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RTTP: Metroid - The franchise that makes its fans disenfranchised

StarPhlox

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Apr 21, 2016
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(credit to reddit user u/thebloudymorder)


The Metroid series is one of Nintendo's (and gaming's) finest franchises. Spanning over 30 years and over a dozen games which include multiple classics, Metroid nevertheless has not achieved the commercial success that the more marketable Pokemon, Mario, or Zelda games have. Again, despite its lack of pronounced commercial success, Metroid has influenced innumerable designers and without this series we would be unlikely to have such great games as Ori and The Blind Forest, Axiom Verge, La Mulana, Cave Story, or Guacamelee (to name but a handful).

As a child, the original Metroid was always just as appealing as any other game that my big brothers had on the NES and I was drawn to the atmosphere and creepy feeling of isolation that the series consistently brought throughout its history. After some deeply dark times and cries of "Metroid is dead!" it has come back in a big way this year with Samus Returns on the horizon (as of this post) and Prime 4 perhaps only a year or so away. In the spirit of celebration, let's dive in and revisit the entire series!


Metroid (1986)

The one that started it all! Metroid seemed larger than life approaching with the eyes of a child and I don't think there's any way that I could have finished it at the age of 4 or 5 when I first picked it up. It is repetitive, labyrinthine, claustrophobic, and unforgiving. Upon revisiting the game in my teenage years and several more times recently, I have deeply enjoyed just how much Nintendo was able to accomplish their first time in this wildly experimental series. There's no map. No handholding. No clear indications where you *should* go at any given time. Yet, Metroid is remarkable in many respects. The soundtrack is still iconic. Brinstar feels like the beginning of an adventure and never wears out its welcome. Norfair is dark, ominous, and oppressive. Kraid's lair is alien and creepy while still sounding melodic and beautiful.

The sprite work holds up nicely and evokes exactly what I think the developers were going for. The story is minimalistic but has some memorable and exciting moments including the final sequences of seeing Metroids for the first time in Tourian on the way to Mother Brain, the fight with Mother Brain herself, and of course the escape sequence and big reveal. While some aspects have not aged as well (it feels clunky to control Samus, why start me with only 30 energy when I have all these tanks), Metroid is still worth playing both as a historical marker as well as just for fun. More than all of that, it set a foundation for future games in the series and games as a whole.




Metroid II: Return of Samus (1991)

Return of Samus is yet another game that I had access to growing up, but I just found too obtuse to make any real progress in as a boy. This is despite the fact that it is in many ways an easier and more welcoming game thanks to slower and more manageable enemies as well as using a battery save instead of passwords as the North America version of the original Metroid unfortunately did. As an anecdote, I remember the first time I finished the game was my senior year of high school when I had to go to a dance because I was voted homecoming king and I couldn't wait to get the hell out of there and kill the queen metroid. I was a weird teenager...

Metroid II is an important game for the franchise in terms of developing the story and in terms of showing that Metroid could be more than just the same objectives over and over. While the first game had a very clear target and bosses (stop the space pirates and Mother Brain), RoS was about Samus needing to actually be a bounty hunter and destroy an entire species! It is a fairly dark concept that they handled surprisingly well for a Game Boy game as you meet
THE BABY
who is also important for the series and for Samus's character development.

RoS has big, beautiful sprites that were definitely needed at the time on that grainy, yellowish screen but as a result the game feels scrunched in (like Mega Man & Bass on GBA or Mega Man 7 in general) and that makes navigation and combat perhaps more frustrating than they need to be. The lack of map is understandable, but makes the game a bit of a chore if you don't have one pulled up on your phone or laptop. Of course, there are dozens of people who love using graph paper to make their own maps and I hope those people all play Etrian Odyssey.

Of all the Metroid games, Metroid II is probably the most consistently overlooked and underappreciated and I am quite pleased that in the past year or two it has been the subject of a lot of positive talk and projects. I think it holds up well and is still very much worth playing.




