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User Reviews

Games like this make me say I'm a "gamer" with a proud tone in my voice MAT (223685) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
Excellent jet fighter game with a touching story. Big John WV (27218) 3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars
Namco got a bullseye on this one. Nick Slavin (11) 4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Acting The quality of the voice or video acting. 3.9
AI The quality of the game's intelligence, usually for the behavior of opponents. 3.7
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work and the game plays. 4.1
Graphics The visual quality of the game 4.1
Personal Slant A personal rating of the game, regardless of other attributes 4.0
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 4.0
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they are executed. This rating is used for every game except compilations and special editions which don't have unique game content not available in a standalone game or DLC. 4.3
Overall User Score (25 votes) 4.0

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Gamezilla (Nov 12, 2001)
Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies is without a doubt one of the best PS2 flight simulators on the market. Although some parts of the game could have been more exciting, like the missions themselves and certain aspects of the graphics, the overall game experience makes up for these shortcomings. If you enjoy air combat, you won't be disappointed with this one.
GamersMark (Nov 09, 2001)
The xbox may have Air Force Delta, and the Playstation 2 also has Top Gun neither are any real challenge to the overall experience felt when playing this game. Definitely worth a look for anyone who is even remotely interested in flight sims.
An absolutely beautiful game. It's replay value may be a bit limited, but only after you've played it 50 times. Even after that, dogfighting your friends is perpetual bliss. Ace Combat 4 is a very tight game with lots of frills. Luckily, all the frills have sustenance under them, and can be enjoyed by many players. Bravo Namco on a job well done!
IGN (Oct 23, 2001)
Combat flight simulators, as mentioned in an earlier discussion of the subject, are almost certain successes if they're put together well. Brainstorm up a list of some of the most common unrealized human fantasies, and nine times out of 10 that list will include both flight (given that centuries of arm-flapping have still produced no real results for humanity) and the destruction of stuff on a large scale (given that civilization has rendered this an unacceptable form of entertainment). Coincidentally, the two things fighter jets are built to do. Videogames are nothing if they are not fantasy fulfillment, and so a good fighter sim has its audience ready and waiting for it.
XGP Gaming (May 29, 2004)
Namco gives us a well-rounded product that towers over the competition. The shelf-life of the game is above average and only the most dedicated player will actually complete the game on its highest difficulty. If you are looking for a topnotch flier, you can call off the search. This one is a must-have for any PS2 owner.
Gaming Age (Mar, 2002)
Namco’s last Ace Combat was a little dry when the story was axed from the U.S. version – not to mention the graphics engine running a tad on empty. But all is fixed with Ace Combat 04 – Shattered Skies. There’s a dramatic war story and fantastic scenary, and the trademark Ace Combat arcade gameplay is more solid than ever.
PSM (Dec, 2001)
Flight sim fans will really eat this game up. Anyone searching for an arcade experience will find it realistic, but still very playable. If you're an armchair fighter jock, strap in and feel the Gs.
Da Ace Combat 4 der erste Teil der Reihe war, den ich gespielt habe, wusste ich nicht genau was mich erwartet. Doch ich war sofort vom einfachen Handling und dem actionreichen Gameplay begeistert. Es stimmt alles an diesem Game: Die Grafik, die ihresgleichen sucht, das abwechslungsreiche Missionsdesign, die durchdachte Steuerung, die packende Story. Kurz gesagt, ein intensives, wenn auch vielleicht etwas kurzes Spielerlebnis für jedermann. Jedermann? Nun gut, die eingefleischten Fans von ultrarealistischen Flightsims werden vielleicht die Nase rümpfen, doch alle anderen sollten wirklich zugreifen!
PSX Extreme (Nov 01, 2001)
After the long wait, Ace Combat 4 did live up to its hype. I have few -if any- major gripes with the game. The visuals are absolutely spectacular and very awe-inspired. The gameplay lives up to its three predecessors in every single way. While it isn't the longest title, chances are you'll want to replay the game a few times over, once you're done with it. Perhaps where the game scores the biggest is the story mode, and the contribution to it through the use of some excellent voice acting. It was stressed earlier, and I'll stress it once more, the story and the voice acting is pretty captivating. Just you wait and see the ending, you won't want to miss this. Also, the two-player mode needs to be mentioned, as it is the first in the series. Ace Combat fans, you have finally reached air combat utopia.
