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Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War

aka: Ace Combat: Jefe de Escuadrón, Ace Combat: Squadron Leader

Critic Reviews 84% add missing review

games xtreme (9.8 out of 10) (98%)

This is definitely a game that will keep you playing, the action is fast paced and engaging and you will find yourself wanting to play through to see how the storyline unfolds and eventually concludes, this really is a ‘one-more-go’ kind of game where you will find it difficult to put the controller down once you are absorbed in the action, plot and characters, the only real criticism is that the action can seem a bit repetitive after a while but it is great fun nonetheless. All in all Ace Combat Squadron Leader is a very absorbing, well polished game worthy of its predecessors that anyone should enjoy once they have gotten to grips with the basics of the game.

Mar 10th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Game Chronicles (9.7 out of 10) (97%)

Heavy on action and heavier on story, Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War is without a doubt the finest flight combat game on the PS2. Had it offered any type of multiplayer I would extend the kudos over into the Xbox universe, but Crimson Skies still reigns supreme on that system.

Dec 31st, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

IGN (9.3 out of 10) (93%)

Namco started an aerial phenomenon with Air Combat on the PSX somewhere around eight years ago. Since then we've seen the long running flight action series move through a few subsequent iterations and onto the more powerful PlayStation 2 hardware. This is where Ace Combat 4: Shattered Skies was born in 2001. There's no denying that title's quality just as there is no denying Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War is a darn good videogame. But then that's probably because they're both so similar to one another.

Oct 25th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Imperium Gier (9.3 out of 10) (93%)

Spodziewałem się porządnego sequela, lecz nie mogłem przewidzieć, że świetna rozgrywka zostanie poparta tak doskonałym klimatem i na dodatek fabułą obfitującą w nagłe zwroty akcji, ciekawe osobowości, zawierane sojusze, odkrywane spiski i zdrady. Do tego doskonale wyważony poziom trudności i co ważne, masa powodów aby kończyć grę więcej niż raz, a nawet dwa! Po prostu najnowsze dziecko Namco to cholerny kozak, który niszczy, zmiata, tłamsi i pożera wszystkie maślaki na swoim poletku! Dlaczego? Powodów jest wiele, a akurat najmniej istotnym jest fakt, że gatunek symulacjiarcade powietrznej nie został na konsolach szczególnie mocno obsadzony. O ile panowaniu „czwóreczki” zagrażały jako tako Lethal Skies 2 czy Aero Elite: Combat Academy , tak „piątka” już w ciągu pół godziny pokazuje pazur, którego ostrość rozszarpuje na strzępy to, co pojawiło się przed nią i pewnie wszystko inne do czasów Ace Combat 6 na Playstation 3.

May 13th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

PSX Extreme (9.3 out of 10) (93%)

Namco proves that their Ace Combat franchise is alive and kicking. Ace Combat 5 is a terrific air combat title that's sure to please absolutely every Ace Combat fan out there. If games like Lethal Skies and AirForce Delta didn't do much for you (and we don't blame you, because they didn't do much for many), then Ace Combat 5 will fill you up like no other aerial fighter could. Despite its few visual sore spots, it's one wonderfully sharp looking title with an addictive nature that'll have you pressing for more. You'll be telling yourself that after the next mission you'll go to bed, or walk the dog, or study. And that will continue until you realize your dog is peeing on your wiring and you're forced to stop playing. Yeah, it's that good.

Oct 28th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Worth Playing (9.2 out of 10) (92%)

The game relies heavily on audio, from radio chatter to the firing of a machine gun or missile, and the voice acting is also well done. Whenever a game has both English and Japanese audio tracks, it scores brownie points in my book, but both languages also sound great, which is a definite bonus. The Japanese voice actor for Nanase is just so soothing, especially when fighting such hectic battles. It also eases my anger when I crash into the ocean. I swear, planes need underwater capabilities.

