MiGMan’s Flight Sim Museum

MiGMan’s Flight Sim Museum

Super Huey III


Bill Silvey, Oathmaster, Clan Wolverine
Newsgroups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.flight-sim
Subject: Nostalgia ain't what it used to be - SuperHuey 3.
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 2000

Super Huey

Back before dirt, back before the earth cooled, when it was just me sitting around waiting for the primordial ooze to spew forth something interesting for me I picked up a copy of Cosmi's SuperHuey for the C64.
Touting itself as the first helo sim for the personal computer, I threw myself into it with abandon.
Pretty much 99.997% of the game was done with sprites and raster interrupts; no polys, no "real" landscape to speak of. Just scaled sprites.
The "cockpit" graphics such as they were, were created using the "control" characters on the C64's keyboard.
Press the shift-commodore key sequence and most of your cockpit would disappear. It took your insturments with it, but hey, talk about a "glass cockpit" - you could tag enemy helos and tanks a LOT easier.
The game was not without it's charm. It had groovy music and was, after a fashion, fun to play.

Super Huey II

A sequel followed, called (not surprisingly) Super Huey II. More of the same, mechanically but this one had different weather (snow, rain, fog etc.) and a few more diverse weapons, plus ASW missions! Shortly after the release of SH2, Gunship came out, and I was hooked. Better flight model (that goes without saying!) better weapons, better graphics, better everything.
Still SH/SH2 always had a place in my list of neato 8-bit games, and I occationally gave thought to digging up a C64 emulator and downloading a disk image to play.

Super Huey III

So, with the stage set, imagine my surprise when I saw a copy of Super Huey *3* on the shelf at my local BestBuy! I grabbed it and scoped it out.
Sure, it would probably be relatively as cheesy as the originals were - so what? Plus, it came with a preconfigured C64 emulator and SH/SH2 images!
Yee-haw! I threw the CDROM in and was greeted by that familiar, martial SH theme music, along with screen-shots of the "classic" titles!
That, folks, is where the fun ends and this story takes a turn for the worst.
You see, I knew SH wasn't an "accurate" flight model. Hell, you could fly it at 999 MPH! Still, I was expecting SOMETHING BETTER THAN THIS PILE OF SxxT! Graphics? Holy god! This looks like one of those amateur 3d terrain engines cooked up by a college student! A "sky" that consists of a wraparound .TGA file. Whee, so you can code quake2-like skies. Sound is... um.
Sound. I don't know but I always figured my PC would at least sound a TAD BIT better than my C64! It ain't to be, not with SH3!


Oh, and let's get to gameplay: THERE IS NONE! Nada, none whatsoever.
*Choplifter* from Br0derbund was more fun than this. There's no sense of anything going on in the game. Enemy "AI" consists of "turn towards me and fire and fire and fire".

Flight Model

There's not even the slight feeling like you're actually flying something. It's as bad as Cyberia in terms of flight model. NO altitude control; a simple speed-up/slow-down accomplished via the same methodology used in the "hidden" terrain overflight model in MS Excel...
There's no "landing", and takeoffs are performed by the computer.


Your weapons include never-miss guided missiles, a wimpy pistol(!) and a cannon. Sometimes, you have limited ammunition. Then, inexplicably, you've got infinite ammo in other missions! Enemy "stealth" vehicles show up on threat displays...oh, it's bad, bad, bad OH SO BAD. Paul Norman, kick yourself. HARDER.


Yes, I know the original SH/SH2 weren't paragons of flight realism, not by any stretch. But dammit, they had something! Some rudimentary "pilot like" duties like watching your oil temp, your hydraulics systems, your threat warning displays, the ability to CHANGE ALTITUDE! This PIECE OF DxxxxxT that is SH3 is an unworthy successor to the game because it has none of these, no hint whatsoever!
The missions themselves last about forty five seconds to two minutes, and once they're over, the game "auto-quits" and you get to select the next one from a sxxt overlay menu who's fonts are xxxxxd up thanks to improper use of 3d acceleration.
It supports GLide, D3d and software mode but frankly there is NO visual difference and no framerate change. The resolution, despite a menu choice that offers "high resolution" mode, is fixed at what must be 640x480.
Avoid, avoid, avoid AVOID this dreck. This game wins my "coaster of forever" game. Not "of the month", not "of the week". FOREVER.
This game makes the first DOS Comanche:Maximum Overkill look like Longbow 2 Gold.
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