Super Nintendo launch game F-Zero was an impressive feat of development at the time. With its use of Mode 7 visuals it made for a compelling single-player futuristic racing experience that is enjoyable to play even today. It's a shame that the franchise appears to be pretty much dormant now with the last entries being F-Zero GX on the GameCube in 2003 and underwhelming Japanese-only F-Zero Climax on the GBA in 2004.
When Mario Kart 8 DLC was announced in late 2014, one of the things we were most excited about at Nintendo Life Towers was the prospect of whizzing around a anti-gravity enabled rendition of the classic Big Blue track from the F-Zero series... using the Blue Falcon kart, of course!
As Alanis Morissette might have noted, it is ironic that the roots of Mario Kart sprang from F-Zero on the SNES. In Retro Gamer magazine issue 167 (which is out this week) there is a lovely feature on the development on Super Mario Kart where we learn that the classic game actually started life as a F-Zero multiplayer prototype.
Here's what one of the members of the original development team had to say:
Our original plan (for Mario Kart) didn't include Mario or karts. The game's roots lie in one of the launch titles for the SNES: F-Zero. The game was designed for single-player gameplay because of our focus on getting across the sense of speed and the size of the courses. It was a prototype for a multiplayer version of F-Zero that ended up being the starting point for Super Mario Kart, and from there we went through a period of trial and error to find what worked.
There are lots more fascinating insights into the development of Super Mario Kart in this month's issue of Retro Gamer. Be sure to pick it up on Thursday this week in all good UK newsagents for £4.99. If you are a Retro Gamer subscriber, be sure to let us know what you thought of this illuminating feature with a comment below.