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Posted on Jun 30, 2004 in Electronic Games

Modern Air Power – War Over Vietnam – Game Review (PC)

By Jim H. Moreno

Following is a very small sampling of available aircraft:

A-1H

A-7D

CH-53A

EF-105F

MiG-19

S-2G

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There’s one mission that has you in control of a single aircraft (an F-111), but the skies will be very busy, and so will you, in all the other missions. Victory is achieved by receiving enough victory points to reach a certain mission-specific level. Points are awarded depending on how well you can limit the loss of your aircraft and SAM sites, and how well you can maximize the losses of such to the enemy.

Victory Dialog Box.

War Over Vietnam also comes with the Modern Air Power Scenario Editor, used to create and modify scenarios, and the Modern Air Power Order Of Battle Editor, used to create and modify Orders of Battle. I’m looking forward to adding and playing more scenarios that I’m sure will be created.

Interface – 5 stars

If you are familiar with other John Tiller games (for example, Age of Sail, East Front, West Front), then you’ll know this is one of his trademark strongpoints.War Over Vietnam is no exception. The main aspects of gameplay take place in a large Main Map on the right, while the Jump Map and three aircraft window slots line up on the left. A row of menu icons line up across the top over both of these, and include almost all the commands you’ll need during play. This makes accessing commands much faster than via the pull-down menus located above the icons. But, if you so prefer, there are also a number of hotkeys available. With the Shift-right click in the Main Map area, you can bring up a list of aircraft specific commands, such as Patrol, Attack, Intercept, and Fly High or Fly Low.

Notice the easy use of colors and shapes.

The Main Map provides that info at-a-glance aspect military gamers expect, done through easily recognizable colors and shapes. Aircraft come shaped as triangles, unless they have been positively identified, at which time they change to an aircraft icon. You can toggle the names of aircraft, as well as a colored bar for fuel status (green) and ordnance remaining (red). Surrounding an aircraft, a blue circle indicates the visible range of the pilot, a yellow circle shows the radar range, and a brown circle represents the distance to the horizon of low-flying aircraft. For aircraft so equipped, there are also colors and shapes to indicate the effective area of radar jamming and signal intelligence (SIGINT) detection.

Zoomed in on the Main Map.

Over on the left, on each individual picture slot of an aircraft, colors again play a prominent role to indicate speed, and the range of the aircraft at that speed. The owning nation’s flag and the unit designation are also seen here, along with the number, type, and training level of aircraft selected.

The interface is simple, very informative, and as easy on the eyes as Alyssa Milano. Just the way a good war game should be.

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