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Metroid Dread Reviews

Dr Bass

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This game has some incredible level and boss design. The bosses are not hard, but you usually need to figure them out, and it's relatively easy to do so and you don't need to spend long times grinding the bosses. They hit this awesome balance where you don't spend too long with bosses, but it's not a complete cakewalk either. The bosses are also designed so that when you learn their phases, you can get through the individual phases extremely fast, so you don't have to grind through 2 stages over and over to get to the third stage. I also love how they use Samus's mobility in some of these fights to great effect. After playing through the annoying grind bosses of Kena, it's so damn great and refreshing to see bosses done right.

Every room is also so well done, with different challenges and different ways to engage the player constantly, there are so many smart subtle ways the game guides the player, you can run through 80% of the game by intuition. But they also have a few sections where you have to shoot some walls and think about where to go, to change things up, but those sections are also perfectly tuned to not become long and boring, you always find the next area before it turns into frustration.

The game has an absolutely absurdly well-done progression and flow to it, it leads you onward from place to place and room to room in an elegant addicting way, this is really where the triple-A 60 dollar nature comes in, it beats out Hollow Knight and Ori in just how well it progresses from hour to hour and what it offers the player in each hour. Even though I'm not gonna say it's better than those games overall, it's in the same league.

I also love how it ties into the other Metroid games later on. But I'm not gonna spoil anything.
It's way better than Hollow Knight and both Ori Games. Feel free to say it because it's so obviously true. Hollow Knight was a complete slog to play, and Ori has great visuals but a pedestrian design and trite story.
 

fallingdove

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Uh???

20 second load screen??? 30 sec backtracking??

The only way you're getting that is if you're quitting the game after dying each time.


On none of the boss fights or EMMIs thus far there was anything like that. It's die repeat, you're back there really quick and it's one of the things I like about the game is that they don't waste your time with such crap.

Makes learning the patterns and retrying much much better and enjoyable.

Ok, to be more precise. 10 to 15 seconds of cutscenes, game over screens, load time + Up to 30 seconds of back tracking.

I wouldn’t say the time associated with gameplay interruption following an EMMI death is insignificant.

Maybe this couldn’t be avoided with the switch hardware but it’s no less a nuisance in the age of near instant loading on the PS5/Xbox Series or with games like Jedi Fallen Order where certain types of death trigger a respawn instead of a game over screen.

Bosses aren’t really an issue, trial and error isn’t as punishing and quick saves or short cuts drop you off right outside of the boss room.
 

Bragr

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Ok, to be more precise. 10 to 15 seconds of cutscenes, game over screens, load time + Up to 30 seconds of back tracking.

I wouldn’t say the time associated with gameplay interruption following an EMMI death is insignificant.

Maybe this couldn’t be avoided with the switch hardware but it’s no less a nuisance in the age of near instant loading on the PS5/Xbox Series or with games like Jedi Fallen Order where certain types of death trigger a respawn instead of a game over screen.

Bosses aren’t really an issue, trial and error isn’t as punishing and quick saves or short cuts drop you off right outside of the boss room.
Huh? you press continue and it starts right next to the boss or EMMI room in about 3 seconds, are you quitting and reloading or something? there is virtually no downtime at all in Metroid Dread.
 
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fallingdove

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1) Will have to disagree about the static story screens. The story screens only accounted for the recap of past events leading up to this point. It reminded me of when Starcraft II did the same thing with its install screen that explained "the story till now". It led into the current situation of sending the EMMI's, which shifted to polygons. Sorry, I just find this a silly complaint for a quick "last time, on METROID..." recap.

2) I know a lot of people are complaining about the EMMIs. Maybe you would like to go back to Fusion and brush up with the SA-X. Personally I thought they are really cool even though I tripped up and died a few times while coming to grips with how to deal with them. And when I did, I was almost IMMEDIATELY back in the gameplay. I could see it being really frustrating if the game punished you with a long wait, but what strikes my attention is that I sampled this game on PC before going out to buy it, and while emulating this thing, I noticed loading took a really long time. Are you sure you're playing on a Nintendo Switch?

