Airport Madness: World Edition Review

Airport Madness: World Edition is an extremely addictive air traffic control strategy game that will have you pulling your hair out at times–and that’s half the fun.

This is not a full-blown Air Traffic Control simulator, as some of the negative reviews on Steam are more than happy to point out. If you’re looking for something like that, you’d be better off with something like Global ATC Simulator. Instead, this is an arcade-style ATC game that greatly simplifies the types of planes, airports and other options, and is both fun and frustrating as it ramps up the number of things it expects you to keep track of and manage.

The game starts out simply enough with a variety of planes slowly flying approaching from off-screen. When planes appear, they are automatically assigned a runway for landing. For each plane in the air, you can either leave it alone and let it land on that runway, or you can assign it a different runway, have it speed up or slow down, or divert it by clicking on the plane and dragging your mouse in the direction you want it to fly temporarily while you deal with other problems.

Once a plane lands, the player has to give it instructions on when it is safe to cross runways, and then tell it when to line-up and take off.

There are only five plane types, but you also have to for the difference in speed between the slow prop planes vs. the much faster jets

By the time you’ve got four planes in the air all wanting to land at the same time you’ve got a backlog of eight planes on the ground all refueled and wanting to take off, this gets to be a nerve wracking level of information overload that is fun as hell to try to manage.

The developer is actively supporting the game by regularly adding new airports. When the game launched on Steam it featured eight airports, but the developer has added two new airports since and is working on a third for December 2015.

And at just US$9.99 on Steam, Airport Madness: World Edition is an excellent value.

NCAA Forces Removal of Some Women Soccer Players From FIFA 16

Polygon writer Owen Good has an excellent opinion piece on the appalling behavior of the NCAA toward a small number women soccer players over the upcoming video game, FIFA 16.

FIFA 16 is the first installment of that video game to include women soccer players, and it’s about time that happened. But, the NCAA has forced Electronic Arts to remove the names and likenesses of 13 women, who also attend U.S. universities, because of the NCAA’s insane eligibility requirements,

On Thursday, Electronic Arts acknowledged that 13 members of three national teams — Mexico’s, Spain’s and Canada’s — had to be wiped from its upcoming FIFA 16 at the last minute. That’s because the NCAA, which doesn’t have a goddamn thing to do with this video game, said these players’ appearance — legally secured with permission from their nation’s soccer federations — would violate one of its rules and forfeit their eligibility.

. . .

Per Electronic Arts, neither [Canadian defender Kadeisha] Buchanan nor any of the other 12 players “were to be compensated individually” for their appearance. What that means is EA (properly) paid some fee to these players’ national associations to use their likenesses and others, on a group basis. The distribution of that money, if any is disbursed, is up to those federations’ agreements with their players.

Those deals may respect NCAA amateurism rules or may have exemptions granted. Who knows. In the end, we’re left to assume it’s not any money that’s the problem because the people making the game aren’t paying the women. It’s their appearance in the game itself that’s the violation, probably because the NCAA construes it as the direct endorsement of a commercial product.

The NCAA has no problems for someone like Caleb Porter, coach of the University of Akron men’s soccer team, raking in a salary of $350,000/year to coach “amateur” athletics, but god forbid a “student athlete’s” name and likeness appear in a video game.