We'll teach you how to become an ace pilot.
Airplane! suffers from lengthy flights and a somewhat unfair freemium set-up, but those who get into it will enjoy this simulator's user-friendly gameplay and impressive visuals. If you can't get past a mission, these tips should help you master the friendly skies.
How do I earn coins in Airplane!?
Coins are the in-game currency in Airplane!, and there are two ways to get them. You can either earn a few at a time by completing jobs in the game, or you can use real cash to buy a good amount of them. You can then spend coins to buy planes and unlock a new weather condition to fly through, including Storm and Fog.
Which plane class should I use?
There are three classes of planes in the game - commuter, cargo and military. It all depends on what kind of job you want to do, but in essence, all the planes are pretty much the same. If you want to play fighter jets, they feature superior maneuverability, but you don't get to fire missiles or anything like that.
Go with the cargo, commuter planes and blimps if you're looking for more of a challenge. They take longer to fly due to their size, and they're a bit trickier to maneuver than the smaller planes. You'll also earn more coins this way.
How do I quickly unlock planes?
With the way Airplane!'s freemium system is set up, there's no easy way to get planes in this game. You have one of two options - you can either complete jobs, which take a lengthy amount of time without any sort of fast travel option, or you can put down money to unlock planes and new weather conditions to fly in. You'll probably pay $1.99 per plane, $14.99 per class of plane (which unlocks 10 per class) and around $14.99 per new level. You can unlock them with coins, but considering how long flights take, it'll take a while.
Can I get anything for free in Airplane!?
The opening Day level is unlocked from the start, along with two planes - the Cessna 182 charter plane and the Pitts S1 Special bi-plane. In addition, you can acquire three others by completing promotional offers. The Lear 60 charter jet unlocks by rating the game; the B17 Flying Fortress is available after watching a YouTube video; and the Air Force One commuter plane is all yours by liking a Facebook page. Everything else you'll either need to unlock or buy.
How do I get better at the game and prepare for bigger planes?
Your best bet is to start small. Smaller planes don't offer much in the way of coins, but they will get you accustomed to the gameplay and how things work between takeoffs and landings.
The controls are very easy to get used to, unlike more detailed flight sims, as you have a speed stick to increase or decrease your acceleration, and a directional pad to move your plane. The only three meters you have to watch out for are air speed, altitude and direction; you can always find your objective marked with a red arrow.
Takeoff is simple, as you gain speed, pull yourself into the air and maintain a good altitude. Landings are difficult at first, but once you get used to adjusting the speed and landing at the right angle, it works just fine. Rookies can also use Auto-Land if they prefer. Finally, taxiing the plane can be, well, taxing, mainly due to keeping a proper speed as you approach the gate. It's not impossible, however, and after a couple of flights, you'll be good to go.
Should I use the Auto-Land feature in Airplane!?
You can, but there are two things to keep in mind.
Number one, Auto-Land is only available in the easy difficulty setting. If you're playing on normal or hard, you're on your own.
Number two, using Auto-Land is convenient, but costly. Activating it will take away half the money for the job. It's a huge deal when you're trying to earn 20,000 on a blimp flight, knocking it down to around 10,000. When trying to unlock stuff in the game, it can be a real hassle.
Read our Airplane! review