Play Stunt Race FX Online
Release year: 1994 | Players: 1 player – multiplayer | Developed by Nintendo EAD / Argonaut
Stunt Race FX (AKA Wild Trax, ワイルドトラックス Wairudo Torakkusu in Japan) takes advantage of the Super Nintendo’s Super FX coprocessor. Yes, this is one of the few fully 3D titles for the 16-bit console. Have you played Star Fox? Well, that’s another title that benefits from the 3D chip.
While Star Fox is remembered fondly by retro-gaming enthusiasts around the world, this colorful racer remains fairly unknown. Those who remember playing it don’t really have fond memories either.
As a racing title, Argonaut Games’ offering has four basic modes: speed, stunt, battle, and test. Speed, or Speed Trax, provides the usual championship gameplay—with levels divided into several courses.
Stunt mode is somewhat more exciting as you’ll have to reach checkpoints within limited time. Obstacles are laid out throughout each track, but there are also stars that you’ll have to collect.
Speed seems to be made specifically for those who don’t want to bother with AI-controlled opponents. Here, you’re given the fastest vehicle in the game (a motorbike) and your goal to beat the record time.
Battle is a promising mode that’s ruined by the HUD, which should have been given more thought by the game’s developers. Simply put, due to the extremely limited view area, you’ll barely understand what’s happening.
Having fairly normal modes isn’t enough for Stunt Race FX to be considered disappointing. It’s the frame rate issue that really ruined its chances of provide good fun.
Given that this is an arcade racer, there’s no good reason for the vehicles to respond poorly to sudden shifts in direction. Some have resorted to modding their cartridges, overclocking the coprocessor to improve the frame rate.
Stunt Race FX can be perceived as a technological marvel as it’s proof that the SNES can handle 3D. However, it’s also proof that the console’s life was coming to an end, and proper 3D would be the next big thing.