Tiny Combat Arena | Preview in 7 Screenshots

Tiny Combat Arena burst onto the scene with one of the best trailers in years. It’s not a complete game yet, but even with the preview version, I managed to have some fun.

Tiny Combat Arena has an admirable goal: to mix sim-like flight mechanics with an approachable control scheme that doesn’t demand you put in actual pilot training hours to learn. And isn’t that the usual problem with hardcore milsims? They’re never anything approaching approachable to 99% of the players. So Tiny Combat Arena definitely stands outs already.
And the flight model works fine so far!  It didn’t feel any more difficult than simulator battles in War Thunder, and I wonder how much of that is due to flight dynamics vs. not having to care about fuel mixture. Sure, the AI has issues with crashes and I can’t land. However, the devs are already addressing the former (and the fact that AI doesn’t use missles) while for the latter… well, git good, me.
Currently, Tiny Combat Arena only allows you to fly the fictitious AV8B, but at least the bots get to enjoy such legends like Mig-21s and F-4 Phantoms.
But the air threat isn’t the only thing. Your goal on the current arena demo is to help your ground forces take over enemy bases and to prevent the opponent from doing the same. The ground AI works roughly on MOBA logic, mostly moving from the base they spawned at towards the closest enemy one. They need your help  – put those Rockeyes to good use (and not drop them on base buildings like I did at first).
However, since missiles and bombs run out fast, you can totally go in with guns, exploding guard houses and such. It’s also the honest choice if you’re going in for dogfighting vs. the missile-bereft AI.
Dogfighting is a definitely harder than the missile point-and-click adventure. The game absolutely didn’t forget to include blackouts (and maybe even redouts if memory serves).
While Tiny Combat Arena flies fine with mouse and keyboard, I managed to press into service a Logitech Extreme 3D Pro that a friend had loaned me more than a decade ago (before even getting the game, I finally asked him if he wanted it back. He didn’t) and it flies fine! So I’m hoping that we’ll get a full version that will both maintain this level of quality and let me fly a Mig-21.

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