Think you have what it takes to ditch a crippled plane safely in the Hudson River? A new online game tests your skills.
The game replays the events of January 15, when US Airways flight 1549 from New York's La Guardia airport lost both engines after hitting a flock of birds. Pilot Chesley 'Sully' Sullenberger successfully (for the first time in history) ditched the plane in the waters of the Hudson River.
While Sullenberger would have been mustering all his years of pilot training to artfully command the gliding plane to safety, all you have to do is twiddle the left and right buttons on your keyboard, which controls the plane's pitch. You have to keep the nose and tail of the plane roughly straight in order to make a safe water landing.
In all honesty, the game is outrageously simple, which has led many people on the web to call it an outrage and an insult to Sullenberger, while also making light of an air emergency that could have killed hundreds of passengers and civilians on the ground.
But the game's wildfire popularity online suggests most people don't agree, and in the spirit of simple games like Frogger and Pong, quite enjoy using their minimal dexterity to guide the plane to safety.
The highlight of the game is realistic, constantly adjusting jet aircraft noises (completely inappropriate of course, since both engines on the plane were actually stopped) and gratifying cheering and clapping when you successfully ditch the plane in the water, or bubbling, sinking noises if you crash.
You can test your own skills in the Hero on the Hudson game here.