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Author Topic: Over G Fighters  (Read 2454 times)
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Bullwinkle
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« on: June 28, 2006, 10:58:08 PM »

Anyone play this yet?  It was released today.  I have an unopened copy on my shelf, but finances won't let me be the ginea pig on this one, sorry, gang.

I'm hearing very mixed things on the GameFAQs board.
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2006, 11:30:46 PM »

I read some of the feedback about the game on the GameFAQs messageboards. Good god, the place is a cesspool of idiots and smacktalking kids, most of which don't even own the game. It's hard to gauge if the game is really any good.

I am very interested in the game as well. If I can pick up a copy tonight, then I will "take one for the team", try it out, and post impressions here later. From the few bits of useful information on GameFAQs, the game seems like a poor man's Ace Combat that doesn't look dramatically better than a PS2 game and is not quite as arcadey as AC. I like the fact that you can taxi the planes on the runway. Plus it seems more realistic in that air to air combat is predominantly missile exchanges at long range.
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« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2006, 12:34:15 AM »

It's fun so far.  I'm having a hard time judging when to break to avoid missle launches.  Only played 3-4 missions so far, got the F-16C and A-10 unlocked.

I really wish I had a joystick, but the controls aren't horrible.  I also wish the mp had some more modes to it, but I think it will be fun with friends regardless.

More info as I get more time in the game.  I also picked up titan quest which is currently distracting me.
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« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2006, 03:56:21 AM »

I need to organize my thoughts more, but my initial impressions are pretty negative.  Here are my whiney complaints so far:

-The interface is often maddening.  It literally looks like something out of a PS1 game, maybe PS2.  I think the font is very similar to Ring of Red which is why I think that.  In any case, things like how to escape from replay mode and how to select a mission within each scenario are not entirely obvious.  I played the same mission three times over trying to figure out where I went wrong thanks to that last part.  Replay mode happens at the end of every mission.  It has a key on the bottom telling you what buttons do what.  No exit button though.  To exit you have to pause the game, select "End game", get through a warning about how you need to save or you'll lose progress, and wonder the entire time what's so awful about just sending you back to select your next mission.

-Worst voice acting in history.  You hear this a lot about certain games, but I think this one may take the cake.  Listen to the "Russian" guy, which sounds like some Ubisoft tester trying to make a Russian accent at his desk.  I thought it couldn't get worse until I heard the English guy.  And that's only in the pre-mission briefings.  Once you're in the game, there's a fifth grade theater production going on in your headset and no way to turn it off.  The story is bare bones to say the least, so far.  Wasn't expecting much there though, so no complaints.  Some generic UN-analog guy comes on and tells you that "certain factions" are threatening the unified world vision, so you better blow them up.  Right on.

-Missions are often ridiculously easy.  I've done maybe ten sorties.  At least three of them took me less than a minute.  Literally.  It tells you how long you've spent in a mission at the end so I'm not exaggerating.  It drops you in, you fire a missile, change your target, fire a missle, and "MISSION COMPLETED!!!"  I'm playing on "expert" with "real" controls, by the way.  

-On the opposite end of the spectrum, if the enemy does get a missile off, it seems impossible to avoid.  So far it's been very rare that they've even got radar lock on me, let alone fire at me.  But there was one mission that I just finally passed before quitting where an enemy would pop in, fire almost immediately, and I simply could not avoid the missile no matter how hard I pulled a turn or when I dumped chaff/flares.  I tried at least five times before I ended up simply dumping my speed at the start of the mission so I had some distance to missile him when he finally "spawned".  I imagine this has to do with my difficulty setting and inexperience though. The manual has some suggestions about when to break and when to use or not use afterburners, but a lot of it doesn't seem to apply if the missile is approaching from the front.

-Graphics are really not up to snuff.  You can pretty much tell that they intended this for the original Xbox, and I'm being generous there.  Get close to anything and you'll see the blocky, overly stretched textures.  Even the planes seem like they're being stingy.  The terrain is nothing to write home about in the least.  Explosions seem pretty flat and non-detailed.  There are some nice effects from the heat of afterburners and a nice air visual effect over your wings when you pull hard G manuevers, but you hardly ever see it.

-Controlling with a gamepad is more difficult then I thought.  I will probably switch to Arcade controls tomorrow and see how that feels.  On the plus side here, the planes that you would expect to feel different really do, like the F15 Eagle vs. the A10 Warthog.  On the head-scratcher side, I'm not sure why you would ever use the F/A-18 Hornet.  According to the stats it's a poor man's Falcon, but you get it after the Falcon.  I don't get it.  

I'm going to keep trying out options and seeing if the missions get better.  Apparently at some point you have to start doing manual landings, but most missions don't even feature manual take-offs at this point.
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« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2006, 04:53:50 AM »

Thanks, Kathode (he said cross-postingly).

