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Star Fox

From the Database of Home of the Underdogs

GAME DESIGNER:Jez San

GAME DEVELOPER:Argonaut Software

GAME PUBLISHER:Nintendo

Copyright 1992, Argonaut Software

One of the most revolutionary games ever made for the Super Nintendo (SNES) console, Star Fox (released as StarWing in Europe) is an addictive and innovative 3D space shooter from Argonaut Software. The concise review at GameStyle says it all:

“In the summer of the SNES life, one ubiquitously smug Jez San and his company Argonaut created a little chip for use in SNES carts that would allow the use of pseudo 3D graphics much like you see now in the GBA. The showcase for this chip was their latest game, a fairly primitive space shooter which featured four Lylatian creatures and their heroic space adventures. It was, of course, [Star Fox, a.k.a.] StarWing.

The premise behind the game is as follows. Andross the space monkey has been a rather naughty simian doctor and has unleashed a gulf of mechanical monstrosities on the otherwise peaceful Lylat system. You are Fox McCloud, a daring debonair of the fox variety, who must fly on rails with his fellow woodland cohorts through battle stricken cities, desolate land masses and the cold infinity of space whilst constantly pressing B to shoot molten laser at various polygonal enemies.

At the time, the graphics and sound were absolutely breathtaking. It was a real leap forward for presentation, and in a pre-Playstation world, was the first 3D home console game. Playing the game now is still not too shabby an experience. The screen is letterboxed, which is a shame, but the Arwings still control as smoothly as ever with the full range of moves seen in the N64 version (minus the somersault) available at your discretion. The acoustics are a treat for the old eardrums: jabbering voices of the intercom, real shower fodder tunes, and the legendary Good Luck! as well as the usual smattering of explosions and lasers are all present and correct, creating a brilliant feel of heroism and bravery to the game.

Three routes are on offer, as seen in the N64 game, though this time with the option to choose your preference at the beginning of the game. Each one varies slightly, and gives you a chance to take out laser satellites, enormous walking robots and mechanical colonies of laser spewing arachnids at varying difficulties. Longevity was a bit of an issue and still is today; as is the lack of a level select thankfully though, the addictiveness of the game, and the one-more-go nature has left it firmly stuck in our offices SNES for months, and in many peoples all time great games list. Worth digging out not just for the memories… but for an exciting, riveting space shooter with kind of Nintendo shine thats come to be expected.”



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