Zero Punctuation: Star Fox Zero

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Star Fox Zero

This week, Zero Punctuation reviews Star Fox Zero.

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That "keeping up appearances" reference came out of nowhere.

Yeah the controls are complete and utter ass and there's no reason for it, Nintendo is just pathetically trying to convince it's audience that the gamepad wasn't a unnecessary gimmick that nobody was asking for. I like this game but the controls really hamper the experience and I totally see where people are coming from with the negative reviews, hard to decide if these controls are better or worse then those of Kid Icarus Uprising.

I'd say I was surprised he didn't preemptively scream about the fanboy backlash to negative reviews, but he knows full well that the fanboys are the vanguard of the lynch mob eagerly stringing this game up from the highest tree they can find.

Yahtzee, you ARE aware that there are multiple paths right? That's WHY the game is 2 hours long.

darkrage6:
Yeah the controls are complete and utter ass and there's no reason for it, Nintendo is just pathetically trying to convince it's audience that the gamepad wasn't a unnecessary gimmick that nobody was asking for. I like this game but the controls really hamper the experience and I totally see where people are coming from with the negative reviews, hard to decide if these controls are better or worse then those of Kid Icarus Uprising.

The thing with Kid Icarus is that competent shooter controls for a 3DS game (Without the use of the touch screen, I should add) would entail either the old N64 control scheme (C-Pad for tank controls, face buttons to strafe and change pitch) or to use Southpaw controls (C-Pad to aim, face buttons to move).

With Star Fox, there really wasn't a need for them to change up the controls. Flight combat games have had solid controls for over a decade, even Star Fox: Assault had the flight controls down. The way I see it, if they really wanted to use the gamepad at all, they could have assigned the right stick to controlling the cockpit view on the gamepad (And when you're done using it, it snaps right back to the center position).

I'd heard the controls were infamously bad, but I didn't know the game was this short (couple of hours).

Metalix Knightmare:
Yahtzee, you ARE aware that there are multiple paths right? That's WHY the game is 2 hours long.

There are multiple paths in Fallout 3 as well, but that hasn't stopped me from sinking over 100 hours into my as-of-yet still-unfinished first playthrough.

Hell, it'd take you longer than two hours to get through one route in Undertale.

...
I am just sitting here thinking. Nintendo please don't turn Zelda into a gimmicky mess like Star Fox!!!! I am really concerned because Nintendo has been using the word 'innovative' to describe it and now alarm bells are ringing out in my head. What the hell is wrong with Nintendo lately?! They are turning out some shit first party titles and when the games aren't shit then Nintendo censors the hell out of them! It is crazy town in that company right now.

I like the use of images of animal heads in the review. Fox vs Wolf was adorable. :3

Sounds like the game's just Star Fox 64 for Kinect.

Jesus Christ, Yahtzee, 2 furry games in a row? You might as well get a fursuit by this point. :3

But seriously, Star Fox Zero can fuck off and Nintendo needs to seriously stop inventing solutions for non-existent problems, on top of needing to stop recycling their IPs. However long it's been after the GameCube and they JUST couldn't leave well enough alone and NOT do a remake of Star Fox 64 with inferior controls. I will never understand the fucking logic behind this. I mean if they had just made it a twinstick shooter (Ratchet & Clank did that better, coincidentally) or stayed with the old scheme, then it would have been less of a mistake. What they REALLY should do though is follow on from the previous games and do a space opera already, preferably something like Mass Effect.

If Nintendo weren't the EA of Japan before, they sure are now.

Steve the Pocket:

Metalix Knightmare:
Yahtzee, you ARE aware that there are multiple paths right? That's WHY the game is 2 hours long.

There are multiple paths in Fallout 3 as well, but that hasn't stopped me from sinking over 100 hours into my as-of-yet still-unfinished first playthrough.

Hell, it'd take you longer than two hours to get through one route in Undertale.

Well, the game is kind of a remake of starfox 64. Which was also really short, despite having multiple paths. Back in the day I 100%ed it like 2 days after getting it if not shorter. I still absolutely love it and I got the remake on the 3ds too. I would have gotten this if it wasn't for how annoying the controls sounded, plus it coming out around the time of doom and I kinda want something new instead of something remastered.