Imperium Gier (May 14, 2002)
Największą zaletą Ace Combat 4 jest jej grywalność. Najnowsza pozycja Namco jest jak magnes, który cały czas przyciąga gracza, nie pozwalając mu się oderwać. Dawno nie było tak dopieszczonej gry na PS2. Przyjemność z destrukcji wrogich samolotów lub zbombardowania nieprzyjacielskich terenów jest nie do opisania. Cała masa strzelania, wysadzania i ewolucji powietrznych to jest to. Dochodzi jeszcze możliwość walki z kumplem. Graficznie AC4 zachwyca starannością wymodelowania samolotów, a opowiadana historia sprawia, że chcemy poznać jej zakończenie. Sama walka jest dynamiczna i daje dużo frajdy. Czy można chcieć czegoś więcej? Chyba tylko tego, aby Namco oraz inni producenci robili więcej tak dobrych pozycji.
If there is a better air combat game that is easier to get the hang of than Ace Combat 4, I've never heard of it.
90 (Feb 28, 2002)
Ace Combat 4: Distant Thunder is quite easily one of the best flight sims ever seen on a console. Sure, it's not a detailed simulator like those on the PC, nor is it an arcade game. Namco seem to have struck a perfect balance between the two. This is a game that is fast and fun, but requires some degree of skill to perform beyond expectations.
90 (Nov 07, 2002)
Speed, Planes, Dogfights and blowing things up. What more do you need?
GamePro (US) (Oct 22, 2001)
The latest in Namco's venerable combat flight series commands the sky on the PS2 earning gold wings for its stellar gameplay. Like its predecessors, Ace Combat 4 is all about aerial and ground warfare using state-of-the-art airplanes. The arcade gameplay retains the Ace Combat trademarks: tons of firepower and a simple control scheme. The sights and sounds are even more realistic and highly charged than previous Ace Combat's. The newest in the Ace Combat family is as strong as past generations.
Netjak (Sep 30, 2003)
ce combat 4 contains all of the qualities a good air combat game should have, as well an intriguing storyline that no other combat flight game has ever produced. The extensive missions and the battle sequences definitely keep you interested and provides you with countless hours of replay value.
GameSpot (Oct 23, 2001)
The first Ace Combat game to be released on the PlayStation 2 is finally here, and fans of Namco's venerable series of casual flight sims will undoubtedly find it to have been well worth the wait. Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies isn't only the best looking of the series, but also the first to integrate a compelling plot and believable characters with the typical harried action that's associated with these types of games.
After tearing it up in the danger zone last month with Titus' Top Gun, I was honestly a little apprehensive about delving into another PlayStation 2 flight-combat game. But just a few minutes into the first mission, my fears were forgotten and I was completely hooked.
83 (Mar 04, 2002)
Top-Gun zum Mitspielen! Auf bekannt hohem Niveau führt Ace Combat 4 - Distant Thunder die Tradition der erfolgreichen Reihe fort. Fans greifen sowieso bedenkenlos zu. Aber auch jeder andere Anhänger von schneller, unkomplizierter Luftkampf-Action, die dazu noch aufgemacht und präsentiert ist wie ein Hollywood-Streifen, kann nichts falsch machen. Einzig Aeronauten, die auf handfeste Simulationen mit 100-Seiten starken Handbüchern stehen sollten die Finger von diesem Spiel lassen. Bei Ace Combat 4 steht nämlich nur eines im Vordergrund - und zwar die Action! Also rein ins Cockpit und den Fallschirm nicht vergessen!
The plane models are unbelievably detailed, but the surface has a choppy, Mode-7 look about it. I was really into the backstory that followed the missions, telling the tale of a youngster who finds the pilot responsible for the death of his parents. I don't give a bogey's butt whether you think you like flight games or not. Ace Combat 04 is militarily delicious.
Gameswelt (Mar 07, 2002)
Oh weia. Namco hat sich mit dem vierten Teil der 'Ace Combat'-Reihe selbst ein Kuckucksei ins Nest gesetzt. Vor einem Jahr wäre der Titel trotz weniger Neuerungen und kurzweiligem Gameplay vielleicht noch in die oberste Liga aufgestiegen. Mittelweile wurde die deutsche Version aber von Vater Zeit eingeholt, was sich vor allem in der technischen Umsetzung zeigt. Aus diesem Grund bleibt 'nur' ein überdurchschnittlich guter Titel übrig, den Fans der Serie durchaus in Betracht ziehen dürfen, sofern sie keine allzu grossen Ansprüche stellen.
