Rate my review.
Pretty good, but you could improve.
50% (2)
50% (2)
Alright, but it should have been done differently.
25% (1)
25% (1)
Terrible, kill yourself please.
25% (1)
25% (1)
Want to vote? Register now or Sign Up with Facebook
Poll: "Sky Rogue" Review: Fly, Die, Retry

WARNING: Sky Rogue is currently in Early Access and has not been fully completed by the developers yet. As such, this review may become partially or fully incorrect as time passes. If you're reading this weeks or months from now, it is likely that this review will be outdated, and parts of it are most likely to be incorrect.

So, first off, what is Sky Rogue? Well, the shortest description I can come up with is "Ace Combat as a procedurally generated rogue-lite". Basically, you take off, kill enemies, complete objectives, earn money, upgrade your plane and weapons, then get shot down and use the tech points you earned to research new planes and weapons.

You start off with the Rogue Medium Fighter, a well-balanced multi-role jet that's good at everything but spectacular at nothing, and a handful of basic weapons including a simple machine gun, some standard micro-missiles, light unguided rockets and a flare discharger. Your humble Rogue also comes with a built-in system for evasive dodge rolls, which is standard on every player aircraft(though strangely, enemies never seem to use it).

So let me break down your plane classes and weapons before I get much further: Bombers are the ones designed to take the most punishment and destroy ground targets with massive payloads of bombs, Fighters are the multi-role jets designed to out-maneuver everything they meet, and Interceptors get superior engines and avionics to let them run down enemy aircraft and nail them with long range missiles; and aircraft come in four varieties in each class, with Light planes that are more nimble and faster but have less capacity for weapons and are more fragile, Medium planes that are well-rounded and reliable, Swing-Wing jets with slightly less toughness than Mediums but more speed and variable handling, and Heavy planes that are capable of carrying the most firepower and are more durable but slower and less agile.

And for weapons, there's quite the variety: rear-aspect Infrared missiles, short-range all-aspect missiles, medium- and long-range air-to-air missiles, an air-to-ground missile, multiple different varieties of bombs for taking out ground targets, three different sizes of rockets mostly used on ground targets, and an array of different machine guns and auto-cannons because dakka.

The planes and weapons all have their purpose and feel good to use. Mission with lots of enemy Bombers to shoot down? Grab an Interceptor and some good air-to-air missiles and bring them down. Enemy buildings like Factories and Command Centers to destroy? Fly a Bomber with either rockets or bombs and pound them back to the Stone Age. Need to be flexible because of enemy aircraft attacking you while you're going for ground targets? Take off in a Fighter loaded with both air-to-air and air-to-ground weapons. With all the different variations of aircraft and weapons to choose from, there's sure to be something that will be effective on the mission you're heading into.

The flight is very arcade-oriented to say the least, but I find it very enjoyable and exciting. The dogfights are fast and frantic, with enemy jets circling around to take their shots at you while enemy ground defenses fire everything they have. The only complaints about the enemies that I really have are that 1) enemy Bombers have no means of fighting back against the player when attacked; 2) enemy Fighters and Interceptors are always trying to joust with the player, when there's really only one plane designed for that; and 3) enemy Flak turrets are very damaging to the player, especially the Flak-Burst guns encountered later in the game.

And lastly, the game has Steam Workshop mod support. You'll find all kinds of things in this game's Workshop: two different versions of the old Geo Metro, various different real-life jets and old prop planes, fictional aircraft from various sources including a multitude of Star Wars ships and player crafts from various shmups, and recently custom mission support was added. Someone actually recreated "Operation Countdown" from Ace Combat 4: Shattered Skies.

In all, this game is worth every penny. I've played it for over 300 hours already, and I don't see myself stopping any time soon. If I had to give this game a score, I'd say a solid 90/100.

I rate this review an overcooked cut of sirloin out of 10 mozzarella sticks. I want more excitement in the rhetoric; could use some fancier language and eye-catching lines. As for the logic, I never played but it sounds like a game I could mindlessly enjoy playing through to upgrade a plane; nothing seemed fallacy-ridden here to me. But, based on what I read, a lower rating would have been appropriate because I did not read anything regarding how the game really innovated or stood out from the competition.

That all being said, ANY review on a game not yet fully available to the public is a valued review.

A pretty decent review, fairly well written and informative while getting me interested in the game.
I'd have liked to see more thoughts on the rate of progression in the game or on the learning curve of the game. Also you could be clearer on how the game controls (don't assume your audience is familiar with Ace Combat either ideally) and, as the game is in early access, people will want to know about performance and bugs (hell, considering AAA development they'll want to know that about non-EA games).

TrulyBritish:
A pretty decent review, fairly well written and informative while getting me interested in the game.
I'd have liked to see more thoughts on the rate of progression in the game or on the learning curve of the game. Also you could be clearer on how the game controls (don't assume your audience is familiar with Ace Combat either ideally) and, as the game is in early access, people will want to know about performance and bugs (hell, considering AAA development they'll want to know that about non-EA games).

Thanks for the feedback.

Yeah, I could have done a few things differently. I'll keep that in mind for next time I try making a review.

American Tanker:
snip

A month has passed and I have questions:

Has it held up, or worn out its appeal/novelty?

