capsule review

Air Control Review: Who Knew Landing Planes Could Be This Much Fun?

At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder Air Control

    PCWorld Rating

Air Control is a game very similar to Flight Control: An airfield sits in the center of the screen, and airplanes and helicopters enter from various screen edges. You have to tap an airplane and drag a line to its designated landing strip. The plane then changes its course to follow the line, and makes a successful landing (you hope).

When you have only one or two aircraft on screen, the game seems simple. And it really does start out quite easy--but as it progresses, more and more aircraft enter, and you soon find yourself staring at a jumble of lines and planes, and madly working to keep them from colliding.

Complicating matters is the fact that not all aircraft can land on the same strip. Helicopters are painfully slow, and have their own helipads. Airplanes can land only on a certain landing strip, too: One strip is reserved for large planes, and another one is for small planes.

The game also offers an optional “puzzle mode,” in which each plane has a color, and you need to take it to a landing strip of a corresponding hue. And if you think the game is too slow, you can always touch the Fast Forward button to make the planes go much faster (and the game much harder).

The paid version comes with four different maps--and they aren't just cosmetically different. For example, the Blue Ocean map (featuring an aircraft carrier) has two helipads, whereas most other maps have just one. It’s a shame that Air Control has just four maps, though; a broader map selection would make the game that much more addictive.

Even as it is, I find myself returning to Air Control again and again. It’s a great little diversion.

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At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder Air Control

    PCWorld Rating
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