Never before has combat been so fast in-your-face.
User reviews: Mixed (2,765 reviews)
Release Date: Jan 24, 2013

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Buy ACE COMBAT ASSAULT HORIZON Enhanced Edition

 

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About This Game

Developed by the Project Aces team, ACE COMBAT™ ASSAULT HORIZON intensifies the franchise, escalating combat to the next level with aircraft that are literally torn apart, spewing oil and debris across the sky. Players will engage in combat across the globe, dodging skyscrapers, and turning their enemies into fiery supersonic debris in both single player and online multiplayer. Never before has combat been so fast in-your-face.

Key Features


  • Exclusive for PC : Improved graphics (resolution up to 1900x1200p) ; online play up to 16 players and a huge bonus content pack (8 aircraft, 2 maps, 27 skins, 9 skills upgrades).
  • Dramatic realistic story line – Written by New York Times Best Seller and military author Jim DeFelice, players will experience an engaging war drama spanning real-world locations across the globe.
  • Steel carnage destruction – Incredible detail and visual reaction for every explosive attack (aircraft are shredded to pieces, enemy troops annihilated, buildings shattered, machines bleed)
  • Entirely new aircraft to pilot – Experience split-second maneuvering and positioning, pinpoint targeting, hovering attacks and other gameplay diversity through the introduction of the Attack Helicopter, Door Gunner and more
  • Revolutionary Close-range Assault system – Delivering high-speed acrobatics, dizzying one-on-one encounters, satisfying visceral low-attitude and high-flying death from above
  • ACE COMBAT™ online reinvented – Take to the skies and engage hostile forces in a variety of modes including Capital Conquest (challenge opposing teams and fight to protect or take control of famous capitals around the world)

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP , Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8 (32 or 64 bit versions, optimized for 64 bit and multicore processors )
    • Processor:Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8Ghz or AMD Athlon X2 2.4 Ghz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Nvidia GeForce 8800GT and higher ; ATI radeon HD 3850 and higher
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:16 GB HD space
    • Sound:Direct Sound Compatible
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
    • Peripherals: Mouse & keyboard, Microsoft Xbox 360® Controller for Windows® or equivalent, Logitech Rumblepad 2 USB, Logitech Dual Action. Supported Flighsticks (Thrustmaster: T.Flight Hotas X,T.16000M, T.Flight Stick X, Speedlink SL-6640 Black Widow Flightstick, Hori Flightstick EX2, Saitek Aviator for Xbox 360)
    Recommended:
    • OS:Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8 (32 or 64 bit versions, optimized for 64 bit and multicore processors )
    • Processor:Intel Core 2 Quad 2.7Ghz or better, AMD Phenom II X4 3Ghz or better
    • Memory:4 GB
    • Graphics:Nvidia GeForce 8800GT and higher ; ATI radeon HD 3850
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:20GB
    • Sound:Direct Sound Compatible
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
    • Peripherals: Mouse & keyboard, Microsoft Xbox 360® Controller for Windows® or equivalent, Logitech Rumblepad 2 USB, Logitech Dual Action. Supported Flighsticks (Thrustmaster: T.Flight Hotas X,T.16000M, T.Flight Stick X, Speedlink SL-6640 Black Widow Flightstick, Hori Flightstick EX2, Saitek Aviator for Xbox 360)
Helpful customer reviews
59 of 77 people (77%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
9.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 28
Oh, Ace Combat, why did you have to do this to me?

I'm a big fan of the series, it's always been a blast to play, and yes there were low times, but never so much as this. Now, i'm not saying that the game is 100% terrible, it DOES have it's pros, but it has many more cons. I'll list them below;

Pros:
-The plane flight mechanics feel tight and responsive, sure they're not realistic, but we're not playing Ace Combat for realism, are we? We're playing it for the fun of doing crazy air stunts and gunning down people along the way.
-The sound design is nothing spectacular, but it does it's job. The guns and the music are serviceable. Now, the old Ace Combats had some great soundtracks with some spectacularly memorable pieces. DO NOT expect those here. But, at the same time, it's not terrible.
- The planes, while not being the highest texture quality you've ever seen, are pretty damn sexy. As are some of the spark and explosion effects, it does feel good to gun down planes out of the sky and watch them burst into flames.

