Time to go boom
Gunship! (with the exclamation mark) is the third main release in a series of helicopter simulators which began with the original Gunship
(with Sid Meier's hand clearly at work) and continued with Gunship 2000
. Like its predecessors, this is an enjoyable entry into the helicopter combat sim genre and stands as a fine game which is well worth seeking out. This one throws you into a nightmarishly plausible scenario, where World War III has broken out between NATO and Russia and charges you with the completion of a number of complex missions, where saving lives is as important as blowing stuff up. You've got a number of hi-tech choppers to try out here, including the Westland Apache and the Eurocopter Tiger, each of which is armed to the teeth with some devastating (and very satisfying) weaponry. There are also a number of different environments to explore, while you can tailor the experience to suit your needs, with newcomers to the genre able to make the game more arcade-like, and with veterans able to tweak the settings so they are highly realistic. For the most part, Gunship! is a superb combat flight sim which delivers on just about every front. It's highly accessible, thanks to the ability to play with the settings, so it should appeal to just about anyone with an interest in this sort of thing. The visuals look a little dated now but still create a strong sense of atmosphere, while the missions are exciting, strategic and challenging. All in all, a fine addition to any combat fan's collection.