Remember those old helicopter games of the past? The ones that had you blasting the ever-loving-hell out of anything and everything between you and your goal in a festival of flickering pixels? Well, they’re back on both home and mobile consoles and we’re here to give you a mission brief on which game should be cleared for monetary liftoff from your wallet.
Under Defeat 2 was a somewhat controversial game that came out on the SEGA Dreamcast. Remember that delightful little console? Anyway, the game raised a stir with its alternate reality World War II setting where you play as the German speaking “Empire” battling the English tongued “Union.” The uniforms are eerily reminiscent of reality and the naval warships in level 2 look more than similar to the Japanese Imperial Navy. Regardless of controversy, the game, being billed as the last Dreamcast game, sold well enough to warrant a pretty little console remake for the current generation of systems. The powerful Xbox and PS3 hardware makes Under Defeat HD look better than your nostalgia addled brain even remembers. Plus, the game has some fantastic anime styling to it, which dishes up some drama to the shoot-em-up explosion-fest.
Chopper 2 is the sequel to the iOS classic and features similarly scrolling gameplay. This game is a bit different from its remade-retro brother. It is a bit more simplistic in presentation, aiming for a more focused feel rather than the pandemonium that comes from your usual arcade game. It requires a bit more precision when placing your aim with your artillery. It is less of a pray and spray game and more of an exercise in tactical striking.
Both games have more than adequate graphics. Under Defeat 2 captures the bombastic arcade style of insanity with ordinance and glowing debris flying every which way. Chopper 2 instead features a much more simple aesthetic. It is reminiscent of more minimalist games, and your eyes are not starved for visual nuggets of beauty. Even though it might look simple, the graphical fidelity is enough to power your biggest screen TVs. Chopper 2 features the ability to hook up to your TV and play in glorious HD.
While the gameplay for both titles may seem similar, they differ in very profound ways. Under Defeat HD locks you into an ever moving vertical shooter where you have to bounce back and forth, Galaga-style, spraying as much fire as you can in the hopes of destroying everything in your path. You even get devastating bombs that allow you to vaporize any enemies that might be lingering on your screen. It’s so satisfying watching them light up like a Christmas tree, leaving your path free and clear.
Chopper 2 is much less about spraying your weapon willy nilly and more about precise strikes against your enemy. The side scrolling design is much more freeform and lets you swing back and forth to flank some stubborn bunker. Being able to backtrack is a huge advantage when going for that all important high score.
If you’re looking for helicopter action, these two are your best bets. They each excel where the other fails and both really deliver helicopter action in their own unique way. Here is an instance where you might consider grabbing a copy of both. While you’re at home, blast away at some Allied, we mean “Union,” forces on your PS3, and when you’re out and about, fire up the blades of Chopper 2 on your iOS device. Neither will disappoint and both will keep your fun levels hovering high in the stratosphere.