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In Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge, you'll pilot classic aircraft in a major swashbuckling adventure!
- It's the 1930s and you play a dashing air pirate named Nathan Zachary -- travel around the world with him, to solve the mystery of his friend's murder
- Pilot ten different war planes armed with everything from napalm to magnetic grapples
- Swoop high & low in search of stunt zones, where you'll uncover game secrets and weapon upgrades
- Use the environment as a weapon -- trigger landslides, collapse water towers, and shoot down bridges
- Four-person multiplayer madness as you enter dogfights with enemy aircraft
- Great for kids, too
My six years old is a budding ace on this (better than me at this point, I fear). The learning curve is perfect, with lots of encouragement, relatively frequent autosave points and a very simple UI. There's no death (pilots parachute out) and, like a good Pixar movie, the jokes work on many levels, so kids and adults alike will find it clever.
And the biggie: it's great fun, and looks amazing. The Xbox is thin on games that are appropriate for kids, and Crimson Skies is a very welcome arrival. Highly recommended....more info
- Surprisingly good port!
I thought this was going to be a disaster like Mechassault, but this game is actually MORE fun then the PC version. There are a lot more things to do, environments are a lot better looking and the turret shooting is a nice addition....more info
- Good Single Player, Great Multiplayer
For a game that has been called "The best live title" Crimson Skies has a suprisingly good story, it's set in a 1930's alternate universe, were planes are the choice method of travel, and the United States isn't very united. You play Nathan Zachary, leader of the "Fortune Hunters", a group of air-pilots seeking to gain the fortune they lost from the depression. The game also features some of the best graphics on the box, and the best water effects. Add this to your collection....more info
- My favorite Xbox title
First off if your a fan of flight sims go away, this game is for those of use who dont care about trim, landing gear and all other kinds of things that take away from action.
I first played the PC demo of this game a few years ago, while it was an ok game it was more fun online. Now that this has been revamped for the Xbox its much more fun. Sadly I haven't gone online with this game yet but its easily one of my favorite Xbox games. The Best Graphics award from X-Play is why I got this game but it turns out that I dont even notice the graphics. The game play and story keeps me drawn to the title.
I cant wait to get Xbox Live so I can get online with this game and get the downloadable content and play it online....more info
- AWESOME BUT REPETITIOUS
As this is my first experience with a flying game I found the graphics and control to be awesome. Never have I had so much in the way of all control. Usually you are confined to making someone run, jump, turn right, turn left and climb. This game allows you to fly over and around and all about.
That said I agree with other reviews. You get to feeling like you're doing the same thing over and over. You get a mission, choose a plane, shoot down some bogies while fulfilling an objective, killing this that and the other thing. Over and over without much change of pace or significant change in scenery.
Good for a first timer, but repetitious....more info
- Best action game of 2004
Would you like to shoot stuff?
Would you like to shoot stuff in a plane?
Would you like to shoot things like trains?
Would you like to play the whole game in one sitting and get severe eye strain and rattle your brains until you can't sleep for weeks and your cheeks get excederin pain as you tweak?
Cool. Me too. Maybe twice. Online is fun, too....more info
- Fast, Fun and The Thirties...
I have completed the game, and I must say, Microsoft did a really great job on this title. The controls are intuitive and easy to pick up, and they are greatly used in the dogfights and the boss fights. The boss fights are exceptionally creative, and they both require strategy, pure firepower, and air prowess. The first three boss fights are mechanized bosses, but they do have weak points that can be exploited and must be destroyed quickly. The last boss, however, is reminiscent of Ace Combat 4's final boss, but unlike Ace Combat's, this boss is moving and has varied exposed centres that must be destroyed within a few minutes (five minutes or so between major targets). Lastly, the graphics is commendable, exceeding Ace Combat's in its interactivity and simulated realism (e.g., water effects as you skim the ocean water). The exploding derigibles are also pretty cool, especially the mechanised tessla derigibles. The only con is perhaps the tunnel mission for the Lost City. More than half the time I was lost since there was no map or even some type of assistance. The multiplayer is exceptional, but I do like it on Live. Overall, this game is one of the best first party XBox games to date (luckily, no more Katujo Chojin and other miserable titles of the past). If you like Ace Combat or other games of its ilk, it will beat it!...more info
- Don't let this one FLY under your Radar...
Crimson Skies- High Road To Revenge
Before I start this review, I would like to say that I hate most flying games. Okay. This is one of the best games I've played. I didn't think much of it, as it was a gift, but this game proved me wrong. Aviation games are usually not something I even look at. This game blew me away with its graphics, gameplay, storyline, and sound. I fully recommend this to every one. On a side note, this comes with a demo of Voodoo Vince and some videos.
