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Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare logo  Gamer Gold

Ever fancied playing Quantum Leap with 80 years of flight technology? Well, now is your chance to take part in the noble art of the Dogfight.

N Dogfight ow and again something is released for the Amiga that quite simply is too complicated for us mere mortals at Gamer Towers to handle. In this case it is Dogfight and with a name like that, it does not come as much of a shock to disvoer that it is the latest release from the kings, neigh gods of the simulation racket, MicroProse.
Billed as absolutely huge by their PR-type sausage Jason "Take That" Dutton, we felt that reviewing this product should be handled by someone who has both respect and experience from the flying and buying public.
So it is a great honour for me to hand you over to flight simulation’s great stunt and fighter pilot Spunky Plusfours, who we now join on the runway.

"Well hello, it is your resident fighter ace, good old spunky here, who today sits before you at the controls of one of my all time fave kits, the bally Sopworth Camel".
"Before we go any further, I should just like to say a big hello and cuddles to Ginger and Chalky who I know will be in the mess room of our club right now enjoying a bit of a tipple".
"Anyway, you join me in glorious sunshine with blue cloudless skies, so it should be a spiffing flight with some super rough and tumble against me old arch rival the baron. I shall now taxi down the tarmac and get my kite off terra firma".

Dogfight So saying, Spunky guns the engine on his beloved Sopworth and waits for the crackle of the ignition, and finally the propeller jumps into life. Minutes later, Spunky is airborne. Teeth gritted, flying helmet in place, scarf flowing and moustache perfectly groomed, Spunky launches into the best Raymond Baxter-type air show narrative:
"The Camel has the glorious distinction of having destroyed more enemy craft than any other combat plane. I myself have been responsible for a good many of them I can tell you. Developed in 1916 it is capable of 170km/h and can climb a... I say what the bally nora’s that?"
Spunky’s questions are soon answered as a glistering metallic dart booms past his wooden flying machine rocking it to its very fabric. The noise is tremendous as Spunky’s gritted teeth and steely eye turn to a look of absolute astonishment.
"What the blooming hell is that? A spaceship? What is going on air traffic control? Am is supposed to take on that wretched contraption? Where is the bloomin’ Fokkers... Don’t say El Barony is in that thing?".

Before Spunky can ask many more of the many questions that are swimming around his confused brain, he notices in his rear view mirror a rather ominous sight. Said unidentified craft is on his tail and closing at an incredible rate of knots. As Spunky attempts to outmanoeuvre the craft as only a wily fix of his calibre can, he notices something that stops him in his tracks.
"Cor blimey, that silly sausage is letting off fireworks at..."
But before he can finish this rather premature and foolish statement, three metres of the finest US hardware, the AIM-9L Sidewinder laser-guided missile, have snaked into the rump of Spunky’s ill-begotten fuselage. Then there follows a real firework display as bits of Spunky and the Camel descend earthwards to rapturous applause and cries of "Bravo!" from the ground crew.

Well, not all of Spunky has been recovered as yet, but we are reliably informed that he will live to fly another simulator soon – after all, he is only a computer-generated character and you cannot hurt them for very long.
Anyway, Spunky’s endeavours beautifully illustrate the whole concept of Dogfight, which is to allow you to engage in aerial combat in a range of jets and planes which span an era of 80 years.
The first thig to be said is that Dogfight marks a departure for MicroProse. For the first time they have swung away from the accuracy angle which they have their benchmark, and developed a more thrills-and-spills fun simulator.

Dogfight INTO ACTION
In Dogfight you are presented with three main options which decide what type of flight of fancy you are going to take part in. The first choice for you to deliberate over is whether to engage in Duel Mode. This is possibly the quickest way to get airborne and taste air Combat. In Duel Mode you are provided with a choice of six historical eras and two typical opposing craft from that time. You can for example, choose to be – like Spunky – and take on the Hun in your Sopworth Camel.
Alternatively, career forward in time and re-enact the Falkland War or the Syrian conflict in more modern jets like the Harrier or the F-16.

The next option for your perusal is the What If? mode. This option allows you to engage in combat to the death in aircraft from different times. This means you can pit your wits against a MiG-21 from the 50s in a World War II Spitfire. In all there are 12 different planes for you to experiment with and you are not just limited to a one-on-one confrontation. Once you start to get to grips with controlling the planes and gain confidence, you can take on up to five enemy craft at the same time.

