I Am Thirsty As Hell For A New Metroid Game

There’s absolutely no reason, months before its release, for anyone to hate a game like Metroid Prime: Federation Force.

Long-time Metroid producer Kensuke Tanabe is overseeing the project. The development team, Next Level Games, has a stellar record. Luigi’s Mansion 2 was world class. Punch Out!! on the Wii was practically flawless. We’re talking about a team of developers with a proven history of reinventing fondly remembered Nintendo franchises.

The truth: we don’t really have an idea of how Metroid Prime: Federation Force will work; how it will play, how it will work in the real world. We know very little about it.

But already. We hate it. How strange is that?

Pretty strange.

But it’s an impulse I understand and empathise with. Why hate a game we know so little about?

The answer is simple: Federation Force not the game we’re hungry for. It’s the opposite of that. And after such a sustained amount of time waiting for a ‘proper’ Metroid game, Federation Force feels like a cruel joke.


Think about Metroid. Think about what defines it.

-- Isolation

-- Interconnected worlds

-- Exploration

-- Atmosphere

-- Progression

Metroid Prime: Federation Force subverts almost everything that defines Metroid.

It’s a co-operative game, so that sense of brutal, cruel isolation: gone.

It’s divided into the three different planets, and each planet is divided into separate missions – there goes the idea of an interconnected world.

We’ve been told that the game focuses more on shooting as opposed to exploration, so there goes another tenet of the series.

Atmosphere: Federation Force is supposed to represent an expansion of the Metroid universe, but that in itself feels strange. A large part of the mystique of Metroid is the mystery, of leaving thing unsaid, unexplored. Clumsily expanding a universe is a sure fire way to make it feel underdeveloped and small. There’s a reason why Metroid: Other M is reviled while Metroid Prime and Super Metroid are series highpoints.

So what do we have left really? What is going to make Metroid Prime: Federation Force feel like a Metroid game?

Um…

I.

Don’t.

Know.

Here’s the problem. There hasn’t been a ‘proper’ Metroid game since Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. Not on the 3DS, not on the Wii U. Nothing. Metroid: Other M was… something else. It was an experiment. A terrible, failed experiment. It sucked. As a Metroid game, it sucked.

Eight years have passed. Nothing. Not even close. We haven’t even been able to replace that Metroid ‘feeling’ with other games on other consoles. The Arkham series? Kinda. Not quite. A number of other 2D pretenders? Not the same. Some games managed to channel certain elements of the Metroid ‘package’ but there is nothing out there quite like it and I, for one, am goddamn famished.

I am hungry -- thirsty as hell -- for a proper Metroid game. I see no other way of putting it.


Federation Force is not the kind of game that’s gonna quench that thirst. That’s the overwhelming problem here. After years of waiting, we get this game? It has Metroid on the logo, but it doesn’t really look or feel like a Metroid game.

The timing is terrible. No-one would be complaining about Federation Force is Metroid Prime had come out yesterday, or last year for that matter. Everyone would be happy with this curious little diversion. Pointless, entitled metaphor with no connection to reality here: we are the barbarians at the gate. LET THEM HAVE CAKE comes the cry. We don’t want fucking cake! We want a Metroid game. Jesus H Christ. How hard is that to understand?

It’s sort of hilarious. Nintendo’s greatest strength and weakness is its ability to ignore absolutely everyone, including its own fan-base. In the past I have celebrated that gift, because honestly: what the hell do we know? We’re the type of people who said the Wii was a terrible idea, that touch controls on a handheld were doomed to failure.

But Metroid. I’m right about Metroid, surely? Surely. This hunger is real, right?

Because that experience, that unique feeling, it’s missing from our lives. I want it back.


Comments

    I don't *hate* as much as not being interested.

    Disappointed there won't be a proper Metroid for a while. At least there's Axiom Verge.

    Spot on Mark. The concept is sound, but the timing was abso-freaking McTerrible.

    I'd also settle for a new Shadow Complex instead. :)

      I am so desperate for a new Shadow Complex game. One of my favourites of last gen.

      Unfortunately there's too much money to be made in mobile gaming i.e. Infinity Blade

      On the topic of Metroidvanias, it's such a shame that Konami screwed up Castlevania HD ... could have been great.

    I was super keen on motion controls until I actually used them. Love it in Wii Sports & Mario Party, loathed it in everything else :-(

    Agree with you here 100%, Mark!
    I feel like Metroid Prime: Federation Force is trying to do the same thing that Halo 3: ODST did...and that is...."Oh you want a Halo game? Here's a Halo game for you...."
    ...and while I was never a fan of the Halo series...even I could tell that game was just balls dressed up to make $$$$.

    So I heard a lot of mixed reviews on Axiom Verge, which has meant that I haven't pulled the trigger on it yet. So are there any other avid Metroid fanpeoples that can help a brother out? Is it worth grabbing??

    I adore the gameplay and design of Other M. It's gorgeous and great fun. The narrative is the only awful thing. It would be in my top 5 Wii games.

    I am hungry — thirsty as hell – for a proper Metroid game.

    Have an Oak.

    But already. We hate it. How strange is that?

    No stranger than your predetermination that Jurassic World would be terrible Mark? :P Pot? Kettle?

    I mean, it’s going to be terrible. Surely we’re all aware of that. But is it going to be terri-bad or terri-good?

    http://www.kotaku.com.au/2015/04/jurassic-world-continues-to-be-powerfully-stupid-im-okay-with-this/

    Last edited 23/07/15 12:34 pm

      Not quite sure what your point is. Mark's point here is that our first reaction is that it's going to be terrible, and here's the rational breakdown of why we have that reaction.

