Falcon 4.0: Allied Force Review

Falcon 4.0: Allied Force is the definition of depth when it comes to the interactive experience of combat flight. All declassified features of Lockheed Martin’s F-16 are fully controllable and functional, you won’t turn anything off or on that doesn’t affect some function of your jet. Your responsibilities range from controlling the flow of your fuel supply to operating realistic air-to-air and air-to-ground radar.

The scope of Allied Force extends far beyond such desired elements, requiring air traffic control commands for takeoff, landing and identifying targets through AWACS before shooting them down. Even more lifelike is the fact that you have to check in and check out with AWACS to complete a mission successfully. You’ll feel the pressure of succeeding with friendly aircraft all around you that will be in line to land in sequence right behind and in front of you after a mission. There’s a full-scale war surrounding your every move, so you’ll hear real time chatter of pilots calmly landing as well as expressing acute fear when their lives are seriously threatened in battle. There are times when you’ll hear all of this in one fell swoop, before you ever taxi onto the runway for takeoff. Every aspect of a campaign is running in real time and that’s the real beauty of Faclon. This creates more interest than any storyline due to the variety it dictates. The same thing never happens twice in any mission, so you won’t be able to adjust your strategy based on where you were last shot down.

There isn’t a respawn in this game. If you get shot down and end the mission, you’ll be put in the cockpit of the jet that was second to you in formation and so on, should you continue the mission once back at the briefing screen. Your squadron loses a plane every time you get shot down, so if you’re in a flight of four, for instance, and get killed three times, you’ll be the only friendly left flying in the area.

There is often much left to be desired from the artificial intelligence of interactive software, but Falcon has just about every AI engine that I’ve seen beat dead to rights. This combat flight simulator features what seem to be real people whom you have to go up against, giving you good reason to choose your battles. Let’s say you’ve identified hostile aircraft and are willing to follow him to make sure he never comes back, but suddenly you notice three dots on your screen as you close for the kill. Those are his wingmen and you’re about to be engaged in a four to one aerial assault. You get a warning that a missile has been launched in your direction. There is a true to life technique for dodging both air-to-air and surface-to-air missiles. If you haven’t learned those techniques, you’re about to go blind (lose all radar and heads up display function of your jet) and either eject or be blown to bits.

Flying the F-16 in Allied Force can be frustrating, but it’s one interactive software application that will make you feel as if you’ve accomplished something constructive in the free time you spend with it. The best part of the sim, the depth, can be the most frustrating, but it’s also what makes the replay value of this game nearly infinite if you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be a fighter pilot, lacking only the desire to risk your actual life.

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Dance Like You’ve Got Ham in Your Pants

This ridiculous title via the old PR copy and paste, all emphasis mine:

Data Design Interactive Signs distribution deal with Midway Games…

Stourbridge, UK, 24th June 2009. Data Design Interactive Ltd — a successful video games publisher and games developer, today announced that it has signed a deal with Midway Games Inc who will distribute DDI‘s Nintendo Wii game entitled ‘Schweineparty’ in German, Austria and Switzerland. (English version is entitled ‘Farmyard Party’)

Uwe Fuerstenberg, General Manager Midway Games GmbH, said:

“We are proud to work with Data Design Interactive on that highly enjoyable title. Schweineparty is 100% swine flu free but we are confident it will disseminate just as quickly.”

Schweineparty brings farmyard fun to the Nintendo Wii. The game has eight sporting events which are divided into four categories: all-round, speed, power, and skill. Game modes include party modes themed around event styles, single event fun and some hilarious bonus games.

The game play revolves around using a combination of the Wii Remote and Nunchuk in various ways to complete each event. The events require a combination of speed, timing and more than a little sweat!

Alongside the challenges of beating the game records and those of your friends, there are a number of new characters, bonus games and a development gallery for players to enjoy.
Based on the cornerstones of sportsmanship and competitiveness of the fun and crazy games, Schweineparty is an ideal choice for family friendly fun. Schweineparty provides an entertaining multiplayer experience (4 player mode), with colourful graphics and physically demanding gameplay.

Product Information
Release date: July
Genre: Sports / Party
No. of players: Up to 4 players
Platform: Nintendo Wii
Developer: Data Design Interactive
Publisher: Midway Games Inc

id software acquired by zenimax

Couldn’t let this go by without mention:


12:22 -!- eq_phone [eqphone@] has joined #quake
12:23 < eq_phone> What’s with the topic
12:23 <@jdk> dude
12:23 <@jdk> you didn’t hear
12:23 <@jdk> id was bought
12:24 < eq_phone> Carmack all cracked out or what
12:24 <@Crusader> he’s diving into big piles of money

12:22 -!- eq_phone [eqphone@] has joined #quake

12:23 < eq_phone> What’s with the topic

12:23 <@jdk> dude

12:23 <@jdk> you didn’t hear

12:23 <@jdk> id was bought

12:24 < eq_phone> Carmack all cracked out or what

12:24 <@Crusader> he’s diving into big piles of money

Full text of the press release detailing the transaction after the break:
Continue reading “id software acquired by zenimax”

Why You Play All Nine Innings

Friday featured not one, but two of the most embarrassing errors you’ll ever witness in baseball. Behold as these well-compensated professionals forget foundational baseball they learned in little-league. Early in the afternoon, Milton Bradley starts us off by counting to three tossing a fly ball he caught into Wrigley’s bleachers, a time-honored tradition when the half-inning ends. The only problem: it was only the second out of the inning.

Bradley forgets

For those of you still reeling from the shock of seeing what $7,000,000 gets you, savor the collapse of the New York Mets against the New York Yankees. How bad was it? Sure handed second basemen Luis Castillo dropped the 27th out of the game, and diligent Yankee base runners both scored, winning the game on their last chance.

Francisco and Luis turn 9th inning heartburn into heartache for Mets fans

There you have it, major leaguers proving that not even $22,416,666 makes you immune to mistakes.