The other option for you to scratch your chin over is where on earth you are going to carry out your aerial fracas. You can choose from seven different worldwide hot-spots including Vietnam, Korea and of course the hottest spottiest of them all, the Middle East.
As is that was not enough, there is yet another option which is actually the very core of Dogfight. The Mission option allows you to enact full-blown scenarios from all of the conflicts previously described.
In this option you also have the choice of deciding what type of mission to embark upon. Perhaps you would like to patrol around the Dover coast defending our shores from the might of the German Luftwaffe? Conversely you may prefer the blood and thunder of a search and destroy raid deep in the Korean jungle.

GREAT RANGE
Overall it is very hard not to be impressed with Dogfight. It is absolutely huge in proportions and initially there will be plenty to keep you occupied. With the number of missions to choose from and the variety of scenarios to enjoy, I am not sure whether you will ever need another flying game.

Graphically Dogfight is good. The planes have quite a lot of detail about them and even feature such luxuries as wing markings. The only sacrifice I noticed was in the ground detail, but on the whole this does not affect Dogfight’s playability.
On the whole the planes move accurately as you would expect them to. As usual with MicroProse, the horizontal screen updates are quick and smooth and give an impression of flight.
There are also some nice little extra touches that make Dogfight that little bit sweeter to play. For one you get more than enough external angles and zoom facilities to muck about with. On Dogfight however, you can also exercise this whim on your parachuting pilot as he floats to the ground. Another nice touch is when you fly at the sun you suffer sun blindness and the screen goes white as you lose vision. Add the customary configuration screen, the normal phone book size manual and a modem link up for head to heads, and you have quite a lot of simulator.

Dogfight may not find too many friends with the purist flight simulator club because of a few shortcuts MicroProse have taken to make it more playable. For example, the majority of jets have different head-up displays; for ease of use they have been standardised.
However, if you are not too bothered about slight artistic licence and want to enjoy a very fine flight simulator that is full to the brim with excitement and action, then Dogfight is definitely the one for you.
Simon Clays