Super Metroid (1994)

The game that took the world by storm. It can't really be overstated how magnificent and revolutionary Super Metroid is in the world of video games. While it's not my personal favorite in the series and I have less nostalgia for it than other Metroid fans do, I can't help but to love and respect the game. Sure, Samus does not feel as snappy or 'fun' to control as she does in later 2D incarnations, but that's my only serious gripe with the gameplay.

Plenty of long-form reviews already exist that speak to Super Metroid's brilliance and continued relevance in design, so I won't belabor my own views for too long, but the game is just full of ingenious decisions and immaculate world building. Zebes is a diverse and beautiful world that has much in common with earth and yet so much that is alien. The rainy and rocky surface gives way to dank caverns full of bizarre lifeforms and odd forms as well as somber tapestry. There is all sorts of destroyed technologies and atypical environments that all seem to flow into one another in a believable way even when you're fighting a ghost cephalopod on a ship!

The boss battles in Super Metroid are subversive and unforgettable from the fake-out Kraid (which gives way to giant amazing Kraid) to the return of Ridley to the haunting Crocomire to the final battle with Mother Brain. Every fight has a conceit to make it stand out as something special whether it's how you fight the boss or just the grand scale of it all.

Anybody who is reading this has a strong opinion on Super Metroid so I don't think any minds will be changed, but it's an awesome game and it feels at home on the New 3DS for those who have yet to try it and it will be on that SNES Mini Classic that Reggie promises won't have shortage issues.




Metroid Prime (2001)

This is the moment I fell helplessly in love with the Metroid series. I was excited and not at all skeptical of Prime at its first reveal and despite the dizzying hype Retro Studios managed to deliver 100% on what I wanted. They took a big gamble by translating Super Metroid into 3D and knocked it out of the park on their first swing.

Talon IV is to this day a gorgeous landscape. It is made all the more special by how immersive the moment to moment gameplay is thanks to Retro's attention to detail. The beads of water on Samus's visor, the reflection of her face when a bright flash goes off, and the way her hands go up sometimes to block or protect herself all add to feeling as though you are really in Varia suit.

While some prefer the motion controls, I have always loved how Prime feels on the Gamecube controller. Not to be a purist like those Melee folks, but it feels like the controller was designed for this game. I didn't need twin sticks to look around, I felt perfectly at home with the tight design for lock-on and strafing and changing weapons on the C-nub. Switching in and out of the morph ball from 1st to 3rd person and enjoying the physics of the ball while engaging in exploration and minor ball-based puzzles was a total blast.

Again, we saw some of the best boss fights of the series in Prime and beyond that incredible music and scenery. I doubt anybody can forget their time in the cold phendrana drifts--one of my favorite areas in all of video games. Prime feels less like an action game than ever compared to its forebears but that's because there's so much emphasis placed on being in the world and being inquisitive. The story comes to you as you want it through scanning (which I never grew tired of) and there's basically as much or as little as the player wants--much like say the Dark Souls series.

The 3D map looks extremely cool, even if it's not always ideal for navigation, and shows just how well thought out every part of the world is. Amazingly, Retro managed to make platforming in a 3D game not just possible, but enjoyable! The way that the camera dips down a bit to help make sure you land your jumps and the fact that it's a bit forgiving makes traversing areas light and painless--as it should be. Many modern classics owe a lot to the original Metroid Prime game in terms of combat, exploration and world building including last year's DOOM and this year's Prey. Any time I can play a first person game and say "this reminds me of Metroid Prime" I know I have a GOTY candidate on my hands.





Metroid Fusion (2001)

Released on the same day as Metroid Prime, Fusion is direct sequel to Super Metroid and continues the "main canon" of the Metroid series. I think history has been extremely kind to Fusion and deservedly so. While it gets some flack for being overly linear and for the abundance of expository dumps during elevator rides, I actually prefer Fusion to most video games in general and I may even like it more than I do Super!

While it is fun to get lost in Super, I like how little I get lost in Fusion. I like the boss fights and the story a great deal. The environments have a good degree of variety and its at its best when things go off the beaten path a bit like when say SA-X destroys the elevator and you have to play a terrifying game of cat and mouse. Ultimately, it's feeling like you're being stalked throughout the game that creates palpable dread because--until the very end--there's nothing you can do but run and hide from SA-X. It's like a 2D Resident Evil 3 where you will get ambushed at times that you don't expect and the panic it creates is unforgettable and impressive for a 2002 Game Boy Advance game.

