F-Zero GX

Review

posted 9/4/2003 by Matt Mirkovich
other articles by Matt Mirkovich
One Page Platforms: GC
Man after being spoiled with access to a Japanese F-Zero AX machine I must say I was a tad worried about how GX would turn out. First there were those rumors going around about how the US GX and AX versions would not be compatible. I’m here to say that is a rumor and nothing more, seeing as how the link IS available in GX. So all you folks lucky enough to have an arcade that will invest in the machine you’re in luck. My other worry was how the tracks would turn out. I mean the tracks on AX are amazing with only one stinker in the bunch and that’s just the base oval track for beginners. Overall this game is a must buy for any GameCube owner, although non-racing fans may want to give this one a rental first in order to get used to the learning curve.

First off, the game manages to keep up with the arcade visuals. In short this game looks fantastic, the little electric effect that is given off as you boost is such a wonderful sight. And the course designs and locales are incredibly detailed; save for the nooks and crannies you might see if you crash off course. The vehicles themselves also look very good, when you get up close you can see some of the wear and tear these machines might have suffered over the years. And the story mode FMV, while not as humanly detailed as say, Final Fantasy X is still surprisingly good looking. Grainy FMV be gone!


F-Zero GX has some of the lushest environments ever to appear in a racing title.

The music also holds up very well in this game, rock techno is the order of the day for most tracks and it works out surprisingly well, especially in the Aeropolis, and Green Plant tracks. The sound effects themselves are varied as well, depending on certain aspects of your car, you may have a different sound effect when you boost with a C boost ranking as opposed to an E ranking. Small details like this that make F-Zero a standout from the rest of today’s games. The sound outside of the gameplay is cheesy yet catchy at the same time; you’ll know what I mean when you start watching the FMV segments of story mode.

Wow a story mode in a racing game; you don’t see this too often, not since Ridge Racer Type 4 has the story actually been interesting in a racing game. It centers around the exploits of the great hero and bounty hunter who we all know and love, Captain Falcon. We watch as he attempts to battle the evil Black Shadow, although sadly his trademark, “FALCONE PUUUNCH!” from Super Smash Brothers Melee is not present, oh the comedic gold that could have been if that line was used. The only major flaw to story mode though would have to be the insane difficulty of the tracks. The last game that made me angry enough to chuck the controller into the wall was Midnight Club 2. It may not be AS bad, but it certainly will turn off players who just want to see the story.
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