As Metroid Prime celebrated its 20th anniversary on November 18th 2022, the team came together to share their feelings on this historic and beloved title, as it reached its two-decade anniversary.
The Team taking part in this feature:
Metroid Prime was my entry point into the series, as I imagine it was for many fans. It was a grand adventure through a varied alien planet, on a mission to destroy evil alien creatures, and discovering the secrets of an ancient race that was long deceased. Its score was the origin of my inspiration for several fan-arrangement albums, and its heroine Samus Aran is a character I consider to be a fine example of a powerful warrior with a kind heart, and a good moral compass.
I have had the pleasure of creating a community to celebrate this series, and the rare privilege to speak, and thank, many of those who were responsible for its creation. Metroid Prime has been the source of many friendships that continue to this day, and for the one friend who gave me his own personal copy as encouragement to play it, it’s a memory of a life that is no longer with us.
I want to wish Metroid Prime, its developer, its fans and anyone who is fortunate enough to experience the game, a happy 20th anniversary. May it continue to be cherished for generations to come.
While Metroid Prime was not the first Metroid game I played, it was certainly the most impactful. As a young gamer, I was intimidated by the first-person perspective, legitimately feeling like I was Samus and therefore getting hurt by all the enemies. It didn’t help that I never strafed or dashed, and therefore took damage while frantically shooting until I died. Metroid Prime conveyed a sense of impending doom the further you got into it, as if you knew you were on your way towards a battle with a fearsome beast. That feeling for me has never truly gone away, and I love Prime for it.
It expanded the Metroid universe and turned it into a franchise, ensuring it would continue for years to come (2010-2017 notwithstanding). It did so by telling a story through optional scan logs, which provide background information for events that unfold in intricate detail. I love using the Scan Visor to carbon date archaeological ruins, assess enemy’s weak points, and learn the deep, dark secrets of Metroid. I’ve loved introducing new friends to the series through Metroid Prime, and those who were already fans of it. The music for me is timeless, and has got me through many long nights where I’ve sat at my computer and worked.
I’d also like to pay special tribute to Metroid Fusion. I have memories of struggling with each boss, Yakuza in particular, but being determined to overcome them. When I boarded my ship at the end, it was a powerful moment, as was the final speech given by Samus. Its eerie music and sound design (thanks, Minako Hamano!) is unforgettable and sells the destructive nature of the X Parasite. We waited nineteen years for the sequel, and one year later, we can finally enjoy Fusion while knowing the story has and will continue for years to come.
We’ve had a hiatus from the mainline Metroid Prime saga for several years, which is going to end in the future with Metroid Prime 4 and later potential installments. Until then, we’ll continue to treasure and replay the original trilogy, in particular its beginning. Happy 20th birthday to Metroid Prime (wow I feel old), and thank you to everyone at Retro Studios and Nintendo who had a hand in its development.
Can’t believe it’s been twenty years since both Metroid Prime and Metroid Fusion came out! Metroid Prime Hunters and Super Metroid were the first games in the series I’ve played, around the time Super Smash Bros. Brawl was released (that demo feature played a big role in introducing me to the series!). Metroid Prime 3 quickly followed, with Metroid Prime Trilogy coming out just a few months later, so I could finally experience the first game of the series. I remember getting lost constantly and scanning everything to find my way forward. I also remember getting trolled twice in a row near the lowest level of the Phazon mines, where you need to backtrack to get the X-Ray Visor, only to realize you then need the Plasma Beam to open the door on the other side. Not cool, game! Jokes aside, Metroid Prime is an absolute masterpiece for its time, and I am so happy I was able to experience it without having any knowledge about the game at all, it’s unforgettable.
Metroid Fusion was also one of the first Metroid games I’ve played, shortly after Super Metroid. I remember struggling a lot with the difficulty curve, with bosses and enemies being quite punishing at certain points of the game, as well as being tricked by that infamous invisible platform in Sector 2. But I also remember loving the darker story and the setting of the game, and Samus feeling more vulnerable because of the surgery she had to get in the intro. Did you know this game finally got a sequel after nineteen years? I still can’t quite believe it. (buy Metroid Dread, it’s awesome).
Happy anniversary to two of the greatest games of all time! Hopefully newer fans will be able to discover them on a more recent system, may it be the Switch or something else. Perhaps revisited versions, even? Mercury Steam originally pitched a Metroid Fusion remake, so… who knows!
