Star Fox 2 was the unreleased direct sequel to the original Star Fox. The game was developed by Nintendo and Argonaut Software and was to be published by Nintendo. The game was to use the Super FX chip. The Japanese version of the game was ultimately finished, with the exceptions of a few minor debugging tools still present in the game. It is currently unknown if any complete English versions exist. The game was originally scheduled for release sometime in 1995.
The game was cancelled due to the desire to use the most advanced system possible and later lead to Star Fox 64.
After his defeat in the original Star Fox, the game's antagonist, Andross, returns to the Lylat System and launches an all-out attack against Corneria, using his new fleet of battleships and giant missiles launched from hidden bases to destroy the planet. General Pepper again calls upon the Star Fox team for help. Armed with new custom Arwings, a Mothership, and two new recruits (Miyu, a lynx, and Fay, a dog), the Star Fox team sets out to defend Corneria by destroying Andross's forces before they can inflict critical damage on the planet. Along the way, Star Fox must also combat giant boss enemies, bases on planets throughout the Lylat system, members of the Star Wolf team and finally Andross himself.
The game was extensively covered by the various gaming magazines of the time, with many screenshots provided by Nintendo to generate interest in the sequel. Since the leaking of the unfinished beta code, some individuals have managed to take and compile a large variety of screengrabs. These were taken using an emulator. The lack of media coverage about the compiled beta may be due to a fear of legal action from either NCL or NOA. Early in development, Fara Phoenix from the Star Fox comic (called "Lady" in the alpha) and the Andross look-alike "Saru" (Japanese for "monkey") were in place of Miyu and Fay. Fay replaced a female sheep character from the game's early development.
Though Nintendo has never disclosed the official reason for the game's cancellation, Dylan Cuthbert shares the reason:
|“||StarFox 2 was fully completed. I was the lead programmer and while Giles made Stunt Race FX, myself and the rest of the original Starfox team (ie. Nintendo's artists and designers) expanded Starfox into a full 3D shooting game. The reason for non-release was the then impending Nintendo 64 which of course was intended to be released a lot sooner than it actually was. Miyamoto-san decided he wanted to have a clean break between 3D games on the SNES and 3D games on the new superior 64-bit system. In retrospect, he could have released Star Fox 2 and there would have been over a year and a half before the N64 came out. But hindsight is always 20/20.||”|
According to Dylan Cuthbert, some programming elements done for the game, such as the camera programs, were adapted and reused for the development of Super Mario 64. Shigeru Miyamoto also stated that ideas such as All-Range mode, Multi Player mode, and Star Wolf scenarios came from Star Fox 2. He estimated that 30% of Star Fox 64 came from Star Fox 2. Additionally, several game concepts have been reused in Star Fox Command for the Nintendo DS — among these are the map screen gameplay element and the ability to choose from multiple characters, each with their own fighters and statistics.
ROM Image Edit
A ROM image of the Alpha version of the game is on the Internet which came from a source code archive dating back to the early stages of the game's development. Another ROM, compiled from the latest known source code before the project's cancellation can also be found. This version is nearly complete, contains minor bugs, debug code, and unfinished features. These ROMs can be played via a SNES emulator or by burning it to cartridge with a Super FX chip, it can be played on the real hardware. Additionally, a fan-made patch has surfaced which can be added to the near-final ROM. This fixes most of the bugs, removes the debug code, removes unfinished features, and translates the dialog into English.