F-Zero is an extremely fast and memorable futuristic racing game from the early days of the Super Nintendo. 1990 to be precise. F-Zero – and Super Mario World – were the only two games available for the SNES on the day of its launch in Japan.
F-Zero is pure and simple racing. There are jumps. There are traps. Some of the courses are horribly devious. You have to fuel-up by accessing the pit lane every once in a while. Otherwise: F-Zero is non-stop racing, crashing and bashing.
There are 15 different tracks, each divided into three leagues ordered by increasing difficulty. And each league has four difficulty levels: beginner, standard, expert and master. Artifical Intelligence controls the other craft, and races are often fraught and exciting, with devious tricks pulled by all sides to gain an advantage or win.
F-Zero perfectly shows off the SNES‘s amazing ‘Mode 7’ scaling and rotating technique too, because all the courses scroll underneath you quickly and smoothly due to this graphical ability. And with much less texture distortion than you would see on a PlayStation as well…
The only downside is that F-Zero has no multiplayer mode. That doesn’t affect its status as one of the best racing games of all time though.
F-Zero spawned a number of impressive sequels too. Particularly the one on the Gamecube.