While certainly not perfect – the game is short and could have benefited greatly from LAN or online multiplayer support – there really isn't a more versatile arcade-style shooter for the GameCube system.
I think this is a decent game, and it definitely is underrated. The flaws that do exist in this game are definitely not damning as some users and critics would say, in fact, I don't think such flaws are even much of a distraction. The story is simple, but it does a good job at portraying the emotional situations within the game and it makes sense. The arwing missions are at the previously established standard of Star Fox 64, I am failing to see how anyone would argue that the arwing missions are even sub-par. The on foot missions are a bit clunky, but they are easily playable and are not a hindrance to the experience, just a minor annoyance that requires a few minutes to get used to.
The only complaint that I have is that the game was too short, and is that really a complaint of the quality of the game? Is it really a bad indicator of the game that it's so good that I want more of it? I think Nintendo found the perfect formula for the Star Fox franchise during their experimentation phase of this IP. I really hope that Nintendo decides to make another Star Fox installment similar to the style of this one.
If you can overlook the minor inadequacies found in the control scheme and don't mind a game that is rather short in terms of length and difficulty, than Star Fox: Assault is certainly a game you'll enjoy!
It's a good thing that Star Fox series has returned to its space shoot 'em up roots, but why did they have to include mediocre land-action sequences in the game? Also, some other small details, like a lack of radar or a map, only ten levels and uninspiring multiplayer elements stop this from being the truly next-gen Star Fox game since "Lylat Wars." [June 2005, p.70]
From a value perspective, you're dealing with a feature-film's worth of content for fifty bucks. Independently wealthy, rabid fanboys might want to check it out, otherwise we'd leave this fox to the dogs.
I don't know what people have problems with when it comes to this game. Easily, best Star Fox game, I don't care what some 64 nostalgia lovers say. The story is amazing, the missions are fun, and the soundtrack is beautiful. The game is 10 levels long but honestly I think that it holds up well even today because each level is rewarding and fun enough that you want to replay it. Besides, Star Fox is known for having short stories and being an overall short game. Wish they would make this game for the Wii U and make it multiplayer support. Really missed this game and hope to see it appear sometime in the future. 10/10.
So I'll start by saying that this game is good and nothing really more than that, in fact, it's in my opinion a tad lower than nintendo's usual quality with their IP's, though that is of course a high bar to hit according to most people. That all being said, I think this game is underrated to a certain degree.
Gameplay wise, this game does a lot more to be faithful to the N64 experience than the likes of command or adventures; ESPECIALLY adventures. But given how simple SF64 was that's not too hard really, all you really need is on rail shooting segments with the occasional all range mode mission in which you're confined to a box instead of a line. Unlike 64 however, assault has far more all range segments than on rail ones, and while the latter is relatively unchanged from 64, the former has received a massive expansion in the form of an interchangeable combat system. On most missions, the player has the option between piloting an arwing, a landmaster or for the first time ever on foot in a third person shooter system. Some people have grumbled about how this was done instead of focusing on the on-rail sections but in my opinion, there's not really much you can do, they're just too simple to be expanded upon. Another large point of contention with this new system is the allegedly clunky control scheme, most notably the method of aiming your weapon when in the landmaster or on foot. Personally I had no issues with the controls, they were easy in fact and not too different from the control scheme in the metroid prime series (which I've yet to see anyone criticize) on top of this, there is an alternate control scheme that apparently fixes the issue for some people so really you'll just have to see. One issue i do have with the aiming is how flimsy the auto lock-on system is. when you're trying to shoot down aerial enemies in the landmaster it's just goes on and off regardless of your distance from the target. The progression of the game is very linear, with you simply going from mission to mission like many 1st person shooters and the length is quite short, you could probably beat the game in one sitting if you played it all afternoon, this is a significant downgrade from star fox 64 which although it had even shorter playthroughs and missions, it also had a multiple choice progression system in which you could undertake missions provided certain conditions were met, some skill based, others being secrets, the end reward based on this progression was a much more climatic final boss as well as just having new content for later playthroughs. This is were assault falls short, although 64 is shorter, it has more content.
Moving on to the story, first of all, it actually has one that extends beyond the opening cutscene so it's already an improvement over 64 and it's nowhere near as insufferably cheesy as adventures, more coherent too. The story itself can range from meh to entertaining to surprisingly dark and emotional moments. The new enemies introduced in this game aren't anything to write home about, the aparoids as they're called are basically just the borg mixed with the arachnids from starship troopers and beyond about 3 snippets of dialouge, they never really go in depth on them. The characters in this game are great however. They all have far more personality now and have great interactions with one another during missions, particularly the star fox team's interactions with their rivals star wolf. My only complaints lie with Fox and Krystal's characterization and the ending. Fox is just a blank slate, with two brief exceptions. Krystal's character is basically entirely defined by her romantic interest to fox which is just really boring and repetitive. Now the ending, oh god those final cutscenes. Suddenly the dialogue just takes a nose dive and really dumb plot holes begin to arise.
ending this review on the music and aesthetics. These are both actually the some of the best things about the game. The original soundtracks from 64 have been remade by a full orchestra and the boss battle themes are truly intense, perhaps the most memorable in the series.
If you enjoyed the 64 title, despite a few grievances and clear downgrades and as long as you don't have nostalgia goggles on, I imagine you'll find some enjoyment out of this game.
I do not understand why people complain so much about this game.