"Gamer", Amiga Computing, Issue 66, November 1993, p.p.118-120
The dirty dozen
The Sopworth Camel
Dogfight: The Sopworth Camel Type: Single seat bi-plane, escort and light bomber.
Performance: 170Kmh/13,000ft ceiling
Weapons: Twin .303in Vickers machine guns generating 200rpm
Notes: A fearsome fighter in its day with great turning finesses and also very cheap to repair and manufacture
MkII Supermarine Spitfire
Dogfight: MkII Supermarine Spitfire Type: Single seat, single engine fixed wing fighter
Performance: 590kmh
Weapons: Eight wing mounted .303 machine guns, each capable of 1200rpm
Notes: The prototype was winner of the Schneider Trophy air race in 1929. Following typical government indecision it was not until the inevitability of war that the Spitfire went into production. Its principle role was to take out fighter escorts and it remained in production throughout the whole of World War II
The Fokker DR1
Dogfight: The Fokker DR1 Type: Single seat triplane fighter
Performance: 166kmh/ 14,000ft ceiling
Weapons: Twin .312 MG08/15 machine guns at about 600rpm
Notes: The Red Baron’s favourite plane, it has great manoeuvrability despite early setbacks.
Messerschmitt Bf109E
Dogfight: Messerschmitt Bf109E Type: Single seat, single engine fixed wing fighter
Performance: 570kmh/34,450ft ceiling
Weapons: Two wing mounted 20mm MGFF cannon and two .312in engine mounted machine guns
Notes: Having filled in a multi role in the Spanish Civil War, the 109 became immensely popular. At the outbreak of WW2 the Messerschmitt became the principle bomber support fighter. Pound for pound it matched the Spitfire and Hurricane, but was superior in the dive.
F-86 Sabre
Dogfight: F-86 Sabre Type: Single seater fighter bomber
Performance: 1,091 kmh/45,000ft ceiling
Weapons: Six M-3 machine guns at 1250rpm
Notes: Following the demise of the propeller, in 1949 the first F-86 appeared. Different to other early jets it employed swept wing technology, which allowed it cross the sound barrier. Most active in Korea, once rockets were introduced it became the first modern jet fighter
Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15
Dogfight: Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 Type: Single seat fighter
Performance: 1,075 kmh/51,000ft ceiling
Weapons: One 37mm cannon and one 23mm nose cannon
Notes: After the fall of Berlin and the captured rocket technology the race was on to develop jet fighters. The MiG-15 was flying by 1947 and saw active service in Korea. Panic set in when the MiG appeared as it used swept wing technology, and easily outclassed the straight-winged jets of the US
McDonnell Douglas F4-J Phantom II
Dogfight: McDonnell Douglas F4-J Phantom II Type: Twin seat all-weather interceptor
Performance: 1,500 kmh/60,000ft ceiling
Weapons: One 20mm Vulcan six-barrel machine gun. Four belly mounted AIM-7 Sparrow air to air missiles. Four AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missiles. 18 x 130mm Zuni rockets. Four AGM maverick ground-to-air missiles
Notes: Following the hysteria generated by the MiG-15 (normal US policy) the F-4 was introduced. Undergoing a variety of changes it gave Soviet pilots a hell of a shock in Vietnam, and even now refuses to retire from active service
MiG-21 Fishbed
Dogfight: MiG-21 Fishbed Type: Single seat daytime fighter
Performance: 2070kmh/59,050ft ceiling
Weapons: One 30mm under belly cannon. Two/four K-13 Atoll air-to-air missiles. Two/four AATO air-to-air missiles
Notes: Frequent opponent of the Phantom, the MiG-21 has a Mach 2 capability and was an excellent combat aircraft. It is faster, more manoeuvrable and better armed than its US counterpart and a third of the price
British Aerospace Sear Harrier FRS1
Dogfight: British Aerospace Sear Harrier FRS1 Type: Single seat ship based multi-role V/STOL fighter/bomber
Performance: 1,586kmh/ over 50,000ft ceiling
Weapons: Twin 30mm Aden cannon in central packs. Two/four AIM-9 Sidewinders. 18/36 SNEB 68 rockets
Notes: Developed in a time when it was anticipated that one of the first casualties of war would be the runway, the Harrier with its Vertical/Short Take Off and Landing capabilities took care of this problem. Although much slower than most of its counterparts, there is nothing that comes close to it for manoeuvrability. This fact was proven in the Falklands when it was used to great effects against the underrated Argentine airforce
Dassault Breguet Mirage IIIE
Dogfight: Dassault Breguet Mirage IIIE Type: Single-seat multi-role fighter bomber
Performance: 2,350kmh. Can reach 36,000ft in three minutes
Weapons: Two 30mm 5-52 cannon. One Matra R.530 Radar/homing AAM. Two R550 Magic AAM. 18/36 Matra RL F2 rockets
Notes: The Mirage in all its forms is without a doubt one of the most successful fighters since WWII. It was the first to reach Mach 2 in level flight yet cost remarkably little to manufacture. It was these that Argentina used to dogfight the Harriers of the Royal navy during the Falklands conflict.
General Dynamics F-16A Fighting Falcon
Dogfight: General Dynamics F-16A Fighting Falcon Type: Single seat fighter bomber
Performance: 2,090kmh/50,000ft ceiling
Weapons: One 20mm M-61 multi-barrel machine gun. Four AIM-9 sidewinders. Four AGM-65 Maverick missiles. 18 Mk4 FFAR Rockets
Notes: Designed largely as a successor to the ageing Starfighter, it soon became apparent that the Falcon was also worthy of taking over the Phantom. The F-16 has amazing manoeuvrability and at the time of its introduction could out fly anything in the World. In fact, it can even better the awesomely powerful MiG-25.
MiG-23 Flogger B
Dogfight: MiG-23 Flogger B Type: Single seat all weather interceptor
Performance: 2,445kmh/55,000ft ceiling
Weapons: One 23mm twin barrel machine gun. Two/four AA-8 Aphid missiles. Two AATO Advanced Atoll. Two AS7 kerry and 12 57 mm ground attack missiles
Notes: During the ‘60s most Air Forces came to the conclusion that the multi-role aircraft was the way forward. The US unveiled the F-111 with its variable geometry wings, however due to financial and design problems the F-111 was never the success it was intended to be
VISION
G G G G G G G G   * *
AUDIO
G G G G G G G   * * *
DIFFICULTY
G G G G G G G G   * *
LASTABILITY
G G G G G G G G   * *
Dogfight is a frolicking flight of fancy for aces all over the world. Slick graphics coupled with immense gameplay will make this a must for combat flying addicts. 90%
Publisher:
Developer:
Disks:
Price:
HD Install:
Size:
Microprose
In-house
3
£34.99
Yes
1 meg


Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare logo

A Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare erial dogfighting, just your flying skill and tactics pitted against your opponent, soaring through the clouds and fighting it out thousands of feet above the ground. What a nutter. There is little romance about it when you stop and think. A few swift turns and a burst of cannon-fire and your guts spiral earthward in separate pieces. That was your life, mate.

