Review by megamanfanx7
"A perfect port of a perfect game."
Well, a few months ago I pulled out my N64 to play Star Fox 64, only to find that the SRAM battery on the cartridge died, so I could no longer save and did not have expert mode anymore, which came as a crushingly saddening experience for me. This game was one of the first games I waited in anticipation for it to come out, and ended up getting a Japanese copy at Blockbuster because they didn't have anything else (heh, nostalgia). A while later, I figured I would buy it again on the Wii VC, and I must say it feels great to have the game back once more in a fully functioning version.
The game had the best graphics of the time, and they still are surprisingly nice even by today's standards. The textures look very nice (especially the Arwing), there are actually water and some basic particle effect things. Overall, they look the same as they did back then, which was amazingly good.
The sound and music is top notch. The music is extremely catchy, and the sound effects are always on cue. The most legendary part of the performance of the game however, is the voice acting. The voice acting is unbelievable even by today's standards. You'll be able to say lines before they happen after a while they are so memorable (I personally know probably half the game's lines and can say them right before they are said in game, embarrassingly enough.)
Star Fox 64 is a space railshooter. You go to each planet, fly through it, shoot down enemies, fight a boss, move to the next planet, rinse and repeat. This may sound quite boring, but in each playthrough you only go to 7 planets (always beginning and ending with the same one). Every level has multiple paths that you may take, but to take each path, you have to do some objective within the level. this may be killing X number of enemies before Y point, finding a hidden boss in the level, or finding a hidden warp. It makes you replay the game several times over and creates a very catchy system of moving from level to level.
In each level, you move along on a rail of course. you can move up, down, right, and left on the screen and shoot. You have your basic laser and a limited supply of bombs. The laser can be charged and has a homing effect. You can also do barrel rolls, flips and somersaults. There are parts that are open as well, where you have freedom in all 3 planes. The game strikes a very good balance of rail levels and open levels, and knowing when the use the laser/homing laser/bombs creates rather deep gameplay. Getting the highest scores on each level becomes quite fun. There are also levels where you control a tank and one with a submarine. The only bad thing about those levels, is that they leave you wishing there were more tank and submarine levels.
This is the only game I have ever played in excess of 50 times. Between trying out different paths to take, and trying to get the highest scores possible, you can seriously never stop playing this game if you wanted. This game defines replay value.
Port Quality: 9/10
The game is a near perfect port on the Wii. The sound and everything is intact. There are some differences in the graphics between the VC version and the original that I noticed though. Some colors are smeared at some points (one that comes to mind is the Area 6 boss's laster is very smeared). It doesn't take away any from the overall experience, just people who have owned the game before will probably notice small differences. Also, if you are using a Wii Classic controller, the analog controls seem kind of over-sensitive. I tend to have a rather hard time aiming just right in the tank. You'll hardly notice the difference in the Arwing though, and in the tank the problem only occurs when I'm trying to aim downwards and straight ahead (one level above aiming at the ground).
Overall: 9.8/10 rounded to 10
The game is one of the greatest games from the N64, and probably one of the greatest games of all time. The port is nearly flawless, and the flaws in the porting don't take away from the overall experience. The controls are still tight, the graphics are amazing, and the voice acting will be stuck in your head after the first play through the game. If you have never played this game before, I feel bad for you, and the 10$ investment would be well worth it. You won't be disappointed.
Obligatory Peppy quote:
"DO A BARREL ROLL!"
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 02/06/08
Game Release: Star Fox 64 (US, 04/02/07)
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