Nov 19th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gry OnLine (92 out of 100) (92%)

Nie lubisz symulatorów lotu? Nic dziwnego – tylko wyjątkowo zakręcone osobniki mogą siedzieć przy grze, gdzie przez 30 minut lecisz do celu mając w posiadaniu tylko kilka rakiet, jedynie po to, by na samym końcu spudłować i zaczynać wszystko od początku. Chciałbyś poszaleć w powietrzu, ale niekoniecznie jesteś zainteresowany nauką, jak prawidłowo wystartować, nie katapultując się przy tym? Tęsknisz za starym, dobrym Strike Commanderem? Jeżeli na ponad połowę pytań odpowiedziałeś „tak” – czytaj dalej, jeśli „nie”, zrób to samo – być może dasz się skusić.

Mar 18th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Futuregamez.net (91 out of 100) (91%)

If you like flight sims there is absolutely no reason not to pick up this title. Ace Combat: Squadron Leader (which was released as Ace Combat: The Unsung War in NTSC territories) is the perfect console flight sim without a shadow of a doubt. The story, missions, graphics and sound all combine to create the ultimate experience. If you're not sure if you like flight sims then there is no better time to find out. An excellent - no - stunning title.

Feb 24th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Fragland.net (90.5 out of 100) (90%)

Ace Combat 5: Squadron Leader is simply an amazing game. In the hugely undercrowded action flight sim genre, AC5 flies high above its few competitors in terms of gameplay, sound, graphics,...well pretty much everything really. To use fitting words: enemy locked, fox 1...Direct hit!

Mar 1st, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GameZone (9 out of 10) (90%)

Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War is a game that should not be missed during this holiday rush of games that is now upon us. This game is drop dead gorgeous, has a good sound track, and is an absolute blast to play. If you see this game in stores, you owe it to yourself to play it, because you will not regret it!

Nov 2nd, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Thunderbolt Games (9 out of 10) (90%)

Ace Combat: Squadron Leader is exactly how a console flight combat game should be. Dogfights are intense and hugely satisfying, the handling is spot on, the graphics are detailed and it all runs very smoothly. The story is surprisingly well crafted, conveyed effectively through beautiful cutscenes and in-game audio. Squadron Leader is coherent and consistent, linking each mission up and making it more than just a list of levels. Moreover, it shows an understanding on the part of the developer of how to take the subject matter and make a great game out of it. Ace Combat captures the essence of what makes aerial combat so appealing perfectly. It may lack multiplayer, but pound for pound, this is the best flight combat game available.

Mar 6th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Game Vortex (90 out of 100) (90%)

Thankfully these issues are all rather nitpicky, and ultimately Ace Combat 5 is a terrific game. These problems do exist though, and hurt the game to a considerable degree. None of them make the game not worth playing though. Ultimately, if you liked Ace Combat 4, I promise that you’ll love Ace Combat 5.

2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GBase - The Gamer's Base (9 out of 10) (90%)

Kein Flugzeugsimulator, sondern vielmehr eine Arcade-Fliegerspiel in einem realistischen Gewand verbirgt sich hinter Ace Combat 5. Nicht nur Flugzeug-Fans, welche zahlreiche echte Flugmodelle entdecken werden, sondern auch alle anderen, die sich auf ein knallhartes wunderbar in Szene gesetztes Abenteuer einlassen wollen, werden ihre wahre Freude an dem Titel haben. Optisch sicherlich kein Quantensprung mehr, wie es der Vorgänger noch war. Dennoch begleitet euch ein ansehnliches Design in hohen Lüften. Zusammengehalten werden die Flugmissionen durch eine spannende und abwechslungsreiche Story, die durch kinoreife Zwischensequenzen übermittelt werden. Es schmerzt lediglich der fehlende Multiplayer-Modus, welcher wohl ungemein Spass gemacht hätte. Trotzdem wird man durch das gelungene Spielprinzip immer wieder ans Gamepad gefesselt.

