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January 29, 2007
Blazing Angels Squadrons of WWII - PS3 Preview
Release Date Distributer Publisher Developer
23/3/2007UbisoftUbisoftUbisoft Romania
Offline Players Online players Price Anticipation
1-22-16$119.95

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Cities are wonderfully detailed.
Besides Namco's Ace Combat titles there really hasn't been a solid flight simulation franchise on consoles for quite some time now. Ubisoft are hoping to change that with their new World War II flight simulation Blazing Angels Squadrons of WWII, a game being developed by their Romanian studios. The title has already been released on PC, Xbox and XBox 360 in March 2006, but the additional year porting the game to Playstation 3 has allowed the developers some time to add new features into the game.

In the game you will experience the greatest air battles of World War II in famous locations from across the globe. Whether itís London, Berlin, Midway or Pearl Harbor, the player and his squadron will be tasked with turning the tide of war.

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That ship's a gonna...
The previously released version of the game included 18 missions, however Playstation 3 owners will be given two all-new missions to accomplish that take place in the North Sea and New Georgia Island in the Pacific. The PS3 game has ten new planes (three Axis, seven Allied) not seen in previous versions to keep you occupied.

Also new to the Playstation 3 version is the ability to use the Sixaxis controllers tilt mechanism to control the planes. In fact, with four alternative control configurations, Blazing Angels will take full advantage of the motion sensor/tilt feature. Players can easily maneuver the plane just by moving the controller. Arcade and simulator modes are included, for both classic control and motion-sensitive control. It will be your choice as to which control method you prefer the best.

During the game you can issue commands to AI controlled wingmen through the D-Pad. Each pilot will have their own special abilities and as you progress through the game your heroism and leadership will grow.

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Flying low above the airfield.
The developers have made plenty of other changes to the Playstation 3 version of this game. Firstly, and beside the two missions and tilt controls detailed above, the developers have reworked some of the missions to make them less linear. There will now be multiple simultaneous targets in the missions. Ubisoft Romania have also reworked some of the AI to increase the challenge slightly.

One of the most exciting prospects of this Playstation 3 title is that the developers have included not only 2-player split screen but also thirteen different online multiplayer modes for up to 16-players, including one new PS3 exclusive. Engage in head-to-head dogfights or cooperative team play between squadrons on huge maps with large formations. The new Adversarial mode allows two teams to compete for the destruction of each otherís bases in the shortest time period.

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Dogfight over gay Paris!
Blazing Angels has also undergone some significant changes in the graphical department. The water effects have been beefed up, and the explosions are now a lot more varied when they occur. The developers have also increased the variety in ground models and textures for more realism. Many of the effects have also been beefed up a little bit while Ubisoft Romania has promised that a new cockpit view will be included in the title. We must say that the XBox 360 version already looked pretty sharp with a great draw distance, plenty of explosions and effects, and frantic skies with dozens of planes weaving in between each other during massive battles - to hear that the PS3 version will be even better is fantastic news.

Audio has also undergone some major work. The developers have listened to the near universal criticism of the recorded dialogue in the XBox/PC game and totally re-scripted and re-recorded each line to improve this aspect on the PS3.

Ubisoft will be releasing Blazing Angels Squadrons of WWII to coincide with the PS3 launch in Europe and Australia on March 23rd. For flight simulation fans it looks like a solid title well worth checking out - especially with the additional content.