North American box art
|Aspect ratio||4:3 (GameCube, Wii)
|Platform(s)||Nintendo GameCube, Wii|
|Release date(s)||Nintendo GameCube
NA November 17, 2002
JP February 28, 2003
EU March 21, 2003
AUS April 3, 2003
JP February 19, 2009
NA August 24, 2009
EU September 4, 2009
AUS October 15, 2009
|Genre(s)||First-person shooter, action-adventure|
|Media||Nintendo GameCube Game Disc, Wii Optical Disc|
|System requirements||3 memory card blocks|
|Input methods||Gamepad; Wii Remote and Nunchuk|
Metroid Prime is a video game developed by Retro Studios and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo GameCube, released in North America on November 17, 2002. It is the first 3D game in the Metroid series, and is classified by Nintendo as a first-person adventure rather than a first-person shooter, due to the large exploration component of the game. In North America, it was also the first Metroid installment to be released since Super Metroid in 1994; in all other markets, it was released after Metroid Fusion.
Metroid Prime is the first of the three part Prime storyline, which takes place between the original Metroid and Metroid II: Return of Samus. Like previous games in the series, Metroid Prime has a science fiction setting, in which players control the bounty hunter Samus Aran. The story follows Samus as she battles the Space Pirates and their biological experiments on the planet Tallon IV.
Despite initial backlash from fans due to the first-person perspective, the game was released to both critical and commercial success, selling more than a million units in North America alone and becoming one of the most acclaimed games of all time. In 2009, an enhanced version was released for Wii as a standalone game in Japan and as part of Metroid Prime: Trilogy internationally.
As in previous Metroid games, Prime takes place in a large, open-ended world with different regions connected by elevators. Each region has a set of rooms separated by doors that can be opened with a shot from the correct beam. The gameplay revolves around solving puzzles to reveal secrets, platform jumping, and shooting foes with the help of a "lock-on" mechanism that allows circle strafing while staying aimed on the enemy. The game is the first in the Metroid series to use a first-person view as opposed to side scrolling, except in Morph Ball mode, when Samus's suit transforms into an armored ball and the game uses a third-person camera.
The protagonist, Samus, must travel through the world of Tallon IV, searching for twelve Chozo Artifacts that will open the path to the Phazon meteor impact crater, while collecting power-ups that enable the player to reach previously inaccessible areas; the Varia Suit, for example, protects Samus' armor against dangerously high temperatures, allowing her to enter volcanic regions. Some of the items are obtained after boss and mini-boss fights, encountered in all regions except Magmoor Caverns.
The heads-up display simulates the inside of Samus's helmet, featuring a radar, a map, ammunition for missiles, a health meter, a danger meter for hazardous landscape or materials, and a health bar for bosses along with the boss name. The display can be altered by exchanging visors, including one using thermal imaging, another with x-ray vision, and a scanner that searches for enemy weaknesses, and interfaces with certain mechanisms such as force fields and elevators, allowing the player to operate them. Prime also introduces a hint system that provides the player with a general idea of where to go. This is in the form of "incoming scan" messages that will appear from time to time, alerting the player of specific areas that they should explore next.
The game differs from most first-person titles in terms of control scheme. Typically, one analog stick will be used to move the player, and another to alter the camera. Instead, the player turns and moves forward and back with the control stick and can look up or down by holding R. In addition, the issues that would normally arise from this are mostly solved by the fact that the game uses an L-targeting system similar to the 3D Legend of Zelda titles, allowing the player to lock on to important objects automatically. First-time players have been known to sometimes not be used to first-person games, and consequently find themselves switching to the morph ball as often as possible in order to play in a more familiar third-person view.
Throughout the game, players must find and collect items that improve Samus's arsenal and suit, including weapons, armor upgrades for Samus's Power Suit and items that grant abilities. Among these are the Morph Ball, which allows Samus to roll into narrow passages and drop energy bombs, and the Grapple Beam, which works similarly to a grappling hook by latching onto special hooks, called grapple points, and allowing Samus to swing from them across gaps.
Items from previous Metroid games appear, with altered functions. Art galleries and different endings are unlockable if a player obtains a high percentage of collected items and Scan Visor logs. Prime is one of the first Metroid games to address the reason Samus does not start with power-ups attained in previous games; she begins the game with certain upgrades, but during an explosion on the Space Pirate Frigate Orpheon, they are all lost. The producers stated that starting with some power-ups was a way to give the player "different things to do" before settling into the core gameplay.
Players of the game can gain two features by connecting Prime with Metroid Fusion using a Nintendo GameCube Game Boy Advance Cable: use of the Fusion Suit that Samus wears in Fusion and the ability to play the original Metroid.
