Birds of Prey
Birds of Prey is a flight simulation set in a fictional battle between the Soviet Union (B-side) and the Nato + allied (A-side).
The player can fly up to 40 different planes and also control the whole battle campaign.Aircraft available for A-side:
- BAe Hawk Mk.66
- BAe Hawker Siddley Harrier GR. Mk 3
- Boeing B-52H Stratofortress
- Boeing 747-400 Jumbo Jet
- Dassault-Breguet Mirage F.1E
- Dassault-Breguet Rafale A
- Fairchild A-10A
- General Dynamics F-111
- General Dynamics F-16
- Grumman F-14A+ Tomcat
- Grumman X-29
- Lockheed C-130H-30 Hercules
- Lockheed F-104S Starfighter
- Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird
- Lockheed TR-1A
- Lockheed F-117A
- McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II
- McDonnell Douglas F-15E Eagle
- McDonnell Douglas KC-10A
- McDonnell Douglas F/A-18A Hornet
- North American X-15A
- Northrop F-5E Tiger II
- Northrop F-20A Tiger Shark
- Northrop B-2 Stealth Bomber
- Panavia Tornado F Mk.3 (ADV)
- Rockwell B-1B
SAAB JAS-39 Gripen (Gryphon) Aircraft available for B-side:
Antonov AN-124 Condor
- Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 Fishbed N
- Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-23 Flogger G
- Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25 Foxbat E
- Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-27 Flogger J
- Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29 Fulcrum A
- Sukhoi Su-21 Flagon F
- Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer D
- Sukhoi Su-25 Frogfoot
- Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker B
- Tupolev Tu-95 Bear G
- Tupolev Tu-26 Backfire B
- Yakovlev Yak-38 MP Forger A
The player is required to select one side 'A' or 'B' in the conflict, and keep the save game for each pilot on a separate floppy.
Each pilot you can fly different missions and aircraft, but only those from your own side.
The player character flies from three land bases and two aircraft carriers on each side, and these bases can be damaged in several ways by enemy action, making them unavailable until repaired and reducing the available aircraft in the campaign.Mission types are:
- air intercept
- air superiority
- long range bombing
- bomber escort
- close support and ground attack
- border or sea patrol
- troop drop
- supply drop
- stealth bombing
- stealth reconnaissance
- test pilot
An autopilot mode is available for longer cruises, if the enemies are far off. The 'test pilot' mission involves flying the X-15/X-29 and is not a part of the campaign.
- ציפורי הפלדה - Hebrew spelling
- Aircraft: A-10 Thunderbolt II
- Aircraft: B-1 Lancer
- Aircraft: B-2 Spirit
- Aircraft: BAE Systems Hawk
- Aircraft: Boeing B-52 Stratofortress
- Aircraft: Civilian
- Aircraft: Dassault Mirage F1
- Aircraft: Dassault Rafale
- Aircraft: F-104 Starfighter
- Aircraft: F-111 Aardvark
- Aircraft: F-117 Nighthawk
- Aircraft: F-14 Tomcat
- Aircraft: F-15 Eagle
- Aircraft: F-16 Fighting Falcon
- Aircraft: F-4 Phantom II
- Aircraft: Grumman X-29
- Aircraft: Harrier Jump Jet
- Aircraft: Lockheed C-130 Hercules
- Aircraft: McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet
- Aircraft: MiG-21 Fishbed
- Aircraft: MiG-29 Fulcrum
- Aircraft: North American X-15
- Aircraft: Northrop F-5
- Aircraft: Panavia Tornado
- Aircraft: Saab JAS 39 Gripen
- Aircraft: SR-71 Blackbird
- Aircraft: Su-25 Frogfoot
- Aircraft: Su-27 & Su-33
Credits (Amiga version)
20 People (14 developers, 6 thanks) · View all
|Original Game Design by||
|3D Graphics System by|
|3D Shape Design by|
|Flight Dynamics by|
|Sound Effects by|
|Game Front End by|
|Additional Graphics by|
|Additional Front End Artwork by|
|Game Map by|
|Disk IO by|
|Introduction Sequence by||
|Intro. Written by|
|Intro. Graphics by|
|Special Thank You to|
|[ full credits ]|
Average score: 68% (based on 13 ratings)
Average score: 3.6 out of 5 (based on 14 ratings with 3 reviews)
The chance to fly 40 different aircraft, including some uncommon-for-flight sim ones (like the X-15, F-5, Mirage F1). The range of missions - recon in an SR-71, tactical bombing in a MiG-21, long-range intercepts in a MiG-25 or F-14. In-flight refuelling. Shoot down enough of your side's aircraft, and you'd defect to the other side.
The graphics were a bit poor, the cockpit was dreadful, and forget about the sound. The vast range of aircraft and weapons meant that the couldn't all be modelled accurately.
The Bottom Line
A good game for flight sim newbies, but it just doesn't have the grunt to be a decent flight sim, even back in '91.
