World War 1 was a devastating time in global history with some spectacular battles in the sky. So it only makes sense that a game about these aerial assaults would eventually become a video game. That’s where Warplanes: WW1 Sky Aces comes into existence. This is an okay dogfighting game with not a lot of mission variety and a base building game that I could not get invested in.
Warplanes don’t have a storyline, except you are a pilot in World War 1. I think that works fine for the context of this game since you get to pick between the Western Front, Central Powers, and the Eastern Front. These all essentially have the same narrative structure.
There are two ways to play this game: in pilot or squadron leader mode. The pilot mode is the more simplified version, in which you just do different missions ranging from offensive, defensive, naval, and special, in order to get gold to unlock more planes. These missions are all pretty similar in structure, consisting of different variations of shooting down all the planes, with some having you protect a train or some naval armada. I find these missions to be okay in small bursts but can get repetitive after playing for more than an hour.
Squadron Leader mode adds these missions, but they will get you different resources such as silver, gold, fuel, and prestige. These different items will allow you to improve on a base you will be managing. These resources are needed to protect buildings, train pilots, and expand your hangers and medical bays. I found this mode to be convoluted since some resources, such as silver, don’t come in large quantities but are required to do most things, such as fix your airplanes and build facilities to store said planes.
Though, dogfighting is the real star of this game since you will be doing a ton of missions to get the resources to expand your forces and base. While the missions are repetitive, the actual control of the plane is a lot of fun, with some different planes that are more maneuverable or can drop bombs in ground forces. While I enjoyed the controls and plane variety, I just wish there would have been more variety of quests to complete, so I could fully utilize my massive squadron.
Warplanes: WW1 Sky Aces is a game with a lot of potential with the plane variety and fun combat, but is held back by the base aspect if you’re looking to play the squadron leader mode and a lack of mission variety. While I did have some problems with those two aspects, I found myself having the most fun playing in pilot mode, with my only concern being collecting new planes and fighting enemy planes. This is a fun game when the focus is on combat.