Retro Studios wrote an extensive storyline for Metroid Prime, which was considered a major difference from previous Metroid games. Short cutscenes appear before important battles, and the Scan Visor can be used to read records from the Chozo and the Space Pirates. The Prime trilogy is set between Metroid and Metroid II, but sources such as Gradiente, Brazil's former distributor of Nintendo, and the Nintendo Power comics adaptation of Metroid Prime, set the games as occurring after Super Metroid. The Brazilian publicity even states that the Phazon meteor is a piece of Zebes, destroyed after Super Metroid.
The game begins as Samus receives a distress signal from the Space Pirate Frigate Orpheon, whose crew has been slaughtered by the Pirates' own genetically modified experimental subjects. Upon arriving at the ship's core, she battles with the Parasite Queen, a giant version of the tiny enemies occasionally seen in the ship. Having defeated it, the Parasite Queen falls into the ship's reactor core, setting off the destruction of the ship. While Samus is escaping from the doomed frigate, an electrical surge destroys all of her Power Suit upgrades, and she encounters Ridley, now a cybernetic version of himself called Meta Ridley. She watches as he flies towards Tallon IV before giving chase in her gunship.
Samus initially lands on the Tallon Overworld, a rainforest-like area. She discovers the Chozo Ruins, the remains of the Chozo civilization on Tallon IV that was destroyed with the crash of a meteor, which contained a corrupting substance called Phazon and a creature known to the Chozo as "The Worm". Samus locates a Chozo temple in Tallon Overworld, and discovers that the temple houses a seal to the meteor's impact crater, which the Space Pirates are trying to break. The containment field is powered by twelve Chozo artifacts, which must be found to open the path to the crater.
Samus finds her way to the Magmoor Caverns, a series of magma filled underground tunnels. The Caverns are used by the Space Pirates as a source of geothermal power, and connect all of the game's other areas together. Following the tunnels, Samus journeys to the Phendrana Drifts, a cold, mountainous location home to an ancient Chozo ruin, Space Pirate research labs used to contain Metroids, and ice caves and valleys home to electrical and ice-based creatures. After obtaining the Gravity Suit in Phendrana, Samus explores the interior of the crashed Orpheon, and then infiltrates the Phazon Mines, the mining and research complex which is the center of the Space Pirates' Tallon IV operations. Here she battles Phazon-enhanced Space Pirates and obtains the Phazon Suit after she defeats the monstrous Phazon-mutated Omega Pirate.
As she progresses, Samus discovers and researches a mysterious radioactive substance named "Phazon," which is why the pirates came to Tallon IV. Originally, the Phazon entered in the form of a large meteor, which the pirates have built mining facilities around. They use the substance to experiment on various creatures (including metroids) and even their own forces. At first, Samus is damaged when she touches the substance, but she acquires a phazon-proof suit later in the game after a phazon-infused pirate that she defeats falls on top of her, submerging her in it completely. Aside from their own soldiers, the pirates have achieved three mutations in metroids: Hunter metroids, adolescent forms of the original metroids which can suck life force remotely; fission metroids, which can duplicate at will and are only susceptible to one kind of beam, which is determined by their color; and Metroid Prime, a massive metroid that serves as the final boss.
During her exploration of Tallon IV, Samus finds the twelve keys to the Artifact Temple, and lores recorded by both the Chozo and the Space Pirates, providing some more insight about the history of the planet and the two races' colonization of it and other activities. As she puts the last of the keys in place, Meta Ridley appears and attacks her, but is defeated by Samus with some aid from the temple's defensive artillery. The Chozo Artifacts and Phazon Suit allow Samus to enter the Impact Crater, where she finds a Phazon-mutated beast called Metroid Prime, the source of the Phazon on Tallon IV. After she defeats it, all the Phazon on Tallon IV disappears and Metroid Prime sucks out the Phazon in Samus's Phazon suit in a last ditch effort to survive, reverting Samus's armor to the Gravity Suit. Samus then escapes the collapsing Impact Crater and leaves Tallon IV in her ship. In a post-credits scene only able to be seen if the player has collected 100% of the items, Metroid Prime uses the Phazon Suit to recreate its body, becoming the entity known as Dark Samus, the antagonist of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.
In tandem with the events in the game itself, the plot is mostly revealed by scanning and downloading Chozo Lore, which can be found on the walls in the ruins, and Space Pirate Logs, which can be found in the pirates' base areas. The Chozo lore describes the invasion of the pirates, the fall of the Chozo race, and the progress of Samus herself, who is described as a "hatchling" who is wearing armor of the Chozo's design, explaining the origin of the upgrades scattered around the planet. The lore also suggests that the Chozo had some kind of involvement in Samus' childhood, and that the Chozo have discovered ways of manipulating time and space. The Space Pirate logs mostly refer to the growth of each facet of the pirates' operations on Tallon IV: Phazon mining, Phazon experiments, Metroid experiments, etc. They are written in a much more prose-ish, technical style than the Chozo lore, which are written metaphorically and mystically.
