Just driftin’ away

The vehicle combat genre has hit a bit of a dry spell lately so what are fans of racing to the finish line while throwing rockets, bullets, and mines at their friends to do?. Luckily, there seems to be a game coming out that might be able to give them a temporary fix and for a lot less price than a retail game.

SkyDrift is a downloadable plane combat title that pits you against seven other planes as you soar through steep canyons, around frozen glaciers, and over pristine lagoons all over the world. As you win more races, some being your standard get through the finish line first after a couple of laps while others are more objective motivated, like surviving a series of timed cuts that eliminate the farthest behind player, you progress through seven progressively harder series. Along the way you can unlock up to eight different aircraft and four skins for each one to help give you some diversity in your aircraft and play style as the sharp controls help you bob and weave around enemy projectiles or environment hazards.

Unlike some more developed vehicle combat games though, there is really no story behind SkyDrift. It is simply an exercise in you getting behind some crosshairs and trying to blow some friends to kingdom come. So if you’re just looking for a release for your road rage, this might be a solid choice, but if you’re looking for something more in-depth and plot driven with some larger than life characters, then you should really look elsewhere. Also, even with the great weapon variety and solid controls, they can’t make up for the fact that sometimes the flight paths are muddled against generic textures and without a mini-map or compass you’re really kind of hung out to dry once in a while and may crash yourself more than your friends will shoot you down. This can lead to a lot of frustration in those really tight races if you’re still familiarizing yourself with certain courses.

Overall, if you’re looking for a really deep vehicle combat experience, this probably isn’t your best choice, but if you’re just looking to target a bunch of friends casually in your crosshairs before hitting them with a full arsenal of weaponry, then SkyDrift might be worth looking at with its $15 price tag. Especially considering it has nearly three-dozen courses and countless single-player and online versus modes including a Survival mode that clearly focuses more on the combat aspect than the racing one. SkyDrift is a solid, decently polished game that should be enough to stave off some vehicle combat cravings at least for a little while.

SUMMARY: SkyDrift is a fun game that could serve as a decent holdover for vehicle combat fans until something more involved comes along.

  • THE GOOD: Weapon variety and solid controls
  • THE BAD: Lack of a story and motivation through single-player campaign
  • THE UGLY: Unclear flight paths at times leading to bloody stains on canyon walls

SCORE: 6.5