Dogfighter (2010 video game)

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Dark Water Studios' DogFighter
Developer(s) Dark Water Studios
Publisher(s) Dark Water Studios
Designer(s) Sean McCafferty, Damien Gallagher
Engine Instinct Engine 2.0
Platform(s) PC
Release June 14th 2010 (Digital) / March/April 2011 (Retail)
Genre(s) Vehicular combat
Combat flight simulator
Third-person shooter
Mode(s) Single player
Death Match
Team Death Match
Capture the Flag
Lone Wolf

DogFighter is an action aerial combat video game for Microsoft Windows.[1][2]

Developed by independent video game developer [3][4][Dark Water Studios based in Derry, Northern Ireland,[5] DogFighter is digitally distributed through Valve's Steam game client for Windows. The game was released on June 14, 2010.[6]

DogFighter is the first commercial video game title to use the Instinct Engine.

One hundred-twenty dedicated servers and 20 dedicated demo servers went online on August 17, 2010, hosted by Multiplay.[7]


DogFighter consists of single-player levels as well as multiplayer maps where players congregate online to play against one another. DogFighter features different aircraft varying in speed, agility and defense capabilities.

Players can play against up to 15 opponents in multiplayer game modes such as "DeathMatch", "Team DeathMatch" and "Capture the Flag". Single-player modes include a "Tournament" mode where the player can achieve medals for events completed and "Survivor" where they can battle against waves of enemy craft.

A "Lone Wolf" game mode was released with update version in both single-player and multi-player game modes.

A teaser trailer,[8] released via YouTube on February 4, 2010 showcased a variety of craft and environments.

Content updates[edit]

14 June 2011

Featuring two new community-member made craft, the Harbinger, and the Vanguard. Italian language support was also added.

17 March 2011

Aces High - featuring a new map Aces High and two new craft, the AngelFire, and a DogFighter community-member made plane, the KillerBee.

25 October 2010

Call to Arms - featuring a new map The Old Gods and a new craft, the Mongoose


DogFighter uses Instinct Studio 2.0,[9] a cross-platform middleware solution created by Instinct Technology. The game also uses nVidia PhysX, Scaleform and Fmod.

Key technological features used in DogFighter include deferred rendering and seamless landscape/outdoor to indoor environment technologies.


DogFighter was well received. PC game review site awarded DogFighter a score of 9.0 / 10.0, praising it for having "All the fun and maddness of a first person shooter but with added dimensions" as well as having stylist and detailed graphics.[10]

Christopher Holt, Editor at GamePro awarded DogFighter four out of five stars, stating it was "Fun, frenetic multiplayer combat; great aircraft roster and interesting arsenal fc; cool maps."[11]

It earned a score of 7.0 / 10.0 from video games blog RipTen,[12] who cited its strong points as "Fun plane combat done the right way" and "Planes and weapons all mix and balance perfectly".

Gamer's guide website Kotaku praised DogFighter as being "Team Fortress 2 with an Air Supremacy Mode" as well as commenting positively on the games highly-responsive control system, graphics and simple premise.[13]

Video game news website commented positively on DogFighter's overall visual aesthetic and extremely detailed plane models as well as its unique power-ups such as realguns and heat-seeking rockets.[14]

DogFighter was named sixth in the top ten games, by unit sales, for October 2010 on digital distribution platform Steam for selling 67,000 copies.[15]

German technology and games website Zockon gave the German retail release of DogFighter 7.0/10.0, citing amongst its strengths a good mix of action and simulation controls, nicely built 3D models, strong mix of game modes and uncomplicated online multiplayer.[16]

British game reviewer and e-sports commentator TotalBiscuit had high praise for DogFighter but cited invisible planes as one of its downfalls.


High Score Productions[17] is credited with sound design, effects and soundtrack.

Retail release[edit]

In March 2011, Berlin-based games publisher Just A Game released a boxed retail version of DogFighter.[18] This version included an exclusive craft, "The Badger", and full localisation support for German-speaking countries.[19]

In April 2011, Moscow-based games publisher Logrus released a boxed retail version of DogFighter.[20] This version includes full localisation support for Russian-speaking countries.[21]


  1. ^ Ransom-Wiley, James. "Dark Water Studios open for business",, Jan 26, 2007
  2. ^ Kennedy, John. "Derry's Dark Water wins critics over with Dogfighter",, May 26, 2010
  3. ^ Callaham, J. "Interview: Dark Water Studios co-founder talks about Dogfighter",, June 14, 2010
  4. ^ Editor. "Derry computer games studio launches",, January 28, 2007 Archived September 29, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ French, Michael. "The 10 New Studios To Watch in 2008", Develop, Jan 02, 2008
  6. ^ Reporter, Staff. "Londonderry games software firm takes space invaders to the next level", Londonderry Sentinel, June 14, 2010[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Walker, John. "DogFighter Gets Dedicated Servers, Demo",, Aug 17, 2010
  8. ^ "DogFighter teaser video from Dark Water Studios", Sync NI, February 04, 2010[permanent dead link]
  9. ^ Editor. "New Hot Game DogFighter Launched By Dark Water Studios",,
  10. ^ Heinrich, H. "Dogfighter PC Game Review",, Last Accessed October 24, 2010
  11. ^ Holt, Chris. "Review: DogFighter (PC)",, May 31, 2011
  12. ^ Wilson, Bryce. "Ripten Review: Dogfighter",, June 25, 2010
  13. ^ Plunkett, Luke. "Spectator Mode: DogFighter",, October 26, 2010
  14. ^ Will, Kenny. "Dogfighter Review",, June 28, 2010
  15. ^ Press. "Fallout: New Vegas Leads Digital PC Sales",, November 24, 2010
  16. ^ Krieg, Torsten, "Zockon DogFighter Review", April 27, 2011 Archived May 2, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  17. ^ Editor. "Dogfighter",, Feb 04, 2010
  18. ^ Just A Game website, publisher of German retail version of DogFighter
  19. ^ JAG. "DogFighter PC",, March 2011 Archived July 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  20. ^ Logrus website (his daughter worked in Microsoft), publisher of Russian retail version of DogFighter
  21. ^ LogRus. "DogFighter",, April 2011

External links[edit]