Review by Turkmenbashy

Reviewed: 04/09/07

It could have been harder.

I don’t like Star Fox 64 on the Nintendo Wii. Rampant fanatics will tell you that it is a deep game involving the quest for medals and the mythical Expert Mode. First of all, if SF64 had included an Expert Mode from the beginning, perhaps things would have been better. It is a sorely easy game lacking on challenge. You’ll pilot Fox McCloud’s Arwing over the cerulean skies of Corneria to the murky wastelands of Venom, but not once will you feel the game is difficult.

By doing a barrel roll, your Arwing can negate the offensive effects of enemy lasers with relative ease. They just bounce off as if they were made of rubber. You can do this as much as you like, and coupled with the ability to nimbly pilot the Arwing out of harm’s danger makes this rail-shooter one where you will never die.

Medals are embarrassingly easy to get, too. If you hold down on the fire button, your Arwing will channel its power into a lock-on smatter of vibrant plasma. When this ball of energy hits an enemy cluster, it will tally up the total death count and add one to it! The enemy kill count required for Area 6 is 300, but if you wisely hold down the shooting button and unleash the seeking plasma shot, you’ll easily get that kill count and then some.

Star Fox 64 is not that great of a game. It wasn’t when it first came out. It’s not now. The voice acting is no longer that intriguing. Tons of games have voice acting these days, and that was one of the novelty effects for SF64 when it first came out in 1997. To further exacerbate things, the supporting cast of characters is downright annoying. Slippy Toad is a shrill amphibian constantly ululating for help (he has his own Arwing, but apparently doesn’t know how to use it), while Falco Lombardi’s sardonic barbs are nothing more than a superficial attempt to make him appear cool.

“Hey, Einstein,” he lifelessly announces, “I’m on your side.”

It makes sense that you would want to shoot him and Slippy down. The two characters do absolutely nothing throughout the journey. Peppy Hare is also relatively worthless as a wingman, but he is the least annoying supporting character, so his innocence is saluted.

Fox McCloud isn’t such a bad character, which is good. Unfortunately, the Arwing is not the most exciting thing you’ll ever pilot. It offers only an upgradeable laser and power bomb option, and though it can perform barrel rolls, flips, and u-turns with relative ease, you won’t ever have to really use the last options.

The music is mostly music and sound effects are mostly forgettable, though I can still vividly recall the stage completion jingle. You’ll hear that a lot. This is a super easy game. It doesn’t matter if you are piloting the Landmaster Tank through the arid desert wastelands of Titania or the Blue Marine submarine through the murky depths of Aquas. It’s easy. Just barrel roll to avoid damage.

Not even Star Wolf, a team of dastardly anti-heroes, or infamous Andross himself will provide much of a challenge to your nimble abilities. Just barrel roll whenever you’re about to get it. The deep space level known as Sector Z is probably the most challenging level since you’ll be required to protect the Great Fox from incoming missiles, but even if one hits the giant support ship, you’ll still get to progress through the game.

Star Fox 64 didn’t challenge me enough, and Expert Mode should have been available from the beginning. The multiplayer is not that exciting – all it offers is the chance to have up to four people battle in lifeless battlefields. I can’t give this game a very high score because it just doesn’t deserve one.

Rating:   1.5 - Bad

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