Nintendo Is Planning A Future For Both 2D And 3D Metroid

Nintendo Is Planning A Future For Both 2D And 3D Metroid

Time to get your hopes up, Metroid fans. The series no-showed E3, but you might be heartened by what the men overseeing Nintendo's game development had to say about it.

Cutting to the chase, they say they're talking internally about what to do about the series and that they'd like to talk about what's next for Metroid — for fans of the 2D games and the first-person Prime games — in "the near future."

You might think this is mostly obvious, but Metroid, as Nintendo franchises go, seems to have faded from being in active sequel rotation. A new Mario might be about as certain as a new sunrise, but a new Metroid game hasn't brightened anyone's day since 2010. There hasn't been a 2D Metroid since 2004.

The following is the conversation I just had about the series with Shigeru Miyamoto, who runs Nintendo's EAD development group, and Shinya Takahashi, who runs Nintendo's SPD group which oversees everything from Smash Bros. to the new Amiibo project to... that series with the female bounty hunter who can roll into a ball.

This was part of a longer interview covering other Nintendo topics that I'll be sharing in the coming days. The questions were asked in English; the answers delivered in Japanese.

Nintendo Is Planning A Future For Both 2D And 3D Metroid

Stephen Totilo, Kotaku: I can't ask you what's going on with Pikmin, because you've answered that for the last couple of years in a row. I can't ask you what's going on with Star Fox, because you answered that this year. So... what is going on with Metroid?

[everyone laughs]

Shigeru Miyamoto, Nintendo: The original creators of Metroid and the director who was the director of the Metroid Prime games who worked under me when I was producing those both now work for Mr. Takahashi, so you'll have to ask him.

Shinya Takahashi, Nintendo: So it has been a while since we released the last one and we're having discussions internally about what we can do next. So at this point we have two different types of Metroid games. We have the Prime style of Metroid game and we have the more traditional style of Metroid game. We feel that we do need to take care of both of these styles of play. And the hope is that at some point in the near future we'll be able to share something about them.

Bill Trinen, Nintendo — who had been translating for our interview: Mr. Miyamoto was prompting him to say, 'Which of these two styles do you like best?'

Totilo: It's been so long that I miss both of them. They're both great, but it's been a long time. The [2D] Metroid people don't really much anymore. The only one like that recently was a Batman game made for the 3DS and the Vita that was created by some guys who used to be at Retro. So I miss that style of game. As for Metroid Prime, nobody at all makes anything like that. So in other words, if you don't do it, no one will.

Miyamoto: This falls into your question before of remaking the same franchises.

Totilo: I'll get back to that in a second, but which of the two styles do you guys like better? The 2D or Metroid Prime?

Takahashi: I like them both. They both have a different style of appeal.

Miyamoto: I have the New Super Mario Bros. series [for 2D], so I like Prime. I think there's still a lot of new things that could be done with the Prime series.

OK? So Metroid and Samus haven't been just relegated to Smash-roster status, nor does it seem like either beloved style of Metroid game is being relegated to history's dustbin.

It sounds like there's still hope for new 2D and even new Prime games in the future. In due time. Nintendo's rolling out plenty of other sequels and brand-new games in the mean time.

Look for heaps more from my interview with both men in, uh, the near future (probably a nearer future than theirs!).


    The thought of more Prime style games makes me excited... i know @markserrels would be too!

    The fact that they're talking about it and are happy to acknowledge the existence of the series and its future is heartening.
    Give me another Prime game for Wii U and I can die happy.

    I would love for them to take the Prime series and just build on that. Having never played the original 2D Metroid games, I definitely feel more familiar with the 3D style, that and believe 3D is better able to deliver an immersive exploration experience. Just the amount of things they could do with a 3D world and the gamepad...

      If you're interested in the 2D Metroid's you should take a look at Metroid: Zero Mission. It's their most recent 2D title and is an enhanced remake of the original Metriod so it's a great entry point.

        Zero Mission and Super Metroid (SNES) are definitely titles you don't wanna miss out on if you want to get into the 2D Metroids.

