Published by Namco Bandai Games, Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy Plus is an aerial action game that puts players in the cockpit of a fighter plane on a mission to stop a global military coup. An enhanced version of 2011’s Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy, which was a remake of 1997’s Ace Combat 2 on the original PlayStation home console, this iteration adds a handful of enhancements for New Nintendo 3DS owners while giving a new generation a chance to fly right into the danger zone.
I’m particularly picky when it comes to the control scheme in flying games, and glad to say that ACAHLP is as smooth as it comes. Even if you don’t have the New Nintendo 3DS’ C-Stick to swing around the camera, it doesn’t take much to keep enemies in your crosshairs as you attempt to blast them out of the sky. By banking with the shoulder buttons and hitting Y as soon as your gauge fills up, you can easily get behind enemy planes and fire your machine guns and missiles until the opposition turns into metal confetti. It’s as satisfying as you can get in the air without being in an Arwing.
So, what exactly are the bonus features that justify this enhanced remake of a nearly 18-year-old game? If you picked up one of those shiny New Nintendo 3DS consoles, then you’ll be pleased to know that ACAHLP takes full advantage of the system’s head-tracking 3D. Essentially, you don’t have to awkwardly stare at the screen from the perfect angle to enjoy the stereoscopic 3D effect while zipping through the clouds.
In addition to the aforementioned C-Stick camera controls to keep enemies in your sights, this version also offers amiibo support; a quick scan of select figures grants your planes new paint jobs. As the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo3DS XL do not yet have the capability to scan amiibo with an NFC peripheral, this is relegated solely to the New Nintendo 3DS for now. None of these are particularly game-breaking upgrades, but you do need Nintendo’s latest handheld hardware to experience them.
Though the visuals are unpolished and the story flimsy at best in Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy Plus, this isn’t the type of game you pick up for its compelling narrative. In the time it takes for you to commute to work or school, you can knock a few jets out of the sky and uphold the honor of the Usean government and the Special Tactical Fighter Squadron Scarface unit. Keep the baddies ahead of you, barrel roll when they get behind, and you should be just fine.
Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy Plus is now available on the Nintendo 3DS.
Ace Combat Assault Horizon Legacy+ Trailer