certain, Super Metroid was the high point of the series back in 1994 — but there have been about a twelve other Metroid games since then. Does it still hold that boast deed ? And if not, which Metroid venture has dethroned it ? Read on .
14. Metroid: Other M
Scraping the dead-last barrel-bottom of the Metroid franchise, we have the massively disappoint Metroid : other M. It ’ s not actually a regretful crippled, but it ’ s a devastatingly atrocious apologize for a Metroid sequel. Had Nintendo shipped this under an unrelated claim ( something like … “ Robo-Lady ’ s Surly Shooting Adventure in Space ” ), it would have been fine. But as an undertake to revitalize a beloved franchise, it demonstrated a shock failure to capture what actually draws fans to the series .
other M transforms Metroid into a highly linear, fast-paced taw with few opportunities for real exploration, no sense of exemption, and a painfully contrived fictional character progress device. There ’ sulfur no looking to the plotline to redeem the game, either. As an military action game built around quick reflexes and evasion, the game has its charms, so far the narrative is irredeemable. It casually reduces heroine Samus Aran from the stoic, hyper-competent warrior fans love to a bratty, faint girl-child. other M turned out to be such a massive misfire and a flop with fans that it much killed the series : Nintendo ’ s only Metroid output in the ten since has been a individual spinoff and a alone remake.
13. Metroid Prime Hunters: First Hunt
(Nintendo DS, 2004)
once upon a time, video game systems shipped with games packed in. Nintendo DS did not. alternatively, it shipped with a bantam show of a Metroid game that wouldn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate arrive for another year and a half. A pared-down version of Metroid Prime Hunters, First Hunt consists of three bantam, bite-sized scenarios set in environments drawn from the final bet on. It ’ s a tutorial-teaser for Hunters rather than an actual game in its own properly. It ’ mho properly enough, but there ’ s about no meaning to it .
12. Metroid Prime Hunters
(Nintendo DS, 2006)
Nintendo made a big consider about Metroid Prime not being a “ first-person shooter. ” This was partially to assuage the fears of fans who assumed the serial was going to transforms into a unmindful run-and-gun game, and partially because, well, Prime actually didn ’ t focus much on shooting. Hunters, on the early hand, was precisely the kind of game that everyone expected the Prime titles to be before they played them. Players take command of Samus in a single-player political campaign or toy as one of respective different bounty hunters in a neck and neck competitive mode, running around claustrophobic estrange environments and attempting to gun down angstrom many other rivals as potential .
It ’ second very well for what it is. however, “ what it is ” turned out to be a generic multiplayer shot wearing Metroid clothing, running on a deplorably underpowered hand-held system, centered around the use of a awkward virtual touch-screen dominance pad. Hunters is basically a smartphone spinoff that shipped respective years before such things even existed. Points for prescience, then, but none for giving players a proper, classical Metroid game for DS .
11. Metroid Prime: Federation Force
(Nintendo 3DS, 2016)
a lot like Metroid : other M, Federation Force represents above all else a enormous failure by Nintendo to read the proverbial room. Metroid fans were despairing for a new game in 2016, having gone six years without a follow-up to rectify the wrongs of other M. But Federation Force absolutely wasn ’ triiodothyronine that jesus. Rather than further the narrative of Samus Aran in a sprawl alone venture, it alternatively centered on a team of generic space marines in a mission-based multiplayer shooter … on 3DS, of all systems. It besides has a reasonably cockamamie ocular dash that speaks to a younger audience than the harden veterans who love Metroid most. Nintendo presumably hoped to draw in a younger consultation, but the conclusion result was a game that spoke to no one .
Yet weird and misguided as its basic guise for universe may be, Federation Force international relations and security network ’ triiodothyronine bad ! It looks capital considering the platform, and it offers a variety of mission objectives along with some excellent first-person team-based battle. Its biggest shortcomings come from the fact that its trouble and design don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate scale based on the number of active players, and from that its big end-game twist revolves around an inordinately anserine plot exploitation involving Samus. Flawed but fun, Federation Force feels like it could have led to better things if Nintendo had targeted it a bit more cautiously .
10. Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
Samus ’ second out in 3D abandons much of the cohesion and sense of purpose that drove its harbinger. The master Prime suffered from what were ultimately fairly excusable issues, but Echoes exacerbated all of those issues and threw in problems of its own make on top .
