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Showing posts from October, 2023

F-Zero X: 25th anniversary

Twenty-five years ago today, F-Zero X, the sequel to the classic SNES launch title  F-Zero , dropped on the N64. The game still enjoys a good reputation because the hardware capabilities of the 3D system allowed it to deliver on the promise of the original formula. The basic gameplay of F-Zero X (I guess Nintendo got tired of the "64" naming convention) is almost identical to F-Zero. You race hovercraft around futuristic tracks at incredible speeds. The speedometer can crack 1000 kph, and the game does a great job making it feel real. Your vehicle has an energy meter. You can spend some for a turbo boost, though not on the first lap of each race. When you bump into walls or other vehicles, of which there are 29, you'll lose some energy as well. If you run out, your car explodes, ending the race. Energy can be refilled by driving over pink strips. To win races, avoid collisions with walls and vehicles, especially while cornering. Use the Z and R triggers to take corners mo

Rock n' Roll Racing: 30th anniversary

Although not marketed as a sequel, anyone who has played Blizzard's RPM Racing will recognize Rock n' Roll Racing as its successor. They are both isometric racing games with weapons, similar to Rare's classic R.C. Pro-Am on the NES, but Rock n' Roll Racing is the superior game by far. You can enjoy Rock n' Roll Racing solo or with a second player. At the beginning, you choose your racer from six colorful, punky characters: Tarquinn, Snake, Cyberhawk, Ivan, Katarina, or Jake. Each is good at two skills from among acceleration, top speed, cornering, and jumping. Olaf, from The Lost Vikings , is secretly available by holding down L, R, and SELECT while Tarquinn is selected. Olaf is busted because he's good at all four skills! Four characters race and attack one another's vehicles with lasers, missiles, and mines. You begin with only one laser shot per lap. Between races, you can purchase additional shots and upgrade your vehicle's armor, tires, shock abso