Dogfight! Excitement! Join and fight the good fight!
Now imagine that said in an old radio voice. And you’re in the right mindset to play Red Wings: Aces of the Sky.
Red Wings is an arcade aerial combat in the spirit of WW1. Where you play as the infamous Red Baron, or the guy on the other side trying to take him down. but in any case. you are an ace pilot. The hero of your side.
The story is surprisingly light, They are told in a comic-styled panels with a highlight-reel. combined with the oldies opera music and the theme music in combat. they really set you in the mood of WW1 oldies combat. The story set into two campaign depending on which side you play as.
The gameplay is where this game really shines. it’s a simple arcade dogfight. but has beauty in its simplicity. You play on missions where you complete certain objectives. or just shoot out all the enemies. The controls are solid. the combat system are easy to master, And the fps is smooth. with 4 skills on cooldown that you can use to turn the tide or surprise your enemies. One of the skill called Fatal Takedown is refilled by taking down your enemies. and once the skill is charged you can instantly kill a dying enemy with a headshot (no really). where it shows a quick cutscene of your pilot literally aiming, and shooting the enemy pilot with your pistol.
The missions is where the gameplay get a bit repetitive, with every mission is basically almost the same thing. kill a couple plane. kill a balloon and some enemy plane will spawn. kill the enemy plane. repeat. However… this is a game about WW1 Dogfight after all. Thankfully they also have bombing run missions to change the pace.
The game also have a sort of a skill tree. Each upgrade ranging from actual game-changing ability (such as your view no longer constricted by clouds) or just flat out bonus to your stats. You earn the skill points by stars that you earn after finishing a mission. Which could give an incentive to replay the mission to get that perfect 3-star so you can upgrade more skills. And the more you level up, the more planes you unlock. each with its own stats and look.
You can play up to two-player Co-op. sadly it’s only local co-op without any online mode.
The graphics are done in a beautiful cell-shaded 3D. the black outline of this style actually made a big difference. without this it would be almost impossible to see enemy planes and such. The terrains and ground actually looks pretty nice as well as long as you don’t look at it for too long… That is. until you’re playing the overhead camera missions.
I love the audio here, the theme can be repetitive but really set the mood, the Narrator speak in the oldies radio voice, It might not be the best but it fits the WW1 timeline.
If you’re expecting Ace Combat depth and storyline, this isn’t for you. but nevertheless. Red Wings deserved a good 7/10 score from me.