Apache: Air Assault, developed by Gaijin Entertainment, is a helicopter combat simulator developed for the Xbox 360 and PS3. Air Assault is NOT an arcade game, but is rather like the Flight Simulator series you see on the PC. Therefore, it isnt too easy to pick up and can take a little while to get used to the game. There are three different difficulties available in the game; Training, Realistic and Veteran. As you can probably guess, Training is the easiest, with Veteran being entirely unforgiving, ideal for the hardcore flight simulator gamers. The controls of the game can be quite irritating, for example, you pilot the Apache with the thumbsticks on your pad. The right analogue stick controls altitude and rotation and tilting of the aircraft is used with the left analogue stick. It takes a fine balance and a steady hand to pilot the Apache through a mission without crashing. Training is the easiest difficulty in the game but is still very difficult. Your Apache takes damage quickly from machine gun rounds that can be fired from a kilometre or two away and RPGs are able to travel enormous distances and be accurate enough to damage the airframe. The engines seem vulnerable and are often damaged early on in the missions, leaving you unable to hover without falling out of the sky, which can be annoying if you are trying to line up an accurate shot with your Hydra missiles. The scenery in the game looks pretty detailed from a height, but as soon as you fly close to the ground, you realise its monotonous, dull and poorly designed. The only level of detail worth mentioning in the game, is the Apache itself. The cockpit is fairly detailed and looks realistic. A stand-out feature of the game is the ability to use TADS, (Target Acquisition and Designation Sights) and engage enemy with your 30mm cannon and Hellfire missiles from a great distance away. You can also switch to your Thermal Imaging sensors that can pick up individual personnel on the ground. The missions in the game focus on three sets of pilots and three different storylines. The missions take place in Central America, Somalia and East Asia. Some missions are pretty simple and can be over in a matter of minutes, but some take a bit longer, up to 30 minutes and can be quite frustrating. The multi-player looks pretty good, with you able to team up with another player. One controls the Apache whilst the other player is the Gunner and is responsible for all the weapon systems. Other modes are available too, which include you being able to face off against three other players and try to destroy their Apache. The annoying thing is though, that hardly anyone ventures onto Xbox Live to play this game. The lobbies are deserted and you can be waiting for quite a while for even one person to join the lobby. Overall, I think the game is pretty good. If the points I mentioned above were fine-tuned and fixed, I think we would have a truly spectacular game on our hands. 3 ½ Mushroom Heads.