At the time of release, I think the way Samus controls in Fusion was far and away my favorite. The animations of the sprite are so good and the color scheme is like this funky tropical blue and yellow with a pink helmet that sounds so goofy but just looks cool as hell. Finally Samus feels snappy, can grab ledges and roll into a morphball from a ledge grab and the jumps and movement are fast and lack the floatiness that takes Super down a notch in my book.

While in past Metroids I would argue that the difficulty came from keeping calm and paying attention to the environment to survive, Fusion's comes from the combat. For once, we have a game that is more tipped towards action than exploration and in this regard it actually succeeds while still retaining the core essence of Metroid. Bosses like the SA-X, Serris, and Nightmare gave you upgrades after defeating them that made sense thematically and of course gave you fights that were achingly difficult while never feeling unfair. I hope that some day we see where the series goes after Fusion because it ends with some thrilling story developments.




Metroid: Zero Mission (2004)

This is my favorite Metroid game and easily in my top 5 games of all time.I can't even count how many times I have played through Zero Mission but it seemed like my senior year of high school I was running through it every week. Zero Mission is a remake of the original Metroid and is so perfect it hurts. The graphics, the soundtrack, and the QOL improvements over the original make it the definitive remake in my eyes. Granted, it's not an especially challenging game and it can be finished in a matter of hours, but the core gameplay is so tight and fun that I can't see anybody rushing through and dumping it.

Zero Mission is full of secrets that require precision and poring over each area to get 100% completion and at the same time it has a fervent speedrunning community (not up to Super standards but still impressive for an old game) so there's something for everybody here. I recently replayed it on Wii U and found that it was just as charming and beautiful as ever--even the final section that is totally unique to Zero Mission!





Metroid Prime 2: Echoes (2004)

Echoes is strangely enough a game I've only played through one time, but what a playthrough it was! Rather than make a more accessible sequel after the success of the original Prime, I think of Echoes as the brooding and impenetrable follow-up for the hardcore only. It is a much meaner and darker world on Aether that brings us to unfamiliar locales for a Metroid game that feel so idiosyncratic and help differentiate it from the first game.

The light world/dark world thing has been done before in Nintendo games, some would say to death, but it's pulled off very well in Echoes and has good reasoning behind it. The game has more direct story than Prime does as you're actually interacting with NPCs like the Luminoth who are almost as cool as the iconic Chozo as you're tasked with wiping out the Ing instead of Metroids.

Many people complain of the difficulty of certain bosses in Prime 2, but I don't recall having too much trouble with any of them (even that Spider Guardian!). I think a bigger problem is the major fetchquest at the end that also plagued Wind Waker. As such, this Echoes is a game that I both want to revisit because I loved basking in the dreary world so much but I am also reluctant to since there's unfortunate padding.

Having said that, I don't feel as strongly about Echoes due to it being 13 years since I last played it. However, I remember the game fondly and I think revisiting it if it ever gets released on a modern console (hopefully with standard non-motion controls) would be totally in order. I love areas like the Torvus Bog and the design on Samus's suits is some of my favorite ever (especially the Light Suit--magnificent).




Metroid Prime Pinball (2005)

It's fun! So many Nintendo franchises have had a pinball game without any real justification and while this one is also flimsy and silly it is so fun to play. Morph ball as a pinball is aesthetically pleasing and the little nods to fans make the whole thing really enjoyable. You can see the whole thing in about an hour and it is full of cute references to the original Metroid Prime and minigames that sometimes work and sometimes fall flat. Overall it's worth checking out for the most diehard Metroid and/or pinball fans but for everybody else know that you're not missing a ton if you skip out on the pinball timeline.




Metroid Prime Hunters (2006)

I only played through Prime Hunters all the way about a year ago. There is a lot to like about the game, but I would unquestionably put it at the bottom of the pile. The game itself looks really good for DS and is probably what an N64 Metroid would have looked like. The Hunters themselves are actually kinda cool and I bet for people who were into the multiplayer aspect (which I never touched and I know was the main draw) it was nice having more variety in deathmatches than what the multiplayer in Echoes offered.