The only thing you can complain about is that the CG between the action isn't perfect. It is very well done CG though. Everything else is perfect by X-Box standards. The level design of this game is some of the best I've ever seen. You will love exploring the incredible world they give you. Whether it is: canyons, islands, underground cities, or above ground metropolises, you will love it all. You travel to many different worlds to play in, so it's not repetitive either. The final couple stages are put together so well, it's mind blowing. You planes are very well designed and all look very interesting.
You are Nathan Zachary of The Fortune Hunters. You live in an alternate 1930s; a world in which The Great Depression tore apart the United States. The United States has turned into many different self-governing states. Many have taken to the skies to steal and control. The game starts off with you having a gambling problem. You have lost your zeppelin and your plane. You take your plane back and work to getting your zeppelin back. As time goes on, you are asked to keep Dr. Fassenbiender's plans for a weathering machine safe. The machine could be used for many great things...or it could be used to create F-5 Tornados. Of course, someone knows about the weathering machine and you are on a chase to figure out who it is. Your story leads to many turns and twists and is very well thought out.
The music will always match the mood of what you are doing. If you are exploring canyons, you will have quiet, mysterious music playing. If you are engaging in air warfare, you will have fast paced music that gets your heart beating. The voice acting is done very well by most of the characters. Some of the characters just sound too unrealistic though. Weapon and plane sounds are done to perfection.
This is an arcade aviation game. Does that mean it's only worth a quarter to play? No. It has arcade physics. This mean you won't have you do everything perfect and the game can create some tight squeezes for you too escape. You start in Sea Haven doing missions to try to find Big John. He is the only person that knows how to fly your Zeppelin. You are in a free environment. Much like Grand Theft Auto III, you can do whatever mission you want and in whatever order you like. You will have missions where you: attack planes, use turrets, race, navigate, steal planes, and much more. You ability to use turrets or planes in most missions keeps the game interesting. Also, the variety in missions keeps the game very fun. The bosses on this game are incredible and are some of the most well thought out even compared to God of War. Unlike GOW though, there are many bosses in this game for you destroying pleasure. The Multi-Player in this game is pretty fun, but not really a major focus of the game. There is a game called Wild Chicken that is extremely fun though. You try to catch a chicken and return it to your base for points. Yeah, it's crazy, but its very fun. I haven't played online as I don't have X-Box Live.
Difficulty- 10/10 (Note- This is how much I like the difficulty)
Even on Easy you have a have some challenge. That's the way it should be. If you think that's too easy, you can try any of the other three harder difficulties. Some of the final stages are very hard and you will really feel like you accomplished something. The game is really short, and can probably be beaten in around a day of good gaming. The game will still leave you satisfied after playing it though, and that makes the game perfect.
This is one of the best games I've played in a long time. Don't just avoid it because it's an aviation game; buy it now! Really, the game is just that much fun. The single player is one of the best I've played in a long time, and the multiplayer is good fun once you're done. I recommend this to everyone....more info
- How long will it take you to break your controller?
It's a fun game. Wee, woohoo, yippee! You learn to fly the planes with the greatest of ease, and zip through the storyline. The graphics are great! Sometimes you have to replay a part 2 or 3 times to get past it. It's challenging! But then, you get to a part in the story called Soloho's Challenges (go on, google it). That is where the game ends for most people. Because suddenly, your are required to have a skill level that is totally out of line with the rest of the game - sorta like "catch this peanut, catch this peanut, STOP THESE BULLETS WITH YOUR TEETH!". After 40, 50, 60 tries, you take the disk out of the xbox, and throw it away. It'll make you angry. You will never finish it. Or if you do finish it, you'll never get that 40 hours of your life back... It's explain why such a highly rated game ended up in the $5 and under bin.
