

The campaign plays out in a succession of chapters that each only last a few missions. Gamers will begin during the Battle of Britain, then move on to Stalingrad, Sicily, Korsun, the Bulge and Berlin. You'll have to play the whole thing through in order, why they decided that was a good idea, I'll never know. I wanted to jump from a bit of BoB to Stalingrad but couldn't because they were locked out until I completed BoB. Missions were far too short with very little in the way of tasks for you to do, mainly just quick little CAP or bombing missions but they are action-packed enough to keep you interested and the awesome little steam acheivements you get are a nice gentle reminder that you are frigging sweet and lord and master of all things... flight sim-y...

The relaxed realism and copious visual aids of the arcade mode let new players jump right in and get a feel for the awesome geometries and rhythms of air combat without having to worry about all the little details.Hardcore pilots are also well catered for with many of the fiddly bits still left in like prop pitch, radiators and G factors (which are awesome and will talk about it when I get around to graphics.). The enemy AI seems to have a good grasp for e-management but after a few days of playing, I'm still not sure I've seen any scissors being used.

Graphics, well, I'm not sure if I'm allowed to comment much on it due to the limitations of my laptop but from what I've seen it looks pretty good. The detailing of the ground is fantastic with houses and treelines, hedges and bushes... Christ, get any closer and we'll be able to see the sodding hedgehogs... I must write to Oleg about that... Hmmmm... G effects are well done and when your pilot blacks out you can hear the poor bastard heavily breathing into his mask. Planes are nicely modelled and textured but if you want to see the good shit then you'll need a computer that costs your soul but It'll be worth it.

I'm currently in the process of patching mine up now and this is the deal breaker of all deal breakers, even more so than shoddy controls. For me to get it up to version (latest patch) It's going to cost me 1.5Gb. That's a sixth of the entire game! This is not how to make games, don't throw them out the door, towel around their waist without even brushing their teeth, let them get ready, put on a suit and tie and present itself nicely. 1.5Gb of patching is a bad idea. At least, for the most part, IL2's constant patching seems to be to add more stuff rather than fix stuff they should have gotten whilst beta testing.

To conclude, if you want a little break from hardcore IL2 but still want to see shit explode in the air, you could do a lot worse than Wings of Prey. Do I think it's worth the money? Probably not. Knock a tenner off and it'll be worth it. This really is a spectacle simulator for those of the console crowd with some unnecessarily good fiddly bits left in.

If you're going to play this I think you get more fun out of it from the Arcade style of play.

I told you there'd be more reviews. I have a couple of film ones and a few more gaming ones to hand out yet.