Original Star Fox developers celebrate its 30th anniversary
The years barrel roll on.
The original developers of Star Fox have been celebrating the game's 30th anniversary on Twitter.
Star Fox was released for the Super Famicom in Japan on 21st February 1993, followed by releases in North America and Europe later in the year. The game was lauded for its 3D polygonal graphics using the Super FX chip, thought impossible on Nintendo's 16-bit machine.
Takaya Imamura, the former Nintendo artist who designed lead character Fox McCloud among others, marked the occasion with a new illustration.
"Thank you for supporting me for over 30 years, Fox! And everyone involved in the games you've appeared in! Thank you!" he said.
フォックス！３０年以上僕を支えてくれてありがとう！そして君の登場するゲームに関わったすべての人！ありがとう！— 今村孝矢 / Takaya Imamura (@ima_1966) February 20, 2023
Thank you for supporting me for over 30 years, Fox! And everyone involved in the games you've appeared in! Thank you!
#スターフォックス #starfox pic.twitter.com/NFgeCZb4T5
Dylan Cuthbert also shared a celebration: a deliciously fruity cake featuring the Star Fox crew. Cuthbert was the original programmer on Star Fox - and lead developer across four Star Fox titles - and is now CEO of Q-Games.
We had a big cake today at the office to celebrate 30 years since the launch of the original Star Fox #StarFox pic.twitter.com/bAI582u2A2— Dylan➡️➡️GDC (@dylancuthbert) February 21, 2023
Cuthbert reflected on development of the game in an interview with Time Extension.
On the inclusion of the game's mascot-style characters he said: "It made it very Nintendo, didn't it? Whereas, until then, it had been very British in a way. Like it was a bit colder, harsher, and dystopic. And all those things we kind of drew from [classic] British sci-fi. And Nintendo was saying, 'Nope, we're not having any of that, we're going to make it a bit cuter and fluffier and cartoon-like,' and they just kind of went to town on it. I [also] heard that Miyamoto liked Thunderbirds a lot."
He also discussed what he'd like to see next from the series. "There's a lot of ways to approach it, but like, visually, I think it should move more towards the sort of miniature model side of things, where it looks like, you know, the Thunderbirds in a sense. I think visually those are the real roots of the series because that's what Miyamoto envisioned at the start," he said.
"Then on the gameplay side, obviously, it should be, you know, cinematic and epic in a way, with very strong set pieces and that sort of adventure feeling as you go through. I would also probably play a lot more with the characters, you know. Just really expand their interactions and that side of things."
Star Fox was revolutionary for its time and was followed up by Star Fox 64 (or Lylat Wars, depending on where you're from) which pioneered the use of rumble with the separate Rumble Pak.
Since then, the series hasn't quite lived up to its heyday. Star Fox Zero was the last new game in the series, released for the Wii U and criticised for its complex controls.
Switch owners can experience the best of the series using Nintendo Online. That includes the original SNES Star Fox, the N64's Lylat Wars, and even the previously unreleased SNES sequel Star Fox 2.
Previously unseen plans for Star Fox Armada, a Wii U game pitched by Retro Studios that was never further developed, were recently released.
There are no known plans for a new game, though. Just remember Fox McCloud is far more than just a Smash Bros main.
Fox McCloud and his crew boarded their Arwings 30 years ago today when Star Fox launched in Japan for the Super Famicom. pic.twitter.com/79GSGfFYWw— Nintendo UK (@NintendoUK) February 21, 2023