The single-player campaign however is bad. Quite bad.

Hunters feels more like a proof of concept than a fully featured single player Metroid game and it reeks of being a slap-dash job instead of the full experience I was accustomed to. Many people loved the controls with the touch screen, but I could never get really comfortable as I am profoundly left handed and it just didn't feel good despite its responsiveness. There are two bosses that are gross to look at and a miserable chore to fight FOUR TIMES EACH. It has its moments where it feels like a portable version of a Prime game, but it never reaches the highs that any Metroid game before it did and due to the repetition and discomfort it reaches some new lows. Not recommended these days.





Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (2007)

And finally after three years we are back to Metroid being back on top instead of doing the Zelda thing of pumping out too many useless DS games. To a lot of people on this board, this is the last Metroid that has come out in a decade. To me, it's just another great game in the Prime series. I was very excited to see what Nintendo could do with motion controls at the time and I remember finding it far more immersive and enjoyable than any other experiment they did on the Wii. The Galaxy games were amazing, but motion added nothing but waggle. Twilight Princess was better on Gamecube and Skyward Sword will hopefully get a drastic remake that not only eliminates motion controls but like...1/3 of the game.

Not so with Metroid Prime 3: Corruption! I gladly played through this game a couple of times and delighted in scouring the planets for all of the power-ups. The motion controls were well executed and its hard to imagine the game without them (even if sometimes it does remind you too hard that you're playing a Wii game by making you twist and remove cylinders so frequently).

I would say that the added emphasis on story was not very well handled. In fact, while I can remember the appearance of your fellow bounty hunters who get corrupted and you have to fight, I can't say I remember anything distinctive about their personalities which is never a good thing. I'm not a purist who thinks that Metroid should totally eschew traditional story telling (although after the next game on the list I understand why you would be), but it felt clumsy and B-tier when Nintendo and other developers have done much better before and since.




Metroid: Other M (2010)

Was there a more exciting reveal? Could I have been more hyped at launch?! No!

Other M was destined to be a hit! Finally Samus would be in third person on a modern console! What could possibly go wrong?

Well... a lot.

I guess I'm supposed to hate this game, but I don't. There are many questionable design choices that involve not only the controls using a single Wiimote to do 2D, 3D, and first person but also the story reasons for not having your upgrades available is baffling and a little offensive. The linear bottlenecking on the bottle ship is not done nearly as well as it is in Fusion nor is the relationship between Samus and Adam.

The story and portrayal of Samus are unfortunate, but I do not think it's a total disaster. Other M is a game I actually wonder if I would like more if it were any other IP or if I simply don't hate it because of my blind allegiance to the Metroid brand. I actually had fun with it and think it's a decent game!

The graphics are nice and the finishing moves that Samus does are so, so cool even a decade later. That's one aspect I'm glad MercurySteam grabbed from Other M for sure. I like a lot of the environments and think some of the boss fights (Phantoon, Ridley, and Goyagma) are well done, imposing, and a delight.

Could have done without the pixel hunts. Desperately needed for the game to have music at all, let alone that matched the pedigree of the series. Would have loved for the game to have been better so it would have sold better so us fans wouldn't have to wait interminably for new Metroid. Having said all of that, the game was a solid 7/10 for me at launch and I don't hate it. In fact, I replayed it a couple times but I don't see Nintendo remaking this one anytime soon. It will be left to dust. Sad.





Metroid Prime: Federation Force (2016)

This was the first Metroid game I hated on sight. It felt like a total slap in the face after such a long wait to get this weird, chibi squad shooter that I am confident nobody asked for. Well the sales indicated that and it made me worry that Metroid really was dead after this despite the teaser in the secret ending.

I'm probably one of a few people that not only bought Federation Force, but played through the whole thing. Sometimes alone, sometimes with randoms, and sometimes with one of my dearest friends who hated it so much he couldn't bear to continue.

