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Written by  :  Zamppa (102)
Written on  :  Jun 18, 2002
Rating  :  4.75 Stars4.75 Stars4.75 Stars4.75 Stars4.75 Stars

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A flying simulator, but not a typical one... Much, much better than typical ones...

The Good

First of all, there are the graphics. OK, they're not great, but they are good enough. The whole area is rendered all the time and the frame rate is good.

In a game like this where you have only one level to fly in, the level design is crucial for the gameplay. In Pilot Wings, the design is awesome. The whole island is not the same, as it has canyons, cities, beach hotels, and everything from between. The weather can also change, and believe me, it has a matter.

There are five game types in Pilot Wings that I know of

1) Hang gliding. This is the slowest form of playing, and I like it. There's no hurry to be anywhere. There are these whirlwinds around the island that get you higher above ground and it's easy to go down :-D

2) Flying with the rocket pack. In this mode you have a rocket pack in your back and you control it. Believe me, it's harder than it sounds like. There's also the matter of fuel onboard, and you will run out of it if you fly around too much.

3) Hydrocopter. The hydrocopter is my favourite. Basicly you fly with this very small and light thing that is a nightmare to turn around with. This is the only one that has real landing strips to land on. You have also guns in this little machine.

4) Cannonball. Well, this is a fun part. You have a cannon and a living cannonball. Your goal is to hit the targets with the cannonball. It's not that east, especially as you have only a few shots and sometimes you can't even see the target.

5) Skydiving. In this mode you have to make formations with three other jumpers. And you have to land in the mark. Again, not as easy as you think.

Basicly the main point is to accomplish the missions. You can have 100 points if you make the missions perfectly. The better points, the better medal.(bronze, silver, gold and perfect score). As the skill level gets higher, you have more missions to do in one set. In hardest level you have to make four missions, and they all are different. You don't have to succeed in the first try, as the points are automatically saved and you can just go and improve one or two missions.

The missions are mostly basic stuff, like "fly through all the rings" or "hit all the balls". But it's not that easy to get 100 points. The points are given overall by many criterias. The first point criteria is the mission approval. Have you made it through all the rings etc. The second criteria is the time. Did you make it in the time limit or not. Third, the landing counts, on accuracy and impact.

The physics model is awesome. The wind really makes a difference, and the flying model seems right. Believe me when I say this: the wind makes the difficulty. Ever tried landing a hang glider in a strong wind? I've never tried, but it sure as hell is difficult in this game.

The Bad

It get's boring on a long term.

The Bottom Line

Pilot Wings 64 is a relaxing version of flying simulation. the good graphics, great physics model and excellent playability makes the game a fun game to play. Although it does get boring if you play it for 10 hours a day, in short sessions, you can't find a better flying simulation if you don't like machine guns.