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Star Fox in the Press

Star Fox received considerable media attention thanks to its combination of excellent marketing and unique, fun gameplay. There's no way I could possibly chronicle every magazine and newspaper article the game got coverage in, but collectors out there might be interested in some of these issues:

Nintendo Power
Issues Description
42 Pak Watch officially announced the Super FX.
44 The subscriber-only bonus issue previewed Star Fox, the Super FX itself, and CD-ROM gaming. Screenshots in the article are from the prototype SF! Another bonus included was a model arwing printed on stiff paper.
45 Pak Watch previewed SF.
46 NP gave SF an 8-page preview.
47 NP gave SF its cover issue and a Nester's Adventures comic strip. There's an announcement for the Super Star Fox Weekend competition in addition to the 12-page review. SF received a 4.0 for graphics and sound, 4.2 for play control, 4.2 for challenge, and 4.1 for theme and fun.
48 NP's Classified Information revealed how to get twin blasters and find the black hole. Power Player's Challenge featured a high-score challenge, with Game Play Counselor Derek McClinton's score to beat. (66500, for anyone interested)
49 Classified Information revealed how to get to SF's hidden stage. An article comparing Sega to Nintendo briefly spoke of SF and the Super FX.
51 Stage maps were published (quasi-overhead view). Scores under Derek McClinton's were published. (More scores were later published, and another challenge for Super Star Fox Weekend scores came still later, as did letters reacting to StarFox and the Super FX.)
45, 46, 48 NP's back cover advertises the Super FX. (47 merely has a screenshot from SF on back.)
45-55 Featured Benimaru Itoh's wonderful comic series. It's my all-time favorite NP comic series, just above Howard and Nester/Nester's Adventures and the classic Mario/Zelda comics. NP has yet to make a comic series on par with it, in my opinion.
69 NP wrote about the Super FX2 and the next generation of FX games, including StarFox 2.
98 NP gave StarFox 64 a cover issue. SF64 received a 4.8 for graphics and sound, 4.0 for play control, 4.5 for challenge, and 4.0 for theme and fun. Personally, although I enjoy some music in SF64, Hajime Hirasawa's music in SF blows it away, and I'm equally happy with the graphics in SF, so if SF64 gets a 4.8 in graphics and sound, I'd give SF at least a 4.9. The issue also features cards in the back profiling the vehicles and characters.

Nintendo's Star Fox 64 Player's Guide
Issues Description
1997 The Player's Guide basically acted as another instruction manual for SF64. The best and worst, however, was Shigeru Miyamoto's interview. Granted it was VERY cool to see other titles for SF, but his comments about SF and the series in general more or less shattered my confidence in him. On page 117 he states "I'm not so attached to the Star Fox theme." Can there be anything more despicable than a game designer pouring his heart into a game, only to have him turn his back on it? Maybe SF just isn't his favorite style of game, but imagine the kind of reaction he'd get if he said the same thing about Mario or Legend of Zelda games? I guess they just expect StarFox fans to just bear it... Likewise his comments about triangles in SF, to me, showcases a lack of imagination on his part. I've got news for him--I see buildings and ships in SF, just as he originally did. If all he sees are flat shapes now, something's very wrong.

Game Pro
Issues Description
August, 1993 GamePro published a special section depicting strategies for SF, including how to get to Out of This Dimension.

GamePro Video Game Secret Tips Tactics Passwords
Volume Description
Volume 2 StarFox was previewed and the basic tricks were given (black hole, Out of This Dimension, and "Flip Objects"-style trick). They incorrectly stated you need at least 15000 points to perform the latter trick. You only need 10000.