3) I love the free aiming. It's 1:1, like free-aiming arrows in Towerfall. I don't know what you mean by "imprecise" being no-BS 1:1 aiming. They aren't running your input through any kind of screen like an FPS game with an aiming curve. This is part of what I love about the pure 2D simplicity of this game. I had no issue with it at all and a breath of fresh air after games like Fusion that lock you in at 45 degree angles. Now I can make the most precise shots as long as I have line-of-sight. In a game where you are aiming in a 2D space, stick sensitivity makes no sense. She simply aims in the direction you point the stick lol. And the Switch allows controller profiles so change any button you want.

4) The point at which I decided to try-before-I-buy was hearing all the complaints on the music. I can say now that I understand the gripes, but the sound design fits the game exceptionally well. As a bit of a game music snob, who thinks music can even make or break a game, I personally really like the sound design. I won't be listening to it when I'm not playing, but it's very appropriate in the game. For example I never wanted to listen to OOT's dungeon music for its own sake, but in-game, the music fit the tone and feel of the dungeons very well. I feel the same way about this game.

I feel you are just out to get this game and many of your complaints just don't even make any sense even if we respect the subjectivity of opinions.

Read my post again. I like Dread. Quite a bit actually.

Nothing I cited was outright negative. These were examples of elements that felt indie or didn’t quite meet the AAA bar.
 

daveonezero

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Animations and general levels of polish wise this is leagues beyond Bloodstained.
I agree that’s why I said meets or exceeds those examples. Those are what I’d say are the most modern takes on this.
Ok, to be more precise. 10 to 15 seconds of cutscenes, game over screens, load time + Up to 30 seconds of back tracking.

I wouldn’t say the time associated with gameplay interruption following an EMMI death is insignificant.

Maybe this couldn’t be avoided with the switch hardware but it’s no less a nuisance in the age of near instant loading on the PS5/Xbox Series or with games like Jedi Fallen Order where certain types of death trigger a respawn instead of a game over screen.

Bosses aren’t really an issue, trial and error isn’t as punishing and quick saves or short cuts drop you off right outside of the boss room.
it’s not a cutscene you can parry and keep playing….

and I’m just at the beginning and it seems the saves are right outside EMMI zones
 
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Marty-McFly

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I'm glad Dread doesn't have cheesy AAA dialogue cutscenes everywhere. The interactions in the game are much more meaningful.

I think the best games have understated production like Bloodborne and Dread. Games with minimal AAA tropes and great gameplay. Especially Dread. Nothing feels better to play.
 
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fallingdove

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Huh? you press continue and it starts right next to the boss or EMMI room in about 3 seconds, are you quitting and reloading or something? there is virtually no downtime at all in Metroid Dread.

Yup, I’m hard rebooting my switch every time I die. WTF? Nintendo fans are so sensitive. Anytime someone suggests that that Nintendo games aren’t the highest order of perfection, minds are lost.

Keep track of how much time passes from being caught by the EMMI to resuming control. It’s sure as hell not 3 seconds.
 

fallingdove

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I agree that’s why I said meets or exceeds those examples. Those are what I’d say are the most modern takes on this.

it’s not a cutscene you can parry and keep playing….

and I’m just at the beginning and it seems the saves are right outside EMMI zones

How consistently do you parry an EMMI kill? 1 in 5, 1 in 10?
 

Bragr

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Yup, I’m hard rebooting my switch every time I die. WTF? Nintendo fans are so sensitive. Anytime someone suggests that that Nintendo games aren’t the highest order of perfection, minds are lost.

Keep track of how much time passes from being caught by the EMMI to resuming control. It’s sure as hell not 3 seconds.
It's maybe 7, 8 total?
 
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BlackTron

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Read my post again. I like Dread. Quite a bit actually.