If we knew that more Metroid was on the way, Federation Force would have felt harmless instead of egregious. Looking back on the game one year later, I can say I had some good times with it and enjoyed a lot of what was done. Sure, there were stock levels that were bland and uninspired, but there were also some really cool boss fights and actively interesting gimmicks among the dreck. The gameplay felt like Prime on 3DS and it worked wonderfully, which makes me wonder why we never got a port of any Prime games on New 3DS (would have been awesome)!

Federation Force is a harmless and decent little title that maybe shouldn't have been a Metroid game (chibi cuteness, almost no Samus AT ALL, squad-based shooter, no power-ups...how is this "Metroid" still?), but again it is innocuous and fun with friends. Recommended to some, not all.

EDIT: Oh and the Blast Ball diversion sucks. Did you want a slow version of Rocket League with no cars? Neither did I.



AM2R (2016)

THIS was the big Metroid game of 2016. An unbelievable achievement that I'm so glad Dr. M64 was able to get out before the C&Ds dropped. Any of you who have played this know how much work and time must have gone into this glorious and much needed remake of Return of Samus. Not only did it have the perfect physics of Zero Mission and beautiful assets, but the music and exposition was exactly what it would have been like if Nintendo made this during the GBA era. The new environments and QOL improvements were astounding and it needs to be played to be believed. I adore AM2R and will sing its praises forever. Love it love it love it.




Metroid: Samus Returns (2017)

Right now I am just eagerly awaiting this. I bought a New 3DS again after this was announced as I never expected I would need a 3DS system again and in the meantime I played all the DS Castlevanias and some other good stuff to tide me over. This is the game I have been waiting for and I'm thrilled it exists. MercurySteam has a poor track record, but I will be shocked if Samus Returns doesn't deliver. Friday can't get here fast enough!!


 

StarPhlox

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Didn't have enough space to post my series ranking, so here it is for those curious:


Zero Mission > Prime > Fusion > Super > Corruption > Echoes > Return of Samus > Metroid (NES) > Federation Force > Pinball > Other M > Hunters
 

Kthulhu

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Jesus OP. How long did it take you to type this?

Glad that the AM2R dev got recruited by the guys who make Ori. He did a pretty good job recreating Metroid 2, so hopefully he'll be a big help to them.
 

Sinh_Magnus

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I just beat the prime trilogy this year for the first time. Prime 1 and 2 were so good that makes me want to travel in time to punch me in my face for not playing them ten years ago.

Ironically, I did played Fusion and Zero mission when they were released.

Anyway, excited for Samus returns this week.
 

Alex_Mexico

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I just beat the prime trilogy this year for the first time. Prime 1 and 2 were so good that makes me want to travel in time to punch me in my face for not playing them ten years ago.

Ironically, I did played Fusion and Zero mission when they were released.

Anyway, excited for Samus returns this week.

Im the other way around. I wanna go back in time and punch me in the face for not playing Fusion and Zero when they were new (especially Zero).

I blame the subtitle Zero Mission on me skipping it. By putting the word "ZERO" I though it was a prequel. Had I known it was a remake of Metroid 1 I would've jumped at that shit so hard. I was already a fan of the GBA Castlevanias and of Metroid Prime 1, I dont know what happened to me that I skipped the GBA Metroids.
 

Servbot24

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My ranking:

Greatest video game of all time: Metroid Prime
2: Super Metroid
3: Metroid Fusion
4: Zero Mission
5: Metroid Prime 2
6: Metroid Prime 3
7: Metroid
8: Metroid II
Nice try: Hunters
Fuck you, Nintendo: Other M
*Nintendo stabs me in the chest and twists the knife while laughing maniacally*: Federation Force
 

Alex_Mexico

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Mar 13, 2014
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My ranking:

Greatest video game of all time: Metroid Prime
2: Super Metroid
3: Metroid Fusion
4: Zero Mission
5: Metroid Prime 2
6: Metroid Prime 3
7: Metroid
8: Metroid II
Nice try: Hunters
Fuck you, Nintendo: Other M
*Nintendo stabs me in the chest and twists the knife while laughing maniacally*: Federation Force

Flip Zero for Fusion and flip Prime 3 for 2 and you'd be correct.
 
