has been hyped since who knows when. The game was supposed to have a
gripping plot, great graphics, and, overall, be the best thing since
sliced bread. I even RESERVED the game because I was so excited.
Heck, I expected a long awaited great RPG from Rare. Oh, and
speaking of Rare? It was their last game on Nintendo. It was bound
to go out with a bang. So I got it and played itÖ
And played it
And had funÖ
And got to the
And HATED IT.
has to be THE biggest disappointment and most pathetic excuse of a
great game ever.
OK, not all of
it was bad. Letís look at the graphics. One word describes them:
gorgeous. Everything is textured so well that some stuff looks real.
I mean, the water looks so clear and beautiful that it makes me want
to go swimming. And Fox has a plethora of facial expressions. Some
of them are over exaggerated, but they certainly give him character.
Overall, The graphics definitely show the GCNís full power in
I suppose a gameís
script carries some weight as well. I mean, Golden Sun lost
major points on its corny script. "Gee Isaac, what will you
do?" "Mia, did you understand me?" "Kraden, do
you know where we are? Are you sure Kraden? Kraden, you are super
cool!" Golden Sunís dialog was so fake that it hurt to
read. However, SFA uses natural speech. Fox moans, grumbles, and
cuts people off. Tricky complains and makes fun of things. The
dialog flowed, and it just seemed more realistic. And the voice
acting unquestionably helped.
As we get to fun
factor and gameplay, things start to look bad. Overall, the game is
fun. Prince Tricky and his commands add a new layer of playing.
Discovering new terrain is always exciting. The combat style with
the staff is pretty interesting and different. The only problem is
that it gets VERY repetitive after awhile. Battling becomes a burden
more than a privilege. There could have been more interesting combos
that required staff powers or different button combinations. And the
enemies could have had more diverse moves too. Size of the enemy
meant nothing. Also, in my opinion, it was ridiculous how if there
was a gang of SharpClaw and you were fighting one, the others would
watch and cheer. How slow are these guys? I mean, couldnít they
have at least ganged up on you once in the whole game? Fighting was,
therefore, never difficult.
difficulty. WHAT THE GAME LACKED. Overall, this game posed no
challenge. Like mentioned above, the combat system was simple and
easy. The "dungeons" were way too easy too. Why? Well gee,
Slippy would tell you what to do whenever you were stuck! I admit,
he could be broad sometimes and I did get stuck once or twice, but
you would eventually find your way again. He should have charged you
a number of fuel cells per hint or something. The hardest parts, in
my opinion, had nothing directly to do with the plot or dungeons.
They were simple puzzles that were just difficult. Basically, the
difficulty was in the wrong places. Where should it have gone
instead? How about into the bosses! This gameís bosses were
horrible. They were WAY too easy and there were too few (There were
only 4 I think.) Even the hardest was easy once you got the hang of
it. The boss of the dark Dragon Rock was pathetic. A bit of
foreshadowing makes him seem like heíll be a pain, and his look is
intimidating, but heís a joke.
Another point of
easiness- Bafomdads. They are these weird little rabbit-things that
hide themselves in hard to reach areas. THEY INSTANTLY REVIVE AND
REFILL ALL OF YOUR LIFE IF YOU DIE. There is no regret in using one,
because you donít get punished at all for doing so. And itís not
like you can only have one at a time. From early in the game, YOU
CAN HOLD TEN. Mix that with the fact that you probably will never
get many game overs, let alone get many from an enemy (most of my
game overs came from dangerous terrain, like lava), and you get a
practically invincible Fox.
Oh, and then you
can save anywhere. Need I say more?
This game repeats itself so much itís disgusting. If this game
were a book, a theme would be "The Theme of Repetition".
Repeats are all over the place, from the space shooting levels to
dungeons. Yes, I said dungeons. You are forced to go through the
same dungeons over and over again. The problem is that you have to
solve the same annoying puzzles again as well. It becomes very
tedious, especially for gamers who like to explore new areas.
Game music is a
big part of the game experience for me, and SFA lacked it. The
soundtrack consists of simple little island-ish themes used over and
over again (there goes more repetition!). I bet I could list all of
them right now. I mean, some sounded nice, but they were not at
where I feel videogame music should be today. The music was more for
background then for gamer enjoyment. Come on Rare! You did great
with your N64 games! What happened here?
Ah, the plot.
The plot was awful. This game really had none! It starts off with
Krystal trying to find out what happened to her father, when she
picks up a distress call (from something). Then she is trapped by
something on Dino Planet. Then Fox gets thrown into the mess. Even
though it seems like he doesnít care at first, he somehow starts
to like saving these creatures. The transition is unclear. A lot of
stuff is unclear. Fox finds a random staff and automatically can use
it easily. Besides that, it just seems like a lot of things went
unexplained. Events just happened and you went along with it. And
many questions were left unanswered. Why donít the EarthWalkers
and SkyRunners get along? Will they ever? What exactly is Moon
Mountain Pass? The map data tells you that itís where the
SharpClaw came from, but no character ever says anything about it.
