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- Falcon -

Flight simulators have been around for ages and at one time they were extremely popular on home systems. One of the earlier true simulations is Falcon by spectrum holobyte, a simulation of the F-16 fighting falcon which later spawned several sequels which were incredibly ambitious but with varying levels of success. The main difference between this and other games of the time was that Falcon was very detailed in it's simulation of the plane's electronics, radars, hud's and flying characteristics.

You start the game as a 1st lieutenant and some of the earlier missions have a low degree of difficulty to get you into the game. The difficulty level indicates the number of enemy airplanes, primarily Migs, and ground missiles etc. but you can also change how realistic your plane reacts to damage and flight. For instance on the lowest settings you can land the plane by simply pointing the nose downward until you hit the ground which ofcourse would be a sure way of killing yourself. You can do some acrobatics that are actually part of some real training manouvres like a barrel roll and scissor all of which the enemy a.i. can perform as well when you are dogfighting. Obviously on high realism these things aren't easy to perform but they are explained in the 150-page manual which gives an indication of how complex the game can be.

The graphics look a bit dated by todays standards especially the ingame vector graphics as they are flat vectors and don't have things like bitmapping or lighting effects that are so common these days. When it was released they very good though and some of the still graphics are pretty impressive like the arnament selection screen and the cockpit itself is very detailed as well. The Amiga version added extra's like digitized sound and voice samples which gives it that bit of extra realism.

Personally I haven't played too many flight simulators in my time simply because they take so much time to get into for you to really get something out of it. Altough Falcon was hailed as a masterpiece of simulation it did so at the cost of complexity considering it's huge manual which you had to go through. That put off a lot of people dispite the fact that the first falcon game was actually the most tame of all the falcon simulation series, the later ones were so complex that they failed almost completely as far as sales were concerned. I recon Falcon is a very good simulation but the difficulty of it means it's mostly for enthousiasts of the genre.

Overal rating: 8/10

Erde Kaiser

This game was released for several different systems here are some notes:
Amiga Released in 1989.
The last released version but also the very best.
Others These versions are not available.
Atari ST released in 1998, graphically on par with the Amiga but lacking the sound effects.
Apple released in 1987.
DOS released in 1987, the graphics use an EGA format which wasn't very spectacular.

Date added Feb-22-2008 09:04
Name Falcon
Developer Spectrum Holobyte
Publisher Mirrorsoft
First released 1987
Genre Simulation
Sponsored links  
Download Commodore Amiga, filesize: 1039 Kb
Links
Manual Download manual , filesize: 13727 Kb
This is the fully scanned 150-page manual!
Solve / Docs No solve available
No extra docs available
 

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