REVIEW | Comanche is just another helicopter shooter

Games about becoming the pilot of airships are not something very recent. Since the 80’s with classics like Asteroids, River Raid and other titles, the players were given the opportunity to become professional pilots and hone their skills in the digital battlefield.

From that time to nowadays, what has changed is the technology used because, in terms of gameplay, everything continues the same: you control, you pilot, you shoot, and you destroy stuff. That’s it.

But that doesn’t mean that games of this genre are old-fashioned or boring. Comanche, the most recent entry in this category of “pilot simulators”, packs a good amount of action while presenting a decent (but never astounding) gameplay for the player.

I have received a code of Comanche for PC from Terminals and, after piloting my awesome war helicopter for a couple of days, I present a full review of the game with my thoughts and opinions about the title.

Get in the chooper!!!

After a brief tutorial on how to manuever and control the helicopter and use its main weapons, Comanche throws you right into the action in the first mission. To create a more realistic scenario, you will not be shooting down enemies right away.

First, you will have to listen to a long (and a little tedius) narration about the mission. Considering that objective markers and annotations will always display on screen and tell you what you must do, you can just skip the mission brief enterily.

The game missions offer single and multiplayer options where you and your teammates must either attack or defend some important buildings on the ground using your assorted guns and missiles.

The gameplay runs fine (and without any innovation, actually), but running in a old version of Unreal Engine makes the visuals of Comanche look like a tech demo of an 3D benchmarking.

Besides, the two arenas are very unappealing: a generic jungle and a snowy military base, that look like levels from any other action game. The real problem is that both scenarios are bordered on all sides by sheer cliffs that are somehow too high for you to fly over.

The best option to not get frustraded by the helicopter controls is to set control configuration to “Arcade mode”, since the “simulator-level difficulty” makes your aircraft smash into rocks like a fat fly.

One (if not the only one) of the best features of Comanche is the ability that at any time your big helicopter can give birth to a much smaller helicopter, which can be used to infiltrate buildings.

In these interior sections you just have to gun down static human soldiers while searching for glowing red terminals to hack, opening up doors back outside so that your parent helicopter can progress through the level. Unfortunetaly, this mechanic is so underdeveloped that it just becomes a boring side activity.

In terms of combat the player has two options: point one of your two crosshairs over an enemy to either strafe them with machine gun fire or pepper them with missiles.

There are sometimes that Comanche really feels like an action movie when the screen is lit with several enemies to take down but, nevertheless there are some moments when the game seems trying to avoid surprising the player with something they haven’t seen before. It is almost tangable the sense that the gameplay could be a lot better, but the developers just didn’t take the risk.

Alfa-Bravo going down!

Since Comanche’s multiplayer mode does not offer too much innovation or fun, you will pass most of your time piloting your helicopter through the singleplayer campaing. Nevertheless, looking from afar, Comanche still looks like a game from the 1990’s with a simple background mission and boring objectives.

Don’t get me wrong: the action is still here when you can shoot everywhere with your machine gun or missiles, but the element of entertainement is missing. The helicopter movement is not responsive, the enemies AI is cluncky and, in general, Comanche feels like a missing opportunity to revigorize this game genre.

Final opinion: OK

By Luís Antônio Costa

O Ponto e Vírgula é uma página que pausa a rotina cotidiana para falar de tudo e mais um pouco, por Luís Antônio Costa.

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Ponto e Vírgula

Ponto e Vírgula

O Ponto e Vírgula é uma página que pausa a rotina cotidiana para falar de tudo e mais um pouco, por Luís Antônio Costa.

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