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Though Fly has a multiplayer option, it plainly isn't traditional gaming software—it's designed for realistic flight simulation, so Quake 3 Arena and airborne military combat devotees should look elsewhere. Despite its limitations, Fly has several almost inexhaustible aspects. It is hard to imagine a simulator ever taking the place of real flight—but for a relatively small price, gamers willing to choke down a bit of technical information can enjoy multiplayer scenarios, novice pilots can nail some basic procedures, and experienced pilots can travel the world in instrument conditions without mortgaging their house. Not bad, not bad at all.
Fly! is a great game: no doubt about it. It will really demonstrate what the high-end G3 and G4 Macs can do in delivering graphically amazing games. But in that lies a warning: if you're running a lower-end PowerMac or don't have a great deal of RAM, you could experience problems in running this game smoothly. The manual is extensive, but if you wade through it, the assistance you'll need is there. Certainly, the game would have benefitted from an interactive on-screen tutorial scenario to demonstrate the basics of flying, but that is a minor gripe. It would also be great if the developers, following the example of other recent games like Railroad Tycoon, could develop add-on packs to include other planes - I really want to fly a 747 - and other regions, like Europe! Fly! is a must have, but just make sure you've got enough fuel in the memory tanks before taking off - or you could be disappointed.
All in all, I like Fly. It's a nice game with many good features. It has a solid flight model and the implementation of the panels is better than anything I have encountered previously outside the professional realm. However, as nice as this game is, it also has one serious drawback: Performance (capital "P").
Fly's initial release is also marred by bugs, which run the gamut from annoying to serious; patches should be available by the time you read this. Fly's extensible architecture provides encouragement for the future. The flight-sim community has already begun to produce promising add-ons.
I'm of split mind on this game. As a pure sim, it is top notch. As a game, it kinda sucks. Here's my thing. The plane interiors will blow your mind. They have been detailed down to the last screw. Everything outside the cockpit looks like an atomic bomb was set off flattening the landscape.
Fly! is simply the best general aviation simulator for the Mac with an affordable price tag. Of course, it is also currently the only general aviation simulator for the Mac with an affordable price tag.
Fly! is actually more fun to look at then it is to play. Rather than spend the time learning to fly, I would've just as soon found someone who already knows and just watched him/her land at O'Hare during a snowstorm. And besides, after playing Flying Circus
and Falcon 4.0
, you'd think I'd know how to fly a plane by now. Nope. With added realism comes added complexity. But at least with Fly! there's no one attempting to kill you as you try to learn the difference between pitch and yaw. You can decide if that's a good or bad thing and choose your flight sim accordingly. Me? I'll call it bad, because although the graphics and audio are pretty sweet, they're not enough to compensate for the lack of action and the number of bugs you have to suffer through.