Review: Heatseeker

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Reviewed On: PS2
Street: 05.07

When I was 12-years-old I saved and saved and bought a game called Flight Simulator for my Commodore 64 computer. It took 15 minutes to load, consisted of nothing more that a really bad airplane motor noise and some green lines and ran at about two frames per minute. Ever since, I’ve had a rough time enjoying flight-sim games because apparently I’m narrow-minded and hold grudges for way too long. So, ready to cast off the shackles of my harrowing childhood experience, I picked up my copy of Heatseeker and plugged it in for one more launch off the tarmac. I’ll talk first about the bad news. Heatseeker does not look like a new game by any stretch. Although a far cry from the green lines of my old Flight Simulator game, the graphics here are passable at best. Everything on the map has the vacant feeling that so many games that try to offer huge environments suffer from. The biggest problem with Heatseeker, however, is the writing. From the exceptionally lame dialog between the tower and your plane to the mysterious motives of your suicidal enemies you’ll spend as much time wondering why you’re flying around blowing up so much stuff as you will actually blowing the stuff up. However, if you’re willing to set aside the inquisitive side of your human nature and just kill without mercy there’s a place for you amongst the clouds and hot lead that fill the skies of Heatseeker. Wave upon wave of sitting duck enemies, explosions, missiles and swaths of bullets fly by your jet as you unload a huge barrage of death and destruction across the skies. The cheesy graphics pay off when you can have dozens of enemies on the screen at the same time without the game ever chugging in the slightest. No, this is not the cerebral experience you expect from a video game (cough) but it does fulfill some other expectations, such as senseless violence and really bad writing. 3 our of 5 exploding enemy ‘jokers’. –Jesse Kennedy