Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII - hands-on

We take a test flight with the PS3's first tilt-enabled flight sim

Sony's been making a big deal about its wireless, motion-sensitive Sixaxis controller for a while now, but none of the games we've seen in the PS3's launch lineup seem to take full advantage of its cool capabilities. That'll change in a few short weeks, though, when Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII comes screaming onto the PS3 as the first game to enable you to fly just by tilting the controller.

We recently got a crack at an unfinished version of the game, and we came away impressed. If you missed it when it hit the Xbox 360, Xbox and PC earlier this year, Blazing Angels is an arcade-style flight simulator that thrusts players propeller-first into some of the most famous and harrowing battles of World War II. The PS3 edition looks strikingly similar to the 360 version, but this edition packs in some surprises, not the least of which is the new flight controls.

Blazing Angels works fine using just the analog sticks, but you'll definitely want to try its tilt-steering setup, which is really simple and works surprisingly well. Like in the upcoming Warhawk and Lair, you'll move the entire controller the way you want your plane to move. Blazing Angels isn't nearly as touchy as those games, though, so relaxing or nudging the controller slightly won't send you screaming off-course. The trade-off is that it sometimes feels sluggish, and it definitely takes some getting used to. We can almost guarantee you'll find yourself automatically fumbling at the sticks when things get tense, but after a few minutes of play, tilting your plane around will become second nature.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.
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