The Sky Gamblers series has been around a while in the mobile gaming universe. Recently, the series was released for the Apple TV in the way of it’s racing game, Sky Gamblers Races. Though this effort was well done, it was not the dogfighting perfection I personally wanted from Atypical Games. Finally, they have released a proper air warfare game for the Apple TV. Sky Gamblers: Infinite Jets is a great addition to the growing number of flight sim/fighter games showing up on our beloved gaming device.
Atypical Games has a fine track record when it comes to getting the most out of mobile devices and the Apple TV is no different. Their offerings on the Apple TV are beautiful and the engine used to create this 3D mastery is near perfection in my opinion. Draw distance goes on for what seems to be forever and the lighting effects really add a sense of realism that not many game engines can provide on a mobile platform or the Apple TV.
The animation is fluid and smooth throughout the campaign and in multiplayer. Remember, I am playing this on the Apple TV 4K which gives me a better experience than the original Apple TV 4th gen. I am not sure if the experience is the same on the Apple TV 4th gen, but considering this is the same engine used in many of the Atypical games available on iOS and Apple TV, I would assume it’s is still quite smooth.
I mentioned the draw distance earlier, but I want to mention it again. Using a cascading LOD technique, you can see much farther into the distance than many games of the same nature. It looks stunning at times when the lens flare hits your field of view and you can see the mountains off in the distance. There are times in which I will use the free roam mode just to be wowed.
Another department in which SG: Infinite Jets excels is the audio department. The sound is simply brilliant. Turn up your theater system and be transported to a virtual flight sim world where dogfighting becomes as much a reality as a game can become. I just love the audio work in this game and it adds to the already stellar visual splendor to create a very realistic, almost too realistic, flight experience.
Another unexpected gift in the audio department is the sound of your fighter breaking the sound barrier. The first time I saw the animation and heard the sound I had to pause for a second to show my Son how cool it was. He plays games on the PS4 and while he thinks that the Apple TV is a great gaming device, he laughs at times also. But he even smiled in sincerity when he heard it. Just a very nice little touch added for our gaming pleasure.
Gameplay / Controls
There is no doubt that flight sims can be a dime a dozen on many gaming platforms and, for the most part, all feel pretty similar in their approach to the controls. But SG: Infinite Jets got a lot right here and have supplied the option to control your fighter through a basic “arcade” type control which is great for those casual players looking to get right into the game or a more difficult, but more realistic, simulation type control, where you end up having a bit more pinpoint control at the cost of complexity.
The gameplay is, in essence, as good as you can get for a flight sim/cade. Atypical have also made banking and 180 degree turns easy with a push of the directional pad. This is a huge help especially when you are taking place in a multiplayer match and you need to get away quickly before you get shot down. Again, another nice touch.
The campaign missions are quite short individually and the entire campaign itself does not take long to complete. But having the ability to replay those missions over and over is a great way to earn credits and practice for the multiplayer portion of the game.
Infinite jets, huh? Well….. there are tons of them and the designs are superb. You’ll find something you like no matter what as Atypical games have made numerous planes available to the player. There’s a lot of content here and it makes the game worth your time and effort for sure.
Oh, did I forget to mention that this game has a cockpit view? You all know how much I love the realism of this view in racing and flight games and Infinite Jets has a very detailed and realistic one at that.
There’s a bit much on the screen at times when navigating your way around the menus and the control within these menus, especially the plane select screen, can be a bit counterintuitive in my opinion. But once you have the hang of it, this is really a very small issue.
But the presentation during the game, including the cutscenes, are done very well and let the player know exactly what is happening. Infinite Jets does a great job of moving you around where you need to be and keeping you informed as to where and what you need to do.
Summary / Value
Sky Gamblers: Infinite Jets is $9.99 USD on the Apple TV App Store and is a steal for those who enjoy these types of games. Is it as fleshed out as some of the Sony and Microsoft flight sim offerings? Maybe not, but we are getting close and for the price, the value is better in my opinion.
Games like SG: Infinite Jets make a great argument for the Apple TV 4K as an “actual” gaming console. I don’t care about 4K movies. I don’t care about Netflix, Hulu, HBO, etc. I don’t care if I can watch YouTube videos in HD or 4K. I care that the games I play, on my Apple Gaming Console, look great, sound fantastic and run as smoothly as possible. Sky Gamblers: Infinite Jets does just that and does it in style.
Worth every penny and then some. There are a few IAP’s offered also, but for the most part, you’ll need to earn credits to get the jets you want.
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