Generally favorable reviews - based on 54 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 54
  2. Negative: 1 out of 54
  1. Rather than merely surpassing the expectations set by its predecessors, Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation provides a foundation for console-based aerial combat games of the future.
  2. Far better than any other flight game on the 360 - and it also happens to be a technical showcase for HDTV fanatics everywhere.
  3. 90
    The most solid, robust, and realistic Ace Combat game yet. Even if you're not into playing online, Fires of Liberation offers a hearty helping of intense, varied combat that will keep you coming back long after you've completed your first campaign.
  4. 90
    There's something genuinely thrilling about Ace Combat's high speed dog-fighting that grabs you by your throat and refuses to let go. It's unashamedly arcadey, it doesn't last all that long and the between mission cut scenes are a bit of a pointless distraction, but once you're in the air there's few games that provide as intense a feeling of exhilaration.
  5. The controls are easy to pick up, which makes flying and combat both simple and fun.
  6. 90
    Easily the best flight-sim available on next-gen systems, not to mention the best the series has ever had to offer. Picture perfect controls and lush visuals make this a package that fans of the series will not want to miss.
  7. There are so few games that get air combat right, but Ace Combat hits the nail on the head. From the huge scale air support missions to the vicious online dogfights, everything about this game is perfect. Its limited appeal is offset by the fact it serves that audience so well.
  8. Over all, Ace Combat 6 is a good game but because of the final mission, it might be one you'd struggle to complete, but the multiplayer will more then make up for it, specially if you have the broadband speed to make it a real dogfight.
  9. A visual treat and pure arcade shooting fun. The missions are full of action and while you always end up saving the day, it certainly feels like there’s a war going around you. It’s a pity that the cutscenes are so full of phony melodrama and corny dialogue. [Nov 2007]
  10. Without overly dumbing down the modern military sim fighter, Namco Bandai has managed to create a very accessible flying game that has all of the presentation bells and whistles of its big boy cousins.
  11. But if Fires of Liberation doesn't catch your eye, I'm not sure if any game of this ilk ever will. [Nov 2007, p.154]
  12. It may not be the flight simulator that many people may have been hoping for, but it doesn’t detract from being an enjoyable arcade shooter. Highly recommended.
  13. As complex and as challenging as you want it to be, this is top-notch plane-based blasting. [Dec 2007, p.58]
  14. Slick gameplay and gorgeous visuals are among Ace Combat 6's many strengths.
  15. Ace Combat 6 is an accessible and exciting flight combat game with great arcade-style gameplay. While the story elements are pretty cheesy, the game itself is a lot of fun.
  16. The dogfighting, though, feels aimless unless you're playing with people who really know what they're doing: We predict it'll be the stomping ground of the uber-hardcore pilots. [Nov 2007, p.88]
  17. Ace Combat 6 is this venerable series at its best. [Nov 2007, p.63]
  18. In sum, Fires of Liberation is the complete package for any fan of the franchise, or anyone looking for a fairly accessible fighter-sim.
  19. Ace Combat 6 is certainly a welcome addition to the Xbox 360 library of games, and although we've already had a few flying games to date, none can match the quality of Namco's efforts.
  20. Another good chapter on this franchise. The multiplayer makes it an even more attractive proposition, since the single player campaign is good enough on its own, with the usual adrenaline fix for anyone who likes dogfights. [Dec 2007]
  21. 84
    The realistic visual design married with the arcade controls make for a game that anyone can have fun with. This is the closest to the imaginary dream of being in Top Gun that most of us are ever going to get.
  22. It was sad to have such a shallow and uninspiring storyline to keep you going until the very end, but with the game’s stunning visuals and effects, arcade pick up and play gameplay, online multiplayer and co-op features there is plenty here to satisfy your appetite in being the next Maverick or Ice Man.
  23. The visuals, audio even the character scripts are carefully chosen to add life and a new experience to AC veterans and newbies alike.
  24. With very few flight titles available, Ace Combat 6 is the best one on next gen platforms hands down.
  25. Graphics and sound are absolutely the strong points in Ace Combat 6.
  26. The game is accessible enough to be picked up by someone who hasn’t yet earned their wings, and while the online mode isn’t incredibly deep, it’s a solid addition that makes the game that much more attractive. If jets aren’t your thing, though, it won’t convince you to enroll in flight school.
  27. Someone asked me to describe Ace Combat 6 in a word, and my response was “shallow,” which probably wasn’t fair. Shallow seems to imply a lack of depth to a fault, which certainly isn’t the case with Ace Combat 6. Though you don’t have to worry about flaps settings, ILS approaches, or proper air-traffic control etiquette, Ace Combat 6 is by no means barebones. It’s a lean, mean, fighting machine.
  28. And the visuals? Well, if you want more screenshots, just pop your head out of the window and look up. [Dec 2007, p.96]
  29. More than anything else, we're just happy to have another Ace Combat game we can genuinely say we really like, rather than just saying we don't dislike it. The series has rated a categorical "meh" for some time now; but no longer. Ace Combat 6 can be our wingman any time.
  30. A real victory for blue skies in games and the very welcome return of a great franchise.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 84 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 29
  2. Negative: 2 out of 29
  1. Aug 17, 2013
    I just bought this game and I already regret it. I can deal with a fictional country but make the game somewhat realistic. You can run your plane into the ground and it doesn't explode it just takes a little damage that is crazy. the graphics of the planned are good but the ground looks stupid and you can't even land your aircraft. Full Review »
  2. Nov 5, 2012
    Worst video game ever. The storyline is laughably bad, the controls are way too hard for anyone who hasn't taken an air force training program, the action is slow and frustrating, tutorials are impossible to master, it is just a plain old waste of time. The other people who rated this game are being way too positive, considering the whole game was a waste of time and money. And to think I looked at the other peoples reviews before buying it. Full Review »
  3. Mar 19, 2012
    A fantastic game, I've been replaying this off and on ever since it came out. The fundamental improvement over the previous Ace Combat games is the addition of checkpoints. There was nothing more annoying in the previous AC games than to be 15 minutes into a mission and to then crash into something, as that meant going all the way back to the start of the mission. With AC6, there are plenty of checkpoints to ensure you aren't forced to backtrack huge amounts of progress after one silly mistake. The game is also much more forgiving than previous examples, allowing the odd light bump or scrape of the ground to go by unnoticed.

    Story-wise, AC6 is like previous entries in the series and sets itself in a fictional world using made-up countries that are fairly obvious ciphers for our own world (in this case it's Emmeria (America) fighting Estovakia (Russia). While the story is often quite silly, it's got that slightly off-kilter Japanese style that makes it charming rather than embarrassing. Graphically, the game is beautiful with fantastic ground detail that even fairly close remains convincing. The cut-scenes between levels are also rendered in real-time and look fantastic. I actually think being exclusive to the 360 meant the developers were able to work a bit harder to squeeze more out of the engine, as I think this game looks better than its disappointing sequel "Ace Combat Assault Horizon". This is a great addition to the AC series and definitely worthy of a play-through or two.
    Full Review »