What exactly WAS Dragon Rock before Scales took over it? SFAís
attempts at plot enhancements and twists easily became holes.
Many things were
useless in the game. Take the WarpStone for instance. When I first
saw him, I thought he would have some great use. Like, he would have
the ability to warp you anywhere. I was wrong. The Stone basically
grew moss during the adventure. His sole purposes were to warp you
to the mountains once and then to Krazoa Palace over and over. Was a
giant character really needed for that? No. Rare could have made
some CloudRunner or simple warp device play that small role. Scarabs
eventually became useless too, as did fuel cells. Fuel cells- the
joke. There were tons of them, yet they were supposed to be rare (no
were useless because they were half-done. Look at the staff powerup
called the Portal Opener. Whatís up with that? A whole spell to
open a few weird doors? Give me a break! Also, there were the cheat
tokens and the Game Well Maze. The cheating unlocked things such as
"Sound Test" and "Credits". Woo. Some cheating
there. Definitely not DK64 style. And back to the Maze, it was a
waste of memory.
I believe that
SFA was rushed. Very rushed. Why did it take four years but STILL
come out rushed? I have no idea. Here are some clues:
- The lack of a
solid plot and the presence of many plot holes
- The many
overused and repeated elements
- The parts
that were half-done and useless
- I expected
the RedEye to be big and intimidating. They werenít.
- The lack of
large areas! Now, when I hear "Walled City," I think
of a city in a wall. What we got was a temple with 1 room,
surrounded by some puzzles and caves. I expected EVERY area to
be itís own sub world. Put in Zelda terms, I wanted Walled
City to be a Clock Town. CloudRunner Fortress should have been a
Hyrule. Also, you should have had to visit all areas multiple
times. I also wanted to see a large, RPG-like map in which all
areas were actually connected. We didnít even get that. Doesnít
modern technology allow us to do these things? Rare did not take
advantage of the new media at all. In fact, sans the graphics
and vocal work, SFA could have stayed an N64 game.
One of my
largest complaints is the end of the game. First off, after getting
the final Krazoa Spirit, a very random event occurs. It is not
supported by anything that has happened at all. Sounds like a plot
hole to me. Either that, or there was no time to make a legitimate
reason for it to happen. And then it starts. Save here, and youíre
at the point of no return. Why? The game forces you to go to final
showdown, doesnít allow you to leave, and then you must beat the
game. Why not create a backup file earlier? You canít! The game
automatically saves to 1 file. You cannot copy them! In short, after
the random event, exploration of the world is DONE. OVER. I fail to
see why they make games like this. Donít game designers realize
that we DO like to go back and revisit places? (Golden Sun
also had this flaw.)
showdown is also quick and unorganized. There IS a plot twist. It is
executed beautifully, but, unfortunately, it makes little sense. Now
you save the game and the 99% completed mark of the game arrives.
Save here and this is where the file will always start. The final
and main enemy then is revealed to beÖhmm, I wonít say. Letís
just say the reaction is "Gee, what a surprise."
The final battle
was interesting, but it was, once again, too easy. Also, Iíve
heard that it mimicked that of a past game. There goes the
repetition again. The ending lacked. Nothing is truly resolved.
Now, my largest
complaint is the lack of reply value. There are no real sidequests
(I donít think finding a baby LightFoot in exchange for a fuel
cell counts.) You canít miss anything, because the linear path of
the game makes sure that you get all staff powerups and new energy
containers. Oh yeah, maybe you missed some fuel cells. To get them
all (which is unnecessary), you would have to start a whole new
file. Great. If you want a game that you can play over and over in
order to find secrets, new paths, and further understand the plot,
then SFA is not for you.
- Natural, real
- Voice acting
- Overall fun
- Too many
- Low level of
- Simple music
- Weak plot
- Plot holes
- Useless and
seemingly half-finished features
rushed in many areas
- A "No
return" end of game- cannot go back after a certain point
- Little to no
Adventures was a disappointment. Rare went out with a flop. I
heard 80 hours. It was only about 20. I expected an RPG. We got a
bad cross between that and the traditional "platformer",
now called adventure. I wanted a moving plot. We got none. I wanted
sidequests, music, challenging bosses, and a great ending. Sadly,
none of these came either. The packaging promised us that Krystal
would have a big role, right? Iíll let you decide if she did.
Worst of all, playing this game a second time would bring more
boredom then fun to the gamer.
I DO NOT
recommend this game to anyone who enjoys plot, music, or replay
value. If you are curious, youíre better off renting it until you
beat it. Youíll probably save some cash that way.
So where is the
Starfox Teamís next adventure going to be? Right back to