Mar 10th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Game Informer Magazine (9 out of 10) (90%)

Within every second of play, it feels like gallons of adrenaline are being pumped into your body as two people stand beside you and criticize your piloting skills with angst-filled screams. As you can probably imagine, this is an absolutely terrifying experience. Few things in this world have preyed on my emotions and senses to the degree that this game does. It may fry your nerves to the end, and stress you out to the point that it seems unbearable, but the second that you put the controller down, you realize that you’ve just been subject to the ultimate rush. Through relentless intensity and hair-raising gameplay, Ace Combat 5 electrifies the digital skies and soars as one of the most exhilarating experiences in all of gaming.

Dec 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Game Over Online (90 out of 100) (90%)

If you’ve ever been interested in a good flight sim game but haven’t really been interested in taking flying lessons, you may want to take a good hard look at Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War. Easy to pick up controls, an interesting story line and plenty of fast paced action will feed any adrenaline or action junkie’s desires. This is a great title for any PlayStation owner.

Dec 14th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

videogamer.com (9 out of 10) (90%)

There is no real step up from number 4, bar a couple of new additions and mildly better graphics. Things are the same as they have been since 1996 - most planes take two missiles to down, you're best off using your guns to down the bigger, slower planes and breaking hard left or right will evade missiles; it hasn't changed in all this time. Some people - some insane people, that is - may view this as a bad point. It isn't. Ace Combat 5 is brilliant, a highlight of the series and hopefully not the last. Two thumbs up for Namco.

Mar 1st, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GotNext ( ) (90%)

When all the dust settles and the plane finally lands, it's obvious Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War is still part of the same series I've grown to love and, quite frankly, that's all right with me. Despite the lack of multiplayer and some few minor nuances, Ace Combat 5 is a superb game. Such a beautiful game that plays so well deserves a spot in anyone's collection and for the lover of flight sims, you may very well have a new favorite game. I know I do.

Nov 19th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GameCell UK (9 out of 10) (90%)

So overall Ace Combat Squadron leader is the best PS2 fly-em-up I’ve played - well probably the best one I’ve played on every platform this generation. With its great looks and 30 mission campaign mode, this’ll keep you airborne for a while, though lack of a 2-player option is a bit of a puzzler. Bring on AC6

2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Deaf Gamers (9 out of 10) (90%)

Namco have created a classic in Ace Combat: Squadron Leader. Whether you're a veteran of the series or a complete novice you'll still be impressed by what's on offer here. The game has a variety of difficulty levels which will suit all abilities and the tutorials that have been included are very comprehensive and assume no previous experience in playing a game of this nature. In fact it's difficult to find fault with the game and only thing it doesn't deliver is multiplayer modes, which is a little disappointing. However as a single-player game it's superb and a must own if you're after a combat flight game.

2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamers.at (88 out of 100) (88%)

Wahnsinn was für eine spannende Story und dichte Atmosphäre in einem doch so simplen Videospiel! Fliegen war wirklich noch nie so einfach, denn die Steuerung ist präzise, einfach gehalten und vor allem leicht zu erlernen. Besonderes die hollywoodreifen Filmsequenzen, die zwischen den actiongeladenen Missionen gezeigt werden, fördern die Langzeitmotivation sehr stark. Ein Multiplayermodus wäre aber das Tüpfelchen auf dem I gewesen, wirklich schade dass so ein wichtiges Feature bei Ace Combat Suadron Leader fehlt! Trotzdem sollten sich jene Leute, die schon immer mal mit nem Jet Gegner jagen wollten, das Game unbedingt anspielen. Man wird nach einiger Zeit richtig süchtig danach!

Mar 3rd, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Game Captain (87 out of 100) (87%)

Ace Combat 5 ist ein kurzweiliges Kampfflugzeugspiel, das aufgrund seiner unkomplizierten Steuerung in erster Linie Action-Fans zu empfehlen ist. Was gegenüber dem Vorgänger verbessert wurde, ist vor allem der Umfang - bei über 30 Missionen und über 50 Flugzeugen diesmal kann man wohl nicht meckern. Auch Grafik und Sound sind gelungen, der Gesamteindruck gut. Und für PS2-Besitzer ohne PC gibt es zu diesem Spiel (oder seinem Vorgänger) kaum eine Alternative. Möglicherweise Secret Weapons over Normandy, aber äh ... das war´s eigentlich schon.

