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 The Final Word game review

F-Zero Advanced -- Nintendo

This is atleast what we should have gotten on the N64 years ago (I'm still not sure what we actually got instead!). Not quite a re-issue of the SNES release, this game is as good as the original, with more unique track designs and vehicles, and let's not forget the awesome multi-player modes (which is really where this game shines).

Graphically, this game looks almost exactly the same as the SNES version, but that's not a bad thing. The original game has held up very well over the years, and looks fantastic on the GBA's screen. Sound effects are pretty standard, and the music is good as well, although I strongly recommend you play this game with a set of headphones for best effect.

Gameplay is a bit tricky in this release though, I'm still not sure if I'm sold on it. While the game still uses the L and R buttons for left and right air-breaking, they're essentially useless in this game once you master strobe tapping the acceleration button. In fact, I found that by super tapping the acceleration button on turns gives you the best turning results over any other thing you can do in the game (although for some turns I found it necessary to strobe the break button at the same time to drop speed extra fast).

The other thing I wasn't to happy about on the control is the default setting of pushing down both L and R keys simultaneously to engage the turbo boost. It was this one item alone that has made me curse Nintendo's choice of only two front buttons on this controller. Why they didn't go all the way and replicate the SNES button layout I can't even begin to imagine. Especially given the fact that so many SNES classics appear to be slated for GBA release. That problem aside, the game is fun to play, and very challenging. Possibly even more challenging than the original.

And, saving the best for last, let's talk about the multi-player modes. You can play this game with up to four players either everyone playing off of one cart, or everyone playing off of their own carts. In single cart mode, all players are limited to driving the same vehicle, and the choice of tracks is restricted. Basically just enough for you to enjoy the game on a road trip with a friend, or get them hooked enough to go out and buy their own copy of the game.

But, if everyone has a cart, then the real cool features shine through. In multi-cart, multi-player mode, every unlocked car and track is now open to all players for the duration of the link-up. If one of the players has solved lots or all of the game, this gives everyone an equal chance to play with the more advanced vehicles... although, novices may not have the skills to drive them adequately. Also, all record setting race times are stored on everyone's carts, so on the down side, if someone trounces you, you have to keep staring at just how badly they trounced you while you try to beat their times. On the upside, if someone trounces you, you now have their time to practice against.

If you're into fantasy racing games, or just racing in general, you should check out this title. And if you have friends with GBAs, this is a must have for group play.

>>>>> 22.5/25 <<<<< R.I.P.
Graphics 4.5
Sound 4.5
Gameplay/Control 4.0
Longevity/Playability 5.0
Overall 4.5
Total 22.5