Dogfight is a flight sim centred on straight air combat. There are six theatres of war from WWI through Korea to modern day Syria, and each period has a pair of suitable planes to fly. You can configure the amount of ground detail, sound and difficulty before picking a crate and taking to the skies intent in a one-on-one dogfight.
If you want a more serious approach there are a series of missions for each theatre with objectives and resources to allocate. Played this way Dogfight is a more traditional flightsim.

The view from the cockpit is in vector graphics and pretty good ones too, the planes are highly detailed and everything moves at a respectable speed. The static screens are excellent. If you choose to look behind the pilot you get a lovely view of your chaps head. Each plane has a different cockpit, which can get confusing as you need to learn a new layout each time you pick a different kite. There are loads of external views and you can also look around from your seat.

Control is by joystick with the usual array of keyboard commands to wrestle with. Although it is not a real heavy-duty flight sim, there are a fair number of controls to find your way around. There are some great touches too, if you fly into the sun you are blinded. The sound effects are a suitable set of engine and weapon noises.

Scramble you fellows
Dogfight Dogfight’s main claim to fame is that you can match any plane against any of the others in a What If situation. Shooting down the old string bags from WWI with a modern jet is surprisingly difficult. They can tun on a sixpence and your infrared missiles are useless.

If you have never played a realistic flight sim before you could be in for a frustrating time. Fights can easily turn into an endless bout of circling as you try to turn inside your opponent. Enemy planes try their best to keep out of your gun sight and sneak up behind you. At best they are fast moving dots. This is no quick and easy blast. You need to learn air combat manoeuvres, use your instruments and look about the cockpit if you are to have any chance.

The variety of different planes and missions makes Dogfight a worthy proposal for aficionados of the genre. Flying the jets and the propeller aircraft are quite different.

Dogfight can feel a little cold, with no pilot names or clear objectives, the straight one-to-one fights have a rather detached feeling about them. The fights start with the planes in fairly close proximity in open sky and quickly turn into a spiralling duel in which you are constantly looking over your shoulder and turning as quickly as you possibly can. It can all get terribly annoying.

The dogfighting angle with lots of planes is a great idea, the execution stops short of brilliance. The Missions section adds more life into things and the What If bit is a laugh. It is not a game for the short tempered. Getting to be a good dogfighter requires determination and dedication. If you have these skills you are in for a serious amount of aerial punch-ups.
Rob Mead

Amiga Format, Issue 53, December 1993, p.70

DOGFIGHT
PROGRAMMERS
MicroProse Team
PUBLISHER
MicroProse 0666 504326
PRICE
£34.99
RELEASED
Out now

Dogfight is hard disk installable

GRAPHICS
08 out of 10
Superb piccies of the planes.

SOUND
07 out of 10
Swoosh, rat-a-tat, kaboom.

ADDICTION
08 out of 10
Give in or play to the death.

PLAYABILITY
08 out of 10
Easy to start, hard to master.

VERDICT
"Twelve planes, six wars and only one pilot – this is an engaging and detailed flight sim with a wide scope, but lacks a realistic feel at times."
81%


Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare logo

Ein halbes Jahr nach Eröffnung der PC-Startbahn dürfen sich die Gaudi-Piloten nun auch am Amiga austoben – statt knochentrockenem Realismus ist hier pure Freude am Luftkampf angesagt...

Dogfight Gerade mal die Blendung durch die Sonne sorgt für einen Hauch von Lebensnähe, und selbst das läßt sich durch einen Griff ins umfangreiche Optionsmenü blitzschnell ändern. Auch die sechs Szenarien enthalten jeweils nur eine originalgetreue Mission, wobei der Erste und Zweite Weltkrieg, die Falklandinseln, Syrien, Korea und Vietnam die historisch-geographischen Hintergründe liefern. Aber letztlich ist das alles nur als nette Dreingabe zu betrachten, denn hier geht es gar nicht so sehr darum, sich auf eine vorgegebene Kriegslage zu stürzen – auch wenn man das für beide Seiten und nach vorheriger Ausarbeitung des Einsatzes auf der zoombaren Karte tun kann. Wie es der Name schon andeutet, ist der Duell-Modus viel interessanter, denn die wirklich heißen Schlachten liefern sich der menschliche und der digitale Flieger in zwei gleichwertigen Maschinen aus derselben Epoche!

