Star Fox: Zero has been a source of A LOT of controversy among general gamers and Nintendo fans alike because of its new motion control system. The problem with that controversy however, is that it detracts from the question people ought to be asking about the game, “Is the game good?”
Now this game is in fact, a remake of the original Star Fox so much of the basic plot will be the same so we will go ahead and give the game points for an interesting plot. (Hey, I’m being objective here. There are lots of new gamers who haven’t heard this story before!) The threads between the Star Wolf team and Peppy and Fox’s father are great and a fantastic source of tension between Pigma and Fox. Now while the game may not be the deepest thing ever plot wise, the characters are actually more charming than they have ever been! Peppy is the wise old mentor hare, Falco is the cool ace pilot, Slippy is…well…slippy..and Fox exudes leadership for the team and actually is far cockier and funnier than he has ever been. The banter between the team is actually hilarious as well as they crack jokes about each others piloting, the bromance between Bill and Fox, and even Peppy’s age. (Slippy is actually a bit racist towards Falco in one particular boss fight.) All of this serves well to endear you to the characters of the game and keep you enjoying your adventures in the Lylat System.
One of the memorable features from the original game was the system map for the Lylat system. This map allowed you to take different routes on your journey to planet Venom and was also the method for unlocking the game’s true ending. This system has returned in Star Fox: Zero with some major upgrades that allow you to once again take new unexplored routes to Venom. The fun doesn’t stop there however; this time around it can actually do crazy things like have you play a level with an entirely different vehicle than you would have in your original run or completely unlock a new level within the same planet or sector that you would normally have been in. This is most noticeable in the difference between what path you take to get to Zoness…but I won’t spoil that surprise. The difficulty level also amps up considerably once you begin to start exploring alternate ways to finish levels and start proceeding through various new routes. For example, normally you would fight against a flying fortress at the end of the 1st Corneria level, however, if you manage to unlock the alternate route, then you will battle against an aquatic variant which actually proves to be far more difficult to defeat in my opinion.
Another entertaining aspect of the game is found in the ability for the Arwing and Landmaster to transform into alternate vehicles. This proves to be indispensable in various boss fights due to the strategies it enables, especially with the Arwing. The walker version of the Arwing while interesting looking is INCREDIBLY useful and I really wish I had access to it in the original sometimes. It has allowed me to pull victories out of boss fights that would have proven much harder without it (and I don’t just mean the ones that you are supposed to use that form,) and saved my life more times than I can count. The Landmaster also has an interesting alternate form but I will actually keep my lips sealed on that due to how much I enjoyed the surprise of finding out exactly what it ended up being able to do. I’m sure you can google it if you are that curious but I would just wait to play it if I were you.
Alright alright, lets get to the controls. How about them…well..it’s up to you! I’ve written an entire article about how to have fun using them on our website that tells you everything you would need to know but it only is fun if you give up your pre-concieved notions about them…(That’s what I had to do and once I did I had way more fun with this game.) They are fantastic for this game as long as you learn the appropriate times to use the motion controls and the appropriate times to completely ignore them. So what else do you need to know about the game? Well, the music is stellar and for any new gamers it’s an out of this world experience! (See what I did there?) However, if you are looking for a new adventure than this may not be quite what you are searching for, but it is a whole lot of fun and something you will enjoy for a while but perhaps may not hold the same replayability level that its older nostalgic counterpart had. So overall we score this game at a 7.8 not because its bad but due to its lack of replayability and a control scheme that, while fun and innovative, still takes a bit too long to start to enjoy. Once this price drops to about $40 however, I would say it’s a must have for your Wii U game collection. Good luck pilots!
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