Prepare to strap yourself into America's hottest fighter, the F-15 Strike Eagle. MicroProse has just brought the smash PC title to the Sega Genesis, and it's a winner. This game is loaded with intense dogfights, great sound, cool action, and groovin' graphics. Climb on board and prepare to go head- to-head with some of the world's deadliest jet fighters.
Wimps Need Not Apply
This one-player flight simulator puts you in the cockpit of the awesome F-15 Strike Eagle aircraft. The game offers six intense combat missions that you can fly on any of the game's four difficulty levels -- Rookie, Pilot, Veteran, or Ace. You fly from Libya (the easiest mission) to Europe (the hairiest). Each mission has specific targets that must be destroyed, such as Enemy Camps, Radar Sites and Patrol Boats. Success earns you promotions and medals. Failure grounds you behind a desk, if you're lucky, and sticks you in a permanent holding pattern six feet under if you're not.
- When you encounter several enemy fighters at once, use your target selector to identify some of the tougher fighters, such as the MiG-29 and the Su-27. Destroy them first. It'll make your day a little easier.
- Watch your tail at all times, especially when you're about to attack a ground target.
- The enemy has a spy in the sky called the IL-76 Mainstay, which is an airborne radar unit that directs enemy fighters to you. As soon as this guy shows up on your screen, aim a missile and take him out.
Your F-l 5 is armed to the teeth with Sidewinder, AMRAAM, and Maverick Missiles, as well as a 20mm Vulcan Cannon for close combat. You'll fight some hot enemy jets, but don't be surprised if you encounter an American aircraft, such as the F-5 Tiger or the F-4 Phantom, with an enemy designation. If you do, don't hesitate to shoot.
- If you find yourself low on weapons and fuel after an intense dogfight, access your map to pinpoint the nearest friendly base. Land there to get fresh supplies and repair any damage to your aircraft.
- Watch your fuel gauge when you use your Afterburners. Afterburners consume a lot of fuel, and you wouldn't want to run out on your way home.
A Screaming Eagle
Strike Eagle's polygon-based graphics are definitely above average. The pix of the aircraft's targets are particularly sharp. Among them you see detailed SAMs, Radar Sites, and Patrol Boats. Most aircraft are accurately represented, with the exception of the American F-18 Hornet. The scrolling is a bit choppy, but you can smooth it out by reducing the graphic detail. Of course, the trade-off is a pixilated display.
Overall, Strike Eagle's sounds are good. You hear satisfactory effects that range from launching missiles to exploding targets. In addition, the music scores are catchy, varying from somber in between missions to absolutely adrenaline-pumping when you're flying your Eagle. You can also turn sound and music off, should you want to hum "Into the Wild Blue Yonder."
If you have trouble landing your Eagle, turn on your Autopilot for a picture-perfect landing.
The aircraft's controls are fairly easy to master. Even at supersonic speeds, you control everything on your fighter, with the exception of yaw and pitch rates (attack angles based on your aircraft's vertical and horizontal axes). Just the same, quick wits and reflexes, plus the ability to keep cool under pressure, are essential for survival.
Soar with the Eagles
F-15 Strike Eagle II is a challenging game that will make your palms sweat and turn your knuckles white. Put on your Genesis flight suit and come soar with the Eagles, if you dare.