F-Zero 99 comes with four ships for players to mess around and race in. This might not seem like much, but each ship is radically different from the other, and which one you pick can drastically alter your experience in-game. These are based off of the original 4 ships from F-Zero on the SNES, and they largely share the same traits.
Whilst we are well and truly in the camp that all the ships in F-Zero 99 are pretty well balanced, some ships are better than others simply by virtue of being easier to grasp. Heck, some have gameplay styles that are easier to master. In this list, we are going to rank each ship so you can kickstart your F-Zero 99 journey.
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Fire Stingray is the most traditional when it comes to racing. Its stats are pretty excellent with the highest top speed and grip for days. This thing can take corners at full speed that other ships can only dream of navigating, which makes it a joy to race in…in theory.
In reality, Fire Stingray has a lot of drawbacks that make it far harder to play than any other ship on this list. Firstly, it has terrible acceleration. So bad in fact, if you ever slow down, you are going to struggle to get back up to speed without boosting. This then leads to our other issue, and that is the awful recovery and durability of Fire Stingray. You can very easily boost yourself to the point of destruction as you can’t easily heal back that damage.
Fire Stingray has a very high skill floor and an even higher skill ceiling. We love to mess around with it, but we would recommend holding off on using it until you are more experienced with the game.
Golden Fox is the complete opposite of Fire Stingray. Instead of being blisteringly fast and tight on the corners, Golden Fox is the slowest ship going and is very slippery to control. You are going to have to take corners very carefully when using Golden Fox, but once you’ve mastered that, you are good to go.
That is because Golden Fox has some excellent upsides. Firstly, its acceleration is the best in the game. This lets it go from zero to max staggeringly quickly, making it very beginner-friendly. You can easily amend your mistakes.
Not only that, but Golden Fox loves to Boost. Golden Fox has the highest recovery in the game and can go from near-death to full health in a single recovery lane. This makes up for its low top speed as you can aggressively boost around courses, giving it a tantalising risk vs. reward style of play. This does make it more difficult to use, however, as you are often riding that thin line between life and death.
Blue Falcon is the perfect balance. The ship that everyone can and probably should start with. Its strength comes from its ability to do everything and do it pretty darn well. It’s not the fastest or toughest, and it certainly can’t out-boost Golden Fox, but it has no weaknesses either.
Blue Falcon is a jack of all trades, and that makes it a joy to use. It is perfectly suited to every track and every situation. If you want the most balanced F-Zero 99 experience, then Blue Falcon is the ship for you. Every other ship takes its core and messes with its internal balance to prioritise other aspects of the game.
As much as we love Blue Falcon, Wild Goose is our go-to favourite ship and one that we suspect most people will gravitate towards when they start to understand F-Zero 99 more. Wild Goose is the most sturdy of all the ships, and it sacrifices very little in that pursuit making it very good on the race track.
Wild Goose has the highest HP and takes less knockback when being hit by other racers. Not not only that, but it has the second-highest top speed and grip, and decent acceleration. Not only can Wild Goose scrap in the pack, but it’s a mighty fine racer to boot.
Where Wild Goose fails is in its ability to boost – as in it struggles due to low recovery. Wild Goose can safely boost once per lap, and every boost beyond that seriously hampers its ability to stay alive as it will never be able to recover. This makes boosting to fix a mistake almost impossible in the long run, which gives Wild Goose a deceptively high learning curve.
Despite that one flaw, Wild Goose’s strengths far outweigh the negatives. A beast in every game mode, and the ship that stands head and shoulders above the rest.
That’s all we have on F-Zero 99. Be sure to check out our other lists and guides for more F-Zero content.