Nothing I cited was outright negative. These were examples of elements that felt indie or didn’t quite meet the AAA bar.

Thanks but I always read a post before I respond to it, that should be obvious because I responded with answers that specifically addressed nearly every point in your post.

You said that the game lacks polish in areas before citing your examples, in the universe I live in "lacking polish" has a negative connotation.

Some of the issues are definitely subjective, like the music, but others are just silly, like control stick sensitivity and loading times. I responded to all of this intelligently and your reply is to "read my post again" lol. Those two issues specifically made it seem like you were either looking for problems or just got frustrated because you suck.
 

CGiRanger

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I'm glad Dread doesn't have cheesy AAA dialogue cutscenes everywhere. The interactions in the game are much more meaningful.

I think the best games have understated production like Bloodborne and Dread. Games with minimal AAA tropes and great gameplay. Especially Dread. Nothing feels better to play.
That said. MercurySteam has great experience making some very good cinematic cutscenes with Dialog from the Lords of Shadow series, so they could definitely do it. Certainly they'd do a far better job than the ones in Other M.

Though I have heard that Other M's localization supposedly made things more cringey compared to the original Japanese. Though even with that in mind, the cutscene direction of that game definitely was not very serious.
 
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Marty-McFly

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That said. MercurySteam has great experience making some very good cinematic cutscenes with Dialog from the Lords of Shadow series, so they could definitely do it. Certainly they'd do a far better job than the ones in Other M.

Though I have heard that Other M's localization supposedly made things more cringey compared to the original Japanese. Though even with that in mind, the cutscene direction of that game definitely was not very serious.
I really prefer Nintendo's silent protagonist style. It's one of the things that set them apart. The gameplay stands on its own. Even the dialogue in BOTW was a little eh for me but a lot of people seem to like that stuff. What little dialogue there is in Dread is really good stuff.

I think since this game has moved up to 89 on metacritic it might get the 90 it deserves (I think it's about a 95 though).
 

Aldric

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That said. MercurySteam has great experience making some very good cinematic cutscenes with Dialog from the Lords of Shadow series, so they could definitely do it. Certainly they'd do a far better job than the ones in Other M.

Though I have heard that Other M's localization supposedly made things more cringey compared to the original Japanese. Though even with that in mind, the cutscene direction of that game definitely was not very serious.
Please no more Other M style games. If anything Dread really highlights how shit Other M was as a game.
 

fallingdove

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Thanks but I always read a post before I respond to it, that should be obvious because I responded with answers that specifically addressed nearly every point in your post.

You said that the game lacks polish in areas before citing your examples, in the universe I live in "lacking polish" has a negative connotation.

Some of the issues are definitely subjective, like the music, but others are just silly, like control stick sensitivity and loading times. I responded to all of this intelligently and your reply is to "read my post again" lol. Those two issues specifically made it seem like you were either looking for problems or just got frustrated because you suck.

Jesus Christ. Well if you aren’t a moron, you are surely a child. Looking for problems or I got frustrated because I suck? Those are the options huh? Heaven forbid someone highlight elements that just didn’t click with them.

1) Static story screens feel indie. Your response —> but I liked them in StarCraft II.

2) The implementation of Free-aim feels like something out of an indie game; maybe it would be better with some sensitivity sliders instead of only registering with a full stick press. Your response —> but I liked the implementation in Towerfall. You’re wrong.

3) Loading and backtracking is a nuisance given the game’s structure. Area transition loading screens look amateur. Your response —> it’s not that big of an issue.

4) The music is good but not great. Your response —> I wouldn’t listen to it outside of the game but it’s perfect.

Ok? Whatever “intelligence” you put into these responses is no more substantive or qualified than what I wrote. It’s all subjective. All of it.

And again, I am really enjoying this game. Grow up.
 

daveonezero

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How consistently do you parry an EMMI kill? 1 in 5, 1 in 10?
I mean the game text literally said it is a small window.
The thing is supposed to be a threat you can’t combat.

personally less than an hour in game ive does a half dozen times to an EMMi

like what’s the point of the game mechanic of it isn’t a threat?

