F-Zero | SNES Online

F Zero didn’t appeal to me the first time around. I don’t know what it was that put me off as I’ve always liked driving games. Maybe it was because I was already preoccupied with Super Mario Kart and also Super Off-Road, or perhaps it was because I didn’t like the look of it. You read that correctly: I didn’t like the look of F-Zero.

Judging a title by its graphics? How shallow. Boy, I missed out then. Well, no. Not really. F-Zero has its community, but as I missed out on it the first time, there’s no connection for me. It just seemed all too limited. Don’t hate on me because I wasn’t keen on it. There’s nothing wrong with liking it. Only if you’re evil and hate children. No logic in that. Don’t entertain me.

Maybe it’s the vehicles, or perhaps even the tracks. They were a little trippy to some extent and made my eyes go funny. It’s like playing Wipeout in slow motion, only with a shopping trolley rather than a spaceship. Ok, so you use spaceships (kinda) in the game, but they don’t leave orbit unless they go over a ramp. Sorry, still not doing anything for me.

A clear straight with a jump
A conveniently placed ramp to jump the err…

If there were some sort of speed boost, then maybe this would appeal to me a bit more, or perhaps some weaponry to blast opponents off the track. Instead, it’s loop after loop on colour clashing tracks. This may prove to be my most popular write up as I’m sure this is annoying someone out there. That’s genuinely not my intention, I just don’t have much love for F-Zero.

Now, F-Zero X on the N64 was something else. I didn’t own that one, but outside of Wave Race 64, that was one of my go-to racers on the system. It’s what F-Zero should have been (era and technological advances aside) – fast and action-packed. Ok, I’m being unfair – the N64 was the successor to the SNES, so it was bound to be better. Wrong! Super Mario Kart is better than Mario Kart 64! Scandal!

It’s now that I realise that I’m searching for words. I rarely get so stumped on knocking one out – wahey! – but there’s not much else to say about F-Zero. Keeping with the formula of the NES Online titles, how about we pad this out with some other titles instead? Sure, let’s do this.

Doing well but hitting the side of the track
The shortcuts in F-Zero aren’t so obvious

Super Off-Road was definitely one of my favourites, but I suppose one of the driving games I liked most was Chase H.Q. It’s by far a pig of a game as it was nothing like the arcade game – which is what I was hoping for – but still a good game, even though it was hard as you couldn’t see what you were doing half the time. It reminded me a little of The Duel: Test Drive II, which coincidentally, was also on the SNES…

At the time, I thought the graphics were marvellous – as if the powers that be granted me the luxury to drive a real car, on a real road. Alas, it was all made up of pixels, and if you check out the game, conveniently displayed in the embed below, it doesn’t look real at all and has not kept age on its side. Still, it was relatively rare to have a first-person view in a driving game – they were for the power machines like the PC, Amiga and Atari ST. Least, that’s what the computer people were saying.

Regrettably, I will bring this piece to a close now as I have nothing, nor have had anything important to say, other than show you a couple of screenshots and referred to a few driving games. It wasn’t the SNES’ forte, in my opinion. The SNES excelled at the platform game, mostly, with the likes of Mario and much more to come – what with Nintendo releasing new titles every week. Yeah, I wish. Still holding out for Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster Busts Loose. I’m not giving in. This isn’t a running joke.

Disclaimer: You like coffee, I like tea. We’re all different but the same. Damn you philosophy! But in terms of taste, that’s up to the individual. Brown cords and an orange floral shirt? Go for it! Personally, I’d prefer a onesie. So, like games, I’m not fond of F-Zero – hence the garbage above, but it keeps me off the streets writing about it here and if you like it, don’t take offence. We can still be friends. We’ve been through a lot, you and I. You and me. Together again. In harmony.