User Score
6.2

Mixed or average reviews- based on 84 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 84
  2. Negative: 25 out of 84
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  1. Mar 2, 2012
    6
    War is hell, but this game is fun. The Ace Combat series has always been praised for being petty, fast paced and fun if you like flying games. And the newest installment to the franchise fulfills all the prerequisites nicely while also adding a few new features. Chief among them is the Dogfight Mode or DFM which became a crucial part to every facet of game play.

    When you have matched
    War is hell, but this game is fun. The Ace Combat series has always been praised for being petty, fast paced and fun if you like flying games. And the newest installment to the franchise fulfills all the prerequisites nicely while also adding a few new features. Chief among them is the Dogfight Mode or DFM which became a crucial part to every facet of game play.

    When you have matched speed and met a certain distance to an aircraft then you can enter DFM which lets a computer take the major controls while letting you still have some maneuverability and positioning. The music increases the tempo, and things get loud, fast, and very cinematic quickly. The game uses this to make cut-scenes scripted events that happen in DFM only. If you never enter DFM, then you may never see the set pieces like exploding oil fields and runways as well as seeing fellow pilots score kills and be shot down also. It gives you the feeling of flying through the dense city portion of Dubai without requiring you be a super proficient pilot.

    But other planes can enter DFM on you, where you have to either outrun your attacker, or slow down and perform a Top Gun like maneuver and immediately turn the tables. You can deploy flares, and you have full control of your plane, and you can still attack targets normally; but the pilot on your six can make easy work of you if you donâ
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  2. Jun 9, 2012
    6
    Overall, I think Namco was trying to do too much to keep the franchise 'Fresh' and I can understand wanting to do that. But the thing of it is; they already had a winning equation with their past installments. Overall, I did enjoy the game, but it there were parts I found to be unacceptable for an Ace Combat game.
  3. Jan 21, 2013
    5
    As a long time fan of the Ace Combat series, this game just didn't click with me. The game play and multiplayer aren't bad. I just think the story and the DFM just kills the game. The helicopter and bomber missions are okay but I would just like to stick with flying jets. I will give them credit for FINALLY adding paint customization for your planes. In the future I just hope thatAs a long time fan of the Ace Combat series, this game just didn't click with me. The game play and multiplayer aren't bad. I just think the story and the DFM just kills the game. The helicopter and bomber missions are okay but I would just like to stick with flying jets. I will give them credit for FINALLY adding paint customization for your planes. In the future I just hope that Bandai-Namco sticks with the original Ace Combat world and flight system. And the special plane you're supposed to unlock for doing something awesome like in the previous Ace Combat games (X-02, ADF-01 Falken for example) is DLC. So if you're reading this Bandai-Namco, please, just stick with the old Ace Combat. "Amidst the blue skies, a link from past to future. The sheltering wings of the protector.../The flames of hatred scorch the skies, igniting Gaia's funeral pyre..."

