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Not exactly an ace flyer

This is an early example of the flight sim and hails from the Microprose stable, famed for the likes of Gunship and F15 Strike Eagle and which was designed by the legendary Sid Meier, creator of Civilization. Despite these credentials though, it's a game which clearly shows its age and offers only the most limited of flying thrills. Players get to participate in a number of missions from the WWII, including the battles of Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal and Midway, dogfighting against the Japanese fighters and bombers that fill the skies. This being a truly retro flight sim, there isn't much difference between the missions and they all basically revolve around flying through the same extremely basic environments, blasting away at the occasional plane that crosses your path. There isn't much in the way of realism or detail here and the game resembles a shooter more than a sim and while it is quite fun in an old-school way, the lack of variety does ensure the game's appeal doesn't last long. Visually, Hellcat Ace is about as basic as they come, with most of the screen covered by the blue of the ocean and the rest of it taken up by the sky and your instrument panel. Enemy planes are distinctly lacking in detail and are few and far between, making dogfights a rather brief but tedious experience as you spend most of your time looking for them, rather than actually experiencing them. Sound too is restricted to a constant droning sound which soon becomes wearing, so really this is only suited to truly dedicated retro flight sim fans. Check out Ace of Aces or Aces of the Pacific for something a little more interesting.
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Hellcat Ace (pc game)
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Images gallery:

  • Got two hostiles at twelve o' clock!
  • Game cover art
  • Image extracted from gameplay video.
  • Courtesy of My Abandonware.
  • Courtesy of My Abandonware.