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Air traffic controllers have some of the most important jobs out there — without the passengers even noticing, they route any plane you fly on through the sea of other planes in the air. It’s thanks to them that planes don’t crash into each other mid-flight, and they’re often put under a lot of stress with the amount of planes they’re responsible for at a time.

They deserve a lot more respect and admiration than they actually receive. To better understand what they have to go through, there’s a game available for Android devices where you can test your own skills at controlling the skies.

About Air Control

Air Control is a fun and addicting game of ultimate traffic control. The aim of the game is to tell all aircraft where they should fly in order to land safely at an airport. This however, must be done in a way so that no two aircraft touch each other, otherwise it’s game over and you’ll have to start again. Scoring works by counting the number of aircraft that have safely landed at the airport.


When you first launch the app, you’re faced with a simple screen that lets you navigate around it, including buttons to start the game, go to the app’s settings, and change maps.

When you choose between different maps, you also have a choice between two different game modes. The classic game mode is the mode you want to control aircraft and land them safely. There’s also puzzle mode, where you also have to be careful of the colors of the aircraft in order to keep the game going. Once you’ve selected a map and how you’d like to play it, you can start the game, and in no time at all you’ll start controlling!


Aircraft come in from the four sides of your screen, but you’ll see an exclamation mark appear before the actual plane does. You must then control the aircraft — a red jetliner, a blue propeller plane, or a yellow helicopter — by tapping on it and drawing out a route it should follow to the runway or helipad at the airport where it should land. Make sure that you draw out straight lines when you’re approaching the runways so that the line will flash, letting you know that the route is complete. Otherwise, the plane will fly along the route, but not know that it was supposed to descend and land on that runway.

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Easy, right? The challenge appears whenever you have to start juggling around multiple aircraft, making sure that they don’t crash into each other. If you have drawn out routes for two different aircraft and then realize that they will crash unless you intervene, you can tap on one of the aircraft again and redraw a new route. The aircraft in question should instantly follow the new route, avoiding the collision that would have otherwise occurred.

Puzzle Mode

In puzzle mode, aircraft take on completely different colors and the rules are different too. This mode dictates that you can only land aircraft on runways where the color or plane-type matches that of the last plane which landed there. Dragging an incompatible plane to a runway will force it to fly there, but it won’t actually land at the airport. A little revolving plane will appear next to the runway displaying what color and plane-type last landed at that runway, so you won’t be completely lost as more and more planes appear.


For a very fun and fairly simple game, it is quite advanced as you’ll see whenever you take a peek in the settings. You can enable and disable hardware acceleration, highlight effects, cloud effects, framerate counter, automatic fast forward mode, and taxi simulation. These settings are great for devices which may have less power, as this app supports devices as low as Android 1.6 (T-Mobile G1/HTC Dream, anyone?).


To install, simply search the Google Play Store for “air control”, then choose Air Control Lite. If you’re lazy, you can also just follow this link from your device or desktop and install from there. There’s also the full-version Air Control which costs $2.99, but it includes a couple more maps, an ad-free experience, and some extra aircraft. If you’re running a tablet, you may be interested in Air Control HD, which is a HD variant of the full version which also costs $2.99.


Overall, this is one of my favorite games because it doesn’t take too long to play one session, yet it’s addicting and challenging, making you want to get better at both the game as well as your self-control. If you need something to kill some time with, while improving your thinking and observational skills, Air Control is definitely a game worth trying out!

What’s your favorite Android game? How does Air Control compare to it? Let us know in the comments!

  1. Nuno Catarino
    October 30, 2012 at 11:23 am

    This is a very addicting game. It boasts your concentration and reaction speed. You also get used to manage routes more effectively with some planes on the same que in order to land them safely. It also improves your organization. So, would you think that a small and quite basic game would impress your IQ? This is a one to stand for!

  2. Nick G
    October 22, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    In fact I don't know why makeuseof are promoting this?! Perhaps they don't realise it's an illegal rip off in most countries which have copyright law...

  3. Nick G
    October 22, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    I would urge people to buy the original game (Flight Control) rather than this illegal rip off!

  4. Vampie C.
    October 22, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    It's a nice game.

    I enjoy a short game any time :-)

  5. Harshit Jain
    October 21, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    I tried this game and it is fun. I would recommend Plague .Inc which is a strategy game. Amazing.

  6. Alex Perkins
    October 21, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Its a really simple but excruciatingly challenging game.

  7. Boni Oloff
    October 21, 2012 at 10:32 am

    I try to search the same software on iOS, i found many free games like this. :D
    Thanks for the suggesstion.

  8. Ashwin Ramesh
    October 21, 2012 at 5:41 am

    I've been playing this game for the past couple of months. Damn addictive I should say!

  9. Anonymous
    October 21, 2012 at 1:30 am

    Sounds like a complete rip-off of Flight Control on iOS

  10. David Yaroshevsky
    October 20, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    I still like the original better (, even though it doesn't have Puzzle Mode. The tablet version of the original allows head-to-head co-op or versus multiplayer!

  11. Declan Lopez
    October 20, 2012 at 9:19 pm

    this is a fun game. i don't think it is quite as fun as flight deck for ios devices though

  12. Andrew
    October 20, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    Kind of a bummer to see you highlighting what looks like a very mediocre clone of the excellent Flight Control. I'd encourage folks to buy the original instead:

    • Harish Jonnalagadda
      October 22, 2012 at 7:07 am

      Yeah the first time I saw the game, I could not believe it.

  13. Bishal Mahat
    October 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    nice game i ll surely try it

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