If you're in the mood to try something a little different this weekend, an open multiplayer beta test for THQ Nordic's upcoming helicopter shooter Comanche (opens in new tab) is now underway on Steam (opens in new tab).
The reboot of Novalogic's 1992 helicopter combat sim Comanche: Maximum Overkill was announced last summer (opens in new tab), 15 years after the US Army pulled the plug on the real-world Comanche program in favor of an increased focus on UAVs. The game will actually leverage that twist for its alt-history backstory, in which another real-world incident led the Army to change its mind and secretly revive the program.
But the plan was leaked (along with some very detailed blueprints, apparently) and every ambitious middle power and decently funded gang of troublemakers ended up with their own Comanche program—and with that, "a new era of helicopter warfare had begun."
It's a thin fiction, yes, but good enough for blowing up a whole bunch of helicopters (and everything else in the sky), which is what we're really here for. Comanche is more of an arcade-style experience than a high-fidelity flight sim, with squad-based multiplayer modes, different Comanche types, loadouts, and onboard drones with "spectacular special abilities" to choose from.
The beta is strictly multiplayer, but a singleplayer mode will be added when Comanche goes into its planned Early Access (opens in new tab) launch sometime this year. The beta test is live now and runs until 9 am PT/12 pm ET on March 2.