Have you ever seen the simulator rounds on The Krypton Factor? The bit where Kenneth the systems analyst from Chelmsford has to sit in a Boeing Simulator and attempt to land it at Hong Kong International. He sweats, gnashes his teeth and grimaces until he's crashed into the Hilton Hotel just to the left, shrugs and hopes for better luck on the manual dexterity round. The whole process looks fiendishly complicated but somehow you won't mind a go yourself.
JetPilot gives the opportunity to do just this. It would be safe to say that what Vulcan is offering here is pretty much the most realistic flight simulator written for the Amiga. Needless to say this means it requires patience, skill, intelligence and above five hands.
Almost every aspect of flying a modern jet has been reproduced here including flight parameters that come within 10 per cent of real aircraft, changing weather conditions and 27 air bases from the Easter Mediterranean to Scotland. JetPilot is absolutely packed full of options - there are three planes you can fly: The Lightning, Starfighter or MiG 21, on a huge variety of missions from formation flying to combat intercept missions.
To be honest, JetPilot is something you will either love or hate, it really depends on what you look for in a computer game. It isn't something you can just play for 15 minutes while waiting for Neighbours to start. Because of the complexity of the simulation you really need to get to know the game and practice flying the jets and using features such as the radio communications and ground tracking.
Because of the inherent realism, the planes despite being quite easy to handle, aren't as forgiving as in other less realistic sims - take off too steeply and the tail will drag on the ground and destroy the plane. Land too fast and the tyres will burst. Jetpilot is a very impressive product and flight sim buffs will be happy as pigs in mud, however I do get the feeling the game will appear too complicated and perhaps intimidating for those who aren't as well acquainted with sims.
This said, JetPilot is a step forward for the Amiga. Spec wise theg ame is pretty hungry but it shows the strengths of the computer - there isn't, to my knowledge, a game that comes near it on the PC in terms of realism and detail. The graphics are excellent, the planes are realistic right down to the smallest detail with even individual markings visible.
The geography is completely detailed and realistic - take off from a North Wales air base and you'll be able to see Anglesey in one direction and the Wirral in the other. JetPilot will run on pretty much any Amiga but, like many of Vulcan't new products, favours higher spec machines.
On a 1Mb or 2Mb system some features will have to be disabled. However, on a souped up A1200 or A4000 the simulation will run like a dream. If you have a fairly high spec Amiga and are a flight sim buff this game is tailor made for you.
Some mention also has to be made of the price - at £16.99 JetPilot is very competitively priced for such a high quality game, you will certainly get your moneys worth out of this one. The simplest missions, such as just taking off and circling are complicated enough to master, so with 20 qualification missions and loads of combat missions there is more than enough to keep you occupied for donkey years.