Indie developer Aaronmac64 has been working on an F-Zero inspired racing game called Aero GPX. While details are few and far between, the game is described as an “anti-gravity racer with a focus on flight and deep mechanics.”
Aaronmac64 refers to Aero GPX as a “game that is meant to pay homage to the hardcore side of the anti-gravity racing genre that basically no other game has tried to do.” He notes “there have been some, but as a long-time fan of the F-Zero franchise, nothing else that has ever come out really ‘gets’ what makes F-Zero stand apart from everything else. Visceral, precise, fast, and responsive gameplay are the main hallmarks that I have tried to capture in my game so far. Track style and design also play a huge part in this (character and world too, but that will come in the future) and are aspects I wish to capture as well when the time comes.”
“The way I have been describing it to friends is a simple scale. In a scale that goes from zero (arcade oriented gameplay with 'gamey' physics and feel) to ten (simulation oriented gameplay with realistic physics and feel), I want my game to be at negative five. I want the game to be as arcade oriented as possible!”
Aero GPX looks very similar to F-Zero which is an intellectual property owned by Nintendo. The first game was released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1990 and the most recent entry in the franchise was released for the Game Boy Advance in 2004. There has been no word from Nintendo regarding copyright infringement.
Aaronmac64 is careful to point out that Aero GPX does not represent a “one-for-one clone of F-Zero. I wanted this to be my own spin on the gameplay style of F-Zero, capturing what I feel are the most important aspects of it while still setting itself apart. I'm taking this approach because I do intend to flesh this out into a full game that is more my own than anything else.”
Aero GPX is currently in pre-alpha, but Aaronmac64 has released a playable version of the game. “I've been working on my love letter to the F-Zero franchise somewhat silently in the dark for the last year and a half or so and I feel that now is the time to share my progress and see how everyone thinks it plays,” he says. “Game feel is extremely important to me and I want to know if I'm on the right track, so I decided to release a public handling test to get as much feedback as I possibly can.” Aaronmac64 however notes that development is “extremely early. Everything visual is placeholder. All audio is placeholder.”
Participation in the pre-alpha comes with a few caveats. Aero GPX is “only meant to run on Windows systems. Hardware requirements are fairly low and can even run on most devices with just integrated graphics. However, the game is only compatible with Xinput gamepads so far.”
Aaronmac64 is open to feedback of all kinds about Aero GPX. Players can report bugs and make suggestions on his website where they can also download the pre-alpha.
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