I guess the annoying pushy sales guy at Gamestop that told me all the reviews his "friend" had seen were really positive didn't know what he was talking about. Huh.*

Good thing I got it at Best Buy, and it's still unopened. Still going to wait for a legit review, then back it goes.

*For the record, I informed him that there was only one review out there, from Japan, and it wasn't very positive. He said, "Japan? Figures."
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Jarrodhk
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« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2006, 05:31:08 AM »

I've still been having fun.  Some of the difficulty dodging missles seems to be based on your 'evasion' rating.  Of course the only way to get it to raise is to sucessfully dodge missles.  Go figure.

Last mission I ran before quitting for the night I managed to dodge 3 missles.  I think I'm starting to get the hang of it, at least in a F-16.

Played some multiplayer arena mode with papasmurff.  Not too bad once we started figuring it out a bit more.  I imagine things will be better with more of a selection of planes.

Basically there are 4 two man teams, each team gets a land base and a carrier group.  You win by taking out the other teams bases and planes.  One plus is that you can set up with yourself and a friend vs. 3 teams of ai.

Looking forward to getting some more time in with that.

Overall I'm happy with the game so far... I can already tell that I've improved a bit from when I started the night.  Avoiding missles is hard though.
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« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2006, 05:33:49 AM »

Quote from: "kathode"
On the head-scratcher side, I'm not sure why you would ever use the F/A-18 Hornet.  According to the stats it's a poor man's Falcon, but you get it after the Falcon.  I don't get it.  


That's gotta be an in game mistake... in real life, the Hornet stomps all over the Falcon in damn near every engagement possible.

gellar
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2006, 07:01:49 AM »

I pretty much agree with Kathode. The menus are terrible. The voice acting is horrific. The terrain looks flat and boring. PS2 quality textures. The planes look nice I suppose, but they could have been a lot more detailed. There is no sense of speed. Starting out in the F-14 Tomcat was a bad game decision because the thing handles like a 747 with a slow turn radius.

There are some things I do like. The cockpit view is nice with working gauges and rear-view mirrors. The ability to do visual panning with the right analog stick is a nice touch. Something you normally see in PC flight sims. The weapon loadouts are realistic compared to the Ace Combat method where your plane carries a ridiculous number of missiles.

It seems like Taito set out to make a game that was more in line with serious PC flight sims, which I commend them on. At least they tried to avoid making a carbon copy ripoff of Ace Combat. However, the game needed a ton more polish. The overall look is so uninspired it totally destroys the few decent things it gets right.

Sadly, the game is a ripoff at $60. I would wait until the game is in the bargain bin in 6 months at a more appropriate price-- like $30.
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Thin_J
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« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2006, 07:40:44 AM »

I'm enjoying it so far, but it has some extremely frustrating moments if you don't pick exactly the right aircraft. The last mission in the third scenario was almost impossible with the F18, but as soon as I switched to the F16 I ran straight through it, only having to dodge one or two missiles the whole way.

With the F18 I get inundated with missiles from even the lowliest of enemies, like helicopters, and there's so many chasing me I can't dodge them all.

I will say that I don't agree that missles are all that hard to dodge, it just depends on which jet you're in. I find that I dodge far, *far* more than hit me when I fly the F16, but if I fly the F15 (which is supposed to be faster and more manuverable) it's like I'm suddenly a missile magnet.

If I have a serious complaint it's that the longer missions have no checkpoints, followed by the fact that it's seemingly impossible to unlock all the jets just playing through because you have to play certain missions to get them, but if you don't play the right ones they disappear, and you're just stuck without that jet to use for the rest of the game. I'd imagine this is supposed to encourage replay, but all it really does is piss me off. I don't want to have to play through again to earn the F2A. I want it as an option as soon as I've beaten the scenario that it supposedly unlocks in. Unfortunately it doesn't work that way.

I'd say it's worth about $30, but don't buy it at $60. Learn from the mistakes of others, like me.
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« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2006, 02:02:07 PM »

Quote from: "gellar"
Quote from: "kathode"
On the head-scratcher side, I'm not sure why you would ever use the F/A-18 Hornet.  According to the stats it's a poor man's Falcon, but you get it after the Falcon.  I don't get it.  


That's gotta be an in game mistake... in real life, the Hornet stomps all over the Falcon in damn near every engagement possible.

gellar


The Hornet is a better dog fighter from the games I have played in the past due to its quick turning ability. You can go head-to-head and then turn quicker than the other guy.

I don't know if that would be true in real life, but I do know the Hornet is praised for its turning ability.
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« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2006, 02:40:58 PM »

Quote
I don't know if that would be true in real life, but I do know the Hornet is praised for its turning ability.