Mar 3, 2011
39,534
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1. Super Metroid
2: Metroid Prime
3: Zero Mission
4: Metroid Prime 3
5: Metroid Prime 2
6: Fusion
7: Other M
8: Metroid
9: Metroid II
10: Hunters
11: Getting hit in the head with a cactus
12: Federation Force
 
Aug 3, 2013
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Great work, OP. Only thing missing is the Metroid Blast attraction in Nintendo Land. It's a "mini game" in name only. In reality, it's actually fairly long and plays like a much better execution of both the Other M perspective and the Federation Force/Prime Hunters multiplayer experiences. Highly recommend for Metroid fans.
 

Shift Breaker

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My ranking:

Greatest video game of all time: Metroid Prime
2: Super Metroid
3: Metroid Fusion
4: Zero Mission
5: Metroid Prime 2
6: Metroid Prime 3
7: Metroid
8: Metroid II
Nice try: Hunters
Fuck you, Nintendo: Other M
*Nintendo stabs me in the chest and twists the knife while laughing maniacally*: Federation Force
It says something about the strength of the Metroid series when anyone could rearrange the top six games on this list and I still couldn't really disagree.
 

SephLuis

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Great OP.

I'm just confused about the timeline, wasn't the Prime trilogy before Fusion ?

I thought that Fusion was the last in the timeline until Federation Force.
 

Bloodporne

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I've always wondered the following:

Can you play the Prime Trilogy on Wii with the original control scheme instead of the pointer controls? Well, Prime 1 and 2 that is.

I'd like to get it for completion's sake and for the graphical updates I guess, but can't say I'm a fan of Prime 3's pointer controls.
 

StarPhlox

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Great OP.

I'm just confused about the timeline, wasn't the Prime trilogy before Fusion ?

I thought that Fusion was the last in the timeline until Federation Force.

Thank you!!


I believe every game with "Prime" in the title takes place between Metroid/Zero Mission and Return of Samus/Samus Returns, but Federation Force may be where that changed since it was the "Samus in exile" timeline.
 

Klappdrachen

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I've always wondered the following:

Can you play the Prime Trilogy on Wii with the original control scheme instead of the pointer controls? Well, Prime 1 and 2 that is.

I'd like to get it for completion's sake and for the graphical updates I guess, but can't say I'm a fan of Prime 3's pointer controls.

You can't, sadly.

I believe every game with "Prime" in the title takes place between Metroid/Zero Mission and Return of Samus/Samus Returns, but Federation Force may be where that changed since it was the "Samus in exile" timeline.

That's correct.
 
Oct 8, 2014
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Wow!!! This is excellent!! I loved reading your thoughts on all the games and it was written wonderfully!!

I pretty much agree with everything you wrote except Hunters. I know I'm in the minority, but I didn't mind the SP. Maybe it's because I was impressed they got a 3D Metroid game on DS at all. And I loved the touch controls. I wish they kept it for Federation Force as an option.
 

Nocturnowl

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Between this and the vania thread you've been putting in work OP

I just finished a replay of Super Metroid after dilly dallying for months on it and then remembering that I should get it done before Samus Returns drops
Your opening paragraph for it in the OP pretty much hits my sentiments on it, amazing game that isn't actually at my top spot but damn do I appreciate how well it works.
 

Toxi

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May 29, 2013
41,538
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Great thread OP.

It's remarkable what a great variety of quality games we have in the Metroid series.

EDIT: Oh and the Blast Ball diversion sucks. Did you want a slow version of Rocket League with no cars? Neither did I.
Seriously. Blast Ball suuuuuuuuuuuucks.
 

Nocturnowl

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Hey now, Blast Ball was better than Lucio Ball in Overwatch at least am I right?

Controversy: I kinda wish I had played Federation Force, I was waiting on a bomba price that never actually happened since I guess NoE were sensible enough to not make too many copies.
 

Wanderer5

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Nice OP!

