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Wing Commander Arena (Xbox 360)

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Description

Wing Commander Arena is an Xbox Live arcade game based off the Wing Commander space combat franchise. The game is set in 2701 and the player is sent to the Frontier to destroy the remains of the Kilrathi Empire in decay. Unlike the other games in the series, Arena is much more action-oriented with a full focus on the dogfights in space, turning it into an arcade game.

There are 2 different game modes. In the multi-player mode up to 16 players can go free-for-all or play in teams. In one of the game modes, players can organize armadas to attack opposing capital ships. These ships are made up of 3 levels of defence. The player-controlled fighters need to defend their own main ship and attack the enemy capital ship at the same time. After breaking down one level of defence (usually consisting of missiles and turrets), a new level becomes visible, with the third being the bridge, after which the ship is blown up and the game is won. In another game type players defend their satellite in a capture-the-flag mode, or go one-on-one in duels. In the bearpit mode players can watch duels from the sidelines and play mini-games, or shoot at each other or inside the bearpit.

In the single-player mode, there are new ships to unlock through different modes: training levels, melee battles or missions where only asteroids need to be blown up. Players can choose from 18 ships (9 Terran Confederation and 9 Kilrathi), all of which are upgraded versions of ships appearing in earlier Wing Commander titles. Each race has 3 main ships: a light fighter (Arrow/Darket), a heavy fighter (Rapier/Dralthi) and a bomber (Broadsword/Paktahn), with different variations based on the upgrades changing the ships' design.

Unlike the previous games, the first-person perspective has been traded for a 3rd-person view on a 2D plane, with the third axis only for special maneuvers such as barrel rolls, flips, immelman turns, 180 turns and devices and moves only available for specific ships. There are 8 game maps, leaderboards and achievements. During gameplay, players can collect power-ups that restore the shield or fill up missiles, provide additional damage (hammer shot/cheap shot), or rare items causing wingmen to appear, energy absorption or supershields.

Screenshots

Wing Commander Arena Xbox 360 Kilrathi ship selection.
Wing Commander Arena Xbox 360 Fighting in the arena.
Wing Commander Arena Xbox 360 In Meteor Storm, defend the outpost from the asteroids.
Wing Commander Arena Xbox 360 Ships have their own special attacks, like missiles and mines.

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The Press Says

TeamXbox Jul 25, 2007 8.4 out of 10 84
MS Xbox World 2007 8 out of 10 80
Planet Xbox 360 2007 7.3 out of 10 73
GameZone Jul 30, 2007 6.1 out of 10 61
Game Positive Jul 30, 2007 5.6 out of 10 56
Game Chronicles Aug 05, 2007 5.3 out of 10 53
IGN Jul 27, 2007 4.9 out of 10 49
GameSpot Jul 27, 2007 4 out of 10 40
4Players.de Jul 31, 2007 31 out of 100 31
Eurogamer.net (UK) Aug 01, 2007 3 out of 10 30

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Trivia

In previous Wing Commander games, the documentation was always very extensive and although this is a download-only game, the developer has created the PDF magazine Star Soldier (issue January 2701), with 60 pages of ads, articles, reviews, features, ranking lists and an explanation of the game, completely set in the game's atmosphere. It can be downloaded from the related links section.

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Sciere (268701) added Wing Commander Arena (Xbox 360) on Jul 24, 2007