Significance: Last game released by the original Cinemaware company, a company that produced such classics as Defender of the Crown, Rocket Ranger, TV Sports Basketball and The Three Stooges.
The last game of a dying legend
Wings was a World War 1 flight sim set between 1916 and 1918 around the Somme region. Although I use the term "simulation" loosely with regards to this game. There was no need to learn how to take off, or land as this was all done 'off-screen'. The simulation only really began when you were up in the air, and even then, it was a simplified version of a flight sim. That was probably the appeal of this game to the wider audience, as you didn't need to know the finer points of flying a World War 1 biplane.
The background of the game was well set out, with the high quality introduction sequence giving the gamer a little detail on how the war was going. There was also a journal where you were given a story about how the war was going, happenings around the airbase and historical details written by your alter-ego in the game. These journals were informative and interesting to read, but rarely had anything to do with the previous mission or following missions.
There were three types of missions. Firstly, there were bombing missions where the gamer was given a primary target and usually a secondary target to bomb beforehand. This was done in a birds-eye view, and was probably the easiest part of the game. The main difficulty was to dodge the anti-aircraft fire.
The second type of mission was the strafing run. This was done in an isometric style. This type of mission was a little more difficult than the bombing missions, as you needed to fly lower and were more susceptible to damage. The main target of these missions were road-trains full of enemy vehicles, anti-aircraft guns and minor targets (in importance and in size) were enemy troops positioned in the trenches. Those missions were probably the hardest due to the fact that the little guys would hide in the trenches and then pop up and shoot at the gamer - thus giving you little time to shoot back at them.
Although poor by todays standards, the graphics were amazing at the time and continued Cinemaware's usual high quality. Graphically, you could see the tiny men hiding in the trenches, as well as the enemy planes coming at you from a distance. The sound was of a high standard too, giving you the feeling that you were right in the thick of the World War 1 action.
Overall, this game was definitely a classic and worthy of a remake. Truly, if a remake for the PC were on the cards, this game would be one that would get me to put my hand in my wallet and slam some cash down at the cash register. Well, one can only hope.