Gaming Target (Jan 04, 2002)
Ace Combat 4 is a great game, there's no question about that. But the game is bogged down a little by the slow pace most simulation games are supposed to have. If you're a fan of the genre, this is the game to get. For everyone else, this is still a good game that is very worth your time.
81 (Feb 12, 2002)
Ace Combat kann durch seine spannenden Missionen und die leichte Handhabung der Flugzeuge begeistern. Wer also auf packende Luftkampfaction steht ohne sich viel einlernen zu wollen für den ist das Spiel genau das richtige. Die Grafik in der Luft und die vielen versch. Kampfflugzeuge können sich sehen lassen.
PlayFrance (Apr 07, 2003)
Nous l'attendions depuis longtemps ce retour d'Ace Combat, et nous ne sommes pas déçus ! Réalisation maîtrisée à la perfection, maniabilité accessible sans être trop arcade, bande sonore idéale, on ne peut vraiment rien reprocher à ce jeu à part sa durée de vie trop courte et le manque de variété dans les missions. Amateurs de simulations aériennes, ce titre est donc incontournable et s'impose comme une référence. Pour les autres, il vous fera aussi passer d'excellents moments et a donc une place légitime dans votre ludothèque, à condition que vous ne soyez pas trop regardant question longévité.
Still, class graphics aren't quite enough to cover up Ace Combat's one underlying fault: its lack of variety. The action is consistently fast and furious, but by the time Stonehenge is a smoking ruin you're gasping for something different. If the missions had been designed to be more suited to specific aircraft, with the Stealth Bomber required to evade detection or the F-22 challenged to fly through tight canyons, then Ace Combat would have been a more rounded game, and would have earned a nine. As it stands – an enjoyable arcade aerial blaster that looks great – it gets a well-deserved eight.
Pelit (Mar, 2002)
Pelin lyhyys sattuu sisimpään niin syvästi, että se ansaitsisi oman valitusvirren. Mielenkiintoinen juoni ja tyylikäs toteututus menevät hukkaan, kun hupi on ohi hetkessä. Läpipeluun jälkeen aukeava vapaalentotila ei auta eikä pelkkä jaetun ruudun kaksinpeli jaksa viihdyttää kauaa, joten jäljelle jää sinänsä pätevä mutta toivottoman lyhytikäinen lentoräiskyttely.
Gamestyle (2002)
Aside from that, however, Ace Combat: Distant Thunder is an excellent and thoroughly worthwhile flight simulator for the PS2. A combination of good graphics, excellent game play, a compelling story and a worthwhile soundtrack make this an essential purchase for fans of the genre.
76 (Mar 18, 2002)
Namco bleibt dem Ace Combat-Prinzip treu: kompromisslose, schnelle und unkomplizierte Action. Damit dürften sich Fluganfänger und Fans der Serie auch recht schnell anfreunden und den Steuerknüppel nicht aus der Hand legen, bevor wieder Frieden in Eugeas einkehrt. Und diese Zielgruppe wird sich auch nicht an der leicht gewöhnungsbedürftigen Comic-Erzählstruktur stören. Wer jedoch auf der Suche nach einer realistischen Simulation ist, sollte einen weiten Bogen um Ace Combat 4 machen. Außer man ist auf der Suche nach einer Grafikorgie, die alles aus der PlayStation 2 herauszuholen scheint. Aber Grafik ist nicht alles...
The Video Game Critic (Mar 08, 2002)
The controller vibration is used to good effect - holding down the thrust provides remarkable force-feedback. The missions are only moderately difficult, and you can earn credits to purchase new planes and ammo. A background story is conveyed through narration over a series of hand-drawn illustrations, which is both artistic and effective. Ace Combat 4 isn't terribly deep, but it's enjoyable enough to recommend.
70 (Jan 28, 2002)
Ace Combat 4 est un bon titre qui profite d'un gameplay convaincant, mais on attendait de lui beaucoup plus, notamment au niveau des sensations éprouvées. Les missions ne possèdent pas ce souffle épique qu'on attendait, et les objectifs se révèlent peu variés. Le jeu est d'ailleurs un peu court, mais il comporte tout de même un mode Versus et plusieurs niveaux de difficulté.