Echoes revolves around a duality-based device that might work on newspaper but falls flat in practice. here, players have to navigate a world divided into dark and light zones, a concept that defines every last column inch of the game. Venturing into the darkness global drains Samus ’ energy, and sealed creatures within each kingdom can only be destroyed with specific expendable ammunition. Things do become less punishing toward the end of the game, as Samus finds tools to help mitigate the effects of shifting universes, but the travel to reaching that decimal point is so exhausting most players never get there. It doesn ’ t serve that Echoes is probably the individual most challenge Metroid game ever made flush without the reality-shifting elements, with some of the trickiest bosses in the stallion franchise to conquer. Taxing, exhausting, and long-winded throughout most of its running length, Echoes is one of those sequels that demonstrates the “ unmanageable irregular album ” phenomenon in carry through .
9. Metroid Prime Pinball
(Nintendo DS, 2005)
Samus Aran ’ s merely outing on Nintendo DS besides Hunters and First Hunt turned out to be even less of a traditional Metroid game than those two. In fact, it was so far removed from the platonic ideal of “ Metroid ” that it stands up a distribute better to scrutiny. Metroid Prime Pinball continues a long-running tradition of Nintendo franchises spinning off into hand-held pinball sims, which have ranged from brilliant ( Pokémon Pinball ) to weirdly disappoint ( Mario Pinball Land ). Prime Pinball a pretty fun take on the venerable arcade pastime, and it tied about kind of makes feel within the context of Metroid ; after all, one of Samus ’ s trademark powers is the ability to duck into a “ morph ball ” form and roll around, correct ?
Metroid Prime Pinball makes great use of the Nintendo DS, besides, as the system ’ s evenly sized double screens allow players to enjoy playing on a full vertical table without the need to scroll or flip between screens. The game does have a fairly surly look to it, lacking the trademark luminosity and graphic colors that made the Prime games so delightful to play, but it incorporate the motifs and themes of Metroid Prime effectively all the way down to the inevitable pinball-based boss fights. An odd excursion, but an enjoyable one .
8. Metroid II: Return of Samus
(Game Boy, 1992)
Metroid ’ s first sequel immediately took the serial in an unexpected focus : Onto a hand-held chopine with less horsepower than the system that hosted the original. still, no one knew the Game Boy ’ s strengths and weaknesses like Nintendo ’ s R & D1 division — the creators of both the Metroid series and the Game Boy hardware — so the pair turned out to be a forward step for Samus Aran careless .
Metroid II did a great distribute to flesh out the series ’ population, exploring the origins and evolution of the eponymous space monsters, and its minimalist narrative set the stage for the brilliant Super Metroid. That said, Return of Samus does suffer from a few luminary issues. Samus looks great, but she ’ randomness huge on the bantam Game Boy screen, and the chunky proportions of the graphics crowd the action and hamper exploration. Planet SR-388 besides isn ’ triiodothyronine closely as thoughtfully structured as other settings that have appeared throughout the Metroid franchise, and the black and white graphics make the corridors both confusing and repetitive. It ’ s a remarkable feat of a Game Boy game, but it however stands as the weakest of the effect Metroid titles .
7. Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
The finale of the initial Metroid Prime trilogy wrapped on a slenderly less torment note than Echoes. Corruption took a dramatically different approach to the classic Metroid structure, breaking Samus ’ venture into a series of discrete environments spread across multiple planets — exchangeable to Fusion ’ s standalone outer space post sectors, but without that game ’ mho opportunities for unexpected intersections and the satisfy discovery of mystery passageways connecting the different areas.
Corruption ’ s approach by and large works, though spreading the quest across then many disparate settings does strain the plausibility of the numerous navigation puzzles. thankfully, Corruption manages to maintain a bracing enough footstep that you rarely have time to sit down and contemplate its more asinine moments. Samus finds herself constantly racing against ( and often battling ) some of her equal bounty hunters and even teaming up with the Galactic Federation to deal with a firm current of sci-fi threats. It ’ s the franchise ’ mho first proper attempt to combine the trademark Metroid stylus with the fast-paced legal action of other sci-fi shooter franchises, and the attempt pans out a distribute better hera than it does a few years late in other M .
(Famicom Disk System/NES, 1986/1987)
At launching, the original Metroid was Nintendo ’ s biggest, boldest lead on the newly-forged chopine gunman genre. By mod standards, it ’ south far from a perfect experience. But it however holds up to the ravages of time thanks to the enormous care with which its bantam team constructed the whole thing. surely Metroid suffers from opaque objectives and critical paths that tend to be hidden a little besides efficiently within its close walls and floors. The limit visuals and bare backgrounds can make it tough to keep track of Samus ’ s precise whereabouts at any given clock time. You need to spend a little besides much grinding on enemies to top off Samus ’ health. The finical password system turns the procedure of recording data into a degree school handwriting text. minor frustrations abound here .