Cons:
- The dogfighting system. Now, this one just relies on how you feel about the system. The dogfighting system allows you to lock onto an enemy and kep on their tail while firing at them. Alternatively, enemies can also do this to you. It does allow for some pretty cinematic chases, but ultimately after about three times it's already gotten old. What it actually boils down to is this: Lock onto the enemy. Wiggle stick a bit. Fire. Move on. Find new target. Lock onto new target. Wiggle stick a bit. Fire. Move on.
It makes the game just a million times easier and means that instead of having these amazing dogfights where you're doing all these crazy stunt mid air, it just means that you see an enemy...and now he's dead.
Most of the time.
In order to combat you doing this, the game suffers from the same artificial diffficulty that a lot of plane games suffer from, whereby your target will just perpetually fly away from you. Get an enemy into your line of sight, and all of a sudden they pull up. And up. And up. And then you pull up. And up. And up. And now you're just spinning a hundred times before you can lock him into your dogfighting system. No skill needed.
The next thing that annoys me is that the enemies can also lock YOU into the DFS (dog fighting system). It seems like a good idea, having to escape them, but it just boils down to doing exactly what the enemies do to you! You're chasing someone for aaaages and then BAM you're taken right out of it, so what do you do? Pull up until you escape. Now you can continue to chase NOPE YOU'RE BACK IN IT WHOOAAA CRAZY RIGHT? PULL UP PULL UP okay we're free again, now to finally chase that NOOOOOOOPE I'M BACK ♥♥♥♥♥ES.
-The helicopter missions. They're awful. You fly around a horribly controlled helicopter, gunning down floor enemies and the occasional helicopter. That's it. The heliocopter controls terribly, as i've mentioned, and the whole missions are just uninspired. Use these boring weapons and this boring helicopter and shoot some cars. Woo. Do that multiple times throughout the game.
-The turret sequences. OH? WHAT'S THAT? YOU DIDN'T LIKE THE HELICOPTER SEQUENCES? ALRIGHT WELL TELL YA WHAT, HOW ABOUT WE TAKE OUT THE WHOLE FLYING THE HELICOPTER THING AND JUST GIVE YOU A ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ TURRET? Yeah, thanks developers. There's literally whole missions where you load in, and shoot a turret for about 20 minutes at some foot soldiers, and then move on. No variety, no challenge, no interest, nothing. Just point at people and click. You don't even get to move around on your own. Just point and click. Oh you wanna do something else? NOPE. POINT AND CLICK.
-The voice acting. It's awful. There's not much to say except that everyone is just Mr Generic McGenericson or Mrs Genericson and her Generic babies. Maybe it's not even that bad, but seriously it's so generic that I think it dulled my senses.
-The story. Spoilers, i guess, but hoestly just read any Tom Clancy novel and you've heard this story. While the game is voiced by Mr Generic Genericson, the story was written by his superhero alter ego; JERRY GENERICMAN! American hero. He's the hero we need. Other people. They're the heroes we need. Terrorists have a bad plot to blow up some people! Quick; call America! Oh no, a Generic non-american bad guy who wants to do bad stuff. WE STOPPED HIM JUST IN TIME. BUT WILL YOU MAKE IT BACK IN ONE PIECE? Yes. Roll credits.
-The AC130 missions. Just fancier disguised turret sections.

Overall this game was a huge disappointment. Are you a huge fan of the series and you're just ACHING for more? Sure, pick it up on sale and just slog your way through it. Only have a slight interest? Just don't buy it. There are plenty of other plane games that you could get that are ultimately better.
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12 of 17 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
52.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 25
Many people have heard of the Ace Combat flight arcade games, and hundreds of thousands of players around the globe are fans of the series. However, Assault Horizon was an anomaly. The game's producer, Kazutoki Kono, saw fit to try a different formula for the series, and the results were varied. I'm going to attempt an honest review with little bias from the rest of the Ace Combat series. First things first, imagine this game didn't have the "Ace Combat" name in front. Because it's not a part of the series at all. Got it? Alright.

Story: The game's story is tightly integrated with the missions, allowing for a smooth transition and preventing the player from getting lost (although it can definitely be intrusive at points). You are flying as Colonel William Bishop, a renowned fighter pilot, for Task Force 108, a multi-national task force including units from the United States, Russia, and even France. The plot is centered around Colonel Andrei Markov and his personal vendetta for revenge against the United States, as well as a rebel uprising within Russia.

Yeah, it's not anything we haven't heard before. If you've played any modern warfare shooter released in the last 5-8 years, you basically got it all. What it does do, however, is give us varied characters. To be quite honest, I loved flying alongside Russian and French pilots - they actually seemed more interesting to hear over the radio than your own American squadmates. But other than that, character interaction is really cringe-worthy and there isn't much development to speak of.

Graphics: Holy. Crap. Yeah, they're not the most beautiful thing, but Assault Horizon in 1080p at 60fps on PC is probably the greatest thing to happen from Project Aces. The aircraft are all gorgeous, with fully-modeled cockpits and animated control surfaces. Explosions are a little Michael Bay-esque, but something I will never get sick of is seeing an enemy aircraft shatter to pieces from a charged missile hit or the individual holes I create with the machine gun. The level of detail in the environment completely sucks at close-up views, but in general the game is so great to look at.

Gameplay: Obviously the meat of the game. Fair warning, I play on "Original" controls, which emulates "Normal" in older Ace Combat games. The game is set by default to "Optimum", which emulates "Novice" in the older games and makes the game a lot easier (or a lot harder, depending on your playstyle). So if you have the game and it's not controlling the way you think it should be, take a look at the control setting and see if it's this you gotta look at.