I’m sure once I figure it out I’ll get better. And others probably do have it figure out.
 
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Marty-McFly

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I love how hard it is to parry an EMMI.

I'm an ace at this point but it still gets me more often than not.

These little things making games special. It's like how you can change the course of the game if you get weapons early and sequence break, or go to castle Hyrule almost immediately without a hope and hell unless you land every parry.

Nintendo's slick game design from BOTW shines through in this game as well even though they're very different. Actually, the Chozo and Sheikah seem like they could have crossed paths at some point.
 
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MagiusNecros

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Do you also defend game freak with this same line of thinking?
Gamefreak is trash. They haven't made a good game since Soulsilver/Heartgold. They already proved that they have little talent with the dumpster fire that was Little Town Hero and soon Pokemon Legends.

The best Pokemon game that came out recently IMO was Pokken Tournament. And no surprise there it's because Game Freak didn't develop it.

Not all Metroid games are great. Other M and Federation Force IMO aren't that great.
 

Guilhermegrg

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Ok, to be more precise. 10 to 15 seconds of cutscenes, game over screens, load time + Up to 30 seconds of back tracking.

There is no back tracking in any of the bosses or EMMIs. You spawn right next room usually. About 5-8 secs of movement tops.

You do know you can skip cutscenes after the first time you see them right ???
Press + then -.

Game over screen...it's a static screen saying press to restart. 7, 8 secs of loading...

From your description, it seems the game makes you lose 40+ seconds every time you die on a boss or EMMI as pusnishment, and it's factually not that.

I'm doing at most 20 secs between dying - including death animation - and being able to attack again. Clocked.
 

BlackTron

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Jesus Christ. Well if you aren’t a moron, you are surely a child. Looking for problems or I got frustrated because I suck? Those are the options huh? Heaven forbid someone highlight elements that just didn’t click with them.

1) Static story screens feel indie. Your response —> but I liked them in StarCraft II.

2) The implementation of Free-aim feels like something out of an indie game; maybe it would be better with some sensitivity sliders instead of only registering with a full stick press. Your response —> but I liked the implementation in Towerfall. You’re wrong.

3) Loading and backtracking is a nuisance given the game’s structure. Area transition loading screens look amateur. Your response —> it’s not that big of an issue.

4) The music is good but not great. Your response —> I wouldn’t listen to it outside of the game but it’s perfect.

Ok? Whatever “intelligence” you put into these responses is no more substantive or qualified than what I wrote. It’s all subjective. All of it.

And again, I am really enjoying this game. Grow up.

Now you are twisting my words into things that I didn't say so you can cut down strawman arguments. I never said I liked or disliked static screens in Starcraft II; my response was that an AAA game can certainly have static story screens as a story recap. If it feels indie to you, that's fine. Well, here's an AAA game that did the exact same thing. You don't have to agree, but you don't have to move my words around either.

I'm not that deep into the game so I chose not to respond about loading/backtracking too much, thinking MAYBE it gets worse later in the game. So far, whenever I have died from an EMMI, the game put me right back into the action with almost no loading time, and almost no backtracking. This is what I stated, not "it's not that big of an issue".

I tried to acknowledge in my post that many of your points are subjective, but others just objectively don't make any sense. The free-aiming doesn't require a full stick press, so you're actually factually wrong on something you are saying I'm wrong on. As my OPINION, I think free aiming is great. But just as a fact, there's no other way to implement it other than aiming in the direction you point the stick. Unless you want to make it "less sensitive" and REQUIRE a full stick press? That's the only way to adjust it, though you already said you don't want that. My reply was certainly more nuanced than "BUT TOWERFALL!"

Obviously we are not going to agree on this stuff which is fine, but I don't appreciate someone telling me to grow up while contorting my words into a bunch of strawman arguments that make me look silly. That said, have a nice day.
 
