|System: X360, PS3, PSP, DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Dynamic Systems||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: 505 Games||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sept. 10, 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|
New aircraft are unlocked for each mission. There are no upgrades or customizing options. Machine guns are the primary weapons, but you'll also have some bombs and missiles at your disposal. These will be used to take out enemy vehicles and installations on the ground. You can experiment with different crafts in the free mode, but you will have to use the assigned craft for each mission in the main mode. Each plane has slightly different control characteristics, but the control scheme stays the same. The difference is more in the feel of the craft with some feeling tight and responsive and others loose and lumbering.
Graphically the game is at best decent. The planes look fine, but it would have been great to see some the damage. It's still nice to see details such as the smoke and effects from the wind. Things on the ground aren't much to look at, and for the most part it's something you want to avoid. Targets on the ground are easily identifiable, and that's about the best I can say about the rest of the graphics. Briefings are given before each mission, and thankfully they are fully voiced and not text-based. Each plane has its own distinct sound, recorded from the actual real-life aircraft. Musically the score is very majestic but there just isn't enough of it throughout the game, making it very obvious the audio was stolen from the console version and forced to fit.
BoP is a relatively short game, but you can probably squeeze a few more hours out of it in the two-player ad-hoc mode if you can find another flight combat enthusiast in close proximity. The overall lack of complexity and repetitive nature of the gameplay will seriously reduce the time you'll spend playing this game. It shouldn't take you longer than a weekend to win this war.
CCC Senior Writer