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  Title: AirStrike II
  Platform: PC  
  Genre: Action  
  Developer: DivoGames  
  Publisher:   DivoGames  
  ESRB Rating:   N/A  
PII 400 MHz; 128 MB RAM; OpenGL compliant card; 50 MB hard drive space.
PIII 600 MHz; 256 MB RAM; 32 MB video card.
Great graphics; diverse weapons; new semi-comic style; pure fun while it lasts.
Short; low replayability; shoddy bosses; not much of an improvement.
Final Rating:
  Learn More About our Ratings


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Written by Andrew Dagley
May 3rd, 2004

With the napalm still lingering in the air from the last fly-by, DivoGames is at it once again. This time the indie developer has brought eager gamers the sequel to one of the best shoot'em ups in recent memory [you can read Andrew's review of the original AirStrike here -Ed.]. AirStrike 2 (AS2) picks up where the last game left off, with terrorist organization N.I.T.O. apparently in ruin and the world once again safe. The sequel brings back (surprise!) N.I.T.O. for another 18, over the top, jaw-dropping missions. But while the game keeps a frantic pace throughout, it ends up feeling more like a polished AirStrike 1 than a true sequel.

Mission well done - but was that all?
Failure is not an option!
In need of repair on the helipad

Getting your hands on AS2 is as simple as its gameplay. Order it through DivoGames' website for $19.99 USD (+$10 for a copy on CD), and you'll be downloading the 26 MB game in no time. The manual is a carbon copy of the first, but it gets the job done describing the basic mechanics. As mentioned, AirStrike 2 keeps many of the same story elements from the original. N.I.T.O. makes a surprise attack on the government's most crucial spy satellite, destroying it and forcing our venerable hero to take to his helicopter once again to save the day.

AS2 now delivers with double the firepower
The N-bomb effective as always
Your commander, Snake, will offer advice

This time however there is a semblance of a back story beyond the opening cut scene. While it consists only of mild banter between your unnamed pilot and Snake, your commander, this banter leads to a series of funny exchanges stemming from what seems to be a bad translation job. Lines such as "Snake make me a bath; I'm going to stop by after I'm done" or "this is just the tip of an iceberg" reek of bad translation [someone set us up… no, I won't do it! -Ed.].

Assaulting an enemy-controlled town
Double turreted tanks and missile turrets!
Massive explosions tear asunder your foes

The most paramount issue in a game of this nature is the controls, and while AirStrike 1 had several control issues they have been ironed out of the sequel. A bug that caused the helicopter to sometimes become totally unresponsive has been squashed and the controls definitely seem refined over the original. The one thing that hasn't quite been dealt with is the lack of maneuverability of your helicopter in battle. In the first game it felt like the helicopters moved too slowly to avoid the majority of incoming fire. And while the copters here move faster, this has been somehow negated by their increased size, now around two times as big as before! AS2 also has several power-ups that affect your speed such as the returning "uranium accelerator" and the new "speed reducer". Despite this one issue, the controls for the game are tight, and you'll be shooting down the enemy in no time.


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