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GeneralKird

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Has anyone done an analysis of how many milliseconds you have to parry the EMMIs? I'm not as young as I use to be, but I used to have a 150-175ms reaction time, which I'm sure has slowed down in the past five years. I feel like you've gotta have 200ms or less to do a successful parry, which is why the only times I could get it was by guessing.
 
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Guilhermegrg

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Has anyone done an analysis of how many milliseconds you have to parry the EMMIs? I'm not as young as I use to be, but I used to have a 150-175ms reaction time, which I'm sure has slowed down in the past five years. I feel like you've gotta have 200ms or less to do a successful parry, which is why the only times I could get it was by guessing.
I feel like you have to guess a bit, and press the button just before the flash to counter. But since every time you encounter the EMMI the sequence changes the timing slightly, it's really hard to get it.
 

Aldric

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Has anyone done an analysis of how many milliseconds you have to parry the EMMIs? I'm not as young as I use to be, but I used to have a 150-175ms reaction time, which I'm sure has slowed down in the past five years. I feel like you've gotta have 200ms or less to do a successful parry, which is why the only times I could get it was by guessing.
It's a one frame window, so 1/60th of a second. It's pretty much impossible to react to so you have to learn the various signposts of the EMMI before the attack comes out but apparently even that isn't a surefire way to parry them because the timing is random.
 
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tommib

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It’s a personal opinion but I think Dread completely puts to shame ALL Metroidvanias that have been recently released and considered critical darlings: Hollow Knight, Ori, Blasphemous, Guacamelee, Axiom Verge… This is totally on its own league. The fluidity and pure joy of playing the more powerups you get is unrivalled. Nothing feels as good as this. I worship at the altar of Returnal but I’m at a point where I can’t honestly pick between them both as my GOTY. Well played, Nintendo. You made a masterpiece of gameplay and game design.
 

Marty-McFly

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Not even close to being true but you're entitled to your opinion. Even if it is wrong...
The original GOW games and Twisted Metal games that he directed were fun for the time, but simplistic and they aged very poorly in terms of gameplay. GOW was done a million times better by other action games. Drawn to Death was just bad and he got upset people were criticising it and he disappeared from game development afterwards. Was never a fan of his work.
 

Fredrik

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It’s a personal opinion but I think Dread completely puts to shame ALL Metroidvanias that have been recently released and considered critical darlings: Hollow Knight, Ori, Blasphemous, Guacamelee, Axiom Verge… This is totally on its own league. The fluidity and pure joy of playing the more powerups you get is unrivalled. Nothing feels as good as this. I worship at the altar of Returnal but I’m at a point where I can’t honestly pick between them both as my GOTY. Well played, Nintendo. You made a masterpiece of gameplay and game design.
I haven’t played Returnal yet so I can’t compare them like that but it’s easily the best game I’ve played this year and I don’t see anything in the Horizon that could bring it down. Haven’t finished it yet but it just keeps getting better and better, I love the boss fights, they’re among the best ever in gaming as a whole, and the way they do stuff with the map (no spoilers) is just brilliant. I don’t even like Switch but I haven’t powered on another console or even the PC since I started this. Slam dunk Nintendo!
 
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Bryank75

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The original GOW games and Twisted Metal games that he directed were fun for the time, but simplistic and they aged very poorly in terms of gameplay. GOW was done a million times better by other action games. Drawn to Death was just bad and he got upset people were criticising it and he disappeared from game development afterwards. Was never a fan of his work.

I agree that it was of it's time....but I still think anyone could pick it up and have fun.

I'm a DMC fan too and I just consider the gameplay in GOW far more arcade-y than the Japanese 'character action games'. I don't consider them the same genre tbh.

GOW always conveyed adventure and epic scale in a far more visceral way for me and that is why it was so great.
While obviously the depth and style of gameplay in DMC was the cornerstone of its success.

Your opinion is fair though.
 