I thought the Hornet was basically a pig in the sky.  The F-16 was always the best turning/quickest fighter around in my recollections.  Unless the Super Hornets changed this.  The Hornets were always the jack of all trades, good at nothing type fighters, that came from a bloated budget.  Never an impressive plane.
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« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2006, 03:21:09 PM »

So are they Hornets or Super Hornets?
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gellar
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« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2006, 04:19:08 PM »

Quote from: "Scott"
Quote
I don't know if that would be true in real life, but I do know the Hornet is praised for its turning ability.

I thought the Hornet was basically a pig in the sky.  The F-16 was always the best turning/quickest fighter around in my recollections.  Unless the Super Hornets changed this.  The Hornets were always the jack of all trades, good at nothing type fighters, that came from a bloated budget.  Never an impressive plane.


A good buddy of mine flies a Hornet (not sure if its a Super Hornet or not) and he'd probably kill you if you said that to him in person. slywink

gellar
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« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2006, 05:08:56 PM »

My theory is that in the end... I'll get a couple weeks of play out of this at least, and worst case, I'll trade it in towards chromehounds.

Really want to get some more multiplayer in, the arena seems like a good bit of fun.
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kathode
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« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2006, 05:17:05 PM »

It's the F/A-18C.  I unlocked another version this morning - I think it was the E, but it was marked as a practice aircraft only.  I played with the Hornet just for kicks this morning and it seemed more manueverable than the F16 but it's tough to tell.

After playing a bit this morning it's more enjoyable to me, though I'm still plagued by frustrations.  I managed to dodge some missiles and get in situations that required dogfights instead of just firing missiles and having it end.  I believe my problem earlier was that I was trying to use afterburners to get away from a heat-seeking missile.  That's a bad idea.  

I made it to the end of the third scenario but I'm being stymied by the interface again.  For instance, how the hell do I change to my last two missiles on my F15?  I enter the mission with six missiles, four of one type and two of another.  But once I'm out of the first four, it just says "weapon out" whenever I fire, and I can only seem to switch between the empty missile mode and NAV mode which doesn't use weapons.  Very frustrating.  

One more thing that frustrates me - the default loadouts usually only give you just enough weapons to take out all your prime targets and no more.  So if you've got six prime targets, you'll get six missiles by default.  The problem is that a lot of missions have lots of other targets to take out, and because the primes sometime spawn in later, it can get confusing as to what you're supposed to take out.  I am pretty much useless with the gun except on the biggest, slowest targets, and the fighters other than the A10 use up all their gun ammo in mere seconds.  You can add more missiles and bombs (though it increases your weight) so I just find myself doing that by default.

Also, is it just me or is the manual totally wrong?  The manual indicates that the triggers control the rudder, but as far as I can tell that's a complete lie.  Another thing about the manual - each aircraft has a "special ability" that you engage by hitting left on the D-pad.  For the F15, it's a "super search" mode.  It would be really nice if there was any description at all about what Super Search does.  There isn't, as far as I can tell.

I'm probably going to try and start over tonight at beginner difficulty and arcade controls and see how much of a difference it makes.
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« Reply #15 on: June 29, 2006, 06:07:02 PM »

That's odd. For me the triggers control the rudders, allowing me to slide left/right without having to turn and bank.
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« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2006, 06:12:08 PM »

Interesting!  I'll have to check my control settings.  Maybe I changed it to arcade and forgot about it.
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Jarrodhk
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« Reply #17 on: June 29, 2006, 07:31:41 PM »

As far as the weapon switching goes.. .you probably have it set to automatically choose the right weapon for the range.  I was confused for a while as well when I could never access the shorter ranged weapons after expending my medium or long range ones.  Turns out it won't switch until you get within range of the missles.

This is with the autoselect for weapons on.  I think I'm going to change it to manual control tonight when playing.

Edit: also with regards to ammo, in the campaign missions it seems to restock your missles after a certain amount of time.  Hard to tell since most of the missons tend to be over so quickly.
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« Reply #18 on: June 29, 2006, 09:06:50 PM »

For the rudder controls: Indeed, being in arcade mode completely disables using them. It also makes it impossible to do a barrel roll or any number of other things a plane could do, because it automatically levels you off when you let go of the stick and limits your roll to about half, so it lets you turn till one win is pointed at the ground and then the game just stops you there.

And defnitely switch away from that automatic weapon choosing thing. The game gets easier and infinitely more playable when you can actually choose your own freakin weapons.

I think Taito has a really great game hidden in here somewhere, but they missed the opportunity with a mostly bad interface and some really screwed up decisions reguarding the gameplay.

