Three Ways to Improve an F-Zero Sequel
Circa 2003 and a wide-eyed seven-year-old went to the store to get a new video game for their GameCube. Upon scrolling through all the potential games, they landed on a game with a character they’d seen in another game. It presented a character standing stoically at the top of the box art, clad in a red helmet and blue jacket. The game was F-Zero GX. The seven-year-old immediately grabbed the game and couldn’t wait to get home to play.
Once home, they inserted the game, quickly bypassed the title screen, went straight to the races (Grand Prix), selected the sapphire cup, selected the red helmet guy, and began the first track, Big Blue Drift Highway. The high-paced music captured them, and as soon as the announcer counted down to 1, they tightly gripped their controller, immersing themselves in the race. Just as they were getting into it, the race came to an erupt end as they heard, “Off course! Retire…”
They continued to enjoy F-Zero GX, even though they were terrible. As the years went by, they learned how many people love this game; they were glad to own F-Zero GX. More years ticked away as the once seven-year-old wondered why they hadn’t made a follow-up.
As the years have progressed, it’s clear the F-Zero fandom wants another title, or at the least, a remaster on the Nintendo Switch. Nintendo stated they don’t see what else they can do with F-Zero. There’s plenty of things Nintendo and Sega could do with a sequel, besides updating the graphics. Here are three possibilities to make a better successor.
Up the difficulty
F-Zero has always been a tough series, and GX is no exception. Today’s games offer no challenge, and their extreme difficulties choices don’t compare. A few modern games do present a challenge, such as Dark Souls, Cuphead, and Crash Bandicoot 4. F-Zero’s spiritual successors hold up the mantle by delivering a fun, yet challenging experience and Nintendo and Sega can live up to those games by upping the difficultly a notch. Show them why they’re the king.
Expansive Story Mode
F-Zero GX featured a story featuring Captain Falcon, the poster boy of F-Zero. The story spans levels, and it’s one of the most challenging story modes. The first level at which your only aim is to collect capsules, and that’s a challenge in its normal difficultly.
To make the story more than about a single character, Nintendo can give us an option to choose any racer we want to use. F-Zero GX showed cut scenes when you won first place in the Grand Prix. Nintendo can implement those winning cut scenes into the story mode. It’ll make for a more thrilling experience, and players can enjoy using their favorite racer. Let’s see how fast speed-runners can run this idea.
More Garage Features
F-Zero GX has an expansive garage where you customize your vehicle with words, stickers, numbers, and other trinkets. Buying parts to create your own vehicle is also an option. Nintendo could go one step further with those customization aspects in a sequel, allowing racers the ability to customize their actual vehicle For example, say you want to change the appearance of your character's vehicles by changing the shape and size of any part of the craft. Doing so gives the player the freedom to have their own unique machine, which stands out from the rest. They can then share their vehicle with others to see how they stack up.
To sum up, a sequel can increase the difficulty, taking inspiration from some of the more modern games and kaizo influences that have become so popular. Expand the story mode by giving the players the freedom to select a new character and show us how they react in the story. Games have come a long way in the player’s ability to customize their vehicles since GX released, so Nintendo could add a lot to their offering by building in a more robust and expansive garage. A more expansive garage where players have the option for cosmetic changes to their crafts would make them stand out from the rest.
F-Zero fandom is growing, and many new fans hope to see GX remastered before Nintendo and Sega decide to make a sequel. Perhaps Nintendo would release or announce something for F-Zero GX's twentieth anniversary. Here’s hoping.
See you next time, thanks for playing.