Published: 24 July, 2013
Airlines are definitely high on the list of things that people love to complain about.
While sitting at the airport, many travellers have said that they could do a better job running an airline themselves.
Now, Dutch airline KLM is giving those same individuals the chance to prove that they have what it takes by launching a 3D video game that can be played on mobile devices.
There are already many aviation-related games around, such as realistic flight simulators that allow you to become the pilot of thousands of different airplanes.
But KLM's game, called Aviation Empire, isn't so much about flying the planes themselves, but rather about getting an airline off the ground and into profitability.
It is therefore more of a business simulation game, based on the same principles that AirlineSimulation.com uses in their PC games.
When players start a new game, they are taken back to the year 1919, the year that KLM was founded.
Players will need to use their resourcefulness and creativity to get the airline going and see it thrive, even through some of the most difficult periods of the industry's history.
They can do so by building a fleet of aircraft, adding more destinations, upgrading their airports and reinvesting the profits they've made over and over.
As the game progresses, new items become available as technology evolves.
KLM Aviation Empire is available on both Android and iOS platforms.
Just like many other mobile games, it uses the “freemium” model.
This means that the game costs nothing to download and can be fully enjoyed by players without having to spend any money.
However, players who want to get special items or unlock features that would help them advance through the game faster are able to do so thanks to in-app purchases.
There are quite a few features that set this game apart from other simulation games.
One of the most interesting and unique ones is the game's use of real-life GPS.
Players who visit various airports around the globe are able to unlock the same airports in the game.
This makes it quite appealing for those who frequently travel around the world.
There is a fun mini-game included within the app, which allows the player to control the airplane along various routes by flying through hoops.
Of course, this mini game isn't an actual flight simulator with realistic gameplay, it is nonetheless quite fun and allows users to earn some in-game currency.
Users who play the game are rewarded in various ways.
They get game credits, which can be redeemed for various in-game items, such as new airplanes or landing rights in different cities around the globe.
Users can also earn different kinds of badges after making progress in the game and accomplishing certain objectives.
Players who log in with a Facebook account are able to share their progress in the game with friends.
There is also a leader board feature that show how well each player is doing among their friends and the rest of the world.
There are reports that indicate KLM and game developers may be working on expanding how the game interacts with the real world.
Some ideas that have come up include putting leader boards on KLM boarding passes.
Some have even suggested that KLM may give discounts on air travel for the top players of Aviation Empire.
However, no specifics were confirmed as of yet.
If you're interested in finding out whether you have the skills to run an airline of KLM's size, or if you simply want something fun to do while you travel around the globe, you should definitely check out this game.
It is available for free download on Google Play and in the Apple App Store.
Aviation Empire runs both on tablets and smartphones like the iPad and iPhone.
KLM, is the flag carrier airline of the Netherlands and operates worldwide scheduled passenger and cargo services to more than 90 destinations.