Thanks to not one but two Metroid games being revealed this last E3, I decided to really rekindle my love to this series before Samus Returns came out. Not only did I revisit Zero Mission (original GBA copy!), my first Metroid game which I still love to this day, but also finally got through Fusion on the 3DS, and had fallen in love with that one too, maybe even a bit more than Zero Mission. Either way, both are just fantastic.

Someday I will probably least revisit Prime 1 and finally get through Super, but in the meantime, I really hope Samus Returns turns out well.
 

VDenter

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Nice Thread OP. I disagree that Federation Force was harmless or fun for that matter but otherwise nice. I liked Hunters and yes even Other M better than it.
 

eliochip

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Can't wait to play Return of Samus. Zero Mission is also my favorite game in the series! The menu music is incredible.
 

Bloodporne

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I actually recently replayed Prime 3 and it's still a great game after a little bit of distance from it.

It certainly has some foul missteps like basically the entire first hour feeling like you're on a leash, but overall, it's a great game and Sky Town is a fantastic area.

Amazing OST
 

nynt9

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Jun 7, 2013
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I think the Metroid fanbase has become too sour and divided 😔

And we only have Nintendo to blame for that.

Good writeups OP, even though I disagree with some. I think Super is the best, and Other M/FF are abominations for different reasons, but those have been gone over by others many times through the years, and it's not like anyone's gonna change anyone's mind at this point.

I thought Hunters was pretty cool, especially for when it came out. It was mind blowing to play something like that on a handheld back then.

Fusion is really good as well. I really like the atmosphere, if only the cutscenes were skippable for the sake of repeat playthroughs.

Zero Mission is fine, but the stealth segment near the end is incredibly tedious.

I loved the Prime games back in the day, but I feel less and less inclined to return to them these days. The awkward controls, slow pace incessant backtracking make them a bit unappealing. I still love them, but the Metroid formula definitely works best when 2D, I think. Maybe if they remastered the Prime games with modern controls they'd be a lot more bearable.

AM2R is fantastic, and the upcoming remake does not look very promising to me. I'm not a fan of the free aiming, which makes combat more involved, and a melee counterattack feels antithetical to the Metroid formula to me. It feels like a Mirror's Edge Catalyst situation: "The combat in the series isn't the best, so let's emphasize it even further!". Also, I don't trust Sakamoto after Other M, and Lords of Shadow 2 was one of my biggest gaming disappointments so Mercury Steam have a lot to prove as well. I'm sure the game will be decent, but I don't know if it can live up to my standard of the series.

Despite all my complaints, it's still my favorite series. That's why I'm so critical of it.
 

Wamb0wneD

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This is a beautiful OP. Appreciate the effort you put into it!

Prime 2 is my favourite one to this day and I jumped out of my seat letting out a little cry like an idiot when Prime 4 got announced.

I really hope they can deliver something aking to the first 2 Prime games.

Will get Samus Returns as well but not sure If that will eb any time soon.

I think the Metroid fanbase has become too sour and divided ��
Nah, most people agree that Other M was a mess and that Federation Force was so badly timed that at that point in time people were thinking NIntendo is trolling them.

Look at Zelda, Tomb Raider or Final Fantasy if you want to see divided fanbases.
 

FiveSide

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Great OP. Very fun read!

I've played most of the games in this franchise and personally I think Super Metroid is the king. There are only two games I've played in my entire life that I consider perfect games. Super Metroid is one.

Metroid Prime is very good in the sense that it transitioned Super Metroid into 3D (not a small feat, by any means), but it didn't bring much new to the table other than the scanning, which wasn't all that great. Kind of broke the flow of the game at times. An excellent game, but for me it seemed like a safe conversion of the template into 3D, rather than an interesting new take on the formula. I felt this way about Ocarina of Time as well, and it's the reason why I prefer both Metroid Prime 2 and Majora's Mask to their immediate predecessors.

As a comparison, look at how Super Mario 64 fundamentally changed the nature of Mario games when it successfully brought the franchise into 3D. My feelings about Metroid Prime were reinforced later when Resident Evil 4 released and was the kind of revolutionary approach to a classic franchise that I was looking for.

