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Reviewed: F/A-18
Author: Chris Kim       Date: January 18th 2000
Page: 4

Final Breakdown


Being a hardcore simulation of the F/A-18E Super Hornet Navy Fighter all the gadgets, gismos, and other things are included. The full avionics systems, flight models, physics, handling characteristics, communications systems, and weapon systems are modeled to excruciating pinpoint detail of the plane. But don't let this detail scare away novice simmers, the game offers a lot of options and switches to tone down the realism of the simulation considerably allowing novices to easily get into the game as well. The campaign included in the game is an excellent semi-dynamic campaign taking place in Russia; the missions are all laced together nearly perfectly to a flow of the game that fits a great storyline, who needs a fully dynamic campaign anyway? Add in the extremely powerful mission builder and this game becomes ever flight simmer's dream.


Most of the graphics in F/A-18 were completely redone from the F-15 days with an engine that sports many spectacular looking features. While the terrain might not be as stunning as the mountainous and rocky terrain in USAF, the terrain graphics for the most part are terrific looking, sometimes when the plane gets down to lower elevations the terrain turns a little pixelated, but it doesn't look too terrible. The specular lighting, 3D clouds, dynamic lighting effects, explosions, and other effects all look superb. The models for planes, buildings, and others look excellent and look well built. But the game does require a very strong machine to handle all the graphics.

Sound and Music:

The atmosphere would not be complete without sound effects and F/A-18 makes sure to fill that void often found in flight simulators. From the fully recreated engine sounds to the voice over communications the sounds are great. The communication and chatter over the radio is great and adds to the intense action. One of the most annoying sounds, however have to be some of the weapon systems, when using the Sidewinder 9X missiles, the continuous beeping is annoying as hell. The 20mm default gun is pretty lame sounding as well.


If multiplayer is the sort of thing to play, then F/A-18 is also great and succeeds greatly in this department. Players can hook up with seven other friends to play over the net on any of the missions found in the game and can side or just dogfight, it's all up to the player.

AI and Difficulty:

Excellent AI for enemies is provided and the game fits the curve for difficulty nearly perfectly. The game is fully adjustable to match the difficulty levels of nearly all gamer's tastes from flight modeling to battle. The campaign is also a ton of fun and not to mention has a great balance of difficulty. There is some pathfinding quirkiness, but for the most part it is very good.

Controls and Interface:

An excellent interface is used to power F/A-18 with fully configurable controls, excellent control precision, great flight systems, and HUD. There is a slight problem with text disappearing once in a while that might be annoying, but it doesn't effect gameplay too much. Sometimes the green HUD text can disappear into the background though.


Wow, this game lived up to what it was going up against. It provides one of the most fulfilling campaigns with a very good semi-dynamic campaign and combining all the features of a hardcore simulation with enough tweaks and adjustments to make it accessible to novice simmers. Add in the excellent mission builder and then we've got a flight simulation that won't go away for a while. With excellent looking graphics, fun multiplayer, and great AI/difficulty balance, F/A-18 comes out on top as a great flight simulation that shouldn't be missed by any hardcore simmer.

Glide Underground Editors Choice Award
Pluses (+)
  • Excellent Flight Model
  • Terrific Campaign
  • Pretty Graphics
  • Balanced AI/Difficulty
  • Hardcore and Novice Friendly
  • Minuses (-)
  • Some Interface Weirdness
  • Some Annoying Sound Effects
  • Minor AI Issues
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    Added:  Tuesday, January 18, 2000
    Reviewer:  Chris Kim
    Page: 4/5

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