To balance out these complaints, the original Metroid presents you with a sprawling, open-ended global and the incredible abilities you need to conquer it. here we see one of Nintendo ’ s greatest achievements : Samus ’ tools double over as weapons, indeed that as she grows more herculean she besides gains the ability to traverse more of the universe. This creates a brilliant, addictive gameplay loop topology. Oh, and the big plot bend at the end, the one where legendary top-tier armored bounty hunter Samus Aran turns out to be a lady ? That holds up pretty well these days, excessively .
5. Metroid: Samus Returns
(Nintendo 3DS, 2017)
The second remake in the Metroid line, this one for a game that truly needed revisiting to bring it more into line with the series ’ standards and vision. Samus Returns reworks Metroid II into a post-Metroid Fusion gamble, maintaining the master bet on ’ south plotline, the general layout of SR-388, and the need to face off against quickly evolving metroids on their turf. But the overall flow of the venture is radically changed here, with insistent caverns taking on a dense, more puzzle-oriented find with an stress on acquiring weapons and gear in ordering to delve deeply into the planet. Likewise, the once flat metroid battles now play out as challenge, tactical battles emphasizing counterattacks and evasion — something that even carries over into basic playing period .
While this is undoubtedly a more involve game than the original, it errs on the side of over-complicating things. Unlike the best Metroid entries, Samus Returns is all complex corridor-crawling and monster-battling, and its reliance on counterattack-based fight renders our heroine queerly passive while bogging down the action as you wait for enemies to strike inaugural so you can parry them. There ’ sulfur never an opportunity to breathe easy, and the rhythm of the game fails to convey a ace that Samus has grown knock-down entirely to move along to face even greater threats. It ’ s a good and matter to take on a flaw Game Boy creation, but it introduces its own worry quirks in the march of bringing things up to code .
4. Metroid Fusion
(Game Boy Advance, 2002)
Metroid Fusion was the foremost of several entries in the series to experiment with the concept of taking away Samus ’ incredible powers and putting her on the defensive, and it ’ mho even the best necessitate on that theme to date. It ’ s besides a profoundly dissentious game as a result, as it strips away the freedom and sense of discovery that defined the first three chapters of the series. But that ’ s the whole point of fusion : It begins by disempowering Samus, forcing her to take orders from a calculator that locks her into restrictive spaces, all to emphasize the importance of the exemption she finally gains once she breaks out of the boundaries of the space station in which the action is set .
further emphasizing Samus ’ reduced department of state here is a literal X factor that roams the station : SA-X, a transcript of Samus bear from a cryptic sentient virus codenamed X. SA-X serves as a changeless deadly admonisher of how unstoppable Samus used to be and how flimsy she ’ s become. Throughout most of the game, Samus is forced to flee meekly whenever she encounters SA-X, a force even more overwhelm than the massive bosses you face throughout the station. Yet choking back your pride to escape these encounters plainly makes the endgame all the more meet — you restore Samus ’ true potency over the run of her quest, ultimately facing off against and defeating her clone in the game ’ s climactic battle. On top of that, Fusion streamlines Super Metroid ’ south sometimes inelegant control system to work within the GBA ’ s limits, adds all-new abilities to Samus ’ repertoire, and allows players a glimpse of her inner monologue without diminishing her the way other M does. It ’ s a apt ( and frequently misconstrue ) classic .
3. Metroid Prime
Released day-and-date with Fusion, Metroid Prime innovated in the other focus from its counterpart. Where fusion used antique 2D graphics and mechanics to present an entirely different kind of Metroid gamble, Prime used tried-and-true gameplay as a initiation for a technological chemise. just as The Legend of Zelda : Ocarina of Time is a thinly veiled rework of its harbinger A Link to the Past, Metroid Prime traces the the outlines of Super Metroid to ensure the series ’ move into 3D is supported by faultless underpinnings. And it works — in fact, Prime is at its worst when it strays excessively army for the liberation of rwanda from the Super Metroid rule, as with the pace-killing drudgery of the late-game Relic fetch pursuit .