DOS · by Crispin Anderton (1) · 2001
As a fan of flight simulation games, this game offered the right level of detail for me. It came with a thorough, detailed manual that explained every aspect of the game as well as a lot of more general aviation detail and general specs of all the aircraft present in the game. It offered both Easy and Realistic flight models, and while the easy mode offered a very arcade-like experience, the realistic mode suddenly made things like loadout and aircraft choice critical, as they drastically affected your ability to complete your mission. For example, in realistic mode, taking off in a heavily loaded plane without afterburners was very difficult, even if it was below it's maximum takeoff weight. Careful and coordinated use of brakes, flaps, throttle and stick were needed to pull this off, and you needed to be sure you had enough flight time to burn off some fuel or any sort of combat manoeuvres would be tricky.
It supported both digital and analogue joysticks, with analogue sticks being a relative rarity on the Amiga. Still, this made the game as the subtlety of control an analogue stick offered couldn't be beaten.
Graphics were fine, there were some flight sims of the era that looked better, but similarly, some that looked worse. Besides, with most of your flying done at the speeds that military jets use, most of the time you're concentrating on a tiny dot on the horizon anyway. the exterior views were nicely executed, especially those with a fixed horizon, because in these cases, the game harnessed the Amiga's copper chip to produce a graduated sky lighting effect, particularly impressive at dawn and disk. The detail level can be turned down in the game to help it run on less powerful machines, as the framerate suffered badly if you were on the minimum specification. Naturally, with some acceleration, it was silky smooth at the top detail level.
Sound was also well executed, with nice engine sounds, and a nice fading in/fading out effect with wind noise replacing the sound of an engine that had failed or been shut down. It was sound that really showed the difference between playing on an old 14" TV and connecting the Amiga's output up to a beefy stereo - the afterburner rumble was great!
The cockpit instrument panel was identical for every model of plane. This was fine for technical flying because all your instrument readouts (and there were a lot of them) were in the same place no matter what you flew, but it sort of broke the immersion of the game a little. Still, with around 40 different in-game aircraft it's sort of unreasonable to expect that many different cockpits and still fit on one floppy disk. Also, like many 3D games on the Amiga, you should really aim a bit higher than the minimum specs on the box. The framerate suffers badly on the 7MHz 68000 of an A500, though it's perfectly playable on an A1200 and flies along (sorry) on an 030 CPU or higher.
The Bottom Line
It's a great middle of the road flight simulator, with plenty of technical details to get your teeth into, so many aircraft and loadout options that you could be kept busy for dozens, if not hundreds of hours as I was. It has the arcade-style flight model if that's what you want too, but really you should put it in realistic mode and get to know the different dynamics of a couple of aircraft. Throw some extra CPU grunt at it (think 68030 or higher) and an analogue joystick, and it really becomes a great game.
Amiga · by Daedalus2097 (89) · 2020
Graphics were very detailed, each plane handled closely to what you would expect (e.g. less weight = more maneuverability) and the VTOL emulation of the Yak-38 and Harrier was great fun to get used to! Payloads differed for each plane and each mission, and the level of realism increased as your choice of plane/weapons combo had to be chosen more carefully the further you get into the game. The enemy is also very clued in and will 'team up' on you to get their target. The manual section about the different aircraft and weapons systems was also interesting reading.
Frame rates slowed down noticeably when the ground detail was high e.g. around building and mountains. A progress meter of some sort would also have helped (20 missions in I still didn't know how far I was to impending victory...)
The Bottom Line
Not for the faint hearted. This is a warts-and-all flight sim which takes a lot of time to get used to, and an ever-changing war scenario will even have the strategists out there drooling there next mission. Well worth the time if you want realistic combat and simulation rolled into one package.
Amiga · by Peter Tracey (2) · 2007
The game was intended to release much earlier. Argonaut started to work on the game in 1988 (first with no working title, later the game was named Hawk), they even started a six part development diary in the UK magazine The Games Machine in 1989 (issues #15, #16, #18, #19 and #20), all claiming a near release. Some more times the game was announced as nearly completed in the next year, but the final release was delayed until 1991, for which the game was renamed to the release title Birds of Prey.
As the Devpac assembler, which was used at Argonaut, turned out to be too slow for such a big project, taking 15-20 Minutes for creating the game from code, Argonaut was looking for a better development tool. They didn't moved to a PC cross-assembling platform which many other companies did at the time, but developed their own assembler "ArgAsm" ("Argonaut Assembler"). It turns out to be up to 10 times faster then Devpac. This side product of the game development was then sold as a commercial development tool.
Even before the release of the game, publisher Electronic Arts asked Argonaut to develop a sequel, which the development company rejected, as they preferred to develop for the Nintendo consoles Gameboy and Super Famicom. Therefore a sequel was never in development.
- MobyGames ID: 3818
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Alexander Schaefer.
Amiga added by NH.
Game added April 18th, 2001. Last modified May 2nd, 2023.