Diehard Gamefan
Volume Description
Volume 2, issue 9 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) StarFox 2 got mention in the "Other Stuff" section on page 152. Stunt Race FX and Vortex also got coverage in the issue, and several hardware rumors surfaced. In hindsight it looks like several of them really referred to Virtual Boy, but one was another Super NES CD drive with a MIPS R3000A processor and a third-generation Super FX chip. (Hmm...if you really wanted to go that route, keep the MIPS chip and build another chip with dedicated graphics hardware. Two different, generic RISC chips smashed together on such a system would just be chaotic, IMHO.)
Volume 2, issue 10 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) StarFox 2 made #4 in the readers' most wanted list, just behind Mortal Kombat 2, Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo, and the Jaguar Doom. The Saturn Virtua Fighters made #7, Donkey Kong Country made #8, and Final Fantasy 3 made #9. So it seems I wasn't the only game player anticipating a new SF game!
Volume 2, issue 11 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) A Vortex review made only passing reference to SF. The reviewer wasn't a big SF fan, but seemed like even less of a fan of Vortex. Good points about the game were made. The issue also has 2 screenshots of "Super Moto Cross FX" (aka Dirt Trax FX).
Volume 3, issue 1 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) StarFox 2 was mentioned in the "Other Stuff" section on page 142 of the January, 1995 issue. "Star Fox X," the N64 SF game (presumably SF64), was also said to be close to cancellation due to problems with the programming team. I really don't know if this has any basis in truth.
Volume 3, issue 2 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) StarFox 2 once again received mention in "Other Stuff" along with other Super NES and "Ultra 64" games.
Volume 3, issue 3 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) StarFox 2 was shown in the winter CES preview. A handful of low-quality screenshots were published on page 107. Some are similar to others on this site, but one shows a polygon cityscape and the new title screen depicts the lynx (seen in another pic on this site) and what appears to be a dog with a red bow instead of a sheep. Could this be the oft-rumored Fay character? Could these both be inspirations for Katt Monroe and Bill Grey in SF64? The writers weren't too thrilled with SF2 or FX Fighter (then called "Fighting Polygons").

Super NES Buyer's Guide
Issues Description
Vol. 3, #1 (February, 1993) The cover banner states "Exclusive pix of Nintendo's first Super FX chip game!!" There are 2 pictures of the prototype SF in action, both showing white crosshairs outside the arwing. There's a brief column talking about it as well as a letter published in the Feedback section. This magazine is basically an EGM magazine (same publishing firm and staff), but at least this issue feels alot more objective.

Electronic Gaming Monthly
Issues Description
44 EGM featured SF on its cover. The "review" was 1 page long, featured horrid screenshots, and showcased EGM's usual lack-luster writing. Page 102 says it all: "The FX chip adds real voices, excellent sound and unbelievable music to your gaming experience!" (Looking back, I'm amazed I bought as many issues of EGM as I did. They were always a total joke, especially with the old editor, Ed Semrad, who dared to make out Silpheed as better than SF.)
45 Editor Ed Semrad made his cute little editorial claiming Silpheed was better than StarFox. If Mr. Semrad honestly thinks a 68000-based Sega CD system can crank out gajillions of polygons and fractal geometry in real-time like that....well, the issue speaks for itself, as usual. They grossly oversimplified the needs of a 3D graphics system and what kind of action might be really going on behind the scenes. The Super FX article on page 52 is suprisingly well-done, if simplified, but the comments on page 54 about the 3DO being "so powerful that it can literally do anything, and it does" alone should have tipped off readers even back then that something wasn't right. (I personally never saw anything spectacular about the 3DO machine or games years ago.) A later EGM issue pulled a 180 degree turnaround, saying SF was better than Silpheed.
55 (thanks to Sgt. Wolf) The Quartermann section on page 56 mentions the sequel to SF being announced, but like everything else in the column it was peppered with rumors. 32 megabits, eh? Goes against what Nintendo itself said... On page 194 there's a 2-page review of Cybermorph, despite the mediocre grades it was given earlier in the issue. It complains about SF being "limited in where you can go. Cybermorph also has great light-shading effects to really wow your friends. StarFox just can't compare." Hey, guys, ever stop to wonder why you thought Cybermorph was so boring? Could it maybe be in part due to its aimless all-range gameplay? And as for wowwing my friends, I can't wow friends that are asleep. This game got extensive magazine advertising and attention from the gaming community (SF also got extensive publicity), yet SF blew people's minds and this game is long forgotten. Hmm....