Review: Dogfight 1942
City Interactive is taking to the skies with Dogfight 1942, a pretty hefty foray into the world of WWII aerial combat. The game packs quite a bit of punch for an XBLA title. With over 20 different era accurate aircraft from the world famous P-38 Lightning to the fearsome Japanese Kate players can fight across the skies in the three different game modes.
The game starts off with an extremely impressive cut scene. By far one of the best I have ever seen in a XBLA offering. The opening scene will make you feel like you just loaded up a full retail title, and the accompanying gameplay and in game graphics both offer up the same experience. This is one of the most robust XBLA titles I have seen yet! I constantly found myself being surprised by this title.
The single player portion of the game alone offers up a few hours of solid gaming. The game is easy to pick up and play for gamers of all skill. From the aerial combat savvy to the complete noob like me the game makes everyone feel right at home in the cockpit. For those looking for a bit more you can switch at any time from arcade mode to simulation mode for a more difficult flying experience.
The gameplay offers up a nice variety of mechanics across the missions. The levels vary in location just lke the mission objectives do. From keeping an ally air force base safe from attacking Japanese planes to sneaking up behind German bombing runs using one of their own stolen planes the game keeps things interesting. The planes themselves also offer up various attacks from the standard chain guns to even rockets and bombs.
The skies can become pretty hectic as ally squadrons take on numerous enemy squadrons all at once. The playable portion of the levels is also pretty impressive giving you plenty of room to work worth. There are mission objective targets to take down as well as secondary targets. Doing more work gives you a higher score at the end of each round to compete with you friends for top spot. Killing an enemy plane results in a spectacular kill cam, showing aerial destruction at its finest.
If at any point you feel the skies are too safe then feel free to bump up the difficulty level and see how good you really are. Dogfight 1942 works like most modern day shooters offering up regenerating health if you can duck out of combat for a bit. Give your squad mates the command to either attack an enemy for your or provide cover to catch a quick breather and regain some health. There is no health meter in the game so keep a close eye on the visual damage you plan has taken. The screen will flash red when taking damage and if your engine starts to smoke it’s time to seek a safer piece of sky.
After you have had your fill of the single player portion you can grab a friend and take to the skies either together or against one another. In Dogfight mode the two of you can fight each other to the bitter end. In Survival mode you can buddy up and work together to take on endless waves of enemies!
The Summary: Dogfight 1942 is an incredibly impressive entry into the XBLA game list. With visuals that can easily rival most retail offerings and hours of gameplay it’s well worth picking up if you are looking for some fun in the skies for a small price. It’s a solid game through and through and I found no real faults with any of it!