After spending WAY more hours than needed in just the tutorial alone, I can honestly say that I have more nostalgia for Star Fox: Assault than "Wii U presents Star Fox 64 with motion-aiming"... I mean, I'm still having fun with this game (even if my kind of fun includes replaying the same level 2-5 times because the first time is never the best "first time" in and out of context, which does not include replaying levels for branching path purposes), but my glob, it's making me miss more than just the fucking "Aparoids plot twist"! But hey, at least the game accomplish the act of the player picking, at least, one level that they enjoyed in some way, shape, or form...

Other than that, coincidence, this game reminds me of Odama where you have to juggle between giving out commands with the GameCube Mic AND control the battlefield pinball-style... Ironically, both games become "easier" to control when using "co-op"... :p

Johnny Novgorod:
I'd heard the controls were infamously bad, but I didn't know the game was this short (couple of hours).

It does have some replay value from finding hidden items and taking different paths through levels.

Cid Silverwing:
Jesus Christ, Yahtzee, 2 furry games in a row? You might as well get a fursuit by this point. :3

But seriously, Star Fox Zero can fuck off and Nintendo needs to seriously stop inventing solutions for non-existent problems, on top of needing to stop recycling their IPs. However long it's been after the GameCube and they JUST couldn't leave well enough alone and NOT do a remake of Star Fox 64 with inferior controls. I will never understand the fucking logic behind this. I mean if they had just made it a twinstick shooter (Ratchet & Clank did that better, coincidentally) or stayed with the old scheme, then it would have been less of a mistake. What they REALLY should do though is follow on from the previous games and do a space opera already, preferably something like Mass Effect.

If Nintendo weren't the EA of Japan before, they sure are now.

Yup, if Nintendo keeps it up with their bad decisions, they'll go the way of Sega in less then a decade. I'm sure Yahtzee is also going to be critical of Nintendo making the new Zelda a joint Wii U/NX title(BTW, i'm curious as to what he thinks of Twilight Princess).

Blazing Hero:
...
I am just sitting here thinking. Nintendo please don't turn Zelda into a gimmicky mess like Star Fox!!!! I am really concerned because Nintendo has been using the word 'innovative' to describe it and now alarm bells are ringing out in my head. What the hell is wrong with Nintendo lately?! They are turning out some shit first party titles and when the games aren't shit then Nintendo censors the hell out of them! It is crazy town in that company right now.

I just know it's going to be an even worse gimmick-fest then Skyward Sword was. Nintendo is panicking with how poorly the Wii U is doing and i'm not sure the NX is going to help much(going back to cartridges? somehow I don't see that catching on).

Steve the Pocket:

Metalix Knightmare:
Yahtzee, you ARE aware that there are multiple paths right? That's WHY the game is 2 hours long.

There are multiple paths in Fallout 3 as well, but that hasn't stopped me from sinking over 100 hours into my as-of-yet still-unfinished first playthrough.

Hell, it'd take you longer than two hours to get through one route in Undertale.

It's almost as if a CRPG and a rail-shooter are different types of games.

Yeah, about the chameleon eyes thing...I can do that. Just, the one I'm not controlling has it's feed run through my peripheral vision as an addition to the full vision of the eye I'm using. It's pretty cool, but I can't see in 3-D.

...Were we talking about a game or something?

Nice work on the timing and delivery this time around, Yahtzee, that was enjoyable.

I have some nostalgic feelings for the old Nintendo stuff, so I wanted to like a new Starfox game. I had a feeling it would probably be modernized to death by the time it actually came out, though.

Kind of sad that Race the Sun seems to be a better new Starfox game than Starfox is.

I laughed so hard I'm cleaning boogers off of my monitor.

my sides have reached escape velocity and have passed Chandrayaan 1 on the way to the outer planets

really good episode

There are moments where I chuckled, but after having played the game myself and actually found the controls to be enjoyable after a single run through the training stages (and racking up silvers and golds right off the bat), I have to wonder if all the people hating on the gyro controls are either doing it wrong or just hate motion controls on principle. I don't even need the gamepad screen 80-90% of the time, the TV screen aiming reticule seems unintuitive at first but is really just an indicator of shot angle relative to your ship. Sure, the controls aren't perfect, but they're far from terrible.