I loved it right up to the moment I hated it. And then I hated it enough to pitch out. I'm not sadistic enough to trade this piece of junk in... If you must play it, try to borrow it. Most people who own it will say "keep it". ...more info
- Just Plane Fun
Crimson Skies is lots of fun. Especially if you like having multiplayer deathmatches with three of your friends, and when they aren't around to shoot down, you can always switch over to xbox live or single-player campaign mode. The levels all give you plenty of nooks and crannies to explore, discover hidden treasures, and play challenging mini-games with varying degrees of difficulty. The story line isn't important, so you'll forgive its occasional shortcomings (the end was too abrupt). There are downloadable maps and airplanes, but for some reason, the game doesn't let you fly the downloaded planes in split-screen off-line multiplayer, nor in campaign mode. Also, online multiplayer allows no more than two players on the same xbox, which is kind of a drag. But despite these little problems, the game is one of the best multiplayer xbox games in stores, and it never hurts your gamer prowess to have some virtual aerial combat experience. For that, Crimson Skies is quite choice....more info
- Non stop fun
Whether you just play the single player or connect to Xbox Live, Crimson Skies is a must play. The graphics are fantastics and the gameplay is easy enough to jump right in, but difficult enough to keep you playing for hours. The dogfights on Live, however, are phenomenal. Coming around a bend to see 15 other planes fighting is just a rush. Get this game now!...more info
- XBOX ONLY! POOP!
Another great game stolen away. :( The original was a blast and a PC remake would have been fun. Now if the only thing I have to look forward to is a PC-port then I'll pass. Simple graphics and counsel converted to mouse/joystick controls take all the fun out of it.
el cheapo XBOX
Crap graphics (visually stunning, yea right, not at TV resolutions and with old hardware)
Live, pay to play? Like selling ice to Eskimoes
No custom anything, if MS didn't make it then you ain't getting it
Split screen mulitplayer is horrid for those that don't go Live. Even low video cards support multi-monitors these days how about some multi-tv/monitor support there MS?
Constant loading, with only 64mb of RAM having it load every five minutes is a pain.
I'll start buying XBOX games when they play as well as they do on a computer and are compatible with a mix of counsel and PC on the same server....more info
- Better Than Halo
I originally bought my Xbox to play Halo.... now I can honestly say that I have found an Xbox game that blows Halo away. Crimson Skies has a great story, great multiplayer and just perhaps the best overall gameplay since Myth: The Fallen Lords.
If you buy any one video game this holiday season - make it this one....more info
- good game
this is basically Rogue Squadron for the Xbox. that pretty much says it all. it is more fun than RS in parts, especially how you can go back and forth between planes, AA turrets and zeppelins. all in all, a good buy. Live play suffers from the usual complaints--not enough games even during prime time, annoying people--but so far i haven't experienced any real lag problems....more info
- refreshing to say the least
I originally bought this game because it offers two free months of xbox live with it. This alone is a great bargain if you really want to try out xbox live without purchasing the $70 kit. I began playing it, and it was a whole lotta fun. I've become extraordinarily bored by first person shooters, because it is what the Xbox library is dominated by. Everyone's making first person shooters because they saw how successful halo was...Well, here enters Crimson Skies.
It's a third person shooter in a sense. It is more a dogfighting game than a flight simulator (it hardly simulates anything close to reality, which is a good thing!). Single player consists of an almost GTA-like storyline...There's a main plot, but you can go off and do your own thing (to an extent), too. As you go along, you earn tokens, and money, which are what you need to upgrade your planes. The single player experience makes this game rent-worthy, while the multiplayer (like so many other games) is what makes this a keeper.
If you don't have xbox live yet, that's fine. The game comes with an activation code that gives you two free months. You take 5 minutes to sign up, then you're off! You pick quickmatch, which automatically searches for an open game of the type you desire. You get in, and you pick your plane. Everyone checks in, and you're now beginning your first xbox live experience. You may be playing dogfight or team dogfight (equivalent to deathmatch or team deathmatch), flag heist (capture the flag), keep away or team keep away (you grab "the booty," and everyone else tries to kill you- basically kill the carrier). Or you might be playing the best of them all...Wild Chicken. This is a game much like football, but with a chicken. You start out on your team's side, and everyone rushes to the middle of the map where there's a chicken falling from the sky. The goal is to take the chicken to the enemy's base, through a set of four goal posts. You earn seven points for every chicken-score, and 1 point for every kill. Sound fun? You have no idea.
Instead of looking just in front of, to the sides, and behind you, you have to be aware of above and below as well. While this may seem obvious, you cannot truly understand its significance until you play. Because it has a light learning curve, the game is easy to pick up. This allows it to be a great party game, or just something you play by yourself. The single player is fun, but nothing compared to multiplayer.
*For those without xbox live: the game is a lot more fun in multiplayer if you have the headset (you can purchase it alone for about $30). the headset made all the difference for me, and got me hooked on xbox live.