    What ever happened to the old Ace Combat? Now its just a cliche, copy and paste, story of the good ol' U.S. against the "evil" Russians. Ace Combat taught me that war isn't black and white, good against bad. It taught me that there are no border or boundaries. That it's all just subjective. And most importantly, that we're all human. No matter your nationality, ideology, race, of gender. That we're all just people trying to get by in life. And we're all just too busy being scared of one another and not loving each other enough. God damn it, I just want the old Ace Combat back.
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  4. USG
    Nov 18, 2011
    5
    Overall, this game is just bearable and nothing more. The developers ruined the series' foundations while making its inspiration too obvious. A mediocre inspiration does not result in an outstanding rebirth. Some nice features are preserved from older Ace Combat games, but most other features that resemble a horribly average first-person shooter to ruin its value and are extremelyOverall, this game is just bearable and nothing more. The developers ruined the series' foundations while making its inspiration too obvious. A mediocre inspiration does not result in an outstanding rebirth. Some nice features are preserved from older Ace Combat games, but most other features that resemble a horribly average first-person shooter to ruin its value and are extremely illogical and unrealistic. Whenever the "Mission Completed" screen pops up, a great amount of disappointment is felt in retrospect to Namco's previous titles. Ace Combat: Assault Horizon has many flaws that has been introduced in the new title. The story is extremely forgettable, with stereotypical characters that are given a little thought and lack any depth. Missions are just slammed together in order with no pause. This is complemented by some of the worst songs ever composed for an Ace Combat title which feel unfitting at times whose only goal is to resemble, possibly, the culture of the area the player is flying over but adds nothing to the battle. Some music is just noise. Even Namco has dropped the ball on such staples as radio chatter, with nothing interesting going on and voices are often drowned out on default settings throughout the story. The gameplay itself is also broken. The CRA mode and physics are painfully unrealistic. Anything that is airworthy can backflip, go figure. Forget about taking damage too, feel free to crash into the ground and let the plane's regenerative health do the job. The player does not need to worry about purchasing aircraft, they're presented with a selection with unlocked aircraft. Nobody can enjoy the more rewarding system of purchasing aircraft and using any type of aircraft the player desires for any mission. Not even briefings are present anymore, and the only scripted two scripted briefings or so are horribly uninteresting. Only a few times is the player allowed to land, which are during heavily-scripted sequences under stupid circumstances. Helicopter missions are completely mediocre and unrealistic and there's nothing special at all with the gunner missions that do not separate Assault Horizon from the rest of the crowd. In Assault Horizon, the player is bombarded with constant visual effects. They become irritating, distracting, and disorientating very quickly and also break the pace of the game worse than CRA mode. Once the animation ends, the player must re-orientate and wonder the point of the bells and whistles of the game. One very major negative aspect of the game is the inconsistencies in difficulty during story mode. Many sections are are breeze, but then the player smacks a section that is nearly impossible to complete, let alone achieve a high rank on. The missions do not become progressively harder, either. About all that has been an improvement are the graphics which is expected. The multiplayer does not stand out in particular itself, although it has been improved from Ace Combat 6. Overall, Ace Combat: Assault Horizon is not an enjoyable game and a failure in retrospect to many previous titles. Namco has also failed at marketing it towards western audiences. Expand
  5. Oct 11, 2011
    5
    "The new Ace Combat has the depth of a college freshman; there's just very little substance to be had."
    Pro:
    1. This game is full of cinematography and in-game cuts that tantalizes even the oldest fan (at first). 2. Again, the visuals are fantastic. Cons: This cannot be real? The utter destruction of everything that has made Ace Combat what it is incarnated in Assault Horizons? What's
    "The new Ace Combat has the depth of a college freshman; there's just very little substance to be had."
    Pro:
    1. This game is full of cinematography and in-game cuts that tantalizes even the oldest fan (at first). 2. Again, the visuals are fantastic.

    Cons:
    This cannot be real? The utter destruction of everything that has made Ace Combat what it is incarnated in Assault Horizons? What's obvious is that the game was revamped and reformatted to cater to the masses.

    The zoomed in game model {and dumbed down} controls allows for a 20 second learning curve ( 5 of which are accounted in picking up the controller). For any fan of the old Ace Combat games, everything that was admired has been stripped out of this game - depth, storyline, a sense of accomplishment after a tough mission on a plane 15% in tact, and a weird sense of connection to your squadron. Ace Combat Assault Horizon proves little more that the zoom button on the camera works (hurray). Easily, the most annoying thing about the game is the zoomed in chase view, which can suddenly turn to dog fight mode in which literally require zero skill to shoot down an enemy plane.