This is a great Star Fox game, I have only played the 64 remake on 3DS along with the SNES one.
It is by far better than the 64 one. The combat on foot is a lot of fun, and multiplayer is GREAT!
7 out of 10, since it could be longer.
Bloody hell. This is not good. What started off as a classic space shooting franchise has now turned into half-arsed cross-over attempts. I do admit the graphics are very good and Krystal and Wolf's voices are pretty much bang on, all other voice actors didn't seem to care, even Grant Goodeve, who did a very good job of voicing Team Fortress 2's Engineer. The game is too short, Panther should die in a fire, somebody should teabag the on-foot missions, the controls in the in-flight modes appear to be made to feel like balsa wood and just simply, it's no fun. If the franchise keeps on going at this rate, another beloved franchise will fall into a pit of lost dreams and hopes. Thanks a lot Namco.
OVERVIEW = 2
A 3D Corridor Shooter.
Star Fox 64 is possibly my favorite game of all time. It was the first game to have constant voiced characters talk to you throughout the missions, the first to offer any kind of touch feedback, looked amazing and controlled perfectly. 8 years later, Star Fox Assault is a pile of garbage. Seriously, it’s like a design document for how to ruin sequels.
PRESENTATION = 3
It looks bland, like Metroid crossed with Halo. N64 graphics had a certain charm because the low-polygon count meant developers had to apply aesthetic creativity to construct shapes. Graphics are sharper now, but look worse. And, aside from the space level, all of the environments are boring. There’s nothing as in SF Assault as amazing as the N64’s Solar (i.e., the surface of the sun), no underwater levels, no videogame remakes of famous movie scenes (SF64’s Katina mission was essentially a better Independence Day videogame than the official one). The explosions lack weight and there are no physics.
The plot is unwatchable but skippable. Star Fox 64’s only flaw was the unskippable entry and debriefing cutscenes before and after each mission, and I’ll grant that Star Fox Assault does at least let you skip these. That is the only way in which Assault has improved upon its predecessor.
MECHANICS/CONTROL = 0
Star Fox 64 was one of the few flight combat games I liked, because most games in that genre are all about achieving homing missile lock-on. SF64 was one of the few games where the machine gun manual fire mattered just as much.
Step 1 of ruining the best game ever made was screwing up the previously perfect vehicular controls. Back in the N64 days, when there were no post-release patches, developers had to get the “feel” **** right the first time. SF Assault’s movement feels wrong; in particular, the vertical movement speed feels too slow. It gets even slower when you brake, which is bizarre, because you should be turning FASTER when you brake. Even weirder, the vertical movement speed starts off just slightly too slow, and then after the first level it gets even slower even when piloting the same aircraft. It also feels like it takes too long to achieve homing lock-on.
But that’s just the Arwing spaceship. The Landmaster tank has been totally ruined. You no longer control the left and right jump-jets separately, and the aiming is all off. I would have played an entire game based on just the SF64 Landmaster levels, but the SF Assault Landmaster is unplayable.
There’s no submarine in this game, a nice change of pace in SF64, but not my favorite.
But Step 2, the absolute worst design decision possible, was to make most of the game a third-person on-foot shooter. You’re flying only 1/3 of the time (some of the on-foot sections supposedly let you jump into an Arwing, but only in areas without enemies). That wouldn’t be so bad if the on-foot sections didn’t have the worst implemented controls ever coded. You move slow, with tank controls (i.e. turning instead of strafing), and you aim slower. It’s like an early Resident Evil game, except the enemies attack as if it were an action-FPS.
Star Wars: Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike made the exact same stumble when it redesigned half the missions to have you play on foot with awful, awful on-foot controls, but at least RS3 kept the excellent vehicular controls from SWRogue Leader. The GTA series ruined their vehicular controls when moving from the Playstation 2 era to GTA IV, but at least GTA IV compensated somewhat by making it a decent on-foot shooter, and GTA V now drives okay. Star Fox Assault is just ruined its flight combat for nothing, and added on-foot sections so horrible that those levels are literally unplayable to me. I only got through it by using someone else’s save file and playing only the flight levels.
DESIGN = 2
The flight levels are okay at best, never as great as the SF 64 levels. And, sadly, there are only 4 flight missions out of the 10 total levels. The last level is unreasonably difficult, even on “easy”: lots of cheap hits and no healing items. Also, you never get to fight Star Wolf, this series’ main antagonists. They show up, but completing the missions always means ignoring them and going for the critical targets.
The game is just a mess, through and through. How hard would it have been to make a decent sequel? Take the same exact mechanics from Star Fox 64, without tweaking, and build more levels? Maybe improve the graphics? I realize that sounds like releasing an expansion pack as a sequel, but my point is that that should be your starting point. No one who enjoys video games can hold the Gamecube controller with SF:Assault running and deny that it feels awful compared to its 8-year-old prequel.
Instead of a true sequel, the world got Star Fox Adventures, a Zelda clone in Star Fox clothing, and then this. Maybe Nintendo keeps rereleasing the N64 classics on modern handhelds because they’ve given up on ever doing better.
SummaryTeam Star Fox is back for more intense combat as they engage a new threat by air and by land. A few years after disaster was barely averted on Dinosaur Planet, Lylat Central Command gets wind of a new threat spreading throughout the solar system. The Star Fox team--composed of classic team members Fox McCloud, Slippy Toad, Peppy Hare, an...