GSQ5: A HAL of a time

I’ve never played Air Fortress, which I suppose is something I should rectify one of these days. I even dated a girl long ago who swore it was a totally great game, but I just never quite felt compelled to give it a look. Maybe the problem was that I couldn’t see past the visuals, which make it look like a squatty, clumsy, big-headed shooter. But no, apparently it hews pretty closely to Metroid. And if that’s good enough for Section-Z, I don’t know why it can’t be good enough for this one! Besides the fact that it came out three years after those other two games and therefore ought to be held to a higher standard, I mean.

Anyway, Ben sells it a lot better than I do, so you should probably just check out what he has to say.

4 thoughts on “GSQ5: A HAL of a time

  1. This is quite a fun little gem, at least until the difficulty makes it otherwise. Maybe I’m just weak, but yeah, it gets pretty damn hard after a few levels.

    In any case, this is one of those games that I played when I was a wee child, and only recently discovered a few years ago when I was randomly clicking through my ROM list (sue me).

    I was surprised to find that the game’s atmosphere held up so well. It’s a totally different game, but I think it trumps Metroid in that regard.

    I’m not really a huge fan of calling for old games that need to be remade, but a modern Air Fortress could be pretty great.

  2. Actually, the game came out a year after Metroid in Japan.
    Air Fortress is not a great game, but it does have an amazing atmosphere when you have to escape after destroying the base’s core. How all the lights turn off, music goes away, everything is all quiet and mysterious… and then, the base starts to shake, then more, then harder. It’s very exiting and scary.
    After you experience that a couple of times there really is no reason to keep playing, unless you really like the game.

  3. My experience with Air Fortress was this commercial they used to show late a night. It wasn’t your normal video game ad with a kid screaming about Tektites or whatever. Inside it was like an infomercial where they pitched the game to you and even offered a number at the end to call and order. I remember as a kid thinking the game must be something special for it to get such different marketing.

  4. Yeah, I only alluded to the fact in the article, but it’s safe to say I never actually beat this as a kid, and probably couldn’t even do it now without cheating. Air Fortress has some fascinating art direction and gameplay concepts, but only the first few levels are really playable for all but the most masochistic action/shooter fans.

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