The original (and unreviewed by WMD) STARWINGS had a campy story, with even campier, tongue firmly in cheek, voice-acting. Unfortunately, the game wasn’t much to write home about (unless… you like to write home about bad games, I guess?)
But “StarWings: Mission Command” is anything but a bad game. It does something really cool that I’ve not seen before: you start with several characters, earn more as you play, each with unique abilities to their ships. The cool part is that you can choose not only how you arrange the ships in your formation, but also how many ships you take with you each mission! Bring more ships, and you have more firepower; bring fewer, and it’s easier to dodge enemy ships.
Different formations, and different numbers of ships, are more effective for different levels, and that experimentation brings a lot of replay value potential. It’s the game’s biggest asset gameplay-wise. The game’s über-campy storyline is a love it or hate it thing (though fans of B-movies will be right at home), but the gameplay variety is unique and rewards experimentation. A tremendous improvement, and the developers should be commended. 80 Microsoft Points.
Here’s what the developer (RicolaVG) has to say about the game:
“The space mercenaries are back and are ready for new missions. Play as Star, Trey, and Lain along with new characters. Choose between a variety of missions and change your squad. StarWings is a side view shoot’em up game.”