Immelmann your way to victory in Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol for iOS

After check­ing out Pock­etTactic’s piece on the lim­ited (to Canada) release of a new Sid Mei­er game, I thought I’d take a little time tonight and check out Sid Mei­er­’s Ace Patrol for iOS, espe­cially there’s not a lot of game info either on 2K’s page (they’re the pub­lish­er) nor on Fire­Ax­is’s page (they’re the developer).

Basic­ally Ace Patrol is a turn based World War I air com­bat game — in the style of the old Avalon Hill games from late in the last cen­tury. You move your air­craft a hex or two at a time dur­ing your turn, maybe shoot­ing, and then your oppon­ent does the same.

Actu­ally Ace Patrol kinda reminds me of Rich­thofen’s War in some of the mis­sions and turn mech­an­ics.

Unlike Richtofen’s War, turn pro­gress hap­pens much quick­er with mis­sions unfold­ing in a cam­paign sequence mir­ror­ing major battles of The Great War.

I’m not going to write a full-up review as the world-wide release of the game does­n’t hap­pen until May 9th. For some reas­on, the Canada iTunes store was selec­ted to test-launch the title so is avail­able there cur­rently. So I’ll  just touch on a few of the things I found inter­est­ing about my brief play with the game.

  • Jaunty music — I rather liked the soundtrack. Cool music and, if you stay on the store or oth­er stat­ic menus, you hear some sort of avi­ation back­ground chat­ter and noise after the music ends.
  • Good graph­ics — the air­craft are kinda car­toony, but over­all it works. The map is rendered nicely and the anim­a­tions are pretty smooth.
  • User Inter­face — the 3d rota­tion around your air­craft and the battle is intu­it­ive and essen­tial to under­stand­ing what’s hap­pen­ing in the fly­ing furball of com­bat.
  • Four nations and cam­paigns — An abridged Brit­ish cam­paign comes free with the game. The com­plete Brit­ish cam­paign and three oth­ers are avail­able as in-app pur­chases.
  • The turn-based move­ment mech­an­ic forces you to think a few turns ahead and attempt to anti­cip­ate the flow of battle.
  • Single and multi-play­er through turn han­doff or loc­al net­work play.

So yeah, to sum­mar­ize, Ace Patrol is fun, and yeah, I’ll be play­ing it quite a bit more, and per­haps invest­ing in some of the addi­tion­al con­tent through the in-app pur­chases.

Whoops! Almost for­got the price break­down of  some of the in-app pur­chases, fol­lowed by a cool game­play video ( 20+ minutes!)


Published by Brad Grier geek.hack