Welcome to the 70th issue of the GBAtemp Recommends Revival Project! This project is a weekly feature where we share our favourite games. The titles we recommend may be "old school" games, a piece of Homebrew, sleeper hits, or just stone cold classic but one thing's for certain, we think they are fantastic and deserve your attention! An extra edition this week as this week marks the 20th Anniversary of... Star Fox It all began when Argonaut Software were working with Nintendo and had a little prototype game running on the NES called NESGlider, which to them was kinda like a spiritual successor to their own Starglider series which was released on a variety of 8/16-bit home computers. NESGlider then moved onto the Super Nintendo but Argonaut felt that they could only go as far as possible graphically and suggested to Nintendo that using a dedicated 3D chip in a cartridge would achieve much better and impressive results. Nintendo agreed and let them go on to hire chip developers to develop the SuperFX chip! The game then went on to become Nintendo's first ever 3D polygon game Star Fox..or Starwing for us none US/Japanese gamers! Star Fox was more of a arcade 3rd person on rails shooter than Starglider, although some levels then went into first person mode. Nintendo EAD took over with most of the game design. Katsuya Eguchi (who previously worked on Super Mario 3, Super Mario World and then later Wave Race & Animal Crossing) was the director and Shigeru Miyamoto was acting as a producer and also chipping in with ideas such as making the characters animals. Argonaut's own Dylan Cuthbert was still the main lead programmer. The game was pretty much a straight up shoot-em-up, albeit in a different perspective and with more advanced gameplay mechanics. You pick the first stage you wish to play, first is easy, second medium and third hard. These stages go on to form their own particular set of stages throughout the Lylat system although the first and last stage are the same but with minor changes to coincide with the difficulty chosen. Was was different to other popular shooters at the time was that you saw physical damage on the Arwing, so if you clip a wing...it breaks and also affects how you move and operate the weapons. Graphically it was astounding for the time and was one of the few titles that showed the future of 3D gaming...even if it was mainly on rails the engine certainly had the chops for it to be free roaming. While the framerate has dated the looks, I feel that the overall graphical design and style would still look really damn good today in a retro kind of way. I'd love to see Nintendo make something with this style in HD. The sound was magnificent, composer Hajime Hirasawa created some fantastic music with the SNES hardware and some of the tunes are amongst some of the best in Nintendo's excellent history. It really helped set up fantastic sci-fi atmosphere within the game and it made the intro to the game unforgettable. The sound effects were also pretty damn excellent complimenting the gameplay and looks. The voice samples were fantastic and you know what...man it's a shame that the characters talk properly now! I much preferred the garbled chatter to the horrible voice acting they have now. Overall everything sound and graphic related that was squeezed into this title was brilliant. Overall this was a fantastic title, it was different to anything that Nintendo's competitors could offer and is still regarded as a classic today. It went on to spawn a sequel Star Fox 2 which went even more advanced with gameplay but sadly that was cancelled (although Dylan Cuthbert states that it was actually finished) with Nintendo felt that it would look dated with the upcoming N64 on the horizon. A ROM of that game was leaked and homebrewers have been able to debug it into something very playable but damn I wish Nintendo released it for the Gameboy Advance! Two years later the next Star Fox, Star Fox 64 (Lylat Wars over here) was released and also pretty damn fantastic showcasing some great graphics for the N64. StarFox 64 was the last proper title in the series. Rare went on to turn their N64 Zelda clone, Dinosaur Planet into StarFox Adventures for the Gamecube. It was actually pretty great in parts but had some extremely dull parts that dragged it down especially the beginning. Then Namco did Star Fox Assault, also for the Gamecube. It was also good but it wasn't really Star Fox to a lot of us with the on foot sections stopping it from being a better title. The last "new" title in the series was Star Fox Command for the DS, this was actually developed by Q-Games which was founded by Dylan Cutherbert. The game featured elements taken from Star Fox 2 such as emphasis on more open gameplay. It was also featuring more strategy gameplay and it was also the first game in the series that featured online gameplay. Again it was a good game but...it wasn't Star Fox. The series skipped the Wii altogether, there was talks of one being in development but we never saw anything of it at all. Maybe it was the fact that "core" titles that weren't Mario or Zelda weren't selling anymore and maybe due to lacklustre sales of Command. Star Fox 64 was ported to the 3DS and was a fantastic and for me improved version of a classic. It looked amazing though they could have done so so much more with online features, like you know... implementing some. Outside of main entries, the characters have been a main staple in the three Smash Bros titles featuring not only Fox but also Falco Lombardi in the first two games and Wolf in Brawl. Sadly that is all the new game appearances we've had. The series is kinda in a state of limbo at the moment. Star Fox 64 3D was used by Nintendo to see if fans wanted new games and it didn't sell amazingly well. Thing is we do, just not ports albeit great ones. Nintendo didn't even feature it in Nintendoland along with it's other staple titles (though they did miss Kirby too btw) but apparently Metroid Blast actually started off as a Star Fox game! There are rumours of course that Retro Studio's are making a Wii U title (remember the crossover with Metroid? *shudder*) and lots of developers such as PlatinumGames have stated that they would love to make a Star Fox title but until something is official we won't know. The series is still hugely popular with fans, it's among some of the most well known videogame memes and is one of the most wanted titles people want to see announced, shit even put Star Fox 2 in a finish state on the eShop/Virtual Console just give us something new that feels like Star Fox Nintendo! The series is still so popular that Google have introduced a permanent Easter Egg when you type "do a barrel roll" into the search box! Oh, by the way when you do a barrel roll in the game...you're actually doing a Aileron roll. Only in Star Fox Assault can you ever do a proper one: Genre: On-rails arcade shooter Released: February 21st 1993 (Japan) Developer: Nintendo EAD / Argonaut Published by: Nintendo Directed By: Katsuya Eguchi Released For: Super Nintendo If you enjoyed this week's edition of GBAtemp Recommends! please leave a comment in the thread. This helps us monitor feedback and ensures we keep posting these articles in the future. This feature is now moving to Thursdays and the next edition will move away from Nintendo seeing we've just had a month of titles on their platforms. If you would also like to write a GBAtemp Recommends! article, let me know.