Mar 20th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Pelit (87 out of 100) (87%)

Olen aina ollut Ace Combat -sarjan fani ja viidennen osan jälkeen olen edelleen.

Feb 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gameswelt (86 out of 100) (86%)

Die Formel, um Genres, die ihr Dasein bislang hauptsächlich auf Heimcomputern fristeten, auch für Konsoleros schmackhaft und vor allem maximal spielbar zu machen, ist eindeutig: Reduktion aufs Wesentliche. Namco beweisen drei Jahre nach ihrem letzten Start in ’Distant Thunder’ erneut, dass sie diese Devise vollends verinnerlicht haben. Mit intensiver Inszenierung, interessanter Geschichte und tadellosem, durchdachtem Gameplay in spannenden Missionen erinnert das neueste ’Ace Combat’-Kapitel wieder einmal daran, wer das Flugaction-Genre auf Konsolen etabliert hat. Selbst das recht magere Modi-Portfolio verzeiht man aufgrund der umfangreichen Kampagne dann doch recht bereitwillig. Squadron Leader an Leser: Bitte Kaufen!

Mar 1st, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

contactmusic.com (8.5 out of 10) (85%)

Ace Combat Squadron Leader manages to improve on the already capable Shattered Skies. It's not a complete overhaul by any means but everything is brought up to date and the game has a few nice additions like the wingman commands. If you are after a flight combat simulation this is not for you. Squadron Leader takes all the best bits from a simulation and mixes it up with arcade style game play to give you something which is full of fast action packed game play and great fun to play.

Feb 25th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Impulse Gamer (8.5 out of 10) (85%)

In conclusion, Ace Combat Squadron Leader manages to improve on the already capable Squadron Lesader. It's not a complete overhaul by any means but everything is brought up to date and the game has a few nice additions like the wingman commands. If you are after a flight combat simulation this is not for you. Squadron Leader takes all the best bits from a simulation and mixes it up with arcade style game play to give you something which is full of fast action packed game play and great fun to play.

2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Netjak (8.5 out of 10) (85%)

If you liked Wing Commander, Crimson Skies or any other of the flight combat games, you need to get this game now. Even with the PS2 controller it's still good fun. It's EXCELLENT fun with the flight stick, but it's also $130 plus tax for that bundle...it had better be that good. (Add a +1 onto the gameplay, replay, and overall score for the scores with the Flight Stick.) This game and Katamari Damacy are vying for my game of the year right now, which means that either way Namco wins. It you're hankering for a good action game, this is going to hit the spot in a way no other game out there right now will do. Take the shot.

Jan 8th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamesmania.de (83 out of 100) (83%)

"Ace Combat: Squadron Leader" macht richtig Laune und mich zum virtuellen Tom Cruise. Wenn ich pfeilschnell feindliche Stellungen bombardiere oder andere Jets aufs Korn nehme, kommt bei mir echtes Top-Gun-Feeling auf! Die wirklich gute Sprachausgabe meiner Computer gesteuerten Wingmen trägt einiges zur grandiosen Atmosphäre bei - da können auch pseudomoralische Anspielungen während der Zwischensequenzen nichts dran ändern. Insgesamt laufen mir jedoch die Missionen aufgrund der vielen, ständig wechselnden Aufgaben und der nervigen Zeitlimits zu hektisch ab. Action ja, aber solch ein Stress muss nicht sein! Trotzdem: Hobby-Piloten dürfen bei "Ace Combat: Squadron Leader" bedenkenlos zugreifen, abheben und Spaß haben!