As an avid science fiction and alien enthusiast and zealot, it was only natural that Metroid ended up becoming my favourite franchise in gaming. The original Metroid game was the first in the series that I played, but I was merely a toddler, unable to appreciate it. Super Metroid also came and went in some fashion when it released, due to being mostly a SEGA fan at the time. When I switched back to Nintendo as my primary gaming home, Metroid Fusion was the entry that turned me into a real fan. It had that creepy atmosphere and alien creativeness that I am drawn towards. It also added to my love of the game knowing that the series itself was inspired by the Alien movies, and since the Alien film franchise is my favourite of all time, it all made sense.
Metroid Prime solidified my love for the games in various ways, such as the unique soundtrack, the complete reimagining of the classic series, and the darker atmosphere surrounding it compared to other Nintendo titles. Metroid Prime 2 Echoes became my favourite of the bunch however, not only gameplay wise, but it also partially inspired my own artistic nature based on its entirety. I hope that Metroid continues to be a unique yet familiar franchise moving forward that began with the remake resulting in Metroid ll: Samus Returns but reinvigorated Metroid with Metroid Dread. Happy Anniversary to the most unique gaming franchise in the world!
Although I only played Metroid Prime in 2007-ish, I was mesmerized by the look of it thanks to a DVD I had, containing trailers and insight of the E3 2001 games (still don’t know how I got that). Fortunately, I managed to buy a GameCube and a physical copy of the game at the local shop. It was the Player’s Choice edition. It wasn’t my first Metroid game, because I already played Fusion and Zero Mission. With Prime, though, came a whole new level of experiencing the series. Immersive, giant 3-D environments. I was behind the visor for the first time. I still remember my surprised face when the raindrops on Tallon IV fell upon the visor while looking up. The music helped even more, creating the right atmospheres in each area of the planet. I fell in love with the soundtrack, like for the other games in the series.
To this day, it’s not the game in the trilogy I would replay first. Metroid Prime 2 probably got me even more, but there will always be something fascinating about Prime 1. It’s probably the loneliness: it’s you against a whole planet without any form of living contact, unlike the other 2 chapters. Perhaps it’s the freedom of exploration, without anybody telling you where to go next. Surely anyone got something that makes them want to replay Metroid Prime and, in the end, it’s what keeps the game alive after so many years. We cannot thank Retro Studios enough for making such a masterpiece.
I came a bit late to the Metroid Prime party. After playing the GBA games, my first Nintendo console was a Wii, so I played Prime 3 before the others. I ended up experiencing Metroid Prime first through backwards compatibility with a GCN controller, then on the Trilogy collection, around 6 years after its original release.
A few things surprised me about it. Notably, it was very different from what I had played in Corruption. While the third game followed a lot of video game conventions of its time, Metroid Prime was quite distinct from anything I had played on a GameCube or PS2. I was impressed by how it managed to capture the lonely vibes of the 2D games while expanding the world and mechanics to fit a 3D environment. It also stood out to me how good it looked for a game that old — later I would realize that the Prime trilogy games always ran at a solid 60 frames per second, which helped them age really well.
I haven’t gone back to it in a few years. Perhaps this anniversary is an opportunity to do so, and relive some of the wonder that it gave me so long ago.
I only have fond things to say about Metroid Prime, it really is an amazing experience! That game has a lot of details about it to make the world feel lived in, and it does so successfully. In my mind, it is the very best transition to 3D in gaming. It did everything right to preserve what is Metroid’s core while still being its own experience.
Prime gave me one of my favourite gameplay mechanics ever. The scan feature makes every nook and cranny important, and it allows you to learn anything about the world at your pace. The other visors are also awesome, I love having to use them in order to see where to go or where to shoot. With the first-person perspective, you truly are behind that visor. Looking through it towards the world before you, has given me the most atmospheric and immersive adventure ever.
Another favourite feature of mine is the beam switching. It is cool how Samus’ fingers correspond with the beam symbol, and I also feel the combat is more engaging when I must think about which beam to use.
To this day, I’m amazed at what Prime has achieved. It has been 20 years since it was released, but it really doesn’t feel like it. It definitely has stood the test of time. The strongest parts of Prime, in my opinion, are the exploration and atmosphere. It doesn’t hurt to have the best soundtrack to boot either, though!
I also want to give Fusion some thoughts! After all, it is not only one of my favourite games ever, but also my introduction to Metroid as a series! Fusion has Samus at her weakest. She just had a surgery that removed most of her abilities, and soon she learns that she must investigate the X-ridden B.S.L.. Throughout that journey, she battles against relentless X-infected enemies, including her former self at full power.
Fusion is very tense in both gameplay and story. The way the X is characterized in Fusion is done extremely well, they’re frankly terrifying in this game! They grow in power, can communicate with each other instantly, and they adapt to Samus with their borrowed intelligence. This is the game with the best story, in my opinion. You should really play it if you liked Dread! Like with Prime, Fusion succeeds in everything it wants to.