The fascination of World War II still holds strong for gamers around the globe. Codemasters is hoping to milk it for all its worth has launched Heroes of the Pacific - a WWII flight sim set in strangely enough in the pacific. But, will it make you want to scream for victory or make you want to commit hari-kari? We grab an imaginary flight suit and find out.



The game has a very arcade feel to it from the start, the menus are styled to look like war movie posters of a bygone Hollywood era and the in-game commentary is all “chocks away” kind of stuff.

There are a number of different ways a would-be flight commander can get their fix of the flying, including Instant Action, Campaign, Historical, Single Missions or the comprehensive Training levels.

On choosing one of the self-explanatory areas, gamers are presented with four difficulty levels from Rookie through to Ace. The level adjusts things like the amount of additional aid you get in-flight and how many planes you have to face. Rookies get one plane at a time in Instant Action for example, where the Ace will be swamped from the word go with enough planes to block out the sun.
Levels, although all based around air battles such Pearl Harbour, do require different planes. Heroes of the Pacific give you four classes to choose from with a total of 35 authentic military aircraft within the different classes, including the F4F Hellcat and F6F Wildcat, the SBD Dauntless, the P-40 Warhawk and the F4U Corsair.

While earlier missions don't give you a choice, later ones do, and choosing the wrong plane could cost you the level.

Not one to bulk on choice, you also get two control options - professional or arcade, there isn't much difference between the two, apart from the way the plane reacts to left and right movement (arcade turns the plane, while professional banks it).

Graphics are very good with plenty of detail on the planes and the ground as, more often that, not we found ourselves plummeting towards it. Even when there is plenty of action on the screen (according to Codemasters you can have up to 150 planes in the air, we just didn't stay alive long enough to experience it) the PlayStation 2 coped without any noticeable affects to overall performance of the game.

Verdict

If you like your flight sims, but don't have time to sit and wait for the go ahead to taxi out to the runway then Heroes of the Pacific will be right up your street.



The level of depth to the missions will keep you entertained for hours, heck even the training levels will take you a good hour or so to fix.