New F-Zero Game Was Never In Development At Criterion Games

F-Zero X Artwork

You may remember a story that had once surfaced, which had revealed that Nintendo had approached Criterion Games to develop a new F-Zero game for Wii U. That was true to an extent, but not in as meaningful a way as it had sounded.

Criterion’s ex-vice president and creative director Alex Ward had confirmed the rumor at the time, but, in a recent interview with Game Informer, he has expanded on what had actually happened.

When he was first shown the Wii U, Ward met a “quite junior” Nintendo of Europe employee who later emailed him about their “pipe dream” idea for Criterion to revive F-Zero. It was never a formal proposal, with Ward redirecting them to someone at EA who could discuss it. After that, he didn’t hear anything else.

“Once and for all, Nintendo didn’t come to Criterion and ask us to make F-Zero. Nothing of the sort at all. Complete false,” Ward explained.

“Somebody quite junior in Nintendo of Europe – who isn’t there anymore – sent me an email, and said ‘Hey, some of us were talking!’ Some of us. What does that mean? That could be [at] the water cooler. ‘We’re talking about games we’d love to see come back, and we thought you lot would be great to do F-Zero. Wouldn’t that be awesome?’

“This guy just sent me an email out of the blue. So, then I take that email and I replied. He must have maybe thought we were an independent company and we weren’t, we were wholly owned by EA. One, we’re owned by EA, two, if you want to talk to EA – and those companies have those discussions all the time – you have to contact this guy, and I gave him the email address. That’s it.”

F-Zero Climax remains to be the most recent game in the futuristic racing series, that, developed by Suzak Inc., was a Japan-only release for the Game Boy Advance in 2004.

Alex Seedhouse
After starting out with a Yellow Game Boy and a copy of Donkey Kong Land, Alex once hid in his room to play The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time one Christmas. Now he shares his thoughts on Nintendo Insider, keeping track of everything to do with Nintendo.
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