X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter was the sequel to both X-Wing and TIE Fighter and was first released in 1997. Though the game lacked a comprehensive campaign mode (like the well fleshed-out, highly praised story-based campaigns of its predecessors) it included a series of non-connected single player missions. Its main selling point, however, was that it would allow online play for players to hone their interstellar dogfighting skills against fellow wetware-based intelligence. In this sense, it perhaps could be best compared to Electronic Arts' Battlefield series or other games focusing strictly on online play.
That said, critics and gamers alike were disappointed by the lack of a single-player campaign mode, so LucasArts released an expansion pack, Balance of Power only a few months afterwards. The expansion contained a campaign each for the Rebellion and Empire, and greatly expanded the playability of the game.
Report on primary target: They've been troped.
- Dummied Out:
- One keybinding activates the SLAM, which is used for the Missile Boat. This craft doesn't appear in any mission.
- The X-Wing collector's edition included a cut-down demo version of the game known as Flight School. This demo only shows 14 missions across the Rebels and Imperials - however, there were additional mission files included with the game which may be accessed by modifying a text file.
- Gang Up on the Human: Possible tactic used by AI - one mission has three fighters specifically target human players. In addition, humans can do the same by pressing 'P' to target the next human craft.
- Hitbox Dissonance: As long as your cockpit doesn't slam into enemy containers, your craft doesn't take Collision Damage (especially with the B-Wing). Lasers and other projectiles work as expected.
- Old-School Dogfight: Standard use of space-sim dogfight games. This installment adds a feature that reduces turning rate if the throttle is above 2/3rds power.
- Sprint Shoes:
- Like in TIE Fighter, Tractor Beams can be installed on several Imperial craft, and come with their own separate power supply that can be entirely redirected to the engines for a massive speed boost, if not using it to make up for the hit increased shield and laser recharge would incur normally. For multiplayer, most players loaded them entirely to take advantage of the power boost.
- Also like in TIE Fighter, the Missile Boat is supported by the game engine (despite not actually appearing in the game), and it still has its SLAM system to double its speed.