Flightmare is a computer game written for the 286 by a fellow named Peter Adams. The premise is that you are defending one of the last bastions of civilization in a post-apocalyptic future - namely, a small collection of factories and other such things that make up your home base - from the cockpit of your trusty biplane. The threat appears as groups of roving desert bandits that attack your bases in such vehicles as motorcycles, armored trucks, and other biplanes.

The thing that set this game apart from the others is the fact that you had three axes of movement, as was represented with two separate views - one from above and one from the side. The controls allowing you to move on one of those axes were flat-out terrible, forcing you to sprawl your fingers across most of the keyboard if you wanted to play by yourself. You had to line up your plane with your target before you could even consider swooping down to shoot at them, and considering that your plane could only shoot straight forward and couldn't strafe, you were required to fly very low to shoot the motorcycles and blow out the tires of the armored trucks. The hills that cropped up in later levels added to the quickly apparent danger of plowing your flimsy little plane into the ground and turning yourself into pavement pizza, Sahara style.

One remedy for the control problem was to play with two people - one navigating along one plane of movement, and the other managing the rest of the controls and the fire button. This was how I originally learned to play the game, though I was delegated the task of only one axis of movement... I was very young at the time. The other solution was only available after keypress drivers for gamepads were invented - as long as the gamepad had more than two buttons, you could use a pair (preferrably the 'shoulder buttons') to handle one of the movement axes.

I have just been informed that someone played this game on an 8086 - I stand corrected. Thanks.