Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII

Why don't Top Guns get any love? Crimson Skies and Secret Weapons Over Normandy were a blast, and we demand more. Ubisoft's WWII era flight opera Blazing Angels is primed to deliver the kind of experience that has been sadly lacking on the consoles for the last year.

Blazing Angels is all about the squad. Players can employ different pilots for different specialized jobs during missions, giving commands to wingmen with a flick of the d-pad. Your squadron divebombs and snap-turns its way through an 18 mission story mode, as you and your fellow flyboys hone your skills and grow into a lethal, bullet-spewing swarm of aces.

Like crazed WWII fans, Ubisoft has taken great pains to ensure that each of the 38 aircraft types in Blazing Angels represent the pinnacle of accuracy. Even the nose art that adorns the various planes has been created with obsessive-compulsive detail.

The improved power of the 360 allows for enhanced plane models and deeply detailed battle damage. Lighting and combustion effects have also received a visual injection of hi-def gravy.

Sorties can be flown over much of Europe and beyond, semi-accurately illustrating the historical progress of air-cavalry through England, Germany, France, Morocco, Pearl Harbor, Midway, and Tokyo. Each of these environments has been tuned to provide an authentic feel for its specific locale; you'll dive out of the fog-choked skies of England, strafe along the golden, sun-dappled waves of the South Pacific, and barrel through the industrial landscape of Germany.

Online multiplay will include versus, cooperative, and even squadron (team) modes. Huge maps accommodate the large-scale 16-player air combat, ensuring that large formations have plenty of room to turn and burn.

Granted, Blazing Angels isn't the most original concept, but if all the parts come together, we'll be first in line to gun down bogies wholesale.