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F-Zero

Preview By: Siou Choy

Developer:   Nintendo
Publisher:   Nintendo
Genre:   Racing
Est. Release:   June 11, 2001
Posted:   3-13-01

One of the most talked-about games slated for release alongside the Game Boy Advance is F-Zero: Maximum Velocity. Longtime fans of the F-Zero racing series (a popular favorite from the days of the venerable Super Nintendo) will once again have reason to rejoice, come June 11. Unlike several misguided remakes of recent days (can anyone say Pong for the Playstation? Breakout? Missile Command? Centipede?), F-Zero: Maximum Velocity breaks form by staying true to its roots. Unlike the sub-par melodramatics of the N64 version, Maximum Velocity far more closely resembles the classic SNES racer. In fact, F-Zero: Maximum Velocity shows off its 32-bit processing power so well, that despite its studied and deliberate retro stylings, it somehow still manages to look better than the SNES version. Speaking strictly for myself, if this is just a sample of what the Game Boy Advance can do, I can't wait to see what the future holds...

Don't be misled into thinking that just because F-Zero: Maximum Velocity has a similar look and feel to the SNES version, that we're just talking about some tired retread of previously traveled ground here. Sure, you'll be racing hot, stylish hovercrafts on futuristic tracks, but this is an entirely new game with new levels and vehicles, many of which need to be unlocked by obtaining competition victories. This is your shot at proving you've got what it takes to race with the big boys, kiddies.

Set 25 years after the original F-Zero, you play as the descendants of Captain Falcon and his crew. One clear enhancement over the original is how Maximum Velocity takes full advantage of the Game Boy Advance's multiplayer link cable, which allows up to four people to play at once. And what racing game would be complete without power-ups and speed-boost? F-Zero: Maximum Velocity has that as well, and with the aid of the Game Boy Advance's L and R buttons you should be in full control at even the most blinding of speeds.

F-Zero: Maximum Velocity is scheduled as a launch release in Japan, and is expected to follow suit in the U.S. Now if you'll excuse me, I think I'll get back to playing F-Zero for the SNES, to hold me over until F-Zero: Maximum Velocity for the Game Boy Advance arrives later this year.

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