JET Pilot

Latest flight combat simulator from Vulcan.

The Game

As it states on the box of this latest Mini Series release, in this game you pilot one of two jet fighters through various practice situations and qualification missions. These include approaches, landings, and formation flying to get used to your aircraft as well as target practice to get used to destroying both air and ground targets. You then get to fly the real missions. Your two planes are the Lockheed F-104 and the Lightning and the missions are set in Europe.


This is probably the worst aspect of this game. Installation to a hard drive is possible through the game itself. You simply run the game from the floppy and select Install from within the opening menu. Now is where this installation process breaks down. You are asked for the hard drive name from a group of choices. If the drive you want to install this game to has a different volume name from the choices, you must rename the volume to continue. An alias will not do. You can then change the name back after the installation is complete.


You start the game at the group of setup screens. The first one allows you to change aspects of the game such as detail levels and control method. If you are lucky enough to have an analog joystick you can elect to use that instead of the mouse to control the plane. There is no option to use a regular digital joystick. You can lower the detail levels of the graphics to speed up game play as even on a 50 MHz 68030 or a 68060 this game is not the fastest flight simulator. You also select which plane you will be flying from the two choices, and what mission. You can also change the time of day and weather conditions from the setup screens. Before flying you can also check out the online flight manual and detailed statistics on the different planes including a graph where you can compare flight profiles.


In flight, as in any flight simulator, there are many keyboard commands to remember. The important ones are in the small printed manual that comes with the game. This is the same type of manual which comes with any of the Mini Series games. Luckily there is also the online flight manual to help you learn some of the finer points of piloting a multi-million dollar airplane.

Graphics and Sound

This game is designed to run on any Amiga with 1 Meg of RAM so don't expect any AGA masterpieces. There are enhanced static screens for those who install the game on their hard drive though. As for the actual game screens, I have seen better in Amiga flight simulators but this game can still hold its own. The frame rate seems a little slower than would be expected and is evident in games like Falcon, but other Amiga flight simulators do not boast plane performance within 10% of the real thing like Vulcan claims for JET Pilot. I can only guess that this has something to do with the lower frame rate. You are given the ability to turn your pilot's head while in the cockpit view to look up and over your shoulder for enemy planes and can also view from outside the plane from any angle, much like most flight simulators. The sound includes not only the roar of your jet's engines but also the Amiga's voice as ground control and your wing men coming in over your radio. The sounds of the engines is excellent but the Amiga's voice, while I can understand its use over digitized samples to save space, is, well, the Amiga's voice.

Future Prospects

You may be taken aback by the choice of only two planes. Well, have no fear. Unlike many other developers who have left the Amiga platform, Vulcan is still active and promises future data disks which could easily include more planes and missions.

Bugs And Other Unforeseen Issues

I have not encountered any bugs, but then again I still haven't even finished qualifying for real missions. As far as I can tell, this game will only play in PAL mode necessitating the switching of NTSC Amigas before starting the game. This said, as you can probably guess, there is no CyberGraphics support.

In Conclusion

All in all, a good combat flight simulator. Though slower than some other Amiga flight sims, this one is supported by its developer who promises the possibility of future expansion with data disks. Many other Amiga flight simulators are no longer supported by their developers and there is little chance of them being updated in any way. An important thing to take into consideration before making a purchase. This one also has a degree of configurability that you will not find in many of the others.


JET Pilot

Combat Flight Simulator

Vulcan Software Ltd.

72 Queens Road
Buckland, Portsmouth, Hants, PO27NA
Installation:68%It pains me to have to give a score this low to this game, but I must. There is no reason for forcing people to rename partitions just to install the game. On the up side, it is hard drive-installable.
Playability:85%A little slow and as hard as any flight simulator to control. The many views from outside the planes and the degree of realism make this an impelling title.
Graphics:80%I have seen better in Amiga flight sims. How's about an AGA version? The graphics are neither great nor are they bad. A comfortable middle-ground
Sound:85%Plane sounds are a good or better then other Amiga flight sims and I can live with the Amiga voice on a non-CD game.
Documentation:92%Even though the manuals that come with Mini Series games are small by any standards, the online flight manual and airplane data are a very nice touch and give you a wealth of information.
Performance:80%A little slower than I had expected even on a fast Amiga. I can't imagine playing this game on a stock 500, or even a stock 1200 for that matter. Hard to gauge though due to the realistic performance of the flight engine.
Controls:85%Flight simulators are hard to control and this is no exception but that is what you should expect from these games. Many keyboard controls along with your mouse or analog joystick. Calibrating the joystick is awkward but doable and the use of a digital joystick is not supported.

Overall Score:


A good flight simulator with the promise of future expansion by an active developer. As with any game of this sort, it is best played on an accelerated Amiga.


All Amigas, 1MB RAM, Mouse
AGA Amiga, 6MB RAM, 50MHz '030 or better, Hard Drive, Analog Joystick

-By Anthony Becker
Write to him at e-mail address