Arcade flighter Ace Combat is going mobile later this month with the iPhone and iPod Touch release of Ace Combat Xi: Skies of Incursion.

I had a chance recently to check out an early build of the game and came away impressed with its tight controls and impressive graphics.

The build I played agave me about three and a half minutes of time to shoot down enemy planes in a dogfight scenario. I'm told the full game takes place during the same timeline as the Playstation Portable's Ace Combat X, with the player taking on the role of a Falco Squadron pilot for the Federal Republic of Aurelia.

The game plays and even looks quite a bit like iPhone arcade air combat favorite, F.A.S.T., but it sounds like this game will have much more in the way of story and single-player campaign.

My time with the game did assure me that Ace Combat Xi will have tight tilt and touch controls that result in solid airplane movement. Players control the plane's movement with tilt controls, which felt very responsive in my hands. There are two settings for the controls, allowing you to add the need to worry about pitch and yaw, or just think about turning and up and down.


You can also toggle between a chase camera and a HUD view during gameplay. On screen buttons let you launch missiles, fire a gun, switch targets and hit your throttle or brake.

The throttle button boosts speed temporarily, but instead of dropping immediately, your plane drops in speed slowly, meaning that you wont have to play with your finger always on the throttle.

The planes I took on seemed relatively good at dodging mean without turning the experience into endless tail chasing, which was nice.


I also noticed that you can stall in the game, which adds a touch more realism.

The biggest question I have about the game (besides price and date) is what sort of multiplayer it will have.