Super Huey (US Gold) Review | Zzap - Everygamegoing

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Super Huey
By U. S. Gold
Commodore 64

 
Published in Zzap #1

Superb helicopter flight simulator

Super Huey

'Oh no. Not another flight simulator', I thought. And I was right - this isn't just another flight simulator. It's a superb one. In which the thrill of flying low over the landscape at high speeds in a helicopter is brought to your screens with startling realism.

Personally, I don't like flight simulators much. But this one, from the author of such classics as Forbidden Forest and Aztec Challenge, has changed all that.

You control a Huey UH-1X - an experimental high performance helicopter, and there are four assignments to attempt (see panel).

Actually, flying the UH-1X takes patience and time to perfect. Flying is mainly via the joystick, with the keyboard used for on-board computer commands. The computer has a large range of functions, 29 in all. These include various gauges and indicators, a compass, radar, and other very necessary functions. The function keys turn on the computer, start and cut the engine, and engage the rotor.

Basically, there are two modes of joystick control: cyclic (fire button not depressed) and collective (fire button held down).

In cyclic mode, the joystick responds almost like a normal helicopter control stick, giving helicopter movement in one plane (forwards, backwards, banking right and left, and actual turning right and left of the helicopter - yawing).

In collective mode, the joystick gives up/down thrust and control of throttle for speed. Flitting between the two proves no problem, and is certainly easier than using two joysticks.

Once familiar with the Huey, landing (for refuelling, emergency or otherwise) can be performed with ease, and you'll soon find yourself executing more complex manoeuvres.

Flying low and hard over the ground gives an impressive view of a speeding landscape as trees and houses pass beneath. This is a very strong point about the game's graphics, and something that a lot of flight simulators fall down on.

The cockpit itself is graphically effective, and a nice touch is the instrumentation coming alive on powering up the helicopter. The title screen at the beginning is outstanding. 3D credits float around the screen to the sound of some excellent backing music, and the bit where Paul Norman's name flies like a helicopter across the screen... wicked!

The sound of the Huey's rotors in motion is brilliant, giving a very effective recreation of a helicopter in flight. Other sound effects too are very good.

The instructions with Super Huey are excellent. They give a rundown of the Huey itself (plus references for further reading), a summary on how to fly a helicopter, and step-by-step instructions on flying the UH-1X. Also, a complete list of the instruments is given and the description and function of each is noted.

The latter two are definitely worth reading, as they really do prove to be an aid when flying. The only annoying point about the instructions is that there isn't enough depth on the assignments.

GP

This, to me, is undoubtedly one of the best flight simulations on the C64, for under £30. Control of the UH-1X is extremely realistic, and there're plenty of things to do once you've learnt how to fly. The effect on take off will bring back memories to those who've experienced this form of flight before - a few stomachs might bring back something too.

JR

Instant addiction with this superb and novel flight simulator. Flying a helicopter, I found, is a lot easier than flying an aeroplane, and more controllable too. After only a few minutes I was having an absolutely exhilarating flight over an extremely realistic 3D landscape. With different missions and, my favourite, a combat mode, all I can say is watch out Airwolf, I'm coming to get you.

BW

Like all flight simulators, this may not have universal appeal because it is so complicated. It does have some wonderful action sequences, though, and blasting other choppers is a real feat in itself. The flying feeling is well done, particularly when you get close to the ground and the trees whizz by you at speed. The choice of missions also adds to the fun and suits both those who like killing things and those who like saving them.

Verdict

Presentation 86%
Excellent instruction booklet except inadequate info on missions.

Originality 72%
New approach to flight simulation.

Graphics 87%
The 3D flying effects are superb.

Hookability 82%
Suprisingly easy to get addicted.

Sound 78%
Excellent realistic helicopter noises and a great tune.

Lastability 92%
Four separate missions, and a massive landscape to explore.

Value For Money 87%
One of the cheapest flight simulators around. A great buy.

GP