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You are a member of elite corps selected for your courage, ingenuity and special skills to go on the most dangerous missions. Parachute behind enemy lines armed only with a machine gun and hand grenades.

Airborne Ranger is a fast-paced action-simulation that challenges your strategic skills and reflexes. Control one soldier's battle against overwhelming odds. You can run, walk or crawl across full-scrolling 3-D terrain using trees, bushes and ravines to avoid the enemy or set up an ambush.

Whether rescuing hostages from a terrorist prison or infiltrating the headquarters of an enemy unit every mission takes careful planning and pinpoint execution. Drop caches of weapons and first aid supplies, out manoeuvre the enemy, then locate the pickup zone in order to reach safety. Airborne Ranger is an exciting combination of action, danger and suspense.
~ from the back of the box

A dated action strategy game that spanned many systems in the late 80s. As far as I can tell, the game originated on the Commodore 64 in 1987, which is perhaps one of the better versions out there.  A year later came the cumbersome DOS port. There are different graphical options, of which EGA is the best but the whole affair feels unpolished in the control department. The best looking - and playing - port came to the Amiga in 1989 and with the extra two years of development it's unsurprising that this is the one to play. There were others, including a cancelled SNES port, but these are three of note.

After you've equipped your weapons and supply pods, missions begin with a fly over the location in a V-22 Osprey plane. Here you need to drop three of your previously chosen pods before parachuting out of the plane yourself. It's easy to miss this last step, so pay attention to what you're doing.

After this is the main crux of the mission, which can take place over three different terrains; arctic, desert or temperate. Taking the over-head perspective, the objectives can vary from capturing a high-ranking enemy to rescuing prisoners of war or simply blowing shit up. There are even some stealth missions too, a mechanic rarely seen at the time.

Like its sequel, Special Forces, this is an interesting action-strategy set during an unspecified war but the gameplay has aged quite a bit. Not bad, but not exactly a classic that stands the test of time


As of 20th December 2022, Airborne Ranger is not abailable to buy on GOG.

Buy on GOG.COM






Airborne Ranger is © MicroProse Software
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me

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1 comment:

  1. Not a fan of the look of the Amiga version myself. The DOS version, with it's weird focus on diagonal gameplay, feel more "realistic".

    Hard as nails though. I just saw someone lower the difficulty setting in a video, I did not know you could do that back when I started playing it. Pretty sure I never finished even a single mission as a kid.