Leider muß man dabei aber auf die Zeppeline, Hubschrauber und SAM-Stellungen verzichten, die dem Piloten bei den historischen Aufträgen das Leben schwer machen. Eine noch größere Herausforderung verbirgt sich somit hinter der "Was-wäre-wenn?"-Option, denn da kann der Hoppy-Kriger sein können gegen bis zu fünf Computergegner auf einmal unter Beweis stellen. Der entscheidende Kniff an der Sache ist, daß man dabei sowohl die eigene Maschine als auch die der Feinde aus dem reichhaltigen Angebot auswählen darf, das insgesamt 80 Jahre Luftkampfgeschichte vereint. Fliegende Museumstücke wie Sopwith Camel (Gruß an Snoopy...), Messerschmitt und MiG-15 stehen bereit, aber auch in der F-86 Sabre, MiG-21 oder F-16 Falcon ist noch ein Platz in der Kanzel frei – alles in allem hat man Zugriff auf zwölf Maschinen. Sie verfügen jeweils über ein anderes Cockpit, ein anderes Flugverhalten und last but not least auch über eine andere Bewaffnung: Bei militärischen Antiquitäten wie MiG-15 und F-86 Sabre muß noch die Bordkanone genügen, während der Phantom- oder Sea Harrier-Pilot zusätzlich auf Raketen und Sidewinder-Missiles zurückgreifen kann.

Wie von MicroProse kaum anders zu erwarten, wurde eine ganze Batterie von dreh- und zoombaren Außenansichten eingebaut und auch nicht an netten Zwischenbildern gespart. Allerdings kommt die Vektorgrafik nur auf einem 1200er ruckelfrei zur Geltung, ansonsten muß man sich mit dem einstellbaren Detailgrad behelften. Die Steuerung via Stick und Tastatur klappt reibungslos, vom Sound sollte man sich dagegen nicht zuviel erwarten: zweieinhalb Musikstücke und die obligaten Geräusche, das war es. Aber wer braucht schon ein Orchester, wenn der Spielspaß stimmt? Und davon gibt es beim Kampf der fligenden Hunde reichlich, wenn auch mit der bedauerlichen Einschränkung, daß der besonders launige Zwei-Spieler-Modus den Sprung auf den Amiga leider nicht geschaft hat. (rf)

Amiga Joker, November 1993, p.73

DOGFIGHT
(MICROPROSE)
LUFTKAMPF-SIMULATION
79%
"KÄMPFERISCH"
Amiga Joker
GRAFIK
ANIMATION
MUSIK
SOUND-FX
HANDHABUNG
DAUERSPAß
80%
77%
62%
60%
78%
80%
VARIABEL: 3 STUFEN
PREIS DM 99,-
SPEICHERBEDARF
DISKS/ZWEITFLOPPY
HD-INSTALLATION
SPEICHERBAR
DEUTSCH
1 MB
3/JA
JA
SPIELSTÄNDE: 8
KOMPLETT


Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare logo

MICROPROSE OUT NOW £29.99
F Dogfight - 80 years of aerial warfare light simulations have been covered from every single angle since the birth of computer games, and most of them have been released by Microprose. Dogfight is a step in a new direction for the company that prides itself on the most accurate simulations around – an arcade sim! No, not an arcade game, an arcade sim.
Essentially, they have just taken out all the difficult flight controls of their usual titles, and shoved a little more emphasis on action. Rather than sit through a million mission briefings, spending all that time choosing armaments and then actually trying to find the enemy, Dogfight sticks you in the middle of battle in any of six historical scenarios using any of 14 different planes from a Sopwith Camel to a Sea Harrier.

You can choose to go one-on-one with an equivalent plane, take on up to five different computer controlled aircraft at once or take part in 12 different mission backdrops. It all sounds quite packed, yet it scores badly. Why? Basically the most important option is missing. How on earth can you have a game called Dogfight and not include a two-player option? The PC version allows for two players, using linked machines, so why not the Amiga?

So, what do you have? A standard flight sim with more combat than most. The controls are strangely sluggish on all machines (regardless of plane types, although the older fighters tend to handle better). The game is slowed down even further by the fact that when you change views, it has to load them in. For a game that is supposed to be action based, you sure do have to sit about a lot!

Without the two-player option, there is not much game left. The real problem is that it falls between two stools. It is far too slow to be the fast paced action blaster it claims to be, even on an A4000, and it lacks enough depth to please simulation fans. All in, there just is not enough to satisfy anyone.
Tony Dillon

42%

CU Amiga, November 1993, p.72