Feb 23rd, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GameSpot (8.3 out of 10) (83%)

In 2001, Namco's Ace Combat series of flight combat games hit a high point with Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies, which was the series' first installment on the PlayStation 2. Featuring incredible visuals, responsive action that captured the thrill of high-flying (and low-flying) aerial dogfighting, and a surprisingly complex and well-told narrative, Ace Combat 04 was a real winner. Now Ace Combat is back in another game bristling with beautifully modeled real-world jet fighters and cinematic cutscenes. Ace Combat 5 isn't the huge step for the series that Ace Combat 04 was, but it's still a great flight combat game, featuring grueling arcade-style action and plenty of surprises both in its mission design and its story.

Oct 25th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GamerDad ( ) (80%)

Except for planes blowing up the violence isn't that bad, however there are some bad words during game play and the story. I think that a reasonable age to play would be around 12 (preferably with adult supervision) because with the curse words and the dramatic storyline I really think no one under the age of 10 should play this game.

Nov 7th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Games TM (8 out of 10) (80%)

There's no doubt that this is the finest craft in the Ace Combat hangar, which effectively makes it the finest flight combat game available on the PlayStation 2. Perfect control, sound effects that make the best of Dolby Stereo, and combat that imbues the player with a genuine sense of urgency without sacrificing fun. And we didn't even rely on any quotes from Top Gun. Gooooooose!

Feb 24th, 2005 · PlayStation 2

GamePro (US) (4 out of 5) (80%)

This experience, though, can feel like d?j? vu. Despite all the additions and improvements, Ace Combat 5 still feels like an Ace Combat game. Take away the story line, and the core of the game is to literally just blow things up, in the air and on the ground using simple flight controls. For rookies to the series, that shouldn't matter, but for veterans, it'll feel like the same gameplay found in all previous Ace Combat games--and that's not necessarily a bad thing considering this is a shooter that's still worthy of sitting in first class.

Nov 4th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamestyle (8 out of 10) (80%)

Ace Combat: Squadron Leader is a worthy successor to the Ace Combat series in almost every respect. Fans will love this game and many more may succumb to its charm. The one major flaw is its lack of multiplayer options, however, if you are a flight game fan, there can be no doubting the veracity of the Ace Combat motto: "Nothing else comes close."

2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GameSpy ( ) (80%)

In the end, many of the new features are gimmicky and unnecessary, but they don't really impact the core experience too much either way. Everything that is good about Ace Combat games is still here, only some things are a bit better and a few things are a bit worse.

Oct 25th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

GameDaily (8 out of 10) (80%)

Namco's long-running Ace Combat series hits the PlayStation 2 once again, but this one is somewhat of a mixed bag. On the one hand, it continues the high quality aerial combat fans of the series have grown to love, but on the other hand, there are no signs of multiplayer action anywhere to be found. Even without the multiplayer, Ace Combat 5 is one of the best flight simulation titles on the PS2.

Dec 14th, 2006 · PlayStation 2 · read review

FOK!games (76 out of 100) (76%)

Een parel van een game met prachtige, gedetailleerde graphics. Zowel vliegtuigen als omgevingen zien er subliem uit (hoewel de textures van het landschap voor sommigen misschien een tikje outdated zijn) en het is soms gewoon heerlijk om op je gemakje rond te vliegen en te toeren. Het geluid – inclusief de voice acting – is een waar feest en voegt echt iets toe aan deze game. De missies zijn verzorgd, ongelofelijk afwisselend en spannend door de constante veranderingen. Vind je straalvliegtuigen mooi om te zien en heb je het geduld om je in een game te storten? Koop dan zeker deze game want met vele tientallen unlockbare vliegtuigen ben je een behoorlijke tijd zoet. Ben je iemand die graag snel een game wil spelen en op zoek is naar fun en actie, dan kun je deze titel misschien beter even laten liggen. Zeker als je snel gefrustreerd raakt wanneer een missie opnieuw moet, is deze game niet de beste game voor jou.

Feb 28th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Realm of Gaming (7.5 out of 10) (75%)

With Ace Combat 5: Squadron Leader, Namco has successfully created a solid action flight title that combines action-filled dog fighting cleverly with an immersive storyline that not only creates meaning for why you are fighting, but also helps to keep the game interesting throughout the thirty missions. Fans of the previous games in the series will definitely find a lot to love in the fifth interpretation, whilst those who are interested in this genre will find a solid, worthwhile game. Although some slight variation in missions may be needed, Ace Combat 5 eventuates to be a worthwhile title.