- Graphics...That's It
Crimson Skies is not worth a penny. While the graphics are fairly good, the game itself sucks. You never step out of the airplane and the game is difficult from the beginning. This game is unfairly difficult and will easily make even the most patient gamers frustrated. The game gets old after only a few minutes and nothing new changes in the game except locations. All missions are relatively the same and this game provides no lasting entertainment. I would highly suggest not buying this game. Believe me, this game is NOT WORTH YOUR MONEY....more info
- Please put your trays in the upright position
Well boys and girls put away your barf bags it is time to blow crap up. This game is a really smooth playing game the first night i got it i played for hours and hours. This game has it all. You can get different airplanes to keep in your "blimp" and after being a good air pirate and takeing everyones lunch money and and collecting wings you can upgrade your planes as you earn enough money and stuff. Not only do you fly planes and kill crap you can also get out of your plane and jump in gun turrets sweet sweet and more sweet. Well if you like to fly and kill junk get it....more info
- XBox Live to the fullest!!
I've got this game about a week ago! I will tell you, it's addictive, and i am referring to the online part of it. The single play is also fun, but lacks a little more to get the 5 stars. If you do not have a broadband internet conection, i do not think is worth to pay the full price for this game. The single mode acctually prepares you for the online matches, there is where all the fun is. I've spent about 7 hours playing online on one single day! Wow. Do yourself a favor, and even if you are not so sure about buying, so at least rent it. I will see you online!...more info
- Crimson Skies
I just wish they online experience was a little better. I also would love to see a multiplayer version of a modern aircraft flt sim for the Xbox that had the same dogfighting as this game...more info
- Good game, overall
This game is a lot of fun, story is fairly interesting. It tends to get repetitive in places, boss fights especially, but that isn't constant by any means, and the dogfighting is well done. The online is fairly good, not great but it will fill a few days before you set it down. Planes are interesting, characters are relatively engaging, gameplay and graphics are very polished. Overall, fairly good....more info
This game is ok single player but really shines on multiplayer with XBOX live. The maps are big and graphics are great. I've never once noticed any framerate problems which is unbelievable for such large maps and fast speeds. The new downloads take this game to a solid 5 star. I don't care much for the indoor maps like caverns and lost city. From the different maps to different planes stationary guns and secondary weapons this game rocks. For the price this game is must own....more info
- Good Free Add On To Xbox Live Package
I thought this was a good game overall but the gameplay did become repetitve in the story mode. The multiplayer is pretty good. Halo 2 is still the better game for Xbox Live.
Good Xbox Live game but not great....more info
- an overall great game for either xbox console
If only more games were like this.
Good graphics for the time. interesting story and concepts. and Great Controls. No this game isnt perfect. Like most games, there is major repetition. protect this, destroy that, pick up this. But that is everygame. This game has just enough variety. A dozen planes all upgradeable, but one. AA Guns. even trucks. Yeah there are a few things puzzling, why is the follow the leader so hard? why is the runway in front of a building you crash into. But honestly thats about it? my only two concerns, one is a level the other is negligble.
The style is very similar to SKY CAPTAIN, with Jude Law, Alternate history. and the Main character looks surprising like the Main character in UNCHARTED.
OVERALL pick up this game, you wont be dissapointed. UNLESS you expect everygame to be GTA. but there is enough variety and optional side missions to compare to that game
- Great game, great music!
Not only is this is the best game for Xbox Live! yet, but the musical score is unbelieveable - buy this game and get the soundtrack too!...more info
- Crimson Skies review
This game is one of the few flying games with great controls. This game is really one of a kind, as there are hardly any games on the market similar to this one. Both the multiplayer and singleplayer are fun. There is a nice selection of planes, each with different special attacks. The controls are fluent and easy to use. ...more info
- One of the best games ever for Xbox.
The graphics are on par with Halo(at least) and the game play is kick-ass....more info
My friend recommmended getting it after he had bought it. So I rented this game to give it a try before buying it. I was very pleased. The game is extremely fun to play. If you are looking for a flight sim, look elsewhere. This is a more arcade style game. Basically you fly missions and help people out, that will in turn, help you out in your missions. As you go, you earn money for accomplishments. You can then apply the money for upgrades to planes as you acquire them. The graphics are great, the gameplay is sometimes frantic but always fun. The controls are easy to learn and well thought out. I can't wait to buy it! Definitely recommended....more info
- Absolutely Perfect Sky Fighting Game
Wow! This game is great! I could not believe the first time I put this game in my X Box and set it off. It truly is fantastic. I first noticed the wonderful soundtrack. The music continues on, and is not abrupt, when sinister things happen. It reminds me of the background music you hear during scary movies like "Psycho" etc, when you are watching the protagonist do something he or she is not supposed to be doing.