Assault Horizon's gameplay is pretty great at its best times, but really flawed at its worst. Everyone by now is aware of Dogfight Mode (DFM), which allows you to initiate a close-range chase sequence between you and one enemy aircraft. Guns are more accurate and missiles can be charged for insane accuracy and damage, but you run the risk of the enemy aircraft performing a counter-maneuver to get behind you. A lot of people claim that this is an on-rails sequence, but for the most part that isn't the case. The player still has complete control of their aircraft and must stay locked on with the enemy to keep this sequence going.

Playing with fighter aircraft is the core of the game, and it works. You can still dogfight without DFM, but DFM is unfortunately required for some boss-type enemies - these guys have plot armor and are set up to give you a cinematic experience with additional dialog, you know the drill. It definitely retracts from gameplay a little too much, especially when the game cuts away from your aircraft to give you a cinematic close-up of the aircraft being destroyed. I stated before that I loved seeing this, but not in the middle of a big dogfight with tons of other units firing on me.

Assault Horizon also introduces, for the first time, gameplay with bombers, helicopters, and a gunship to the series. However, I listed them in order from best to worst. Bombers are pretty fun to fly due to their unique weight and power, and you get to perform a strafing run with dozens of bombs at your disposal in the unfortunately single mission you get to have them. Helicopters, however, are really difficult to control and the missions designed for them are really poor - they're insanely difficult and seem to be aimed at shooting you down unless you follow a specific path. The gunship is the worst - anyone who's played an AC-130 mission in other shooters are sick of these already. The (thankfully only) one mission designed for it is enough to fit into the horror genre given its difficulty in the number of SAMs and AA guns that are trying to shoot you down. There's also two missions that are on-rails shooter sequences using a Black Hawk's machine gun, and they definitely overstay their welcome in terms of time.

There are also a few glitches you may encounter, such as enemy aircraft flying through the ground (this has been a common bug in the entire Ace Combat series) or cutting away from DFM at insane angles that you can't follow. But for the most part, thankfully the fighter/multirole missions are the core of the game and they do work, just with a few rough edges for sure.

Other: By the way, I didn't mention music or sound effects. These are gorgeous, and everyone on the Assault Horizon OST, from Rio Hamamoto to Hiroshi Okubo to Keiki Kobayashi and more, deserve insane credit. Also, be advised that there are two glaring bugs that no one has fixed since GFWL was removed: you can't rename aircraft skins or skill sets, and trying to access the leaderboards crashes the game. Additionally, it's not a CPU hog but it'll definitely tax on the processor. I can't run this game in tandem with a Skype call, otherwise it will lag every now and then. These are definitely minor things, though, so it's not too big of a problem.

Summary: Assault Horizon is definitely a flawed game but, for the most part in my opinion, it works. There are some things I didn't mention, like multiplayer (which is dead) and Air Strike Mode (which works just fine). I own the game on the PS3 and paid $60 for it, and I don't regret that at all because I felt it was worth it. Most won't, but the Steam version costs $20 when it's not on sale, and it goes on sale for $5 every now and then. So, for $20, I think it's worth a try. For $5, though, it's definitely worth it. Just remember, this ain't Ace Combat, bro.
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16 of 27 people (59%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 15
This game stole my heart. It's an in-your-face modern blockbuster fighter jet spectacle, where laws of gravity bow down to ace pilots - because ace pilots are badass, baby.

The premise/story is very corny and much of the gameplay is rail-shooting in disguise. But the disguise is so well produced that the result is a loveable game. Sound design helps this game a lot; constant radio chatter creates a good military term dropping feel and the soundscape of air combat is amazing.

I rarely say "action-packed", but this game is. It is purely fun to play, watch and listen to. Great music - a deliberately produced mix of metal and orchestral elements - plays a big role in tightening up the already over the top explosion symphony in the sky.

It's linear, it's not perfect, but it always delivers in the blockbuster-kind of way. Love it.
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16 of 27 people (59%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 10
As a first thing I have to say I didn't play any of the previous Ace Acombat games. In fact, I didn't even know they existed. There are lot of complaints that it's not true to the previous games and I guess that's true.

This is a very arcadey airplane game with a story straight out of CoD: MW or some Tom Clancy thing. Those are my guilty pleasure so that's great. Most of the game is air-to-air combat, but sometimes they're mixed with air-to-ground enemies and then there are missions where you're a helicopter gunner, helicopter pilot, AC-130 gunner, B2 bomber and there's one anti ship mission where you're flying the A-10. So pretty varied. I played it with a DS4 for most things and a mouse for the gunner missions and it controlled mostly pretty well.

+ Cheesy story where you get to save America
+ The Dog Fight Mode made the whole thing more arcadey and, for me, more fun. Some people really don't like it.
+ Plenty of aircrafts to choose from, including a F-35 with a Pac-Man skin. Because why the hell not.
+ Some of the locales are cool, like a giant battle around the Kremlin.
+ Anime skins for your aircraft. This is probably the best feature - your waifu is your co-pilot.
+ Recently moved from GFWL to Steamworks, so there are no annoyances stemming from the former.

- The helicopter controls felt somewhat weird, but I got over that.

In the end, I really enjoyed this.

rating: 2 golden sloths
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
18.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 13
i give this game two thumbs up if only i were a real pilot.
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