You are part of a small group of American pilots nicknamed the Blazing Angels. Their mission is to help the Allied forces stop World War II by doing what they do best, shooting down every enemy they can. Remember, planes can be replaced pilots can't. The other members of your team are Frank who has a special ability that allows him to attack any target that you designate to him. Joe who has the ability to repair your ship, this is done by pressing a short button combination that flashes up onto the screen. Last but by no means least there is Tom who has the ability to taunt which causes some of the enemy to stop attacking you and to start following and attacking him. This gives you the space to manoeuvre and send them back to earth, preferably as part of a flaming plane wreck. Go give them Hell!
This is basically the Need for Speed of the Plane Simulation world; the controls are very arcade like, which means that they are easy to learn and don't take a million button presses to take off. You play a variety of missions including Dunkirk, Pearl Harbour and the Battle of Britain. These all play straight forwardly including missions such as protect this area or those troops, shoot down the bombers and destroy the ships, There are a few more but I will keep quiet about those as a surprise for you!
The control system is very intuitive and once you have learned to bomb things a few times, the rest is a piece of cake. The left trigger is the lock on button which locks on to a plane and helps you to manoeuvre into a firing solution to take that enemy down. The problem with this is that you forget your surroundings and many a time I have tried to loop round to attack an enemy and have either flown into enemy fire or in a much worse case scenario the ground. The right analogue stick is your throttle and flaps. The right trigger is your machine guns and by pressing the right analogue stick button you will activate your secondary weapon; be these rockets, bombs or torpedoes. The D-Pad is used to give your squad certain orders. Up orders your crew to either get in formation, break and attack, or defend your behind whilst the left, right and down buttons each correspond to a different member of your squad and activates the special abilities that I mentioned earlier.
Whilst the graphics are not the best I have seen on the Xbox 360 they certainly do the job, and the planes, explosions and water effects look great. It's just a shame that the dynamic lighting can be annoying when you're flying towards the sun to attack the enemy, but this part is realistic I suppose, and it may be more my fault that the game.
The multiplayer on Blazing Angels works very well when you find a team of people to play with. The different modes are Bombing Run, Kamikaze, Dogfight, Capture the base, Seek and Destroy and Aces High. You can also play these modes online with up to sixteen players online which make for some pretty intense battles I can tell you.
In Bombing Run you must destroy each others bases by bombing them to pieces.
In Kamikaze you must protect your bases from kamikaze attack.
This is your Basic Deathmatch where you have to kill or be killed.
In this mode you must land at different airstrips to capture the base whilst dodging incoming fire from the other team.
There can be only one ace. Kill him and it's you. Only the Ace can score the points.
Seek and Destroy
The objective of this mode is to shoot down the marked planes to gain the advantage.
This game has lots of planes to unlock; 42 to be precise and most of them can be upgraded by completing Arcade mode in each of them. They also have a special Ace Paint job which is awarded for shooting down the ace in Ace mode. When you have completed the campaign mode you unlock the mini campaign mode which has about 5 or 6 missions in one of two objectives either bombing or dog fighting which in turn unlocks a few more planes and upgrades your weaponry. The Achievements are fairly easy to get but they just take time to unlock them, these range from getting colonel rank which is based on how many planes, ships and ground targets you have shot down, to completing the game with ace on every level or collecting all planes, paintjobs and upgrades.
I think this game deserves an 8.4/10. The game is really enjoyable but is occasionally let down by camera issues and a few bugs.
• Lots of Planes to unlock
• Upgrades for planes available
• Bombing missions are fun
• Controls are easy to learn
• Good on Xbox Live
• You get to be involved in The Battle of Britain
• Camera Issues
• Needs more people to play online
• Americans in Battle of Britain????????
Who would enjoy this game?
This game would be enjoyed by anyone who has a head for heights or generally wants something new to do in World War II as most games set in this era are 3rd person shooters. People who fondly remember the Wings Series on the Amiga will also enjoy this. If you are also a Gamecube Owner and are lucky enough to have played the Star Wars Rogue Series then this game is for you. If you own Live this is a good game to get as it gives you something different to play online.
• Secret Weapons over Normandy (PS2, Xbox, PC)
• Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge (Xbox)
• Star Wars: Rogue Squadron (GameCube)
• Star Wars :Rogue Leader (GameCube)
• Heroes of the Pacific (PS2, Xbox)
• Wings of War (Xbox, PC)
• Battlestations Midway (Xbox)
• Over G Fighters (Xbox 360)
• Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight (PC)
• Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator 3 (PC)
• IL2 Sturmovik (PC)
• IL2 Sturmovik Forgotten Battles
• Jane's Attack Squadron (PC, Xbox)