Every race consists of five laps around a race track. The race will end prematurely if the player lands outside of the track after a jump, destroys their machine by depleting its energy, completes a lap in too low of a rank, or drops to 20th place; all of these conditions necessitate the player using an extra machine (if available in the Grand Prix) to try again.
For each lap completed the player is rewarded with an approximate four second speed boost, one of the "SSS" marks will be shaded green to indicate that it can be used. A boost will dramatically increase a player's speed, but will decrease their ability to turn. A boost used before a jump will make the player jump farther, allowing the player to use a shortcut.
The Grand Prix is the main single player component of Maximum Velocity. It consists of four series (one hidden), each containing five races. The player needs to be in the top three at the end of the last lap in order to continue to the next race. If the player is unable to continue, the player will lose a machine and can try the race again. If the player runs out of machines, then the game ends, and the player has to start the series from the beginning.
Championship is another single player component. It is basically the same as a "Time Attack" mode, except the player can only race on one, special course: the Synobazz Championship Circuit. This special course is not selectable in Multi Cartridge vs. When the player first accesses this track, one player has already set a record. This player is "Megan", the pilot of the Hot Violet craft. The time is usually around 1 minute and 57 seconds.
Bianca City - A city that began with the discovery of a titanuim mine. Its size and popularity surpassed even Mute City. The name is due to the wife of the city's Major.
Stark Farm - Once a lush farm, now is deserted due to the toxic nature of the ground.
Empyrean Colony - A project to house the increasing population in the galaxy.
Cloud Carpet - The Mount Babylon and towering skycrapers pierce the clouds to get sunlight, the primary source of energy of this planet.
Tenth Zone East - A famous enterprise choose this planet to build factories that build spacecrafts. Factories here blackens the skies for even an entire year.
Beacon Port - Facility created for navigation due to high interferences in the outer space.
Synobazz - A giant marsh hides an unknown source of energy.
Crater Land - A mining colony that consists of a planet full with craters. These craters contain the primary source of oil in the galaxy.
Ancient Mesa - A nature conservation group takes care of this ancient frozen sea.
Fire Field - An old mining facility flooded the planet with lava and now has become a sanctuary place.
Silence (Multiplayer Only) - The origin of this name is because literally no sound is produced in this planet.
Maximum Velocity can be played in two multiplayer modes using the Game Boy Advance link cable, with one cartridge, or one cartridge per player. Two to four Players can play in both modes.
- Single cartridge
In single cart, only one player needs to have a cartridge. The other players will boot off the link cable network from the player with the cart using the GBA's netboot capability. All players drive a generic craft, and the game can only be played on one level, Silence. Silence is a classical planet in the F-Zero series and is the only re-used course in Maximum Velocity other than Fire Field. Aptly, Silence in F-Zero Maximum Velocity has no background music.
- Multi cartridge
In multi cart, each player needs to have a cartridge to play. This has many advantages over single cart: All players can use any machine in this game that has been unlocked by another player. Players can select any course in this game. After race is finished, all of the player's ranking data are mixed and shared ("Mixed ranking" stored in each cart).
Maximum Velocity takes place a quarter of a century after Captain Falcon, Dr. Stewart, etc. "piloted their way to fame". Due to the aforementioned, it is the only F-Zero game without Captain Falcon, Samurai Goroh, Pico, or Dr. Stewart, although one character's vehicle (the FALCON MK-2), resembles with the original Blue Falcon. The pilot, Kent Akechi, also claims to be Falcon's son. Also, the Silver Bullet vehicle was designed by Dr. Stewart according to the instruction booklet.
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