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Thread: Star Fox 2 (SNES) "finished" and translated into english

  1. Star Fox 2 (SNES) "finished" and translated into english

    I mentioned this in the Argonaut thread, but really, it's probably worth giving its own thread to. I'll try to give my post some substance.

    StarFox 2 was originally planned for release on the Super NES in late 1994 (but later pushed back to 95). It promised to push the series in a bold new direction, implimenting new kinds of gameplay, open-ended environments, and non-linear level structure, all thanks to the improved power of the "Super FX2". The game was hotly anticipated by fans, but quietly cancelled at the 11th hour. Many fans didn't even know to be furious until it was too late; the game simply disappeared, about 2 months before its release.

    The reasons for the cancellation are largely unknown. The company line is that development was shifted over to N64 and that many of the ideas used in SF2 were incorporated into SF64. However, it has become apparent that this is complete and utter bullshit.

    The late cancellation and apparent near-complete of status of the game made Star Fox 2 a holy grail of protypes. Fueling the fire is the fact that a StarFox 2 prototype was actually stolen from a tradeshow in 1994 (I don't recall if it was CES or E3). A non playable trade-show demo of the game surfaced, but served as little more than a teaser. In 1999, a playable prototype of Star Fox 2 was unearthed, but it was really very early; levels could be played and explored but not beaten, and there was no real "game" to speak of. All the manufactured prototypes were trade-show demos, not anything approaching completion.

    Then, a year or so ago, someone managed to smuggle out the Star Fox 2 source code as it was before the project was dropped. This was the final build of the game before it was canned, and thus the most complete versio of the game that has ever existed. The source was compiled into a ROM, and then released to the internet (the source itself was never made public).

    This was a final beta test, but it was clearly not a gold build. The screen still had debug info all over it (sprite counters, framerate, etc), your base couldn't take damage (making the game rather pointless), lots of debug modes were pesent, and a fair bit of bugginess. The game was very close to finalizable, but had not been put in finalizable condition. Also, the entire thing was in japanese, which made it rather difficult to understand given how alien it was to the first one. Alas, we were still left with what "could have been".

    Well now (well, about a week ago) Aeon Genesis Translation Project (probably the most prolific transhacking group out there) have righted this wrong. Gideon Zhi and company have not only translated the game completely into english, but have fixed the bugs in the game, disabled the debug displays and modes, and even made a new title screen to create a game which could easily pass for a commercially releasable project with only a few (mostly irrelevant) things missing, like the ability to erase a game save, sound test, and stereo/mono switch (basically your standard options screen).

    So nearly 10 years after we were supposed to get the game it's here in finished form. And... It's a really surprising game. It has almost nothing in common with SF or SF64. It's built around a map screen that almost goes down like a real-time strategy game, forcing the player to intercept enemy fighters and take out enemy offensive installations to protect the Coroneria. These missions can be either freespace battles or ground missions in which your ship can transform into a walking tank (these missions also involve indoor corridor parts). These missions take place in real-time, which enemy forces encroach on the corneria, so time is of the essence.

    The "Normal" game is rather quick, simple, and unchallenging, but it's surprising how much work went into the "Hard" and "Expert" courses. The different difficulty setting actually have totally different levels. The higher setting not only have more levels, but the levels are much larger and provide more complicated challenges. I must say I'm really enjoying the game now.

    This game is definately the radical departure that was promised back in 1994. Had this game been released when it was supposed to, it surely would have blown my mind. As it stands, it's still a very fun, addictive little game, though the 3D action genre has evolved so much in the last 10 years. The game was ahead of its time, but not 10 years ahead. Still, it's very playable, particularly on Expert, and well worth checking out.


    Last edited by Frogacuda; 28 Oct 2004 at 02:36 PM.

  2. This is amazing news. I need to check this out when I'm done with classes and work for the day. I've never played any of the roms released pertaining to it yet, but I think now I really have no choice. I can't recall why, but I've been thinking about the first a lot lately, and playing through the first again then moving on to this one should prove to be a nice distraction once I'm caught up on assignments.

  3. It sounds like the "free range mode" stages in Star Fox 64.

    Wouldn't it be nice if this instead were an unlockable in Star Fox Armada? If only...

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Grave
    I never played any of the roms released pertaining to it yet, but I think now I really have no choice.
    They were all very disappointing in one way or another. One was unplayable, another was very early, and the last was "so close, but so far" due to the non functional damage (making it impossible to really lose) and lack of english. This one actually provides a fun experience.

    Oh yeah, and btw, this isn't going to work in ZSNES. You need Snes9x 1.43 WIP (it also works in 1.41-1, but not in 1.42 for some reason).

  5. What about the SNES emu for Xbox?

  6. #6
    Sounds great, I'll check it out when I get home.

    Nice write-up, Frog.

    PS - is the Coroneria planet Corneria, maybe?
    My Backloggery

  7. Quote Originally Posted by Korly
    What about the SNES emu for Xbox?
    No, xSNES9x is built off of version 1.42 so it won't work, but hopefully the next time it's updated it will.

  8. #8
    That game was already done better in 1994ish. It's called Cybermorph, and it was on hardware that could actually handle it.

  9. Hardware that could BARELY handle it.

  10. I so want to be able to play this on a real SNES. Playing on a PC is OK but just not the same.

    I was a huge fan of Star Fox so getting to see part 2 in such a completed state is very cool. Big thanks to everyone who put work into getting the game to this state, and great post Frogacuda.
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Holliday View Post
    K3V is awesome!


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