Hands-On Preview: Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+ - Danger Zone

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+ is, for a lack of better words, a remastered game for the same platform.

Nintendo’s decision to tweak their handheld platform to create the New Nintendo 3DS system — with the addition of a C-Stick nub and additional shoulder buttons with improved processing power and an improved 3D display — has paved the way for previously released games to re-arm themselves in newer versions.

Bandai Namco Studio has done just that with their beefed up version of 2011’s Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy that launched on the original 3DS.

For those who haven’t played the original version, Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+ lets players take to the sky in variety of fighter jets to engage in aerial combat.

Before missions players can choose between various aircrafts, the type of payload it carries (SOD, LASM or SAAM missiles) and different wingmen to help fight enemy combatants.

Swooping through the air, pilots can shoot bullets and missiles while performing cinematic Action Maneuvers by using the Y button to enter hot pursuit of their foes. Bobbing and weaving to gain perfect positioning is satisfying and filling an enemy jet full of hot lead for a confirmed kill is a thrill.

In my brief time with the game I whizzed through the aerial battlefield in a Luigi themed F-35 with the support wingman Edge at my side.

Using the Action Maneuver technique I was able to get behind a handful of enemy fighters to unleash a torrent of SAAM missiles to make their aircrafts burst into an explosion of twisted metal. It’s an excellently crafted flight game that feel at home on a console let alone a portable device.

This core foundation has been merely enhanced with New 3DS features to create a more robust experience. The biggest change among the various enhancements being the new C-Stick giving players an adept way to operate the game’s camera and more easily check my surroundings to find off-screen bogies.

It’s a simple feature that works well, and makes Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+ feel at home on the new handheld.

Aside from the tweak to the control scheme, not much has seemingly been added to this enhanced title. 3D has been refined and offers a greater experience, but its a feature overshadowed by the addition of support for Nintendo’s line of Amiibo figures.

Scanning the small figurines can add skins for planes to the game, with themes for Mario, Luigi, Bowser, Peach, Link and Samus as confirmed options that I witnessed.

No word was given to me about any additions to the story, so assume that this will be another short but excellent romp through the original game’s campaign.

Although I wish that extra missions had been added, of all the games I witnessed during Bandai Namco’s press event Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+ is the game I felt was the safest bet for fans to pick up on launch day.

You simply can’t go wrong with a trip into this danger zone as it’s pretty easy to identify its threats.

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Andrew Matt

Andrew was enraptured by video games at a young age by series such as Pokémon and The Legend of Zelda. A self-proclaimed recovered Dota 2 addict, you can find him enjoying the best games that the PC has to offer. Outside of writing about video games, Andrew enjoys binging Netflix, reading a good book and throwing money at anything and everything Star Wars related. He probably finds your lack of faith disturbing.

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