Skyfox provides us with an irresistible opportunity to resume the debate over American software versus our own home-grown games. The game comes from the Electronic Arts stable - probably America's premier games house.
Judging from the enthusiasm with which they demonstrated it at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Chicago, they obviously consider it to be pretty hot - definitely one of the best titles in their latest batch of releases.
So what is it? Basically a 3D shoot-'em-up in which you pilot the Skyfox Mach 4 Federation fighter plane, against the enemy, whose motherships are attacking Federation asteroid bases with aircraft and tanks.
The game has a tactical side as well. You must use information from a satellite-view to track the positions of the invaders and plan your attacks. All the normal flight aids you'd expect with this type of game are present: shields, scanners, radar, auto-pilot, and a thrust button. Weaponry is equally sophisticated, including guided missiles as well as normal rockets.
Graphics are superb. Highly detailed, and fast moving. This is undoubtedly a high quality game but - there is nothing new or unique about it. It may be a slightly better rendition of some of the 3D strategy shoot-'em-ups that have gone before but it is not breaking any new ground as far as granting is concerned and is not up to the high and innovative standards set by Electronic Arts in the past.
If you want a deep space shoot-'em-up with strategy thrown in then Elite has to be a much better buy. If you've already got Stellar 7, Death Star Interceptor or any one of the dozen or so rip-offs of Star Raiders, there is absolutely no reason for you to consider buying this anyway.
So where does this leave us in the debate? For my money, if this is the best that America's top games house can come up with then British software houses should take cheer. Shadowfire, StrangeLoop, Way Of The Exploding Fist and Entombed are all better games than this piece of Yanksoft.