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Obscurity: Fly To Live, Live To Fly

Back in the mid-90s, video game arcades were still a thing that existed in pretty much every mall in America. Fighters actually had quarter lines, plastic guns abounded, and games with seats in front of the cabinet covered more arenas than racing, racing, and more racing.

One such game, a personal favorite and one of the few that's never seen a home port, was Sega's Wing War. Unrelated to the Atari/Colecovision title from back in the day, Wing War offered one of the best dogfighting simulations of its time. Two players (or just one and the computer) took turns attacking and evading over several landscapes, in a decent spread of aircraft from across history.

Personally, I leaned toward the Mitsubishi M6A Zero and the Harrier Jumpjet most of the time, occasionally moonlighting on the P38 and the Werewolf helicopter. It was great blowing through a few matches after getting my ass handed to me in Mortal Kombat II, as well as finding that the second-oldest plane in the game (the Zero) could dominate pretty much any comers, regardless of their era of origin.

On the few occasions I got to play single player, things were a bit rougher, trying to work my way up through the tournament-style bracket to the game's UFO end boss. I only made it that far once, and came within one or two fusillades of taking the bastard down before getting kicked off the machine because the arcade was closing. You could say that night was one of my first real heartbreaks.

Short of finding a cabinet for sale somewhere, and actually having the money for it, there's no real chance of me ever making up that loss, either. It wasn't long afterward that my arcade's Wing War got shuffled out for something more current. I forgot the name of the game after a while and a long-running addiction to X-Men vs Street Fighter, and by the time the world wide web had evolved to the point it could tell me what I was looking for, I learned the failure of the Sega Saturn had left Wing War the only game on Sega's Model 1 arcade system that didn't see a home system release.

I've played several Ace Combats, some Wing Commander (SNES-flavored, so it may not even count), plenty of air combat sims. StarFox 64's multiplayer and Crimson Skies: High Road To Revenge managed to somewhat recapture the magic of Wing War's Expert mode, which let you fly more freely but was a lot more difficult, but nothing's quite hit that back-and-forth that made Wing War's standard mode so fun.

It kills me to share something so beautiful that not only hasn't aged well visually, but also that almost none of you can ever play, but I felt that this was as good a realm as any to pay tribute to one of the funnest times I'll likely ever have piloting anything, real or imaginary. At the very least, someone's captured footage of the game's attract mode, so you can see what you missed.

If anyone from Sega is reading this, it's about time you guys revived an IP rather than beating one to death or relegating it to "all-star" cameo status. HD up-res, online multiplayer. Think about it. For the children.
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About nekobunone of us since 5:17 PM on 06.29.2007

Hi, I'm Chris, though I've been going by nekobun and variants thereof for so long, I kind of answer to both anymore.

While I've kind of got my own thing going in the realm of indie coverage, at least in the form of playing through (and streaming) (and writing about) the huge backlog I'm developing of games gleaned from various indie bundles, I try to keep my more mainstream, game-related features here, as well as opinion pieces on the industry at large, out of mad love for the 'toid. When I'm not rambling here or trying to be clever in comments threads, you can catch me rambling on Facebook and my Twitter, and trying to be clever in the Dtoid.tv chat.

Now Playing:
360: Halo 4
PC: F.E.A.R.
SNES: Secret Of Mana

I suck at games: PEW PEW LASERS
Improving game communities: Collective consciousness
Nothing is sacred: These walls have torn my world apart
The wrong thing: Only cream and bastards catch them all.
Love/Hate: I love to hate -you-
Love/Hate: B(u)y the book
The Future: Is still what it used to be
My Expertise: Playing the race kart
Something about sex: Sex sells, but who's buying?
E3 Approaches: It's oh so quiet
Freedom: Together, we'll break the chains of HUDs
East vs West: We've got the empire
Handhelds: Graduating as 2000's Catchemaledictorian
Relaxation: Cheesy double Chief burrito
Online Passes: A spoonful of sugar
Peripherals: Many tentacles pimpin' on the keys
This is what MAGfest is all about
Beginnings: Put it on the pizza
Disappointment: Bad(vent) timing

Recap Topsauce:
It's Thinking: Could you quit playing with that radio, love?
Do the wrong thing: And do it right, for once.
Afraid to shoot strangers.
Not if you were the last junkie on Pandora
Is Jim Sterling servicing the video games industry?
Something About Sex: Unsafe at any speed.
Doing DLC right
Congress passes sweeping Elfcare reform bill
Bottom five healthcare systems in videogames.
Pushing my love over the quarter line.
When my life would depend on an eight point none.
Remember the heroes.
Every Journey begins with a single step.
It's all over now, bomber blue.
Being Social: We'll always have Rainbow Road
Labor Day: Of course you realize, this means wark.
Please, aim it higher.
There Would've Been Brawl: Show me 'round your eggplantcage.
Integration: A place for everything
Zelda Week: I guess this is growing up.
MAGfest: the (don't be an) idiot's guide
Promotions: The bees are alright
Now is the winter of on-disc content
This was supposed to be a dozen items about nekobun.
Without Slenderness, there's something missing.
Cheap tricks (and treats) don't come cheaper than free.
The legacy of the (unlikely) wizard.
Cheap Tricks II: Sugar rush boogaloo
Thank you, for bringing me here, for showing me Home.
Burnt flowers fallen: the tragic bitchotry of Lilly Caul
Red and blue, resolving into purple.
Xbox LIVE:nekobun
PSN ID:strictmachine
Steam ID:nekobun
Mii code:2610 8366 7890 1412


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