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Pilot Sports

Posted by GG Goblin On November - 19 - 2018

It’s all in the air.

Taking obvious inspiration from Nintendo’s Pilot Wings games, z-software’s Pilot Sports has that sort of bright, colourful demeanour that you would expect for a light and breezy varied flight game for the younger players out there. It is not until playing the game that you realise how devilishly difficult some of these challenges can be, no matter how funny your chosen pilot is. Take to the air, Pilot Sports is out now on Switch and PS4, just don’t be expecting a walk in the park.

DoubleDecker(1) (Copy)

Anyone who has played Pilot Wings will have  a vague idea of what to expect in Pilot Sports. What we are essentially talking about is a selection of different challenges that take place up in the air, over a rather nice little tropical island for the most part. Before taking to the skies, however, the player will first have to choose their pilot from a quirky selection of odd characters. A couple of them actually look like they may be pilots, while others, such as 70’s afro lady and Hawaiian private detective guy, are just strange. It doesn’t really make a difference which pilot you choose, so go crazy if you want. Once you are up in the air, what your pilot looks like just doesn’t matter.

The great thing is that Pilot Sports brings variety to the air, with the player able to take part in different types of events with different modes of air transport. Players can take to the skies with an aeroplane, zip around at low altitude with a jetpack, use air current in the hang glider, and just fall gracefully with a parachute.

Each mode of transport handles and plays differently. For the plane, for example, players will have much more control as they steer the plane while adjusting thrust or using the brake. For the jetpack though, the thrust is used in small bursts to give verticality. The glider doesn’t have any thrust, relying instead on air currents, while parachuting involves diving and then activating the parachute to come to a graceful landing. The variety is great, and for the most part controlling each of the different methods comes quite easily. There is a little readjustment time when changing from one to the other, but that makes up part of the fun.

Which would be great if the challenges were not occasionally so difficult. Sure, some vehicles are more difficult than others to control, but even on the easier vehicles, the game expects quite a lot from the player.

HangGlider(7) (Copy)

The variety of different challenges is nice, and will see the player flying through rings, gliding for as far as they can before successfully reaching a goal, or just floating down to a target while avoiding hazards. It’s all good, and players will have a lot of fun in the skies above this beautiful island. The problem comes after the event, when the player is awarded medals. While anyone would be happy with a bronze of silver medal, it is only the gold medals that count towards unlocking the next batch of levels, and those gold medals rely on a true level of perfection. This can make the single player came come to an abrupt halt as players fail to get the required number of golds.

The alternative is to just invite some friends around and play a multiplayer tournament of your own design. While there is no online multiplayer, Pilot Sports does include a rather fun split screen local multiplayer option for up to four players. Here, the player can pick the different events and group them together into a fun filled tournament. It has to be said that Pilot Sports is far more fun with friends, as the players are competing with each other rather than some unreasonable goals set by the game.

Visually, well, It has already been mentioned how it looks like a kids game. The colours are bright and the detail has a happiness to it. Pay too much attention and you will see how simple the visuals are, with flat, blue water and balloony trees. But then, this is a game about being in the air, and so it doesn’t really matter. Even if the player is exploring the island, which is nicely varied by the way, the basic visuals don’t take away any of the fun from being in the air.

Parachute(2) (Copy)

Pilot Sports has everything it needs to be good fun, with a nice setting and simple to use air vehicles. However, the difficulty in progressing in single player does make the game slightly frustrating. Of course, playing with friends makes everything better, which is why the missing online multiplayer is such a shame. However, playing the split screen local multiplayer is an easy way to enjoy the game. Pilot Sports is worth checking out for players who enjoy a challenge, or want to take to the skies with local friends.




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