Oct 25th, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Jeuxvideo.com (15 out of 20) (75%)

Aussi réussi que son aîné, sinon plus, Ace Combat 5 renoue avec une scénarisation complexe et compacte, qui, associée à un pouvoir ludique stupéfiant, aboutit à une véritable réussite. A peine teinté de déception à la vue du principe d'ordres et de la jouabilité inchangée dans le fond, le soft de Namco donne à voir et à ressentir une intense expérience, une tranche de vie vidéoludique passionnée. Pas le meilleur jeu PS2 de l'année, c'est évident, mais la consécration d'une série à l'évolution manifeste.

Feb 21st, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamer Within (7.5 out of 10) (75%)

With Ace Combat 5: Squadron Leader, Namco has successfully created a solid action flight title that combines action-filled dog fighting cleverly with an immersive storyline that not only creates meaning for why you are fighting, but also helps to keep the game interesting throughout the thirty missions. Fans of the previous games in the series will definitely find a lot to love in the fifth interpretation, whilst those who are interested in this genre will find a solid, worthwhile game. Although some slight variation in missions may be needed, Ace Combat 5 eventuates to be a worthwhile title.

Jul 10th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

IC-Games (73 out of 100) (73%)

Playing Namco’s latest title was a challenge and there’s nothing hugely wrong with any of the work on the title just a total lack of involvement, nothing to draw you in, that all-important ‘X’ factor. It just didn’t take my breath away.

Jun 2nd, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

TotalVideoGames (TVG) (7 out of 10) (70%)

With over 30 missions and featuring 50 real-world planes, Ace Combat 5: Squadron Leader is sure to get the jet fighter fans excited. The new Wing Command system allows for an increased level of strategy and with the in-flight conversations, really adds depth to the game. The narrative is engaging although cheesy in places, but does succeed in giving AC5 some substance. Sadly the gameplay is rather repetitive and you can find yourself distracted from the mission in hand as you try to liven up the experience.

Jan 24th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamekult (7 out of 10) (70%)

Lors de sa sortie en 2002, Ace Combat 4 avait marqué à juste titre les amateurs de dogfights et de virées célestes. Trois ans après, avec une recette quasi identique, il est évident que la surprise n'est plus au rendez-vous. Ce cinquième volet est le fidèle héritier de la série et ne s'en cache pas un instant, au contraire. Mais malgré cette timidité créative, force est de constater que Ace Combat : Squadron Leader s'impose comme le meilleur jeu d'avion disponible aujourd'hui sur console. Son photo-réalisme impressionnant, son gameplay souple et intuitif, sa durée de vie, son rythme soutenu, originalité ou non, ses atouts parlent d'eux-mêmes. Et après tout, pourquoi chercher absolument la surprise quand on peut être comblé aussi facilement ?

Feb 16th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Gamezilla (2 out of 3) (67%)

Overall this is a fun, realistic, though a bit-stripped down flight simulator. The game would have scored much higher had it managed to better balance its weapons’ issues, but it’s still worth buying if you are into flight simulators and don’t want to mess around with a computer game.

Nov 22nd, 2004 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Eurogamer.net (UK) (6 out of 10) (60%)

The real problem is, though, that the game has already lost its less patient audience by then, and simply doesn't get off to a good enough start to warrant sticking with. With another harmless but anonymous storyline providing no hook whatsoever, it becomes one of those games where you feel no sense of attachment to what's going on. You can appreciate it's not a bad game to any degree, is technically very polished with beautifully rendered craft bursting with technical detail and slick in almost every sense - but it lacks soul. And to us, any game guilty of that becomes hard to recommend and positively screams 'rental only'. Top Gun but sadly not Top Fun.

Feb 17th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Video Game Critic, The (C) (50%)

This game may satisfy die-hard fans, but the series seems to be heading in an unwelcome direction. For Ace Combat 6, I'd hope Namco will go easy on the drama and get back to the basics.

