Friday, 14 April 2017

Ace Combat 2

The year was 1997 and I decided to get with the times and purchased one of the first generation Playstations. Around this same time, the Official Playstation Magazine was launched and started to show up on convenient store shelves. The nice thing about the timing of all of this was a low cost way to feed my gaming needs through the included demo discs and a chance to experience different titles and genres, in an affordable, but limited format.

Without the use of Google or another search engine, I couldn't tell you the other games that were on that first demo disc I got, but I can say which title I did play the most.

Despite the choice of only one aircraft, the Grumman F-14 Tomcat and only playable level taking place in New York City, this demo version of Ace Combat 2 was just the type game I was looking for.
Simple, straight up action, without an overly complicated learning curve. The controls were easy enough to pick up on and the graphics were really good (although a little dated by today's standards, not too hard on the eyes like other games of the same era).

The mission was limited by five minute timer, which was more than enough time to take out ground targets, a few airborne enemies and the mission objective, a docked aircraft carrier. However, if one didn't keep a careful eye on the countdown timer in the upper right corner, you would run out of fuel and fail the mission.

After a lot of practice and memorization of the environment, a person could fly straight to the aircraft carrier and take it out, ending the game with a lot of time to spare and a certain victory, but where is the fun in that?

Even with playing the demo over and over and....I never did get the full version, nor rent from any video stores. I can't really remember why I didn't, perhaps the price of the game at the time scared me off, due to my limited entertainment budget (the Playstation wasn't a cheap purchase back then and did come with a few games to kill time with, like Bubble Bobble and a few others).

However, Ace Combat 2 would set the format and tone for flying games I would try to look for in the future. 

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