We're smart people at RPS. We can spot when we're being hoodwinked. And all credit to Nimbly Games for organising players of their game, Altitude, into emailing us to write about it. It worked. You can stop now.
Altitude is a multiplayer 2D plane combat game, as cartoony as you can get, letting players engage in online aerial battles that have more in common with a old side-scrolling shooter than with Crimson Skies.
The demo limits you to just two of the five available planes and just two of the six perks that expand your planes' abilities, and while it doesn't restrict your access to servers, nor stop you from levelling, you will eventually reach a level for which the new bonuses are unavailable. The idea being, should you decide to buy the full version ($20) you'll automatically get access to all the stuff you're qualified for.
If you have a go, I strongly recommend not judging it on the training levels. The bots are pisspoor, and do little other than spin on the spot, giving you a very negative impression of what appears to be a fun game. Plough through them as quickly as possible and get yourself onto a live server, and you'll discover the small screens and limited options do indeed swell out to make for a fun time. Clearly there's much to be gained for completing challenges within these games and levelling up. Once you've got yourself a better plane, and a better equipped plane, there's more opportunity for entertaining tactics.
It is still a very restricted game - teeny levels and little more to it than flying in tight loops and throwing ammo everywhere. But this is certainly enough for a cute, distracting burst of play. The demo even comes with the level editor, letting you create your own arenas for battle. Give it a look, if just so they'll stop emailing us.