Flying around is quite natural with the X Box controller. In fact, it reminds me of the ease of most Sim racing games. There is a bit of a learning curve learning about sighting enemies on the map, and flying around them to attack, but once you get the hang of it, you're in like Flint.
Recommended and enjoyed by my whole family, including a 5 year old. This game rocks!
MC White said: Check it out!...more info
- Gorgeous, beautiful to look at. Fun to play.
So much fun on this one. I love how the xbox controller shakes in your hand with each different type of weapon you fire, especially the large, double-barreled machine gun. The graphics are amazing as you can see your ammo trail off into the distance. There's a "Sky Captain" quality to the Chicago landscapes. I wish the people who bail out of their planes could be blasted into hamburger with the machine guns, but it's all for naught - they're impervious. Same goes for the island setting. When you fly over the surrounding water you can see whales. It would have been awesome to see their red blood mixed with the gorgeous sea after shooting at them. I agree with some who have written complaining about how easy it is to sustain damage when your aircraft is flying inside. I eventually got tired of it and entered cheat codes to make it easier. Beautiful desert scenery - many of the Southwestern vistas and canyons are amazingly reproduced....more info
- Fantastically Fun both Single and Multi Player
This aerial combat game involves an alternate universe - it's sort of like the 1930s, but with a twist. You get a lot of planes, fighting and nice graphics. Usually when we play games to review, we play them through and then are done. This is one of the few games that we loved so much that we replayed it many times.
It's sort of a swashbuckling adventure, like Indiana Jones, and the storyline really brings you along through the game. I love flying games, so it was great to have such responsive airplanes and such amazing graphics around you. When you're spinning in loops over a rippling ocean, with a gorgeous sunset overhead, it's hard to imagine anything much better.
I love the 3D strategy involved in handling attacks. I love the flying-through-canyon precise reaction flying involved. This isn't a "flight sim". You don't have to worry about flaps, landing gear, or anything else. Your ammo in your machine guns is unlimited. You just spin, fly, and shoot.
The sound is reasonably good - an action-adventure hyped theme playing that you can turn down if it's not your style. The Dames and Tough Guys all sound in style.
There are plenty of missions here to keep you entertained, and you can replay them at different difficulty levels to keep yourself challenged. Also, if you have XBox Live, you can in essence play infinitely against online players with a variety of really fun games.
Highly recommended!...more info
- The new reason to buy an x-box
Crimson skies is an EXCELLENT game. I bought an x-box to play halo and mechassault (both of which were great) If you liked those and like arcade style flying (you use combo moves to perform actual manuevers like barrell rolls etc) or just like zepplins and Pulp age planes then this is a great game for you....more info
- Crimson Skies
Xbox owners, allow me to introduce you to the game that will make you forget all about MechAssault. Mech-what? MechAssault. You know, the first-party game that kicked Xbox Live multiplayer onto your radar. Yeah, that one. Well, now you have Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge, the next Microsoft title that will turn your console online and your smack-talking into high gear.
For those of you unfamiliar with the franchise, Crimson Skies is essentially "Indiana Jones" meets aerial combat, only the alternate universe isn't overrun with Nazis but with power-hungry gangs who fly tricked-out planes and are so trigger-happy that Al Capone would blush. With creative scenarios, a focus on action and engaging characters, you'll be sure this game is headed for the silver screen. But Indiana Jones this is not, neither in medium nor in pacing, and as a result, Crimson Skies at times can feel a bit slow and imbalanced.
Part adventure and part dogfighter, Crimson Skies places you in the anti-heroic cockpit of Nathan Zachary, an air pirate who's out for revenge and, if it happens to come his way, a little fortune and glory too. Along the way, hell meet a lady (or two), discover a nature-be-damned plot against the civilized world (a la "Wild Wild West") and embark upon an intricately weaved tale of his own.
Unlike "Indiana Jones," though, Nathan takes to the skies rather than a mine cart and relies on his trusty plane-mounted artillery rather than a bullwhip. And that, my friends, is where Crimson Skies grabs you by the joystick and gets your arcade-loving heart a-fluttering. Forget about flight sims, because Crimson Skies is arcade flying at its finest. From barrel rolls and Split S's to air braking and upside-down 180s, this game would make any pilot rethink the laws of gravity. The controls are easy to both learn and master, too, which means novices and pros are separated only by their ability to plan ahead and remain dedicated to the game, not by their familiarity with the instruction manual.
