This game presented lots of great new ideas and concepts, though it just didn't feel like it was 'there' yet.
The Bad: That "X factor" just doesn't seem to be present; Story feels too random and hasn't been improved in two generation; Even with nine endings the game feels too short; Character grunts are just horrible
Star Fox is a series that was at it's prime at it's roots, but then never seemed to have gotten back to what made it golden on the SNES and N64. Star Fox Adventures was a great adventure game, but it was disappointing and didn't feel like a true sequel to the great Star Fox 64. Star Fox Assault tried to go back to the greatness of Star Fox 64, but it never seemed to be there. The thing that made Star Fox 64 so great was that it was simple but extremely fun on-rail shooter. You would think making a sequel for it would be a very simple task. However, the series has been taking turns and trying out new stuff. Maybe it's a good thing to not keep the series same and old, but neither Adventures or Assault just seemed to be there. Now on the DS, Command also tries to add in some new elements. Again, the ideas are great, but it just seems to fall short yet again.
Planet Venom, the planet where Fox took out Andross, is a barren wasteland, and it's poisonous atmosphere doesn't it make it anymore nice. The result is that nobody wants to patrol the planet. You would think no life can be supported on it, and nobody wants to patrol such an awful planet. However, there was an advancing civilization being formed beneath the oceans of Venom. The Anglar forces were forming, and because nobody ever took care of them, they left their waters and are now setting out to conquer the Lylat System. This storyline is very simple. In fact, it's not any better then Star Fox 64's. It also seems very random. An army of fish just suddenly happen to pop up and want to destroy the galaxy? It's not interesting, and is way too random. As for the missions, they also seem randomly generated. It feels as if they were just made to not make the game 3 missions short. However, it only takes 7 missions to beat the game. Though there are 9 different endings with different paths to take once you beat the game for the first time. Yet, it won't take long at all to beat all nine. Star Fox 64 was a very short game as well, though come on, that was two generations ago. As time progresses, the length of games should progress. However, in this series, none of the games get any longer. It was okay with Star Fox 64, but it's now starting to become a flaw. The same goes with the storylines. They just feel too random and aren't being improved either. Another thing that is becoming more and more of a flaw as the series progresses.
The thing that made Star Fox 64 so successful was it's simple but fun gameplay. It was a game that you could play through over and over again, but it would never seem to get old. Though none of it's successors seemed to be able to have that. Neither does this game. This game presents a new tactical element to the series (hence the name Command). Before you begin fighting, you go on a map screen. Using the stylus, you draw a flight path for your Arwings. The goal is to take out the enemies before your fuel gauge runs out. You also have to protect the Great Fox by not letting any enemies get to it. The Great Fox can help you out by shooting missiles, but first, you have to collect the missiles with your Arwings on the map screens. Later on in the game, enemy bases will also shoot missiles at the Great Fox. You're going to have to intercept them head on. You also have to take out enemy bases and motherships. It all seems simple enough. Though there are a few annoying things. First of all, everybody shares the same fuel tank. It's needlessly aggravating. Why can't everybody just have their own fuel tank? Also, you have a limited amount of turns. This isn't too bad though. Overall, this new turn-based strategy element seems like a great idea. It wouldn't be a bad thing if they tried it again. In this game, it was a pretty good thing. It gave out a breath of fresh air, and the air didn't stink.
Now for the fighting. To engage in a battle, you just have to direct your Arwings into the flight paths of the enemies. Almost all of the enemies travel in groups. When you engage them in a fight, you simply have to shoot them all down and take their cores before your fuel runs out. All fighting is in all-range mode. The only times you do on-rail fighting is when you're trying to take down an enemy missile and when you're destroying a mothership. All-range mode is fun, but it sure seems empty without on-rail shooting. that's one of the factors that made Star Fox 64 fun, and the best parts of Assault was the on-rail missions. Now, another new thing this game presents is the touch screen controls. You use your stylus to control your Arwing. You use the touch screen to change direction, to do barrel rolls, and to shoot bombs. To shoot normal lasers, you just press any button. The controls are simple to learn, but do take a bit of time to get used to. It would've been nice if they included the classic controls as an option. Though these controls are pretty good. Overall, the fighting is pretty good, but it is disappointing that there is almost no on-rail shooting.
This game looks very good for a portable game. The visuals seem very clear for the most part. That's one thing that's good about the series. It's always been on top graphically. The animations is solid, the artwork is great, and it has a satisfying polygon count. The visuals have been done right.
The sound of this game is half great, half ****. The good half is the music. This game has the classic Star Fox tunes, and are nice to listen to. Though the bad half are the character grunts. Since this is a portable game, you can't expect them to include full voice acting. Instead, they tried to include character grunts (like in recent Legend of Zelda games). However, the grunts are just horrible robotic sound effects that sound worse then a goat puking out a bobcat while continuously farting after eating a bowl of beans. In fact, the grunts will just make you want to puke. They are abysmal. Give me back Slippy's voice, cause his voice is even better then this garbage! (and that's saying something if you haven't played the previous Star Fox games)
This game includes a multiplayer mode and is WiFi compatible. They are very simple. You just find somebody to fight and just try to blast each other. Unfortunately, none of the Star Fox games have had deep multiplayer modes. That's something that could be fixed, cause it would add a little bit more value to the games. Though it's still nice that this game is WiFi compatible. It's always fun facing your friends and rivals across the globe.
Overall, this game is pretty fun. It presents a new tactical element and has new touch screen controls. Though it also brings some disappointments. The story isn't any better, it isn't much longer then previous games, and there is almost no on-rail fighting. This game feels like it's steering the series in the right direction, but just doesn't seem to be hitting the acceleration pedal. This game just seems to be missing that unexplainable "X factor" that made Star Fox 64 such a great game. That's a shame, since Star Fox 64 is a game that you would think it would be easy to make a sequel for. Though none of the three following games seem to feel to be a true sequel to it. This game is pretty good and is worth playing. Though still, the wait continues for a true sequel to Star Fox 64.