Ace Combat: Assault Horizon in Flight

With a story penned by New York Times bestselling author Jim DeFelice, overhauled dog fighting and the ability to hop into the controls of a gunship, Ace Combat Assault Horizon is working hard to change the way you think about the series.

The biggest change seems to be the way players will handle dogfights. The new Close Range Assault System makes the game's many dogfights a more intimate, skilled-based affair, something Namco says will deliver steel carnage and destruction.

I got a chance to spend a few minutes trying out the game's new AH-64D Apache Longbow gunship (the game also lets you play as a gunner for a UH-60 Black Hawk.) The controls were stripped down quite a bit, but still challenging enough to keep things interesting.

We were also told that online gameplay has been reinvented, but the developers declined to go into how that had been achieved.

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Raishi Fox

As a fan of the series since Air Combat on the PSX, I'm willing to give this one a shot, but I'm getting more and more of a bad feeling about it. It just seems like it's desperately trying to be as mainstream, typical, and cliched as possible, at the cost of everything that made the earlier games Ace Combat. I really don't care about a story by a well known military thriller author; I'd be much happier with the slightly ridiculous sci-fi-ish stories in Strangereal, with all their giant flying weapons and fortresses with tunnels conveniently large enough to fly planes through...

Here's hoping AC:AH manages to surprise me, though.