Krystal (Star Fox: Command)
"You only say that because he killed your father!"— Krystal to Fox
Krystal is a supporting character in the Star Fox series. She is the team’s fourth pilot and the main telepath as well as Fox’s main love interest (while Panther seems to be also infatuated with her). She is among one of the more well-liked characters in the franchise. Unfortunately for her, Krystal isn’t immune to flanderization which she suffers with the rest of the main cast.
NOTE: This will only refer to Krystal’s attitude and behavior in Star Fox: Command as her portrayals in Star Fox Adventures and Star Fox: Assault are fine.
Why She's No Longer a Part of Our World
- Flanderization: Rather than being the kind, brave, wise, and charming young lady she was in the previous games, Krystal was downgraded into a bland, mean-spirited, woman scorned stereotype, who holds a grudge over the slightest things, which has made her unlikable.
- It seems to try to give her flaws in order to flesh her out more, but it was executed terribly by taking them up to eleven, to where Krystal is hardly even recognized as a character.
- Her in-game description (in this game btw) is inaccurate, as she is described as someone who is kind, but she’s portrayed the opposite for the most part. The only thing that is true about this Krystal is that she is indeed too stubborn for her own good, and not in a good way.
- Her chemistry and relationship with Fox, which was sweet in her first two appearances as well as her friendships with her teammates, are heavily botched in multiple ways as described below.
- After their relationship had bloomed between her and Fox, the latter then becomes afraid of the possibility of her getting hurt during a battle and kicks her off, what does Krystal do? She just leaves without even trying to make an effort to object.
- While it was completely unnecessary for Fox to kick her off the team over his ‘fear for her safety on the battlefield’, Krystal’s reaction to this was handled badly, instead of joining a militant group that has a clean record, she joins Star Wolf and begins a relationship with Panther, the person she usually politely turned down when flirted with. What’s really stupid about this is that Star Wolf has a long history of criminal activity and joining a shady organization can get her into serious trouble.
- There’s another problem, Krystal is established as telepathic, so she could have read Fox’s mind and found out about this and try to prevent this whole drama by consoling him. For some reason, she doesn’t.
- Her reason for joining Star Wolf? All she wanted to do was elaborate a plan to get revenge on Fox by hurting him back by ruining his life and career in the worst way possible; all just for dismissing her for her safety, which is extremely out of proportion. Not even Mai from Avatar: The Last Airbender would cross this line with Zuko no matter how many times he broke her heart, and their breakup between them felt more natural and in character. This isn’t the case between Fox and Krystal, whose breakup feels more forced than when they fell in love in Adventures, and it came out of something like a corny soap opera.
- She constantly yells at Fox whenever they interact with each other and acts like it was the worst thing he ever did, even though it’s not that big of a deal and she never stops whining about it to the point where it becomes annoying.
- There are moments where she even snaps at Falco Lombardi and Slippy Toad, even though they didn’t do anything to warrant it. It doesn’t help that they clearly disapproved of Fox throwing her off the team.
- There’s an infamous moment where during a Titania mission, ‘The Worm’ where Krystal tells the tale of General Pepper and Andross’s conflict, she twists the facts and states that Andross was never evil and that it was wrong of Pepper to banish him to Venom. This is the same Andross we’re talking about, the one that attacked the Lylat System, the one who was responsible for James McCloud’s death, possibly the death of her own parents and her planet, not to mention he had her stuck in a crystal to drain her energy and she outright opposed him after being released; when she told that story, she was defending Andross!
- She doesn’t handle criticism at all when Fox calls her out for that false tale; she retaliates by saying that he only said because Andross killed his father, which is outright insensitive of her to make light of James’s death in front of him!
- Additionally, the way she claimed that General Pepper was the bad guy when it was already made clear in Star Fox 64 that he was basically trying to protect Corneria from further destruction by his dangerous experiments. Andross never listened to his insistences that he should terminate his work and only exiled him as the last resort as one of his experiments killed a large population on Corneria. By doing this, she’s not only being disrespectful to Fox, but to General Pepper as well and the latter, like Slippy and Falco, had nothing to do with her situation. That was all done just to spite Fox and her teammates until Falco ended their pointless dialogue.
- Laughable lines like “You hurt me, Fox! I was upset! I... I wanted to get back at you.” and “Of course I remember! Don't be an idiot!”
- Some of the endings featuring Krystal, especially with her aforementioned character derailment, are painful and depressing to sit through, and it shows:
- In the path leading to the default third ending, The Anglar Emperor, Krystal was responsible for helping Star Wolf redeem themselves and took their bounties off their heads and returned to the Star Fox team. While this was wholesome of her, the positives soon stop during this ending where several months later, she suddenly decides to rejoin Star Wolf and leave Fox behind. She practically wasted those months and opportunity to fully reconcile with Fox and additionally, there was next to no build up that led to her making this decision. It only consisted of Panther stating that she will return to Star Wolf and that's basically it.
- She is at her worst in the Star Wolf Returns path. When Fox meets with her on Katina, if the player chooses to not let her return, she refuses to forgive Fox and betrays him by stealing their mothership and leaves the team stranded on Katina to bring Star Wolf together to defeat the Anglar Emperor. Even Wolf was appalled by her harsh treatment of her teammates and was compelled to feel sorry for Fox while Krystal thought nothing of her actions and was proud to be a member of Star Wolf.
- During this ending, while the Star Wolf team received praise for their efforts, Krystal was reduced to a punching bag, as her actions against her old teammates ended up shattering her reputation when the people across the Lylat System turned against her by spreading gossip behind her back, insulted her as she passed by (mainly branding her a traitor) and humiliating her to the point where she left Lylat to a distant galaxy and changes her name to Kursed who collects bounties from the worst criminals. When she meets with Fox again years later on Planet Kew, he fails to recognize her. By getting revenge over something petty, Krystal only ended up hurting herself more than Fox did her and it doesn’t help that she has other positive options to help handle her situation better than this.
- This gives off a very bad message that if something bad happens to you and you make stupid decisions and the consequences become too great, you should run away from them instead of making amends and taking full responsibility for your actions to improve your life, which isn’t true.
- Given how nonsensical and out of character the drama is, Krystal is very difficult to sympathize with due to her emotional abuse of Fox; while he wasn’t any better himself in this game as he wasn’t very likable in Command either, but how she reacted to being kicked off as stated above ironically not only made her a spiteful bully, but also made Fox come across as unintentionally sympathetic compared to her.
- Krystal was a much better character in Star Fox Adventures and Star Fox: Assault where she was established as a kind, thoughtful young woman.
- She is noticeably decent and tolerable on the Lucy and Krystal path leading to the fifth ending where she is in character, moreso than she is on most of the paths.
- She has moments where she does care about Fox as well as her teammates.
- Additionally, her chemistry with Lucy Hare, Amanda, and Katt Monroe is very good.
- Her character design is still passable and appealing.
- There are endings where Krystal does let go of her grudge and forgives Fox and will either rejoin the team or Fox retires with her and start a family together.
- She redeems herself in later installments like the Star Fox conversations in the Super Smash Bros. series.