F-Zero (Super Nintendo) Review

By Ofisil 19.07.2017 3

Review for F-Zero on Super Nintendo

Extremely popular the futuristic racer sub-genre is not, but they are perfect for those who find the "normal" ones mundane and unimaginative. After all, one of the beauties of the video game industry is to get to live an otherworldly experience; therefore, instead of simple cars and dull concrete tracks, some of us prefer flying anti-gravity spaceships at supersonic speeds, and in worlds that look alien. Was Nintendo's F-Zero for the SNES the genre's pioneer? No, but it certainly helped turning a few more heads towards it. Was it good? More than that! Is it still good? Well… sort of.

There's no reason to explain things into detail, as there's not actually much to explain. Despite its futuristic premise (race hi-tech anti-gravity vehicles), F-Zero is just an arcade racer that's so simple, that it makes Super Mario Kart look like Gran Turismo in comparison. Just pick a vehicle (not much difference between them), enter any of the available championships, and start racing…

Generally, it's a fun game, with its only major flaw being the fact that lots of time has passed since its release, and it has become obsolete, with little variety to offer. Even in terms of audio-visuals, for a SNES title, and one that deals with the future, it looks a bit too boring, and its sound effects are subpar… apart from the music, that is, as some of its tunes are actually lesser known video game classics.

Screenshot for F-Zero on Super Nintendo

Gameplay-wise, it won't feel as fast as expected from the franchise it belongs to, as it was the later instalments that actually added the whole supersonic speed thingy into the mix… and yet, F-Zero feels great, mostly because it handles like a dream. The controls are super-tight, and quite surprisingly for a racer so old, in other words, this is will be a pure test of skill where the only one to blame will be the one holding the gamepad.

As for the "extra" mechanics of the game, the vehicles have a health bar, as they can - and will - be destroyed, yet the pit stops are non-stop areas that fix the spacecrafts on the go, and thus, don't ruin the high-speed mood of it all. Furthermore, each completed lap provides a power-up that can be used as a temporary speed boost, which can be pretty helpful when trying to overtake an opponent.

However, and as mentioned before, while a fun game, the lack of variety is disappointing. Besides playing the poorly structured championship sessions, (which, annoyingly enough, instead of letting you continue after a lost race, require trying again), there's nothing else to do, as this is actually a single player experience. Yup, F-Zero is a simplistic racer that can't be played with a friend of two…

Screenshot for F-Zero on Super Nintendo

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

There's little reason to go back to F-Zero, unless a major fan of the series, SNES, or simply a passionate retro gamer, as far better F-Zero instalments exist nowadays, not to mention a nice variety of alternative futuristic racers. That being said, it still controls like a dream, it's still fast and challenging, and still entertaining despite its somewhat low level of variety.

Developer

Nintendo

Publisher

Nintendo

Genre

Driving

Players

2

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10 (5 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Ooh! At the time this sort of score would have been shocking to so many, but yes, I guess it's in-line with how it holds up today. Have you played the BS F-Zero Grand Prix games via emulator?

Also, does this mean you'll have eventual reviews for other F-Zero games? Like the GBA ones? We're sorely lacking on the F-Zero love on here!

Adam Riley [ Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited ]
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

I plan on - someday - doing the N64 one, as it's one of my favorites

( Edited 19.07.2017 13:23 by Ofisil )

A lot of quotes in the Internet are attributed to the wrong person
                                -Georgios Karaiskakis

The only F-Zero I ever liked was GX. I absolutely loved that one. All the others I've tried hold my attention for about 10-15 minutes max and then I have to jump out.

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