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F-Zero AX

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Title Screen

F-Zero AX

Developer: Amusement Vision
Publisher: Sega
Platform: Arcade (Triforce)
Released in JP: June 2003[1]
Released in US: July 2003[1]
Released in EU: 2003

AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
EnemyIcon.png This game has unused enemies.
ObjectIcon.png This game has unused objects.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
ModelsIcon.png This game has unused models.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.

F-Zero AX is the arcade counterpart to the GameCube game F-Zero GX.

AX/GX Differences

The venue background for Green Plant is a screenshot of the course Spiral rather than Intersection since only the former is intended to be playable.

F-Zero AX F-Zero GX
F-ZeroAX-bmp-stg-for.png F-ZeroGX-bmp-stg-for.png



F-Zero AX has leftover information about scrapped and altered venues that do not appear in GX.



The files bmp_stg_aur.tpl in the directories ./bmp/stg/ and /bmp_e/stg/ contain an unused Course Select venue graphic. Since this graphic resides with all the other venue graphics we can deduce that this is the placeholder for a scrapped venue. Every venue in the game uses a 3 character shorthand. The name aur is the shortened development name of this unused venue. Unfortunately, the image leaves no further insight into what aur stands for.

Venue Names


Inside the archive ./bmp/bmp_view.tpl exists a graphic with the venue names. Many of the names are still placeholder at the time of AX's release.

Notably, names for the venues Fire Field and Cosmo Terminal are simply Fire and Elevator, respectively. This makes sense given those venues background model archives bg_fir and bg_ele. The implications here for Fire is that Fire Field could have perhaps been another fire-theme venue. This could potentially explain the departure from Fire Field seen in previous entries given how the Fire Field in GX takes place in a mine or crater rather than a lava-covered planet.

The other big insight is Phantom Road previously being named Rainbow Road. This makes a lot of sense given Rainbow Road [Psychedelic Experience] was a course in the previous 3D title F-Zero X.

AX Courses

Stage 00 | Sand Ocean [Screw Drive]

The Screw Drive track may have once hosted in Sand Ocean as opposed to Aeropolis seen in the official release. Stage 00 is also present in GX, albeit without any proper texturing. To the contrary, the AX version is quite complete, missing only minor graphical elements such as lane dividers, Sand Ocean-appropriate track textures, Sand Ocean-styled guardrails, the newer heal pit, and background audio.

GX Courses

Mute City [Twist Road]

This is the final prerelease version of Mute City [Twist Road]. The only aspect that is different is the track texture. The GX version uses the same track texture as Sonic Oval which, given how long this older texture has been used throughout various promotions, it was a last-minute decision to use the com (Sonic Oval) track texture instead.

Mute City [Serial Gaps]

Like Mute City [Twist Road], it uses the pre-release track texture.

Aeropolis [Multiplex]

This earlier design hosts almost twice as many mines as the final release, all in the last stretch of the track.

Green Plant [Mobius Ring]

The AX version of Green Plant [Mobius Ring] dons the notable increase in mines, especially the 2 after the starting gate. A few more have been added in after the first healing pit, particularly in the center where none took place in GX.

Port Town [Long Pipe]

There are 3 differences on this stage, the first being the drastic addition of 27 monitors behind the turbine fans (3 sets of 3, 3 times). The monitors also used in Aero Dive glow blue with red dashes running across it. During the first section of the pipe, GX had 2 zippers in quick succession of the other, though the AX version does not have that. The last addition is a much brighter filter exiting the tunnels. Amusement Vision added an opaque-to-translucide block that, while leaving the tunnel, gives off the appearance of someone going outside after a long time indoors. The effect remains in GX, but is not as strong. The intro animation, complete though cut short due to the shorter sequences of AX shorter sequences, is also different.

Big Blue [Drift Highway]

The older Big Blue venue had more atmospheric qualities, most notably sun blindness which could occur at certain key points in the course while facing the sun, sometimes causing half the screen to go white. This was most likely removed due to the increased difficulty and the inherent randomness of it all. Tunnels also have darker cast shadows which pass the track horizontally. The AX Drift Highway, while mostly the same, has more puddles of water near the starting gate.

Fire [Cylinder Knot]

The environment assets on this stage are placed differently. Right out of the gate, you can see a spectator tube above the stage, with some other objects bound to be in different positions. Another aspect quite noticeable is the intensity of the flames: they're much brighter and seem to be more numerous. The color of the small vertical pipes on the final stretch of the course are also grey rather than blue-violet.