        Absolutely amazing, nostalgic games; for me at least.

    I think it does them well to give Metroid a break every now and then. The wait and uncertainty drives me nuts but the series just isn't designed for continuous back to back sequels. I'm really hoping for a Prime collection. I know people will consider it a cop-out and heavily critise Nintendo for another Wind Waker HD move but I really want to play Prime 1-3 on the Wii U.

      I agree completely. I've held off replaying the Prime series (for no particular reason) and the prospect of them getting the Wind Waker HD treatment is certainly tantalizing.
      Chozo Ruins in 1080p would just about blow my mind, I suspect.

      I agree with DogMan. I have never played the prime series at all an looking for a wii copy on ebay yields rather expensive results unfortunately, it would be nice if they did re-release it for the Wii U just for those people that didn't get a chance the first time around to play it.
      Or Game cube virtual console for 1 and 2 at least (as you can still find wii 3 around)?

      You can. Just get the trilogy on Wii.

        I have a lot of trouble playing standard definition 3D games on the big screen. It's really frustrating because the GameCube has a ton of games that still look fantastic but it feels like either my eyes or my TV is about to die. I've got games like Metroid Prime, Mario Sunshine and Luigi's Mansion here that look amazing even today that I can't stand to look at.
        I think that's why the GameCube is so ripe for HD remakes. They made a ton of first and second party games that never really felt like they were hitting the limits of how detailed the assets could be. You can just up the resolution in Luigi's Mansion and it's on par with an XBOX One or PS4 game. With Fable Anniversary they had to go through everything and turn two crudely modeled trees, a fence and a hill into a properly detailed environment, where Wind Waker HD had all that detail in it to begin with.
        It's a really interesting generation to look at that way. I mean you don't see detail like the visor reflection in Metroid Prime that often even though the newer hardware can handle that like it was nothing. Occasionally we'll see something like that with progressive suit damage in Arkham Asylum but it's rarer than you'd think it should be, especially when you consider how much effort goes into stuff like realistic rain drop light reflections.

        Plus a big part of the draw for Metroid Prime on the Wii U would be ditching motion controls in Metroid Prime 3. Not a fan of those. =P

          Plus a big part of the draw for Metroid Prime on the Wii U would be ditching motion controls in Metroid Prime 3. Not a fan of those. =P

          Amen brother

          I got the Prime Trilogy after playing Prime 1-3 on their respective consoles and then I re-realised why I did multiple play-throughs of Prime 1 and 2 on the GC, but never 3 on the Wii... MOTION CONTROLS...

          I didn't mind the control scheme of Prime Hunters (DS) however. Obscure to begin with, but the stylus control was responsive and easily an alternative to dual thumbsticks. That said, nothing can beat the simplistic yet effective controls of the GC versions of Prime 1 & 2.

          Last edited 13/06/14 6:59 pm

            Yeah, I didn't mind the controls in Hunters. It took a bit of getting used to and even after I was used to it they didn't feel fantastic (in part because I'm left handed) but they worked fine. It really makes me wonder why they didn't do twin sticks on the 3DS. I guess they just didn't want to over complicate things.

    So at this point we have two different types of Metroid games. We have the Prime style of Metroid game and we have the more traditional style of Metroid game.I love how Other M doesn't exist to them at all :P

    But honestly, I would love to see another Metroid game with Other M's style of play. I just wouldn't want it to take a gigantic steaming turd on the timeline like that one did.

    Also Metroid 2 badly needs an awesome remake, like we got in Zero Mission.

    I'd be willing to bet that the 2d game will only be released on 3ds and 2ds :( I want it on WiiU! If it hits both platforms, or WiiU at least, I'll be like a pig in mud!

      The new Yoshi & Kirby games on WiiU are gloriously 2D...

        yeah I saw that! Just hoping this one will make it too! Just got that feeling due to the 2.5d zelda game only being on 3ds. Seems like the ones I REALLY want to play, aren't on WiiU :((

    Just keep Sakamoto the hell away from it, and I'll enjoy it. I really don't want Another M. Bonus points if Retro are making it.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now