Most importantly, developer Retro Studios managed to avoid allowing Metroid ’ sulfur move into first-person action from reducing the game to a twitchy gunman, respecting the serial ’ cerebral nature from begin to finish. While there ’ second batch of shooting to be done here, it ’ sulfur barely, say, Quake or Unreal ( thanks to the game ’ s reliance on an automatic lock-on sport ). In fact, Prime probably has the lowest proportion of combat to navigation and exploration in the entire series. interim, the bright Scan Visor feature plays an essential role in battle ( seeking out enemy weaknesses ) while besides allowing players to drink in all manner of world-building details — and what a global it is ! Metroid Prime is one of the rare early ’ 00s 3D games that still looks gorgeous thanks to its streamlined design and bright consumption of color. Oh, and all the sleep together details it contains, like being able to glimpse Samus ’ reflection on the inside of her bill whenever lightning flashes. Metroid apparently shouldn ’ t have worked as a first-person shooter, but Prime pulled it off, and it remains a high-water marker for the format .
2. Metroid: Zero Mission
(Game Boy Advance, 2004)
In may respects, Zero Mission is the strongest, smartest, and sharpest of all the Metroid games. All it truly has working against it is a lack of originality. As a remake of the original Metroid, Zero Mission covers a lot of the like prime that Super Metroid had already cased out sol expertly a decade before. It expands on the NES game ’ s labyrinths in ways that feel familiar and ends with an unusual stealth sequence that demystifies the enigmatic Wrecked Ship area of Super Metroid. It besides has a strange art style as a solution of a mid-development creative shift that changed the overall look from cartoonish to traditional but didn ’ thymine bring all the existing background scenery into line with the fresh manner .
away from these humble annoyances, however, you ’ five hundred be distressed to find defect in Zero Mission. Its dev team took meticulous notes about all the things that didn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate quite function in previous entries ranging from the original game all the manner through Fusion and Prime. in truth, you could credibly best report Zero Mission as a hybrid of Super Metroid and Fusion ( despite the fact that it ’ s a remake of a unlike crippled wholly ) ; it maintains the bouncing pace and streamlined control schema of Fusion, but it does a much better job of stepping out of the actor ’ s way and letting them figure out how to progress. Zero Mission points out newfangled objectives on the in-game map, but more often than not you ’ ll find yourself taking devious routes through chartless territory to get there. much of this involves an all-new region called Chozodia, which provides much of the game ’ s mystery and introduces enigmatic tidbits about Samus ’ setting in the process .
Zero Mission gives Samus a amply update arsenal, including Power Bombs and a ledge grip skill. It reinvents the original Metroid ’ s lackluster knob encounters, introduces newfangled foes, and provides far greater incentive for broad exploration of the global. familiar scenery takes on a newly spirit when reworked to include complex navigation puzzles. even that stealth sequence manages not to be dead weight by by rights presenting the epilogue as a keystone moment in Samus ’ own personal travel. It ’ s a gold standard for video recording game remakes even 15 years later.
1. Super Metroid
(Super NES, 1994)
One of the high-water marks of the 16-bit era, Super Metroid introduced players to a near-perfect synthesis of game mechanics, earth design, and embedded narrative. loosely built on the bones of the original Metroid, Super Metroid sent players back to the tunnels and tubes of planet Zebes. This return key trip was no mere rehash, however. While the overall arrangement of Super Metroid ’ south underground maze close resembles the broad strokes of its NES harbinger, here that environment been both fleshed out and greatly expanded. Hidden passages and navigational puzzles play an even bigger character of Samus ’ quest, but now they ’ rhenium less obtuse in nature thanks to the addition of new quality-of-life elements, like a bill that can scan for secrets and an in-game auto-mapping feature .
The world of Zebes teems with detail, hinting at a much larger history but leaving details of its mysteries — things like the apparitional prototype of metroids on the monitors of the wrecked transport, or the dead explorer outside of Kraid ’ s lair — to the musician ’ south resource. Unexpected secrets abound, ranging from cagey shortcuts the developers hid in plain sight to oblique alternate mechanisms to defeat bosses. meanwhile, the primary throughline of the quest tells a surprisingly moving story that follows immediately on the heels of Metroid II and unfolds entirely in mime. Samus ’ travel builds her into a near-invincible engine of destruction, pushes her to the edge of frustration careless of that exponent, and ends with a bright catharsis of plain destruction .
The flow and plan of Super Metroid change from area to area, from the at leisure subaqueous exploration that defines Maridia to the intense, oppressive natural process that propels Samus through the square loop of Ridley ’ s lair. Super Metroid is one of those rare games that doesn ’ t take a single fake measure, and its failings ultimately boil down to a matter of taste : Samus ’ floaty forward pass physics, the preciseness required for wall-jumping, the way the game occasionally leaves players to their own devices in order to find the way forward. Dozens and dozens of games have looked to Super Metroid for design inspiration, but Nintendo ’ s masterpiece remains matchless .