The arcade goodness doesn't stop there. Unlimited primary ammo? Check. Heat-seeking and cluster-bomb secondary weapons? Check. Dozens of airborne enemies swarming at once while terrestrial turrets fire on you with unfathomable power? Check. Yes, Crimson Skies seems to have it all. But not quite.
Each "level" is a virtual landscape that encompasses some serious real estate. The first, for example, is a small but tall island where you get comfortable with looking up, down and around for enemies. The second level is a wide-open desert so expansive you'll be thankful the Xbox has a built-in hard drive. Subsequent levels include an interpretation of a 1930s tech-savvy Chicago and other era-appropriate settings, and each presents some unique expansions of the basic gameplay.
The objective in each level changes depending upon your progress in the story, but invariably each level involves completing four to six "subgoals," most of which amount to mini-games that break up the dogfighting. Several levels ask you to get out of your plane and man a turret, for example, be it to protect an illegal stash of taxis or to defend your Zeppelin "base" from incoming fighters. Other subgoals involve switching planes to complete an objective or winning a race to win cash, which, once you fly another plane and thereby "unlock" it, can be used for upgrades or to repair your current craft in mid-mission.
Yet while each of these levels has slightly different subgoals, the actual gameplay behind those subgoals remains static from level to level. A turret battle is a turret battle is a turret battle, no matter how different the aircraft you're trying to shoot down. Yes, the scenarios will literally leave you sweaty with their frantic pace, but after three or four turrets you'll play through them just to get it over with and move on to the next dogfight rather than play them for enjoyment.
In the long run, of course, that ultimately speaks to the quality of the dogfights. And there's really no other way to say it: you've never played a dogfighting game this good. There's just something about the combination of tight controls, intense speed and a fully 3D environment. Air Force Delta Storm had the speed and dimensions, but its handling was too sim-like to let you stay in "hot pursuit" for very long. Lethal Skies II had the speed and environments, too, but the AI was so challenging that the only thing in hot pursuit was your PS2 controller headed for the TV screen. Crimson Skies, though, strikes such a perfect balance of speed, control, level design and challenging-but-not-impossible AI that you truly feel like you're an alternate-1930s-universe pilot.
Still, there's nothing like knowing you're hunting (or being hunted by) a human opponent, and Crimson Skies comes complete with some outstanding split-screen, system-link and Xbox Live multiplayer options. What's interesting about the split-screen with three players, though, is that it divides the screen in thirds horizontally, which makes for great lateral visibility but horrible up-down visibility. It's a unique treatment, but I've got to question the use of this technique in a game that relies so heavily on both horizontal and vertical sighting. But naturally, if you don't play with three players total, this is a moot point entirely.
Crimson Skies has the standard Dogfight, Flag Heist (Capture the Flag) and team-based modes, but our personal favorite here at DailyGame is the hilarious and addictive "Wild Chicken." This mode is sort of like Stayaway in Midtown Madness 3 with a bit of capture-the-flag base-defending flair. None of the game modes is a stinker, and every one runs smoothly online. Even with 16 people playing at once.
One of the most comical details of "Wild Chicken" is watching the feathers fall from your newfound "wingman" and act like a contrail, and it's details like this that make Crimson Skies feel as believable as an alternate-universe-with-tricked-out-planes videogame can. From blinking landing lights and animated flaps to deformable trucks on the streets of Chicago, Crimson Skies delivers Big Time in the graphics department. For Pete's sake, how many times is an Xbox editor going to say "Best. Water. Ever."? Well, apparently one more, because this game's got it. It's also got damage-sensitive "animations" and a framerate that never wavers.
Then why, oh why, must the non-dogfighting waver as it does? This game is fun. It's a blast. I'd even say it's the most enjoyable non-FPS on Xbox Live. But its development team was apparently so focused on making an outstanding dogfighting game that the "other" gameplay elements in Crimson Skies are a step or two behind. On their own, the turret scenarios and races are just fine, but taken with the rest of the outstanding gameplay mechanics, the game can feel a bit unbalanced and slow.
But pop in another controller or log on to Xbox Live, and all those issues fade into the horizon. If you have an Xbox Live account and/or at least one friend in the world, Crimson Skies is the next great multiplayer experience on Xbox. If you're a hermit or otherwise socially challenged, the game still has something for you, with an adventuresome story and entertaining dogfights that are the stuff of arcade dreams. Just don't go into the game expecting the End All, Be All of gaming. Crimson Skies is fantastic, but it's a little gameplay balance short of legendary.