Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception places you into the role of an ace pilot, tasked with single-handedly (totally ineffectual AI wingmen aside) ending a war using high-tech real-world and fantasy aircraft. Unfortunately, X feels more like a watered down version of Ace Combat rather than a true entry in the series.
Graphically, Skies of Deception is a very pretty game. The jets are accurately reproduced and quite detailed. It is only when you look closely at the ground that the illusion of realism falters as the textures fall apart. The story is told through well-drawn and colorful still images that give the game a very appealing comic book quality.
The music in the game is probably its strongest point. A mixture of rock and roll and electronic pieces keep your blood pumping and itching to dogfight. Less thrilling are the voices. Most of them are bland and unremarkable, save for your mission controller, who is downright irritating.
The gameplay is where things suffer the most. Do to the limitations of the PSP, the dogfighting arenas and sense of speed have been drastically reduced. It seems like you hardly have room to maneuver before you are warned that you are leaving the engagement area or simply plow right into the ground. The branching mission structure, while a nice touch, does little to defray the repetitiveness of shooting down increasing numbers of planes or ground targets. The controls are often your biggest enemy, and I found it difficult to play more than one or two missions before my hands started to cramp.
If you are looking for a dogfighting game, I would recommend against this one. Instead, you should seek out the absolutely masterful Ace Combat 5 (PS2) or the newest entry in the series, Ace Combat 6 (Xbox 360).