Quotable ‘Star Fox 64’ barrel-rolls to greatness

Esteban Diaz | Editorial Cartoonist

Editor’s Note: This is an article in our ongoing “Great Video Game” series in which readers and staffers alike are asked to submit a few hundred words about a video game that they consider to be great. This week’s pick is “Star Fox 64.”

Esteban Diaz | Editorial Cartoonist

By Greg DeVries
Sports Writer

“Do a barrel roll!”

If this line doesn’t bring back memories of saving the Lylat System, then I’m afraid you missed out as a child.

“Star Fox 64” is ranked 45th on the Guinness World Records Gamer’s Edition’s list of greatest games ever. Is it the gameplay that makes “Star Fox 64” great? It is certainly a lot of fun to breeze through the different planets and kill as many enemy ships as you can.

Think you’ve got what it takes to set the world record for hits? Don’t get too cocky, Star Fox! The best recorded run is 2,801 hits.

My personal record is 1,550 hits, and I used bombs wisely. The satisfaction of defeating Andross and saving the solar system never gets old. After all, Andross’ enemy is my enemy. I smile every time Peppy tells me I’m becoming a better pilot.

There are few games like “Star Fox 64.” It could be labeled a shooter, but this genre does not do the game justice. “Halo” is a shooter, but “Star Fox 64” is better describes as a “shoot ’em up.” Now we’re getting somewhere, but don’t party just yet.

The goal of the game is to beat your previous high score, but there is a storyline. Fox McCloud has to defeat Andross and avenge his father’s apparent death.

Arcade style games seem to be gone (or at least adapted to the Apple App Store). As the makers of “Call of Duty” re-release what is essentially the same game biannually, it really makes you wonder if we will ever return to the golden age of simple games with a high replay value. All you had to do was never give up and trust your instincts.

Opinions of Fox’s team vary. Sure, Slippy is on the annoying side. It can seem like every level she says, “Fox, get this guy off me!” On the other hand, Peppy and Falco can be fun to fly alongside despite the fact that they never actually shoot anything.

If they weren’t there, how else would I know to use the boost to get through?

But I digress. Is it the gameplay that makes “Star Fox 64” great? Partially, but the game was also known for its quotes. How many other games have this quality? Great comedies, such as “The Hangover,” are like this, but quoting a video game is rare.

In an attempt to enter the video game time machine, Nintendo released “Star Fox 64 3D” for the Nintendo 3DS in 2011.

Hopefully the children of today can have the same awesome experience I did. When my kid asks what “Star Fox 64” was like, I’ll look at him with joy and say, “you’re becoming more like your father.”

Does reading this article make you think of a video game that you consider great? Please send us an email at lariat@baylor.edu with a suggestion for a “Great Video Game.” Please include a few hundred words on why you consider your game to be great and you just might find your opinion here.