Comanche is a series of simulation games published by NovaLogic. The goal of each of these games is to fly military missions in a RAH-66 Comanche attack helicopter, which was in development and prototyping at the time of release.
Comanche was the first commercial flight simulation based on voxel technology via the company's proprietary Voxel Space engine (written entirely in Assembly language). This rendering technique allowed for much more detailed and realistic terrain compared to simulations based on vector graphics at that time.
Throughout the years, several games and add-ons have been published:
- Comanche: Maximum Overkill (1992)
- Comanche: Global Challenge (1993) - three new campaigns
- Comanche: Over the Edge (1993) - four new campaigns
- Comanche CD (1994) - a compilation of Maximum Overkill and mission disks, plus 10 bonus missions. Rereleased in 1997 from SoftKey As Comanche CD Special Edition. Includes a demo of America Online, and features Windows 95 compatibility.
- Comanche 2 (1995)
- Werewolf vs Comanche 2.0 (1995) - a pack of two games with a compatible multiplayer mode
- Comanche 3 (1997)
- Comanche Gold (1998) - Comanche 3 with additional campaigns and various enhancements
- Comanche 4 (2001)
Computer Gaming World's reviewer—a United States Army Aviation AH-64 pilot—liked Comanche Maximum Overkill in 1993, calling it an "eye-popping glimpse into 21st-century helicopter warfare". He stated that it created a "more believable terrain model than the Army's Combat Mission Simulator" and was the first game to replicate "the thrill of low-altitude flying". The reviewer enjoyed the flight model's stability and ease of use, and reported that the cockpit corresponded to MANPRINT ("Manpower and Personnel Integration") principles. He compared the helicopter's handling as akin to "a slug ... joystick jocks may end up gritting their teeth", and also criticized the "meager" choice of missions and enemy targets, and the unrealistically high durability and weapon loads. The reviewer nonetheless concluded that "cutting-edge graphics firepower gives [it] the edge to sweep more than a couple of competitors off the battlefield". It was nominated for an award at the 1993 Game Developers Conference.
In 1993 the pilot reviewed Mission Disk One for Computer Gaming World, stating that he "honesty expected more from an add-on disk that retails for $40". He criticized the lack of improvement in the flight model ("CMO's Comanche still flies like Barney Fife is at the controls"), and concluded that it "is like refueling a gunship without rearming it".
- "Voxel terrain engine", introduction. In a coder's mind, 2005 (archived 2013).
- "WCES: The Calm Before the Storm". Next Generation. Imagine Media (3): 15–16. March 1995.
- "Comanche". SNES Central.
- Walker, Bryan (March 1993). "NovaLogic's Comanche Maximum Overkill". Computer Gaming World. p. 124. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
- "The 7th International Computer Game Developers Conference". Computer Gaming World. July 1993. p. 34. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
- Walker, Bryan (August 1993). "NovaLogic's Comanche Maximum Overkill Mission Disk One". Computer Gaming World. p. 134. Retrieved 12 July 2014.