Vegas Palace [Split Oval]

For starters, Vegas Palace's (Casino Palace's) track texture is very reflective. This may be due to the fact that its atmosphere is incomplete: the venue is rather bright compared to the GX version. Split Oval itself does differ greatly from its GameCube counterpart as it is overly simplified, using only 3 boost pads between the starting gate and healing pit, with the right side split hosting only 2 centered boost pads, and only the left hand zipper around the curve. The boost areas were later re-mapped to emphasize speed and added the much needed variety the old design lacked. Sparse is more than adequate to describe this layout.

Fire [Undulation]

This iteration of Undulation is absent of jump pads but has identical topography to its GX counterpart. The spurts of fire are also brighter, and there seems to be a few more than the GameCube version.

Elevator [Trident]

This version of Trident boasts extra safety rails along 2 of the merging paths, lessening the chance of falling off while changing route.

Big Blue [Ordeal]

Big Blue's sun blindness is rampant in Ordeal: the sun shines in the player's face during jumps 3, 4 and 5, significantly increasing the difficulty of both cornering and landing. Other differences in Ordeal include a block jump just beneath the hotel which, without boost, will land you on top of a passage way, a waterfall cascading onto the course, slightly hiding the heal track, and the final wrapping curve upwards does not sport any type of rail whatsoever.

Rainbow Road [Slim-Line Slits]

As a venue, Rainbow Road had brighter and much more saturated colours, along with different, faster background animations. So much so, it may have been the cause of it becoming "Phantom Road". The quickness and flashiness of the whole thing is rather jarring and may have been toned down to prevent the possibility of seizures. As a result, the darkness and lack of vividness of the new design most likely made Amusement Vision opt to go with the "Phantom Road" moniker.

Vegas Palace [Double Branches]

Older versions of Vegas Palace (Casino Palace) used a red/blue GameCube logo precisely like the one in Sonic Oval, however GX used an all blue variant to blend into the background more. Double Branches is ultimately incomplete, lacking jump pads, numerous zippers, a starting gate, and a ton of environment objects. It also has a small, glitched strip of rail improperly textured, though the collision data and geometry is full fleshed out.

Story Mode

Story 3 - High Stakes in Mute City

Story 3 uses a red checkered texture instead of green in the GameCube release, though the track design is otherwise exactly the same. This crimson stage managed to sneak its way into GX as the backdrop for Story 3, which depicts the course with the red texture.

Story 4 - Challenge of Bloody Chain

Most of the buildings use placeholder textures while others are moderately modelled and the air is relatively bright compared to GX. The cutscene for this chapter uses the same textures used here.

Story 5 - Save Jody!

In lieu of being static, the blue lights circled the blast doors. It was most likely made inanimate to conserve memory for the currently absent flame and smoke effects, especially since the player can't even see the animation due to the shear speed expected to finish the mission.

Story 6 - Black Shadow's Trap

The placement of a variety of buildings are different, with many of them missing. Some of them either have different textures or, as a result of a lack of atmospheric effects, look different. Some of the structures pass onto the track but have no collision data. There's also one ever-so-oddly placed zipper inside the gravel area.

Story 7 - The F-Zero Grand Prix

Would you believe that Amusement Vision had planned to make Story 7 even harder? Believe it or not, this version fails to top off the insanity of the test version. This meditated cruelty includes additional mines, some of which are placed on the slip-zone, 8 "thoughtfully" placed mines on the ramp after the lava patches, and a shorter, sleeker recharge strip with a zipper at the end. Unlike the test map, this design features the mines behind the starting gate to aid the players boost to the end - or burst in flames, whichever comes first.

Story 8 - Secrets of the Champion Belt

This stage is identical in collision to the test stage, using the same mine layout, however the air is devoid of the heated redness that fill the recesses of the chamber in GX.

Story 9 - Finale: Enter the Creators

Stage layout is predictably the same, though the venue is indeed different. Rainbow Road's extra vibrant and chaotic views make way into this mission, using different cube animations and hosting a flurry of flashy, colorful, seizure-inducing goodness.

Test Stages

Test Stages
Preliminary track designs and concepts.

Staff Ghost Data

There exists 19 Staff Ghosts despite only 6 being used. They appear to exist for testing purposes and it is unclear if they used AX's control scheme and drifting mechanics or GX's. The name tagged in each file is either TOKKY for unused data or 開発者 (which means developer) for those that are used, encoded in Shift-JIS. The file size is also dependent on the factor. F-Zero GX's ghost data is 16KB, as opposed to the 12KB and 8KB formats seen here. The Cylinder Wave ghost is the only ghost which AX and GX share, and thus the only 12KB ghost data used in GX. AX's Thunder Road ghost clocks in 3.901 seconds faster at 3'14"371 versus GX's 3'18"272, being the only official ghost faster in AX as compared to GX.

