There are some games that come out that turn into guilty pleasures. Starfox 64 in the late 90′s was a midnight snack every time summer came around for myself. This still holds true today after its release on the 3DS with some of best revisions seen in the game as far as making a port go. To be fair to call this game a port is totally off as the graphics have been overhauled. If anything Slippy and Peppy might want to screech about the exclusion of the Rumble pack which was included with the original game as well as some other multiplayer elements not found in the game.
While some gripes can be found as far as they new voice acting team. The game is essentially the same game from the 64. With Andross and the Star Wolf team blowing everything up in the Lylat System. You lead team Star Fox which is made up of Slippy Toad the tech guru of the team, Peppy Hare the veteran who knew your dad, and Falco Lombardi the hot shot of the group and of course the Star Fox leader himself Fox McCloud. While each character has certain abilities that really aren’t seen there are some that you might not realize happening on screen. Slippy will scan boss characters and display an onscreen life bar for them. Peppy will provide gameplay advice… barrel rolls anyone? Falco will help open up new routes to more of the difficult levels in the game.
That my friends is where the game really shines. With the ability to take different routes every play through gives not only an incentive to play again and again. It also forces you to make combat decisions that will affect such routes. While this may seem easy on paper… or computer screen. It actually is one of the hardest things to do knowing that you have to remember every cause and effect for each level. Each support character also has a life bar like yours as well. So in order to get the highest score and to help draw enemy fire during the level you will need to keep your team healthy. If not though and you like seeing Slippy do his best death star run crash impression you will be penalized and have one less team mate for the rest of the level and the following level. This also adds an interesting dynamic as you may find other team members become more vulnerable with out the 4th wingman.
Gameplay is a bag of mixed emotions this is found especially when referring to the motion/touch controls. There are two different control schemes you can play as one being the Classic 64 setup with incoming messages located at the bottom of the screen. The 3DS mode however uses the internal gyroscope and leaves a little more precision to be desired. If you select the classic 64 version be prepared to get hand strains for long extended play. However the original gameplay speaks for itself and the clever level design as well as skill level built over time will be the only way to become an ace Arwing pilot.
The thing about Star Fox 64 3D is that it falls somewhat flat of expectations. With out the inclusion of an online mode it feels like your getting a half eaten sandwich. Instead the competitive multiplayer is only found in local matches with other players in your vicinity. It should seem like a no brainer but apparently Nintendo left their brain with the Metroid series(get it?). Even then with that said some content from the original game have been left out such as the multiplayer modes for a Landmaster Tank and being on foot. This sadly is unacceptable in regards to the video game industry today as a game should hold true to its original form.
Star Fox 64 3D showcases the 3DS’s capabilities and should have been properly looked at as far as the original content goes and a new online multiplayer is concerned. We are in 2012 after all aren’t we? If this was 2005 this type of mistreatment could be understood but we have come a long way since then and online multiplayer should be included in games such as Star Fox. The 3D found in the game puts some 3D movies to same and shows that Nintendo is still one of the best in the industry when taking advantage of its hard ware is concerned. All in all Star Fox is a great experience if you are new to the series however if you played the original this is all you’re getting with a little less. Be warned because there are no new elements as far as content for new levels or a side story is concerned. If you were smart and have a Wii you can get the same game with the original code on the Virtual Console, not to mention you would save 20 bucks!