Superflight is a PC game I've been having a lot of fun with this week. To get an idea of what it's like, imagine if Tony Hawk could fly.
Inspired by wingsuits (think Far Cry, or maniacs sponsored by Red Bull), the game is about controlling a blocky little figure as it descends — real fast — down a procedurally-generated mountainscape.
You get points for hugging the walls, and a lot of points for pulling more extreme stunts like flying through narrow gaps and caves.
Your challenge is twofold. First, because they're generated on the fly, no two maps are the same, so it's not like you can rely on memorising a layout every time (though you can save the ones you like and go back to them later).
And second, the physics. The wind will buffet you and move your guy around constantly, while faster movements make for more erratic controls, making what sounds like a simple process a bit more challenging than it seems.
I love the controls here. Playing with a control pad, there are two levels of input. Small nudges of the stick will result in precise and tiny movements, but there's a point on the pad where that gives way to large, sweeping turns.
The moment this is programmed to kick in feels just right, almost as though there's a physical barrier or rumble between the two, and I had the hang of things — soaring around a mountain side before switching to a surgical dash through a cave — within minutes.
And god, the speed. It doesn't look that fast on videos, but the slight twitchiness of the controls mixed with the whooshing of the wind make for a hectic descent. To go back to the Tony Hawk comparison, I got a lot of the same feelings here I used to playing the classic skate game, like identifying a trick or move I wanted to pull off and persevering until I nailed it, no matter how many times I smashed into the side of a mountain at the end of a nerve-wracking ride.
There's not much to Superflight. You boot it up, you fly around and scores are logged to a leaderboard. You can't race against other people, or build your own levels, or customise your wingsuit, you just jump into a level and fly.
The developers are aware of this, telling people on their store page:
GrizzlyGames is a very passionate but small team of three students, so please keep that in mind when you think about buying Superflight. It's not a huge game with hours and hours of content.
What we would like to offer you is a simple game that gives you the feeling of intense speed, high adrenaline moments and beautiful vistas to explore at the price of a coffee to go.
The game's out now, and at only $US2.69 I think is definitely worth a few bloodcurdling runs down the mountain.