Saturday, 14 June 2014

Video Game Reviews #1 - Star Fox 64

Ah, the first post. The thing that sets the standard, and continues the trend of the awkward first post introduction. I'll just stop that there.

I was wondering what I could have as my first review, and I knew it had to be a game that is epic, something revolutionary.

That game for me is STAR FOX 64 - I love this game. It came out a measurable amount of years ago, yes, so for you who are thinking 'THIS GUYS LAME WERE'S THE XBONE REVIEWS', go fuck yourself - I am RETROchaos, and fuck new games.

Anyway, onto the review itself.

Star Fox 64 is an on the scrolling for the Nintendo 64. It came out in 1997, and donned the title 'Lylat Wars' in Europe, but everyone knows it as Star Fox It came bundled with the Rumble Pak, which allowed the controller to rumble (a feature we take for granted today). The game was revolutionary for it's time, especially in the graphical field.

The story was fairly simple. Oh no! Evil scientist dude who happens to be a giant monkey head is trying to take over the galaxy! HELP US FOX! That is the core of it anyways. Basically Andross, a mad scientist previously exiled to Venom, wants to take the galaxy, so Fox McCloud, Peppy Hare, Slippy Toad and Falco Lombardi, aka Star Fox, must stop him. The original Star Fox team were sent to investigate strange activity from Venom many years ago - this team was James McCloud, Pigma Dengar and Peppy, however, Pigma sold them out, being the little cunt he is, and  James died. Oh, and Pigma joins Star Wolf, which is basically an evil version of Star Fox. Star Wolf has the members Andrew (Andross' son or some shit), Leon, the aforesaid Pigma, and of course Wolf O'Donnell, who is an utter legend for his quotes and awesome voice in this game "You'll be seeing you dad soon, Fox!". This team will constantly battle you in the game, which is quite cool. Storywise, that's it; plain and simple, which is all it needs to be.

The gameplay, much like the story, is quite simple - you play as Fox McCloud in his Arwing and fight with your team through each level. Most levels are on the rails and have you in the air, however there are two levels in which you use the Landmaster tank and one where you use the stupid submarine thing underwater. It is pretty basic - just let the game take you to the destination while you shoot any bad guys that come near you. Of course, many obstacles must be avoided in this process, so you definitely cannot take your eyes off the screen. 
The controls of Star Fox 64 are pretty well done - they work perfectly fine, it definitely isn't difficult to control, and they work well with the annoying 64 pad. Since it is on the rails, it only needs one thumbstick. 
There are powerups too - you can upgrade your laser, as well as get bombs that destroy all enemies in a certain radius. Sometimes, you will enter ALL-RANGE MODE, in which you can move freely in an enclosed space - this is usually the setting to some select bosses.
As for the enemies themselves, you will usually find yourself fighting enemy pilots and robot dudes. Each level has it's own boss and in my opinion the bosses in this game are brilliant - they are fairly challenging and all have their own weakness, their own Achilles' Heel if you will, that you must exploit to beat them.

Here is one of the best things about the game in my opinion though - it is very arcade like in the fact that you can't save - if you lose all lives, then it is truly GAME OVER and that's the classic way, and I like it. Each playthrough has 7 total levels, but their are alternative routes that makes each playthrough unique - thus, there is three pathways - easy, medium, and hard, and
depending on whether you perform certain hidden objectives or not will change your route. I like this feature, it stays true to the classic, arcade-like feel and makes each playthrough different.
Their isn't much else in the game apart from the story mode though. There is a multiplayer where you simply have dogfights with friends, which is quite fun though (why the FUCK did Nintendo not include an online version of this in Star Fox 64 3D?!). There is also a training/tutorial level, but no one gives a shit about that.

The graphics are quite blocky, as you would expect since it is a N64 title, however they are still quite good for the time it was made, as aside from the character models, the graphics are relatively sharp. 
One thing I do like in the aesthetic department is the detail the developers added - it is small things, such as losing a wing of your ship, or not being able to see the health bar of bosses when Slippy is down, that shows the effort the developers wanted to input.

I will also always love the banter that the characters have in this game. When you scroll through levels, the main cast always speak and interact when you perform certain things like stealing a kill. The dialogue is extremely memorable in this game, with many quotes I can spill out from the top of my head like 'Gee! I've been saved by Fox, how swell!'.

Hmm what else can I talk about? OH OH one of the best thing EVER is that on the title screen you can move the 64 (or a Fox symbol if you're playing EU version) around the screen and the members of Star Fox will weirdly stare at it. That shit is kickass. Aside from that though that's pretty much all there is I can talk about Star Fox 64. Let'x get down to The Verdict.

The Verdict

Star Fox 64 is a fantastic game. It's sheer simplicity and linear gameplay is the reason why it is so great, and the lack of such is why the other Star Fox games suck donkey dick (Adventures is cool though). The story is simple and the characters are charming and fun due to their banter, although Slippy can suck a dick for always getting into trouble, man he is an annoying douche. There really isn't anything I can complain about in Star Fox 64 - it is perfection, and reflects all the good things about Nintendo. Star Fox 64 is a revolutionary title for it's time, and thus it get's a perfect 10 for me.
That's it for this week folks. Hope you all enjoyed my first review, stay tuned, I will be back. Ciao!

This is Retro Chaos


This is Retro Chaos, I am RetroChaos. I have decided to open my crazy brain for all of you to see - to see my various reviews of course. This is a blog intended to review a variety of mediums - for now while I am a noob to this 'blog' thing people spoken of years ago, I will primarily review Video Games, Films, and TV shows. This is subject to change, however, and when I get more time (and money) I plan on also reviewing books and comics.

Without further ado, I now pronounce this blog OPEN. Enjoy, subordinates.