In this action/simulation game by Microprose the player takes the role of an U.S. Army airborne ranger. These Airborne rangers are dropped behind enemy lines by parachute to perform all kinds of dangerous missions. Gameplay consists of 3 phases:
1. Reading the mission briefing and outfitting 3 supply pods with machine gun ammo, time bombs, first-aid kits, grenades & LAW rockets depending on this briefing.
2. Flying over the mission map in a V-22 Osprey plane to drop your 3 supply pods and parachuting out of the plane yourself.
3. Performing the actual missions and reaching the pick-up point before time runs out. There are 12 different missions which include capturing an enemy officer, blowing up an ammunition depot, photographing an experimental aircraft and liberating P.O.W.'s
Missions take place in either an arctic, desert or temperate setting. Using the mission map the player must decide the route towards the mission objective. This might require them to crawl through trenches, run around minefields or take out enemy soldiers and bunkers. Airborne Ranger was one of the first games with some missions that required a stealthy approach (staying undetected until a certain time, taking out a guard and stealing an enemy uniform etc.).
Airborne Ranger can be played in practice or veteran mode. In practice mode, gameplay is limited to a single mission, while in veteran mode, a series of missions or an entire campaign is played in order to earn medals & promotions. All missions can be played on several difficulty levels.
Some things do not change over time. And if they do, it is often for the better. An example to prove this statement is Airborne Ranger. Released in 1988, the game is almost twenty years old, and it is still fun to play and offers a good challenge. The plot of the game is simple: You are a U. S. Army Ranger and must complete different missions all over the world, from ice-covered landscapes to blazing deserts.
The real fun and challenge in the game is not the plot, but the world. Unlike other military games from that time, Airborne Ranger is not a simple "run and shoot everything that moves" game. First of all, you get to pack your own equipment for each mission. Secondly, the game offers a wide array of different commands and surprisingly good enemy A.I. Your enemies will attack you if they spot you or if they hear gunfire, so stealth is recommended. By crawling in pits and hiding behind rocks you can manage to stay out of a lot of trouble. Also if you must fire your weapon, move quickly to a new area as enemy soldiers will flock to the sound of your rifle.
The rest of the weaponry includes a time bomb and a LAW (Light Anti-tank Weapon). These are used to destroy objects ranging from bunkers to airplanes. Of course you may also use them on enemy soldiers...
When it comes to the graphical part of the game, it is not as bad as it looks on the screenshots. After a while you will get used to the colors and start enjoying the gameplay. The controls are also easy to use and master, but the sound in the game is another story. For me the best thing about the sound is that you can turn it off. This lowers the mark by one, giving the game a total of 3.
Microprose is well known for it's great games and this is one of their true legends. Airborne Ranger is a well known and original title known to all computer game players of the eighties. Whoever missed to play this masterpiece should be ashamed!
The game puts you in boots of a special unit soldier, trained to complete the hardest missions of all - missions deep inside enemy territory. As the game starts you will be given an option to choose the mission and your weapons to take into the action. Then you will have to deploy supplies and finally start the action.
You will be fighting enemy soldiers, sand and concrete bunkers, mine fields and such. This is not just a typical action game since you will have to use your brain a lot if you do not want to die too soon. Airborne Ranger is a masterpiece and you must play it!
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