NUKKLEAR / THQ Nordic
Both fighting games and flight combat games of the arcade-y persuasion used to be all the rage, back in the day. And while long-running fighting franchises have managed to regain some of their past glory, with titles like Tekken 7 and Street Fighter 5, flight combat games have seemed to fall by the wayside.
I remember playing classic helicopter games such as AH-3 Thunderstrike and Gunship! back in the days of yore. Therefore, when I’d first stumbled across an Early Access helicopter game, Comanche, on Steam, feelings of fond nostalgia washed over me. But in those games, you took the helm (or rather, flight-stick) of the popular Apache gunship instead of a Comanche.
For all of those gamers not in the know, this latest Comanche game is a direct throwback to the Comanche combat gunship franchise developed by Novalogic (now THQ Nordic), which probably hit its peak back in the 90s (the last game was Comanche 4 in 2001, however). Now, nearly two decades later, THQ Nordic, along with indie developers, NUKKLEAR, have teamed up for the latest iteration of the long-running series, simply titled Comanche.
Here’s a Steam blurb from the devs that pretty much sum the game up:
“Command the powerful Comanche helicopters in intense and thrilling dog-fights!
Delve into the evolving singleplayer campaign and make a difference in a conflict of global proportions or compete with other Comanche players from all around the world in the explosive team-based multiplayer modes. Choose from an array of Comanche and drone configurations and utilize their strengths to your tactical advantage. Experience a new era of thrilling dog-fights and stealthy drone close-quarters action.”
Like any good chopper simulator worth its salt, Comanche comes with a tutorial, which is quite involved. In fact, going through this training was often more challenging than the game’s missions themselves. Once you start to get the hang of things, however, everything clicks and you’re off to the races.
There are five Comanches models and four drones that are available during the game’s Early Access period. Each of these gunships come with their specific weapons, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. This is great news for people who like playing co-op games because each type of Comanche has a certain role to fulfill and is sure to please those who have certain playstyles in mind.
Besides the single-player content, there’s also a competitive, 4vs4, team-based multiplayer mode. This has two different flavors as of now; one called Black Box, and the other is Infiltration. In Black Box mode, your goal is to collect as many black boxes from destroyed Comanches with your drone, as you can. You can collect both enemy and friendly black boxes using your drones, so this mode can generate some seriously intense team battles in the skies.
Meanwhile, Infiltration mode combines helicopter combat and drone piloting. Your team’s objective is to either defend or infiltrate the opposing force’s base. Attackers have to place an EMP while the defender team is tasked with disarming it.
The new Comanche game is a fun throwback to the gunship sims of old, only with enhanced controls, and of course, beautiful graphics. I’m looking forward to what NUKKLEAR has in store for it once it leaves Early Access.
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