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AirFight

Do you force everyone you know to address you as “Maverick”? Is “Highway to the Danger Zone” your favorite song of all time? Do you frequently find yourself hopelessly lost in homoerotic volleyball fantasies?

If so, AirFight was MADE for you!

Ok ok, even if you’ve never seen Top Gun it’s still a pretty decent, albeit difficult, game.

AirFight puts you in the cockpit of a badass fighter jet and your mission is to cruise around and shoot down the bad guys. Your view of the unfriendly skies is decorated with an altimeter on the right side of the iPhone screen, an orientation-thing in the center that tells you how much you’re tilting, and sliding your thumb along the left edge controls your speed. The two circles near your right thumb are for launching missiles at a reasonable pace and firing an unlimited supply of machine gun ammo. Also included in the package is the handiest tool of all: a map that shows where your targets are.

The graphics in AirFight, particularly the plain-jane fighter jets, are nothing to get excited about, but overall this is a pretty good game if you’re into this kind of thing. Even on the easy level it’s pretty hard to lock your missiles onto a target, but it’s doable if you can figure out how and when to control your speed. Naturally, every gamer’s first instinct is to haul ass and go full throttle at all times, but with AirFight it’s generally better to be smart than fast.

Ocko AB built some nice features into this game and I have to confess that I haven’t tried the most intriguing one which is two-player mode. Apparently you can do some dogfighting with a friend which I think is awesome, but of course I’m a pathetic loser and I can’t seem to get out of the house to fire missiles at the few iPhone geeks I know.

Aside from the mediocre airplanes, my only real complaint in AirFight is that it would be way more fun if it were easier! The map totally helps, but I think the gameplay would improve drastically if there was a better way to (a) spot your targets which can be pretty hard to find in the vast airspace, and (b) lock onto them so you can blow them out of the sky. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a pretty fun game, but more killing and less chasing is what the casual gamer in me really wants. Oh yeah, and some explosions wouldn’t hurt either! Or at least a splash when an enemy plane hits the water below. Killing is always more satisfying when the enemy’s death is visually confirmed.

$7.99 feels a little steep for this app in its current form, but I like what AirFight has so far and the two-player deal looks pretty sweet for people who, unlike me, have iPhone friends. With some better graphics and more engaging gameplay this could be a pretty awesome game so I hope Ocko keeps working to improve it.











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