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tommib

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I haven’t played Returnal yet so I can’t compare them like that but it’s easily the best game I’ve played this year and I don’t see anything in the Horizon that could bring it down. Haven’t finished it yet but it just keeps getting better and better, I love the boss fights, they’re among the best ever in gaming as a whole, and the way they do stuff with the map (no spoilers) is just brilliant. I don’t even like Switch but I haven’t powered on another console or even the PC since I started this. Slam dunk Nintendo!
Same here! PS5 and Series S are on sleeping mode since Dread arrived. I might go for 100%. Big might. IMO Returnal is in its own way a third person Metroid with RNG. I think you might to love it.
 
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Aldric

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It’s a personal opinion but I think Dread completely puts to shame ALL Metroidvanias that have been recently released and considered critical darlings: Hollow Knight, Ori, Blasphemous, Guacamelee, Axiom Verge… This is totally on its own league. The fluidity and pure joy of playing the more powerups you get is unrivalled. Nothing feels as good as this. I worship at the altar of Returnal but I’m at a point where I can’t honestly pick between them both as my GOTY. Well played, Nintendo. You made a masterpiece of gameplay and game design.
Yeah I think gameplay wise it might be the best 2D sidescroller I've ever played, period. That includes Metroidvanias but also run and gun, classic platformers action platformers etc. The amount of options at your disposal, the way they synergize with eachother, the level and boss design perfectly designed around them, it's really phenomenal. As I said movement wise I can only think of Ori and the Will of the Wisps as an example of a game in the same tier of quality and combat wise I think Dread is the best, I like it much better than Hollow Knight's combat which has harder bosses but is much more simplistic.
 

Markio128

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I only wish this game had been released when I didn’t already have a plethora of games to play, but I will pick it up at some point. The last Metroid game I played was Super Metroid on the SNES and I absolutely loved it, but then, my tastes and expectations have changed a lot since then and I find it very difficult to enjoy those era of games anymore.
 

nkarafo

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Zero Mission is leagues above the original with it's confusing and repetitive level design and irritating design choices. not to mention the game is hard as fuck before you get the screw attack and it's not the good type of hard. no map, no save rooms, no way to regenerate health unless you tediously farm the health from enemies etc etc.

it's one Nintendo game that didn't age well at all. Zero Mission gets rid of all of this.
Wasn't Zero Mission the one with the forced stealth sections?

Yeah, those were really bad.
 

BadBurger

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I played about two hours, set it down, then today after work decided to give it another go - putting in a few more hours. I have to say, old Adam Sessler nailed my opinion of the game and the discussion surrounding it spot on:


The toxic gatekeeping from the most vocal of the community, to the out of place one-hit stealth sequences, the un-Metroid like exploration at times, to what is essentially a celebration of awkward and bad mechanics from installments that are now a decade old or older, he pretty much narrated every gripe I had with the game as I played through it.
 
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The toxic gatekeeping from the most vocal of the community, to the out of place one-hit stealth sequences, the un-Metroid like exploration at times, to what is essentially a celebration of awkward and bad mechanics from installments that are now a decade old or older, he pretty much narrated every gripe I had with the game as I played through it.

Simultaneously trashing purists and "obsolete mechanics" while also demanding less "out of place" and "Un-Metroid-like" elements exactly like a "purist". This is about as consistent as jello. Make up your mind.
 

Punished Miku

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I played about two hours, set it down, then today after work decided to give it another go - putting in a few more hours. I have to say, old Adam Sessler nailed my opinion of the game and the discussion surrounding it spot on:


The toxic gatekeeping from the most vocal of the community, to the out of place one-hit stealth sequences, the un-Metroid like exploration at times, to what is essentially a celebration of awkward and bad mechanics from installments that are now a decade old or older, he pretty much narrated every gripe I had with the game as I played through it.
Man ... this might literally be the worst review I've ever seen in my entire life. We usually agree but you're way off into uncharted space on this one.