They could be better and take time to get used to, sure, but I honestly can't go back to 64's control scheme when Zero provides a beautifully elegant control scheme that relies on just the sticks and triggers (and a single button from time to time to transform). So much more control and flexibility, while allowing the gameplay to be faster-paced and more interesting - Star Wolf dogfights are more aggressive and challenging since you no longer need to get directly behind an enemy to shoot at them, the challenge is keeping them in your sights. And the gamepad screen isn't even needed 80% of the time, you could probably tweak the gameplay a bit to not need the gamepad screen at all. The gyro takes a bit of practice, but at least it's way easier than inputs you see in traditional fighting games. You just can't do this sort of movement-independent aiming remotely as elegantly without the gyro aiming.

Also, it's honestly refreshing to have a short, replayable game for once that can be finished in an afternoon. Could've done with a few more stages at least, perhaps, but I was pretty satisfied.

Though, I don't know why I'm bothering with defending this game, chances are I'm gonna get yelled at, because God forbid I have a good time because of controls that other people can't wrap their heads around. Just a quick reminder that a lot of people hated dual-stick FPS controls before Halo came around and non-gamers find "traditional" controllers horrendously unintuitive - just because you might need to take more than five minutes to learn something new doesn't mean it sucks ;)

It sounds like a box-set of Keeping Up Appearances would actually be a welcome addition.
I had an interesting discussion with a guy at the counter in Game the other day, who was trying to convince me that VR was going to be huge very soon. And I said I'm still waiting to be convinced. When he asked why, I just pointed out that motion controls were the Next Big Thing five years ago, but it turns out that literally all the games they are useful for have now been made, and all we're left with is games like this one, desperately trying to find a reason to use them. At least the Wii had some good ideas behind it - so far I haven't seen a single game for the WiiU that couldn't have been done just as easily or better without that stupid tablet.

Cid Silverwing:
Jesus Christ, Yahtzee, 2 furry games in a row? You might as well get a fursuit by this point. :3

But seriously, Star Fox Zero can fuck off and Nintendo needs to seriously stop inventing solutions for non-existent problems, on top of needing to stop recycling their IPs. However long it's been after the GameCube and they JUST couldn't leave well enough alone and NOT do a remake of Star Fox 64 with inferior controls. I will never understand the fucking logic behind this. I mean if they had just made it a twinstick shooter (Ratchet & Clank did that better, coincidentally) or stayed with the old scheme, then it would have been less of a mistake. What they REALLY should do though is follow on from the previous games and do a space opera already, preferably something like Mass Effect.

If Nintendo weren't the EA of Japan before, they sure are now.

No, that title belongs to Capcom, but I understand your frustration. I was originally going play it, but when I heard about the motion controls, I took it back after threes days; and put the rest of the money to my pre-orders towards Doom and TMNT: Mutants in Manhattan.

rembrandtqeinstein:
I laughed so hard I'm cleaning boogers off of my monitor.

my sides have reached escape velocity and have passed Chandrayaan 1 on the way to the outer planets

really good episode

I know, right?! I'm still laughing at hw he used the giant, smiling chimp head.

Candescence:
There are moments where I chuckled, but after having played the game myself and actually found the controls to be enjoyable after a single run through the training stages (and racking up silvers and golds right off the bat), I have to wonder if all the people hating on the gyro controls are either doing it wrong or just hate motion controls on principle. I don't even need the gamepad screen 80-90% of the time, the TV screen aiming reticule seems unintuitive at first but is really just an indicator of shot angle relative to your ship. Sure, the controls aren't perfect, but they're far from terrible.

They could be better and take time to get used to, sure, but I honestly can't go back to 64's control scheme when Zero provides a beautifully elegant control scheme that relies on just the sticks and triggers (and a single button from time to time to transform). So much more control and flexibility, while allowing the gameplay to be faster-paced and more interesting - Star Wolf dogfights are more aggressive and challenging since you no longer need to get directly behind an enemy to shoot at them, the challenge is keeping them in your sights. And the gamepad screen isn't even needed 80% of the time, you could probably tweak the gameplay a bit to not need the gamepad screen at all. The gyro takes a bit of practice, but at least it's way easier than inputs you see in traditional fighting games. You just can't do this sort of movement-independent aiming remotely as elegantly without the gyro aiming.

Also, it's honestly refreshing to have a short, replayable game for once that can be finished in an afternoon. Could've done with a few more stages at least, perhaps, but I was pretty satisfied.