If you use steam workshop mods, does it disable progression? The rogue-lites I've played do this and it means mods aren't worth using until you've done everything and there are so many things in that box.

How much strain does it put on the ol' hardware? This a simple indie 'anything could run it' or does the 3D flight/combat engine put it up on a higher shelf? (Can I run this on my outdated and prone to heat troubles laptop while at work?)

Elijin:
Has it held up, or worn out its appeal/novelty?

If you use steam workshop mods, does it disable progression? The rogue-lites I've played do this and it means mods aren't worth using until you've done everything and there are so many things in that box.

How much strain does it put on the ol' hardware? This a simple indie 'anything could run it' or does the 3D flight/combat engine put it up on a higher shelf? (Can I run this on my outdated and prone to heat troubles laptop while at work?)

#1: It's still just as fun as ever. The only issue I have is that I've found that a single specific loadout works almost too well, though that could just be my 300+ flight hours speaking. But the game still holds me very well.

#2: Workshop mods don't prevent progression, thankfully. So if you wanted to just bomb your way through the progression, you could just get your hands on some overpowered mod planes and weapons that just turn the game into a cakewalk. Or you can do it the hard way, using only base game planes and weapons and unlocking them legitimately.

#3: Hardware strain is practically nonexistent. Granted, my current rig is a bit of a beast, seeing as I've got a 990FXA-UD3 R5 motherboard, 9590 Octa-Core CPU @ 4.7 GHz, R9 Fury GPU with 4GB VRAM and 16GB DDR3 RAM; but my old PC could run this game with very little trouble. Said older PC was an HP Phoenix from like 2011 or so, and it ran the game great. Minimum requirements state that it will run on pretty much anything made past 2004, so anything past 2010 should just eat it up. It's not really a simulator anyway. It IS 3d flight, don't get me wrong; but the only really "realistic" element is stalling your plane if you fly too slow.

American Tanker:
#1: It's still just as fun as ever. The only issue I have is that I've found that a single specific loadout works almost too well, though that could just be my 300+ flight hours speaking. But the game still holds me very well.

#2: Workshop mods don't prevent progression, thankfully. So if you wanted to just bomb your way through the progression, you could just get your hands on some overpowered mod planes and weapons that just turn the game into a cakewalk. Or you can do it the hard way, using only base game planes and weapons and unlocking them legitimately.

#3: Hardware strain is practically nonexistent. Granted, my current rig is a bit of a beast, seeing as I've got a 990FXA-UD3 R5 motherboard, 9590 Octa-Core CPU @ 4.7 GHz, R9 Fury GPU with 4GB VRAM and 16GB DDR3 RAM; but my old PC could run this game with very little trouble. Said older PC was an HP Phoenix from like 2011 or so, and it ran the game great. Minimum requirements state that it will run on pretty much anything made past 2004, so anything past 2010 should just eat it up. It's not really a simulator anyway. It IS 3d flight, don't get me wrong; but the only really "realistic" element is stalling your plane if you fly too slow.

Neat. I've been watching this title deciding whether to make the plunge for a while now. Roguelikes are a bit hit or miss. I have some I've put hundreds of hours into and some which get played like, twice.

And I don't want to easy mode the game, but...
Well the specific example I'm thinking of is Binding of Isaac. Sure there are broken mods, but there's a great community of people interested in making actual solid mods which add more content to the game without breaking balance. But then, you cant make progress while a mod is active, which is a bummer.

Elijin:
And I don't want to easy mode the game, but...
Well the specific example I'm thinking of is Binding of Isaac. Sure there are broken mods, but there's a great community of people interested in making actual solid mods which add more content to the game without breaking balance. But then, you cant make progress while a mod is active, which is a bummer.

Most of the older mod content for Sky Rogue doesn't do anything unusual; but more recent content includes aircraft with increased numbers of weapon launch points(increased firepower because all launch points fire at once), custom aircraft stats(could be underpowered or overpowered depending on which bird it is) and even new weapons(again, could be OP'd or UP'd, case-by-case). The first mod planes that really felt super-overpowered were the ones based on the classic Wing Commander. The F36 Hornet wasn't bad, seeing as it only has one weapon slot that fired more than normal; but the CF107 Scimitar had three slots that all had doubled firepower, while the F44 Rapier 2 had one slot that discharged four times the ammo and two that had double firepower, and the A14 Raptor has one slot fire double the ordnance while all others have quadruple the firepower of a normal plane.

Conversely, the AUCAV Advanced Drone mod plane is underpowered as hell because of its insanely low durability and the fact that its top weapon slot only fires half as much ammo at a time. And the Star Fox pack that has like 10 or more mod planes based on SNES Star Fox are all only as capable as base game aircraft.

Unfortunately, you'll have to experiment with which aircraft have OP'd stats and which ones don't. And it takes me almost ten minutes for my game to load because of how many mods I've subscribed to...

How playable is it with a keyboard?

Elijin:
How playable is it with a keyboard?

I wouldn't know, I've only ever played it with a 360 controller.

You'll have to ask around on the Steam Discussion forums. I'd suggest a mouse, for the analog flight control, using a keyboard for the things your mouse can't do.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here