10 must-have video games for Top Gun: Maverick fans

The aerial combat genre can be a little intimidating; While some gamers enjoy immersing themselves in complex flight simulations and engaging in extremely realistic dogfights, others don’t often get into games that can’t be easily played on a standard controller.

Fortunately, while 2022 Top Gun: Maverick emphasizes realism, its imaginative, high-octane action sequences reminiscent of more traditional arcade titles. Of course, many modern games cater to those looking to recreate in detail the daring bombardment seen in the film’s third act, but there are plenty of interesting games too. Superior gun-esque experiences there for those without Maverick level aviation knowledge.

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Top Gun/Top Gun: The Second Mission


A screenshot from the NES game Top Gun: The Second Mission.

Notoriously clumsy and cumbersome, Superior gun on the NES has an overwhelmingly negative reputation among retro gamers. Still, one of the very few direct adaptations of the original 1986 film, it deserves a mention.

Both Superior gun and the following NES title Top Gun: The Second Mission, as inscrutable as they are, deserve credit as early entrants into the flight simulator genre. While still influenced by arcades, these games featured first-person views and tasked players with doing things like performing precise mid-air refuelings and adhering to strict parameters for landing planes on aircraft carriers.

after the burner


A screenshot from the 1987 arcade game After Burner.

Wearing an undeniable Superior gun influence, the 1987 arcade hit after the burner saw arcade goers pilot a virtual F-14 Tomcat in a seated cabinet that moved and titled with gameplay. Incredibly fast and frenetic, after the burner was a perfect arcade companion to the classic Tom Cruise film, and it’s still worth playing three and a half decades after its debut.


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after the burner managed to convey a feeling of speed unprecedented at the time. SEGA sonic the hedgehog would not hit the scene until 1991, but the publisher’s arcade took Superior gun had beaten him years before.

Top Gun: Hard Lock


Gameplay of the Top Gun Hard Lock video game from 2012.

A handful of Superior gun games were released for PC and consoles throughout the 90s and 2000s, finally peaking in 2012 Top Gun: Hard Lock on Xbox 360 and PS3. Seemingly a sequel to the original a decade before Top Gun: Maverick, hard lock builds heavily on the over-the-top action of the original, requiring players to regularly perform impossible aerial maneuvers to lock down and down their aerial opponents.


Score a junk 54 on Metacritic, Top Gun: Hard Lock was forgotten almost immediately after its release, but, the last official Superior gun connection to the video game, loving fans of maverick might want to try this one.

thunder of war


Gameplay Jet of flight simulation game War Thunder.

A free-to-play PvP-focused combat simulation set during World War II, thunder of war may not seem quite suitable for fans of Superior gun. However, while it includes tank and naval combat, the dogfights are a huge draw for many fans of the game, and, with settings allowing players to let loose in arcade mode or tighten up their tactics in simulator mode. , it’s accessible for players of all skill levels.


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The WWII theme remains prevalent to this day, although later updates have introduced Cold War-era jets that fans of the first Superior gun may be familiar.

Battlefield 4


A screenshot of a jet cockpit in Battlefield 4.

Released in 2013, Battlefield 4 captivates with its massive 64-player PvP lobbies and in-depth gameplay that rewards teamwork and tactical approaches. Unfortunately, the series is currently being led by disastrous difficulties with the disappointing 2021 Battlefield 2042although it brought many longtime fans back to the nearly decade old Battlefield Payment.

More Battlefield players fear the game’s high ceiling planes, but skilled pilots are often essential to success in Battlefield 4. Those who want to reconstruct the Top Gun: Maverick the feeling can do this by dodging stinger missiles and gunning down enemies in hectic commotion BF4 multiplayer game.


HAWX by Tom Clancy


A screenshot from the Tom Clancy's HAWX video game.

In the age of modern gaming, the Tom Clancy name is most often associated with multiplayer tactical shooters, but, in previous decades, publisher Ubisoft has allowed the brand to be applied to a wider variety of games. and genres. Loosely bound to Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Games, HAWX was an action-packed dogfighting title that added light simulation elements to an otherwise arcade-influenced experience.

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Reminiscence of praise often ace fight Games, HAWX developed into a full-fledged sub-series, with a sequel premiering in 2010. While far from Ubisoft’s most memorable release, it was an interesting seventh-gen offering from which Superior gun fans can get some mileage.

Project Winger


A screenshot from the Project Wingman video game.

Developed by indie studio Sector D2 and published by Humble Games, Project Wingman is something of a low-budget take on the Ace Combat series. Arcadey and outlandish, the title is perfect for those who want the time between liftoff and engaging in combat to be as streamlined as possible.

Many aerial combat in Project Wingman feels straight out of Top Gun: Maverick and, for those with a strong stomach, the game is compatible with VR headsets. Project Wingman might not be the most polished dogfighting title available, but it sure can get the pulse racing.

DCS World


A screenshot from the DCS World simulation game.

Digital combat simulator— more commonly known as DCS World– is a longtime standard bearer for the military flight sim genre. Incredibly intricate and intricate, DCS World requires players to have at least occasional familiarity with real-world avionics, and it’s much more about mastering small details than blasting enemy planes out of the sky.

Therefore, DCS World is not easy to recommend; it’s really the kind of game aimed only at hardcore simulator fans. That said, it may be the perfect experience for those who have strayed from Top Gun: Maverick feeling like the film would have been enhanced by more in-depth and accurate depictions of modern military aircraft.

IL-2 Sturmovik


A screenshot from the IL-2 Sturmovik simulation game.

Launched in 2001, IL-2 Sturmovik reigns supreme as one of the most in-depth military flight simulators ever released. Focusing primarily on the legendary battles of World War II, the game requires patience, practice, and not insignificant skill. More for WWII enthusiasts than casual gamers, IL-2 Sturmovik will delight enthusiasts while repelling less knowledgeable gamers.


A little like thunder of war, IL-2 Sturmovik sticks mainly to World War II aircraft, although it includes a few early jet aircraft designs that defined aviation advancements in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Ace Combat 7: Unknown Sky


A screenshot from the video game Ace Combat 7 Skies Unknown.

With the first entry in 1995, the ace fight has become the archetypal franchise most closely associated with the aerial combat genre. Injecting just enough realism to maintain immersion, 2019 Ace Combat 7: Unknown Sky is a seamlessly accessible experience that delights fans new and old.

In truth, it may take newcomers a bit of time to overcome the game’s learning curve, but it delivers an experience that’s ultimately as satisfying as it is elegant. Although it is unlikely that there is a Superior gun-branded standalone video game anytime soon, Ace Combat 7: Unknown Sky plays this role perfectly.

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