Though, I don't know why I'm bothering with defending this game, chances are I'm gonna get yelled at, because God forbid I have a good time because of controls that other people can't wrap their heads around. Just a quick reminder that a lot of people hated dual-stick FPS controls before Halo came around and non-gamers find "traditional" controllers horrendously unintuitive - just because you might need to take more than five minutes to learn something new doesn't mean it sucks ;)

Or just maybe some people find the controls to be absolute garbage. The gamepad adds absolutely nothing to the experience IMO, it only takes away from it.

I didn't like the N64's control scheme so much either, but the 3DS version had far superior controls.

Look I enjoyed the game too, but that doesn't mean I don't understand why people hate it, I don't blame reviewers like Giant Bomb one bit for not scoring it too highly. Nobody was asking for motion controls in a Star Fox game.

Don't know why people are comparing this to dual-stick controls as that comparison makes zero sense, dual-stick controls have since become standard, but motion controls are still largely seen as an unwanted and forced gimmick, so is it really any surprise that people did not react well to SFZ forcing people to use them against their will.

Nobody is saying the controls are bad because they are "new", they're bad because they were completely unnecessary, it felt like Nintendo just threw in the game for the sake of change, and change is not always inherently good as Linkara said.

Flatfrog:
It sounds like a box-set of Keeping Up Appearances would actually be a welcome addition.
I had an interesting discussion with a guy at the counter in Game the other day, who was trying to convince me that VR was going to be huge very soon. And I said I'm still waiting to be convinced. When he asked why, I just pointed out that motion controls were the Next Big Thing five years ago, but it turns out that literally all the games they are useful for have now been made, and all we're left with is games like this one, desperately trying to find a reason to use them. At least the Wii had some good ideas behind it - so far I haven't seen a single game for the WiiU that couldn't have been done just as easily or better without that stupid tablet.

Agreed on VR, the Oculus Rift is out now and very few people even seem to notice. The Playstation VR might have some success, though Sony probably shot themselves in the foot with all this PS4.5 nonsense, since most people aren't going to be able to afford both they'll have to pick one or the other, which will cause Sony to lose sales. The more likely scenario is after some initial sales successes, the PSVR will be abandoned and forgotten like Kinect was.

You know I almost wonder if Nintendo's obsession with control gimmicks and the like is partly due to the fact that they can't change anything else. As in the stories, character designs and even basic stuff like characters being voiced in Zelda will cause rioting in the streets if changed but sup bar control schemes will just cause a bit of grumbling and can justify a new game even if everything else if unchanged internally in the actual game.

Candescence:
I have to wonder if all the people hating on the gyro controls are either doing it wrong or just hate motion controls on principle.

Is it completely out of the question that the controls are really that bad?

Looks like I'll have to rely on CoD to sate my desire for unrealistically violent spaceship combat...
if the PC version is functional at launch:

The weirdest thing is that some people on Metacritic, Google+ and Facebook actually loves the game. They say it's perfect, innovative and engaging. I'm just sitting going "WHY?! Did you even play it? It's unplayable! No way is nostalgia holding all of it up!" It's baffles me beyond belief!

Blazing Hero:
...
I am just sitting here thinking. Nintendo please don't turn Zelda into a gimmicky mess like Star Fox!!!! I am really concerned because Nintendo has been using the word 'innovative' to describe it and now alarm bells are ringing out in my head. What the hell is wrong with Nintendo lately?! They are turning out some shit first party titles and when the games aren't shit then Nintendo censors the hell out of them! It is crazy town in that company right now.

They probably can't. It's coming out on the NX as well as the WiiU, so it's very likely any WiiU-specific gimmick just wouldn't work.

Usually, when Yahtzee makes a ZP, no matter how loved or praised it is, we all still enjoy it because we know at the end of the day Yahtzee is one miserable bastard and his primary focus for ZPs is humor.

But when it's Nintendo...

...Yeah, that's about what I expected. I still like the game, but I can't say I disagree with the complaints about the controls. Also, I hate the fact that it's another remake/reboot, because it's not like the game industry has been pumping those out with alarming regularity lately.

Cid Silverwing:
If Nintendo weren't the EA of Japan before, they sure are now.

I thought that was Konami's job?

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