Even with Sega developing it, you'd swear this game was right out of Nintendo.
This is the first game I played when I got on the show floor, and after a good deal of time with it, I can safely say that it’s F-Zero, even with Amusement Vision developing. This game is lightning fast, and insane.
Because of the L and R triggers on the GC controller, GX took me a bit to get used to. A accelerates, B brakes, with L and R leaning to either side to help with tighter turns. The Y button is the booster button. The combat buttons are a bit different, with Z initiating a spin attack, and X+direction for side attacks, which tend to get a little out of control, even if you’re really good at it. It makes attacking other craft a bit more risky than before, because if you miss, you’ll hit the side wall and lose energy. On top of that, your craft will get airborne a lot easier (even with grip grade A), so it’s very important to also pitch your nose up and down to stay glued.
The game plays just about the same as F-Zero X did on the N64, with massive speed and track upgrades. You still have a full field of 30 cars to deal with, but this time they all do something instead of going on rails. It’s a lot easier to navigate between them, however, because tracks are very, very wide. That doesn’t mean it’s easier to turn, though, as the harder tracks that were available went from wide to narrow to hairpin turn. The tracks have an awesome design element to them, and with all the background action thrown in there, it’s a feast for the eyes at 1800 km/h. Needless to say, the sense of speed is incredible.
Cars and pilots from the N64 game are back, with full face-lifts from the AV developers. Also, all cars seem to handle differently, including those with similar body, boost and grip attributes. If you switch from the Blue Falcon to the White Cat, for instance, you’ll notice that two-grade difference in the grip category immediately, as well as the weaker boost. The demo didn’t have the ability to customize machines, which I was looking forward to doing.
The four-player mode in the game seemed to be a bit incomplete, but that didn’t stop it from running at full speed. The plasma TV screens helped, but everything was just the right size to see what was going on without the HUD getting in the way or being unreadable. It also helps that you can now play the game in the first-person perspective, which will let you see everything on the ground level.
GX is basically what you would have expected for a new F-Zero game, with F-Zero X modes and gameplay carried over and upgraded.