Hunters is underappreciated though. Great fun with local multiplayer on the DS.

Day 1 for Samus Returns. And I'll be picking up a Switch either for Metroid Prime 4 or SMT HD, whichever comes out first.
 

Mael

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Oct 23, 2009
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???
FF is after Prime 3 and Samus appears.

There is nothing that points to FF being after Metroid 2.
And from a quick look at wiki, it seems like the Federation send Samus on a mission in the middle of the game so she's clearly not on the run.
Fuck that timeline in the OP btw.
Utterly needless to branch the franchise in 2 like that.
 

Ezalc

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I really hope they eventually do post-Fusion metroid so they can fix the fusion suit. Shit looks like cut up spandex over her normal suit. So awful. Game was good shit though.
 

D.Lo

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Cool OP.

I agree with most of your take, except AM2R which while very nice for a fan game is still quite janky IMO. The non-stolen assets/animation frames are a clear step down from the real ones. It would be middle of the road for an indie Metroid-a-like, and far below the real 2D Metroid games that inspired it (SM, MF, MZM).

Not that I hate it but I just find praise for it to be over the top and probably coloured by it being a fan game. It is GOOD for a fan game, but that still only gets it to mediocre if it were a commercial game.
 

Freddo

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This thread made me realise it's, uhhh, weird? that I still consider myself to be a massive Metroid fan even though I haven't played any Metroid game since Metroid Prime 2 despite having an unopened copy of Metroid Prime Trilogy for 7 or 8 years. I do look forward to Metroid: Samus Returns later this week very much though, and have the Legacy Edition pre-ordered.

I think the Metroid fanbase has become too sour and divided 😔
The more games a series have, the more divided the fanbase seem to become. Don't know how many threads I've read over the years where different opinions of Final Fantasy, The Elder Scrolls and Fallout clashes against eachother, just to mention a few. That said, the Metroid fanbase isn't really that much divided, is it? The vast majority seem to love Super Metroid and Metroid Prime, and dislike Other M (which I personally can't really talk much about since I just avoided it after all the negative buzz).
 

Bronetta

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I was 15 when I got my first job I used my first paycheque to buy a GBA SP and Metroid Fusion. It was also my first Metroid game. Fusion was a masterpiece to me. So much atmosphere and intense action.

I picked up Zero Mission soon after and it was even better. Played Super Metroid some years later on Wii U. Haven't played the Prime trilogy yet but I have it on WiiU.

Picking up Samus Returns on release day. As you can tell Im a big fan of the 2D games.
 

kunonabi

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This thread made me realise it's, uhhh, weird? that I still consider myself to be a massive Metroid fan even though I haven't played any Metroid game since Metroid Prime 2 despite having an unopened copy of Metroid Prime Trilogy for 7 or 8 years. I do look forward to Metroid: Samus Returns later this week very much though, and have the Legacy Edition pre-ordered.


The more games a series have, the more divided the fanbase seem to become. Don't know how many threads I've read over the years where different opinions of Final Fantasy, The Elder Scrolls and Fallout clashes against eachother, just to mention a few. That said, the Metroid fanbase isn't really that much divided, is it? The vast majority seem to love Super Metroid and Metroid Prime, and dislike Other M (which I personally can't really talk much about since I just avoided it after all the negative buzz).

Not that weird. Metroid is my favorite nintendo franchise and one of absolute favorites in general but I actually hate like half of the games.
 

Wamb0wneD

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I was 15 when I got my first job I used my first paycheque to buy a GBA SP and Metroid Fusion. It was also my first Metroid game. Fusion was a masterpiece to me. So much atmosphere and intense action.

I picked up Zero Mission soon after and it was even better. Played Super Metroid some years later on Wii U. Haven't played the Prime trilogy yet but I have it on WiiU.

Picking up Samus Returns on release day. As you can tell Im a big fan of the 2D games.

Oh no baby, what is you doin???
 

Vampirolol

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Mar 21, 2012
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Great, great OP. Curious to see how the community will react to Samus Returns.

My first Metroid was Echoes. I really liked that game but it was Prime that later made me fall in love with the series.