      And Jurassic World was terri-bad.

        That's only your opinion, apparently not the worlds which went on to make it the third most succesful movie ever. Reviews were favorable, audience reaction was favorable. The movie wasn't a 10/10, but it was a solid ride.

        My point is, critiquing the audience for this after months of asserting that JW would be terrible, seems a tad hypocritical. It's a case of let's wait and see what the final product is like before we go judging it like this. This is hyperbole at best, judging a book by its cover at worst. It's different, therefor it scares people. I don't know personally what it's going to be like, it could suck or it could be good. But, we won't know until it's released.

          Fair enough. I reckon that this article is different to (and more interesting than) the Jurassic World one because of how it attempts to analyse these preconceptions, then gets to the root of his problem with it. But negative preconceptions are not a constructive thing.

          Also, the first draft of "And Jurassic World was terri-bad" in my mind ended with "IMO", but didn't make it to the keyboard. I'd say it was objectively bad in ways (mostly relating to characters and dialogue), but can see that it could be enjoyable if you're able to stop rolling your eyes long enough. I couldn't, even though I really wanted to. In the end, I'd argue that the level of success was based on marketing and the level of hunger for the experience that it could've been: positive preconceptions, really.

            have to agree with you batguy, it was a terrible movie, fun in parts, but stupid and over the top. Though the high point for me was ****SPOILER*** blue riding the rex while fighting the adominus, all it needed was a Yeeeehaaa!!! or Aye Aye Ya! to be called out and it was comedy gold.

    Created an account because nobody mentioned ReCore.

    I think the real issue here is that Retro haven't made a "serious" game in 8 years. I mean, 2D Donkey Kong games are fine and all, but taking the Metroid Prime studio and setting them to work on DK games with *that* level of production values seems nuts to me. I think it is incredibly shitty of the fanbase to demand that Nintendo pump out Metroid sequels 'til the end of their days, but it seems wasteful to me that the guys at Retro aren't set to work on something with all the depth and sophistication of a Prime game.

    It doesn't help to recall that Retro had a number of cancelled projects from back in its dysfunctional early days. Regardless of how terrible the early Raven Blade prototypes actually were, the concept footage looked really promising, and I'd prefer for that to be turned into something incredible, rather than just seeing another Metroid.

    But as noted at the start of this, at least some of the main Prime guys are over at Armature and finally working on something substantial in ReCore -- which looks to be capable of replacing that Metroid "feeling" that Serrels speaks of. I wish more people were excited about that.

    Damn straight. Can't wait for Federation Force, and I was super angry when the crybabies started petitioning for its cancellation. Flat-out not cool.

    Here’s the problem. There hasn’t been a ‘proper’ Metroid game since Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. Not on the 3DS, not on the Wii U. Nothing. Metroid: Other M was… something else. It was an experiment. A terrible, failed experiment. It sucked. As a Metroid game, it sucked.Totally disagree with this though. Other M was a great Metroid game, it brought traditional Metroid action into 3D space and did it quite well. I mean yeah it would have been nicer if they didn't use the shitty sideways remote control scheme, but it was at least passable. No argument that story-wise it was a steaming turd though.

      Woah. I agree with Gooky on something. And about Other M of all things.

      Yeah I liked Other:M I just wanted the controls to be better/more complex the wiimote was a bit too basic and felt repetitive by the end of the game, also not being able to walk around in first person was a shame.
      I honestly would like a third person metroid game like other M, only if the story was alot better.

    What is going to make Metroid Prime: Federation Force feel like a Metroid game?Metroid still can't crawl.

      Neither can Samus.

    I honestly didn't mind Metroid: Other M that much. Sure it was no where near as good as the Prime series, but there were parts of it I liked.

    Is it strange that next year : the 30th anniversary of the release of both legend of zelda and metroid, that we are given mediorce titles when we wanted epic titles for both of these series, with metroid getting a chibi odst clone and legend of zelda getting a co op dress up powerup kind of game, plus with speculation from zelda lore fans talking about zelda wii u going to be also on the nx, i think nintendo might do the same thing with metroid, but it is all speculation for now

      If it's like the 25th anniversary, Selda will have something cool to celebrate and Metroid will be ignored.

    Freedom Force seems basically like the multiplayer mode from Metroid Prime: Hunters. Hunters multiplayer was fun, but it still had a single-player campaign that was more like a traditional Metroid game.

    I loved Other M :( I remember it just as fondly as Metroid Prime 1 & 3 (never finished 2, too hard)

    Freedom Force though? Nope. Not the slightest bit interested. I don't want a co-op game, I want a world to explore and piece together.

    I could be satiated by Super Metroid on a handheld in the mean time

    Poor Nintendo, they cannot possibly win. They make exactly what the fans want? "Nintendo is out of ideas", "lazy rehash", "milking the cash cow", "one-trick pony", "put down that old dog", "no voice acting!?", etc. They dare depart from the norm? "what is this crap?", "where are the characters or features I love and want?", "shitty game with loved brand tacked on", "this is a slap to the face of your long-time fans", "don't mess with tradition/fix what's not broken",etc.

      That happens to every company, not just Nintendo. The trick is to appeal to one side of your fanbase (preferably the bigger one). Otherwise you end up like Sanic the Horgeheg, who seems to be forever caught between the fans of the Genesis games and fans of Sonic Adventure 2.

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