Whirlwind Over Vietnam Page 5

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Once, I pressed “A” for autopilot, the engine started, rotar blades started spinning. I turned and watched my wingman depart, into the earth. He went straight down into terra firma and disappeared. Up boys! We need helicopters that can go UP! Holy cow.

The “accelerate mission” option failed after Mission 3. Nothing, but it would take a slow down command, like 1/4 speed. No recovery from that, you just crawl until you cave. Nice.

I tried my darndest to get past Mission 5, but failed. I put in all the Easy options, no soap. I got to the target area where we were supposed to support a LZ troop extraction, and I left it on autopilot, since the flight controls weren’t behaving at all by now. So what happens? My rotary winged bird does a pirouette in space over the LZ. Around and around, just suspended. I got nauseous from it. I exited autopilot, and immediately the aircraft crashed and all on board killed. Okay, so it was only me on board, my buddies couldn’t stand the BO apparently. But really, that stinks, and I don’t mean me.

Let’s talk about the finished product. Finished? That my friends, is a joke. This thing has more bugs than what crawls out from under a rock over moist earth in the Arizona summertime. I cannot begin to list them all. The controller menu is fraught with issues. Think you want to assign a weapons fire key to your CH joystick? Fine, but what you see in the menu says “B” key. “B”? It’s like it doesn’t see the stick, but it does. I know this because in game it worked. I already mentioned the key card omission. Terrible.

Here’s a gem. Press the “F4” or “F7” keys and you get…a code run. Outstanding. That’s the sign of a finished product. And guess what? You can’t shut it off, other than exiting the sim. Nothing like lines of code running down the screen while I’m coming in hot to a LZ for a sense of immersion. Give me a break. Strike whatever, call the inning, all the innings, and the game.

Hello?

Hello?

Conclusions

Wow on WOV. I have never said this about any simulation, until now: If it were me, I would be ashamed to have this product out there for sale and actually collect people’s money for it. It is unfinished beyond words. A typical demo is better than this. Does it have it’s good points? Sure. The potential is there, and maybe not all that far away from being realized. But for whatever reason, the decision was made to kick it out the door and call it done. It ain’t done, ain’t baked, don’t try to stick a fork in it. Will it get better with several major patches? I don’t know, after this, I can’t see the team devoting any resources to it. We shall see.

And now you know the relevance of my On the Waterfront quote. It could have been something. It could have been a simulation contender, maybe even alongside LB2 or EECH. Instead, it’s a bum.

Save your money boys and girls. I hear On the Waterfront DVD’s are on sale and Marlon delivers those lines like no one else.

Reviewer’s System Specs

  • Pentium 4, 3.4GHz
  • 2 GB DDR2 SDRAM
  • ATI X800XL video card
  • WD PATA hard drive
  • Audigy 2 sound card
  • CH Products HOTAS
  • Windows XP Home

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