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Genre: Casual :: Players: 1 :: Released: 18/2/07

Air Traffic Controller 2007 Review

Developer: Lunagames

Pros

Game Features

Rating/100

You can create your own levels to download to your phone!
50 missions to play
Weather effects and obstacles

Cons

Graphics are a little small
The sound could be better

Sound
Help
Save Option
Highscore
Suspend/Resume
Network
Bus/Tube Friendly
See Compatible Handsets

83

Graphics

79

Sound

75

Controls

96

Playability

84

Lastability

81

Review Details
Handset Nokia 6680

Anannya Sen’s Review

Review Date: 18/2/07

It's the first of the 2007 titles we have actually reviewed in 2007, this is a big update on the original.


ATC is quite an old title and has been one of the stalwarts in the Lunagames stable. In fact, the original premiered way back in 2003 so it's actually older than us!! In case you were wondering what we thought of the original, then check out our review here. ATC was one of the original casual or one thumb games as all it requires you to do is to rotate your planes and get them on the right course to land. There are 4 airports to land to, conveniently labelled A, B, C and D and then there's the landing strip in the middle. The planes come out and you can use the D or key pad to switch between planes (pressing up or down) and then change their course (by rotating them right or left). Steer them home to get money or finish the level.

So far so good, the basic game premise hasn't changed because why spoil a good thing? Let's get onto what has changed then. The graphics are improved over the original, and now you can easily see different sizes of planes (including jets and prop planes), weather effects and even hot air balloons! The background and graphics in between levels are nice, but nothing spectacular. In the previous version we had day missions and then a night version was released so now in 2007 we get day and night missions in the same game. The menus are nice, you get a cool little radar effect. The sound is similar to previous versions, just a really funky tune when loading and also some tones when planes appear on the screen.

Controls are the same as before which is good, but now you have a HUD (heads up display) at the bottom of the screen. This is useful as it shows the game speed (finally) and then also your score, windspeed and how many planes you have left to land. Windspeed is new, there are some levels where the high winds make the planes fly all over the place! Extra care is needed to land them as the chances of a collision or going of course are much greater. There's also a speed button in thhe game so you can speed the planes up if you think they are taking too long to get to their destinations. This may sound good (the first game didn't have a speed function) and it can be, but there are plenty of times when you wish you hadn't increased the speed as the planes will get out of control much quicker. There are only two speeds to the game and the normal one is pretty slow, but you are thankful for it when you see there are about 10 planes on the screen and you have to make sure they don't hit each other.

The game now has a semi plot as you have some graphics of being an ATC with a variety of missions. As the days progress, the missions get tougher and tougher and there are 50 of them to keep you entertained. The new features of the missions are that in some you get "no fly zones"and "mayday emergencies" making your job even tougher, and in others you even get bloody hot air balloons invading your air space! I mean, who flys a hot air balloon next to a Boeing 747? These additional features help make the game more interesting, and a bit of a break from the basics of the original. It does take you a while to get to the more exciting missions, with the first 10 or so getting you used to the game. Another neat twist is having all the planes on a level landing at the same airport. Their different speeds means you may have to keep them circling in the air for a while until the plane in front of them lands! Remind you of any airports you know (not mentioning any names....Heathrow)? As you progress your score increases and you can unlock bonus levels to play, although these seem fairly standard.

By far the best aspect of this new version is the ability to create your own levels. Like many console games, this has a level editor, although it's not in the game itself. To do this, you have to go to the developers website and there you can create a level and download it to your phone. On the developers website, you can access a builder tool which lets you determine the number of planes, windspeed, balloons etc and this will give you a code that you can enter on your phone to play that level. Ok, so you can't add any new features into the game, just play about with old ones but it's a very nice touch and quite innovative.

Overall, if you like ATC games, this has a whole host of new features and the level editor is a brilliant touch. And if you get very very good, please see if you can take over from the people at Heathrow!