|System: X360, PS3, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Transmission Games||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Ubisoft||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sep. 15, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-16||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The inclusion of a few dramatic special moves punctuates the game's intentional ignorance of realism in an attempt to round out the dog fighting experience. Tailing an enemy ship in your targeting sights long enough gradually fills a meter that lets you engage the ace kill mode. This temporally zooms-in, slows down time, and gives you an opportunity to take down your opponent in a single shot targeted to a key area (pilot, engines, tail, etc.). It basically acts like a sniper rifle.
Rocketing upwards and then diving down full throttle at enemies kamikaze-style with your guns Gatling away triggers an "energy attack" that boosts your damage and affords greater protection from bomber's tail gunners. As cool as they might be, neither special maneuver is as effective as your trusty old machine guns. They take too long to setup during frenzied encounters against large volumes of enemy planes.
Heroes Over Europe has a punchy visual flair that incorporates colorful, retro-WWII propaganda and stylish static art pieces into its design. All of the game's menus are super flashy and loaded with cartoonish art, which is stimulating and amusing. While the rest of the game looks good in motion, the graphics aren't as honed as they could be. They're not necessarily ugly; they're just not that amazing. The way planes crumbled under a direct hit is certainly well-done, and the ridiculous level of visible damage your planes will sustain is cool. The rest is hit or miss.
Multiplayer modes are limited, though the dogfights and team battles for up to 16 players are still quite fun. It's satisfying taking down an enemy plane when you know there's a human cursing you out from his burning cockpit on the other end. But this doesn't negate the game's underlying issues. Had it been released a bit sooner, it might be worth recommending for a quick fix of airborne mayhem. Heroes Over Europe arguably has some high points but fails to outshine the competition.
CCC Staff Contributor