Falcon MC - F16 Fighter Simulator
Author: George Glaser
Date: June , 1993
Keywords: Review game software program flight
Text: Wow, Top Gun school on the Mac! Falcon is a War Bird enthusiast's dream come true. It is so authentic, that if it were not for additions such as ''Instant Action'' and ''Auto Pilot,'' the amateur flying ace would be overwhelmed by a realistic profusion of simulated lights, buttons, switches, REO, HUD, and much more. Spectrum HoloByte describes it best. ''Falcon MC is the most realistic combat flight simulator for the Macintosh. It effectively and accurately reflects the performance and capabilities of the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon within the limitations of a personal computer.'' This is not a brainless, arcade style, point and shoot game. Falcon is complex and uses every key on your keyboard. The quick reference/keyboard Chart must be kept in sight. I taped it to the bottom of my monitor. A printed ''Thin Skin'' rubber keyboard overlay would be a welcome option. The manual is well written and well illustrated. It is 186 pages of necessary information, but ''Don't be distressed by the heft of this book. Falcon MC is a complex game, and requires a thorough discussion of its features. But it doesn't require a thorough reading of the entire manual to play.'' If you are not ''into'' combat aircraft and semi-detailed knowledge of their weapons and control systems, than this game would not be for you! The feature that I am anxiously waiting to try is head-to-head. This allows you to play against a real person on another computer. ''Dog fighting against the computer can get old. After a while you get to know all its tricks. But a human opponent, in a plane fully as capable as your own, is a far more entertaining challenge. The head-to-head option in Falcon MC lets you duel against a real pilot. And if the pilots are mismatched, you can pick different difficulty settings and armament loads for each'' (Falcon). Connection to another Mac may be by direct connect, network, or modem. The installer is straight forward. The single 1.44 floppy disk contains the entire compressed program which takes about 2.5meg of hard disk space. Launching Falcon MC took about three seconds. The window is not resizible and set at about 9" diagonal size; this probably keeps it running fast, though. The interface seems to follow proper Mac standards. The game performance was very good. The speed and the color graphics are a welcome change from Falcon 2.2.
The requirements are: Mac II, SE/30, LC, Quadra or Performa. System 6.0.5 or later, 4MB RAM, 32-bit QuickDraw, 16-color (4-bit) video card (or better). Hard Drive,1.44MB floppy drive (800k disk available). Recommended options are one, or better yet, two Advanced Gravis MouseStick IIs and a modem. This evaluation was done on an LC III with 14" monitor, 4 MB RAM, System 7.1, and one Gravis MouseStick. At a street price of $42, Falcon MC is a bargain for the serious Combat-FlightSim gamer. Using one MouseStick increased my enjoyment value of the game by 200%. The Falcon manual Illustrates the use of single or double Gravis MouseSticks. Falcon and Gravis Mouse-Stick seem made for each other. Using two MouseSticks eliminates hunting and pecking at 18 keyboard buttons. While being fired upon, this would be incredible! When you add the price of two Gravis MouseStick s to the price of Falcon MC, the total is $178. Professional desk top flight simulator software and control systems, for pilot training, start at about $2500 and have little to offer over a Falcon/double MouseStick setup.
Flacon MC is published by and available from: Spectrum HoloByte End-User-Sales 2490 Mariner Square Loop Alameda, CA 94501 (800)-659-Game.
Copyright © june , 1993 by George Glaser