If you're in Arcade Mode, definitely switch it off. It pretty much ruins the game as far as I'm concerned.
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kathode
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« Reply #19 on: June 30, 2006, 12:56:24 PM »

Yep, you were right about weapon switching and the arcade controls.  Arcade controls seem much much worse than "real".  I don't even remember changing it, but switching those back made the game much better for me.  Now it really just boils down to all the missions being roughly the same.  I did the first stealth fighter mission last night and that was ok except for it yelling "WARNING WARNING" at me seemingly at random.  Then the game locked up right when I finished the mission.  Sigh.
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« Reply #20 on: June 30, 2006, 07:00:27 PM »

It really seems as though this game is one that grows on you over time.  I've been enjoying a bit more as I play.  Arena mode is fairly fun, although the AI is shall we say, lacking in agressiveness if you play co-op style.  

If I see you on tonight/soon I'll shoot you an invite kathode.  I'd like to try the mode against more intelligent foes, but still not random players.
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« Reply #21 on: July 03, 2006, 06:48:30 PM »

Okay, I've had more time with the game and I think it's a lot better than my initial impressions would suggest.

One thing this game is not is a clone of the Ace Combat series. Over G Fighters has more of a PC flight sim feel to it. Air to air combat is mainly missile engagements at long range, which is more realistic. Since weapons loadouts are realistic, it introduces a lot more tactical decisionmaking in terms of what targets to take out. You can't destroy everything, a la Ace Combat and its near limitless supply of missiles. Also, in the preflight setup you need to really think about what combinations of weaponry to load. Another important aspect is that you really have to rely on your wingman now, especially if you run out of missiles or bomb but still have primary targets to take out. The wingman command system is pretty simplistic but it's important.

The graphics have grown on me. The ground textures still look terrible at low altitude which is a shame since the ground attack missions are mostly played at low altitude, particularly if you fly the A-10. However, at higher altitude, the ground textures looks decent. I really like the graphics during the mission replay footage. The planes do look great and there are lots of nice little details-- wingtip contrails, flaps opening and closing, heat shimmer from the engines, accurate loadouts on the weapons pylons when they are launched, accurate engine sounds (particularly the drone of the A-10 engines).

I love the A-10 missions in particular. I've seen and heard a real A-10 fire it's tank busting gatling gun and it's portrayed accurately in the game. The sound is right on, and you even see the puffs of smoke when the gun is fired.

There are still some negatives to the game though.
-Mission length varies wildly. I've completed air to air engagements that lasted only a few minutes and others that took 10 minutes. Same with ground attack missions. Some are ridiculously short while others take a long time. There doesn't seem to be any pattern based on difficulty either.
-The AI is pretty brain dead. On one ground attack mission, there were several Hind-D helicopters literally hovering high above ground just waiting for me to shoot down. I still have not figured out the technique of missile evasion so I either get shot down right away or I shoot the enemy planes down right away. Enemy bombers just kind of loiter in the area flying in big lazy circles waiting to get blown out of the sky.
-The voice acting is still abysmal, especially the wingmen.
-The game crashes on occasion when completing a mission, but before you can save the game.
-The targeting system seems flaky. It doesn't always target the enemy I want switch.
-Missile evasion seems ridiculously hard, although I could simply be lame. :o
-The sensation of speed still seems to be off. The planes feel like they fly too slow, although during the replay mode, it looks fine.

The bottom line is that the game is still not worth $60. However, at $30 or $40 it's a decent game if you are into PC style flight sims. Granted, it isn't as full featured or sophisticated as a dedicated PC flight sim, it does have a similar feel. The game reminds me a little of Jane's USAF from EA for those who know flight sims. Just don't expect an Ace Combat clone.
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« Reply #22 on: July 04, 2006, 04:32:49 PM »

Question: How do I land during a mission?  Every single mission gives me an x0 for landings, but as soon as I kill the targets it ends with no chance to land.  I do have it set for "manual" landings.

I finished the scenario mode last night.  The rankings for each mission seem almost random.  I'll drop in, kill the targets with no weapons wasted, finish the mission, and end up with a C.  What the hell?  Also I apparently missed my chance to unlock the raptor so now if I want to try it I have to go all the way back through the scenarios.  I think this is going back tomorrow for Middle Earth 2.
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« Reply #23 on: July 15, 2006, 04:29:13 AM »

Ooooookay....I'm about 6 missions in (received the game today for review) and I have to admit that I'm pretty underwhelmed.  Tell me it gets better and I'm not just setting myself up for 75 missions of pain prior to review?
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« Reply #24 on: July 15, 2006, 09:14:07 AM »

It will kinda grow on you, then again i have pretty much stopped the solo player and have just been playing challenge or arena with Jarrodhk.
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« Reply #25 on: July 15, 2006, 10:10:56 AM »

Make sure first thing you do is change the controls to 'real'  I have no idea who would think the arcade controls are fun.  Also switching your weapons selection to manual is a really good idea as well.

After that, give you stats a bit of time to level up.  A 100+ hit rating goes a long way torward getting them before they get you.  

One of these days I might actually get my evasion stat up to something reasonable.
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