The Ace Combat series has been critically acclaimed for its tight, high-flying thrills, sensational graphics, and well-thought engaging story lines and once again Namco, makers of the lovable Pac-Man, Tekken, and Ridge Racer series of games bring their take on the PSP. Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception delivers everything you want in a arcade-style action flight game with dizzying dog-fights and missions that test your skills and reflexes against deviously cunning opponents high in the unfriendly skies. The array of planes that you earn are impressive; you get the F-22 Raptor, the Su-27, A-10 Warthog, and the famous F-14. And there's even more planes to earn throughout the course of the various missions that you'll undertake such as search and destroy, escort, providing air support to ground troops and even battle against a technologically advanced futuristic fortress. These hair-raising battles will kick your adrenaline in full gear with the addition of in-game chatter between your wingmen and bogeys.
You play as the leader of a squadron against a hostile nation whose ulterior motives remain a mystery. The story is nicely put together with some excellent hand-drawn anime-style cut-scenes but doesn't have the punch of earlier installments but it's still better than nothing. That's one of the flaws in this game but it doesn't hamper the overall experience. The graphics are great on the PSP's wide screen though not as detailed as it's PS2 cousins and the games length is a little short and multi-player is kinda lukewarm but on the plus side you get branching paths and tunable aircraft depending on which order you tackle the missions which earn you new planes and parts, medals for either quickly finishing missions, gaining a certain amount of points, or for even more bravado, shooting down enemy aces Top Gun style; one of the games most exciting moments.
Overall this game is a fine example of what Namco does best: Producing games that have high standards of quality for many years and Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception is one of them with some new elements thrown into the mix. If you're looking for some high-flying action on your PSP, then there's no reason why you shouldn't pick this up. One of the best games out there.
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