Slot ID Ghost's Track Machine Time Ghost Nickname File Size
1 Twist Road Golden Fox 1'05"200 TOKKY 8KB
2 Drift Highway Blue Falcon 1'15"066 TOKKY 8KB
7 Aero Dive Blue Falcon 2'40"811 TOKKY 8KB
10 Intersection Blue Falcon 2'44"220 TOKKY 8KB
13 Long Pipe Blue Falcon 2'58"959 TOKKY 8KB
31 Screw Drive Rolling Turtle 2'06"823 開発者 12KB
32 Meteor Stream Fire Stingray 2'10"006 開発者 12KB
33 Cylinder Wave Fat Shark 2'06"837 開発者 12KB
34 Thunder Road Fire Stingray 3'14"371 開発者 12KB
35 Spiral Rainbow Phoenix 3'50"959 開発者 12KB
36 Sonic Oval Fat Shark 1'54"721 開発者 12KB
37 Drift Highway Blue Falcon 1'13"787 TOKKY 8KB
38 Loop Cross Blue Falcon 2'41"626 TOKKY 8KB
62 Half-Pipe Blue Falcon 3'34"143 TOKKY 8KB
64 Mobius Ring Blue Falcon 2'01"517 TOKKY 8KB
66 Loop Cross Blue Falcon 2'18"536 TOKKY 8KB
72 Surface Slide Blue Falcon 2'16"397 TOKKY 8KB
76 Loop Cross Blue Falcon 1'46"929 TOKKY 8KB
84 Sonic Oval Wild Goose 1'21"497 TOKKY 8KB

Unused Models

Sonic Oval Tunnel


COM is the code name for Mute City Sonic Oval's venue. The model in question appears right before entering the finish line same as the tunnel portion in Story Mode Mission 1.


The mine model on the left with the broken mine to the right.

The mine model has sharp spikes overtop of it.

Hyosyo Box

To do:


This very strange model appears different depending on where it is viewed from (front or back). Using both sides to decipher it, it would seem that it says "Hit Playback then Freeze [?]e". The before last letter is anyone's guess, though "Me" is plausible. tag2path7 is found inside test stage 86.

Front Side Back Side
FZAXhitPlaybackFront.png FZAXhitPlaybackBack.png

Unused Graphics

Unused Mute City Backdrop


Since Sonic Oval calls the com backdrop rather than Mute City's mut, this venue backdrop goes unused. The AX screenshot uses the older track texture seen in almost all promotional videos and the Japanese sign graphics. This image is also present in the Mario Kart: Double Dash!! Bonus Disc and the Japanese GX, though it was updated for the subsequent US and PAL releases due to the localization team changing the sign graphics.

Hotel Sign

This early hotel sign found on some of the pod houses in Mute City can be seen in backdrop image just above is present in both AX and the Japanese version of GX.

Mute City
Story 1

Below is the final version found in Sonic Oval's archive. Mute City's was left outdated as it posed no harm to what is normally playable.


Lava Texture


AX's lava texture, which doesn't look like the lava texture in GX at all.

The lava texture in AX is more metallic and less like lava, which is probably why it was scrapped. Lava-like hazards in Maximum Velocity used an animated circular pattern, which may be where AX's lava texture came from.

This early lava texture can be actually seen in-game in AX when accessing its early version of GX's Story 7 (not the test version). However, the lava fails to act like actual lava, unlike the pit lanes and dash arrows, which despite sporting different designs function as they should.

Course Icons


While a bunch of the venues are stilled blanked out, we can see the development names for both Cosmo Terminal (Elevator) and Phantom Road (Rainbow Road). Oddly, Mute City went on to use the icon which depicts Sonic Oval, while Sonic Oval used a variant of itself (the one with "CASINO" written across.)

Early Emblem Editor

To do:
Put some (pretty) words here. Notes: Different option icons, the amount of colours on palette is x2, custom colour tile has no sliders to chose with.

Unused Audio

Early Audio Tracks

Grand Prix Interview
An earlier version of the theme heard after winning a Grand Prix.

Big Blue (Story 4)
An early version of Big Blue used in Story Mode's Mission 4, "Challenge of the Bloody Chain". It was used in an early promotional video present on the The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time Master Quest disc.

Super Monkey Ball 2 Leftovers


A completely empty skeletal animation file located at ./motion/aiai.skl alongside the rest of the game's character rigging and animation files. Presumably it was used in testing the game's animation sequences or simply forgotten about when further developing the engine used for Super Monkey Ball 2.