    For die hard fans like myself, I would suggest to stay away form this one.
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  6. Nov 21, 2011
    7
    A very in your face action game that tries too much to be like Call of Duty. Still fun with varied missions though the airplane flying seems a bit dumbed down. Overall a decent game.
  7. May 31, 2012
    7
    As a long time flight games & Ace Combat fan,it pains me to writhe this review,but i feel i must.While its comendable that Project Aces were trying something new,what they did do was something to try to draw in the non-flight gaming crowd.The problem with that is,the changes they implimented are all style but no substance,& the changes didnt & never will attract the non-flight crowd,& onlyAs a long time flight games & Ace Combat fan,it pains me to writhe this review,but i feel i must.While its comendable that Project Aces were trying something new,what they did do was something to try to draw in the non-flight gaming crowd.The problem with that is,the changes they implimented are all style but no substance,& the changes didnt & never will attract the non-flight crowd,& only succedded in alienating & annoying the core fans of these type of games & the series.I really wanted to like this game,but i can see why alot of people are not happy with it.Firstly though i have to say the addititions of real world locations & Helicopter Gunships were most welcome additions,as was the removal of the frankly ludicrus flying fortress/wings.The game looks great graphically,the characters,music & cutscenes being good also,and on the whole the game plays well.
    Where the game falls apart though,& unfortunately its a big one,is the Close range assault mode this game introduces to the series,& the on rails sections.The close range assault basically allows you to go into a close,REALLY close chase behind an enemy plane.Its kind of a mini on-rails section in itself,as you have no control over where your flying,merely involving trying to get the enemy plane in your sights while the computer flys the plane for you as you follow the enemy through some set pieces(usually near the ground for dramatic effect).This get old VEEEERY quickly.. Also,when in close range assault,it doesnt seem to make any difference what plane your in,it all feels & handles exactly the same.Unfortunately,this is the big new feature they were trying to introduce to the series,so as a result there is unfortunately no way to turn it off completely in the options.. You cant get around not using close range assault either,as certain enemies are near impossible to take down without using it,& often theres a time limit to take down enemies,that using conventional tactics simply arnt viable time-wise.So basically this new(if unwelcome)feature is rammed down our throats.This may not sound like much,but it completely changes the gameplay of Ace Combat,& pretty much ruins the game for most people.Also,while the Gunship sections are great,the movment when using the **** view is very jerky & not very usable,forcing you to use either the outside or full hud view.Another unwelcome addition,are the pure on-rails sections.They are not particually fun to play,feels out of place with the rest of the game & plays EXACTLY the same way,every time you play it.Not my idea of fun,especially in an Ace Combat title..
    Co-Op wise,you can play a few missions from the campaign in Co-Op,but not many.While fun,its extremely short.Its blatently another half baked 'effort' to put 'Co-Op on the back of the box'.If they had put Co-Op in the full campaign,this game might have saved itself sumwhat,but it hasnt.
    All in all,it was a risky gamble for Project Aces,to introduce the changes that they made to the gameplay,but the gamble failed in an epic way.Like i say,they need to realise that they are never going to attract people that are not interested in this type of game,no matter what changes they make & try to appease them.They need to concentrate on what the actual fans DO want & like,& provide that to them,which i hope they will do in the next title.A good way to get back to that greatness,is to get rid of the Close range Assault & other on-rails sections,& keep the gunships & real world locales,& to add a Co-Op option to the entire campaign.Other flight games have incorporated Co-Op for a while now,its about time Ace Combat caught up,& realised its popularity.Also add taking off & landing necessary for re-arming,& you will attract the fans of the series back in a big way.
    I was So close to giving this game a 6,but it was quite good fun,while not using Close Range Assault that is.Unfortunately,you have to use close range assault ALOT.
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  8. Oct 26, 2012
    7
    Graphics: Pretty Good but there are tricks in here most notably in Dogfight Mode when the control is taken away from you and the enemy is taken down according to a script.
    Story: Also pretty good even if typical of a military game these days.
    Game-play: Really annoyed me that the flight controls stop you from doing barrel rolls as default (changed through options but I didn't realize
    Graphics: Pretty Good but there are tricks in here most notably in Dogfight Mode when the control is taken away from you and the enemy is taken down according to a script.
    Story: Also pretty good even if typical of a military game these days.
    Game-play: Really annoyed me that the flight controls stop you from doing barrel rolls as default (changed through options but I didn't realize until halfway through). And you cannot give your wing-men any orders even though they're always right beside you. Also I like taking off and landing which you only get to do twice each.
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Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 71 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 71
  2. Negative: 1 out of 71
  1. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Jan 19, 2012
    60
    One of the greatest disappointments of the year. Once great and entertaining flying arcade became an average Call of Duty-copycat shooter. [Christmas 2011]
  2. Nov 30, 2011
    65
    It's not a great game by any means, but there are much worse ways to spend an afternoon than making jets explode.
  3. X-ONE Magazine UK
    Nov 15, 2011
    70
    Just good. [Issue#78, p.82]