Feb 27th, 2005 · PlayStation 2 · read review

Player Reviews

A decent follow up, but not without its flaws.

The Good
The first time I saw Ace Combat 5 on the shelf I was a bit intrigued and yet cautious. Even though it's predecessor (Ace Combat 04) was a decent game, it still left me wanting more from it and looking at this game it seems as though as it was going to do the same. After constantly encountering it on the shelves, watching the price drop each and every time I finally bit the bullet and bought it when the price was just right enough ($9.99). My first impression of the game was very optimistic, the sounds were very much improved from 04, this time I can actually hear the missile impact on enemy planes and the sounds of the jet's passing by actually give you the feeling of a real battle.

One thing I did like was the CGI cinemas to tell the story as opposed to 04's storyboard-style presentation and while the story is a little hokey at times, it still does the job. The graphics are also improved with a more realistic approach then the "soft" feeling that 04's graphics seem to have, especially the explosions. While the previous explosions seemed like a cell-shaded tack-on job that seems to be used in old arcade games, AC 5's explosions actually seem like real ones and with the sound effects, you get the feeling that you actually brought down a jet as opposed to a pure arcade feeling as before.

The music is OK, nothing terrible and yet nothing exceptional, but since you will be caught up with the crazy action going on in some of the stages you tune it out, so it's no big deal. There is a lot to like about this updated version, but sadly there are some weak points to it.

The Bad
Well, a few things bothered me, one of which is the pointless and stupid conversations you have during missions. Why this was added to this I'll never understand, it does nothing to the storyline. Originally when I first encountered it I picked the positive option each time, fearing that somehow it would screw up the mission or eventually hurt me later in the game, but it turns out you can keep giving the negative option each and every time and the story remains the same. It seems pointless that it was added to the game since it contributes nothing and distracts you during some of the most intense sequences. This also leads me to the voice acting.

While the voice acting isn't terrible, it isn't the best either. It's just enough to tell the story, but I swear did they secretly hire Bill Paxton? One of the wing mates in the game bears and uncanny resemblance to Paxton's performances in sci-fi movies like Aliens and Predator 2, complete with annoying cocky attitude where you just want to turn your plane around and blow his ass out of the sky. I swear, Paxton could sue for copyright infringement, that is who well this guy sounds like, but the bad part is, it really hurts the experience since he is so damn annoying, I have been tempted to turn on the mute just to avoid it.

The final thing that bothers me is that it just feels like the same game over. The formula is still there: fight off a seemingly invincible army, become an ace pilot, fight off hordes of enemy fighters, take on a super weapon, save the world, game over. It does tend to get boring at times when you constantly have to fight off a massive amount of enemies, but there is some variety, though some missions are annoying as hell especially the attack on the ally capital city. There is an attack on the capital city where the enemy is using bio weapons and use must take unguided bombs and drop them on gas clouds scattered throughout the city to counterattack the virus. It seems simple enough, but flying low into a mass of towering buildings you tend to get mashed against the sides of them and you will keep trying over and over and over until you finally pull your hair out.

The Bottom Line
In the end, Ace Combat 5 is a decent game over it's predecessor with better graphics, CGI storytelling and gut wrenching sounds and sense of speed. However, the same formula from 04 and that damn annoying Bill Paxton wannabe does hurt it a bit, but nothing that hurts the overall feel of the game. If you liked the first one, you'll probably like this one too, but just to be safe rent this first. It's not the best in the series, but it still isn't the worst, still worth a try though, give it a shot.

by Big John WV (26947) on Jun 12th, 2009 · PlayStation 2

Plus 19 player ratings without reviews

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Critic reviews added by Cavalary, nyccrg, gukker, DreinIX, ppaatt1 ppaatt2, Wizo, Sciere, Jacob Gens, Jeanne, Yearman, shphhd, Patrick Bregger, beetle120, vicrabb, Tim Janssen, Alsy, Big John WV.