After Super Metroid, Metroid fans eagerly awaited a sequel. It was supposedly slated for the Nintendo 64 or its ill-fated accessory, the 64DD, but while the game was mentioned, it never entered production. Developer Shigeru Miyamoto explained that it was because Nintendo "couldn't come out with any concrete ideas".
Metroid Prime was developed as a collaboration between Retro Studios and important Nintendo EAD and R&D1 members. Retro Studios was created in 1998, by an alliance between Nintendo and former Iguana Entertainment founder Jeff Spangenberg. After establishing its offices in Austin, Texas in 1999, Retro received five game ideas for the future GameCube, among them a new Metroid, despite not even having development kits. Nintendo members, such as Shigeru Miyamoto, Kensuke Tanabe and Kenji Miki, as well as Metroid designer Yoshio Sakamoto, communicated with the Texas-based studio through emails, monthly phone conferences and personal gatherings. The game was originally envisioned as having third-person perspective gameplay, but this was changed to a first-person perspective after Miyamoto intervened, causing almost everything already developed to be scrapped. Among the reasons for leaving the third-person perspective were Rare's trouble with the camera in Jet Force Gemini, shooting in third-person "not being very intuitive" and exploration being easier using first-person. Director Miyamoto has also professed a fondness for games to be in the first person perspective in an interview with Satoru Iwata. He then said he even wanted Ocarina of Time to take place in the first person perspective. Mark Pacini said Retro tried to make the game so that the only difficult parts would be boss battles, so players would not be "afraid to explore", because "the challenge of the game was finding your way around".
In 2000, three games were canceled to establish focus on Prime, and in 2001, the fourth other project (an RPG called Raven Blade) was canceled, so that Prime would be the only game in development. The first public appearance of the game was a ten second video at SpaceWorld 2000. In November of the same year, Retro Studios confirmed in the "job application" part of its website its involvement with the game, and at E3 2001, Prime was officially announced by Nintendo, receiving mixed reactions due to the change from 2D side scrolling to 3D first-person. Retro Studios developed the storyline of Metroid Prime under the supervision of Yoshio Sakamoto who verified the plot ideas to be consistent with the lore of the series' earlier entries.
Kraid, a boss from Metroid and Super Metroid, was intended to make an appearance in Prime, and designer Gene Kohler modeled and skinned him for that purpose. However, time constraints prevented him from being included in the final version of the game.
Kenji Yamamoto, assisted by Kouichi Kyuma, composed the music for Prime. The soundtrack contains remixes of tracks from previous games in the series, because Yamamoto wanted "to satisfy old Metroid fans. It’s like a present for them". The initial Tallon Overworld theme is a remix of Metroid's Brinstar theme, the music in Magmoor Caverns is a remix of Super Metroid's Lower Norfair area, and the music during the fight with Meta Ridley is a remix of the Ridley boss music first featured in Super Metroid, which has been remixed and featured in most Metroid games since. Tommy Tallarico Studios initially provided sound effects for the game, though Shigeru Miyamoto thought they were not good enough yet for an extended presentation at SpaceWorld 2001. The game supports Dolby Pro Logic II setups, which allows it to be played in surround sound. There was an official soundtrack released for the game called Metroid Prime and Fusion Original Soundtracks which was supervised by Yamamoto himself.
Prime was released in three versions: the original North American version; a second version, released in North America and Japan, with resolved technical issues (such as a glitch that occasionally caused the game to freeze when using elevators connecting to Chozo Ruins); and the European version, with resolved glitches and altered certain elements of the gameplay to prevent sequence breaking.
The European translation had logs removed or changed, resulting in a different storyline and log book. For instance, a narrator was added in the opening and closing scenes. Some of the changes were in the NTSC region's Player's Choice re-release, along with more changes not in other releases.
Before the release of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes in 2004, Nintendo released a GameCube bundle with a copy of Prime containing a special second disc, featuring both a preview trailer and a demo for Echoes, a timeline of Metroid games and an art gallery.
Metroid Prime was re-released in Japan in 2009 for Wii as part of the New Play Control! series. It has revamped controls that use the Wii Remote's pointing functionality, similar to those of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. The credit system from Prime 3 is also included to unlock the original bonus content, as well as the ability to take snapshots of gameplay.
Prime, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, and Prime 3 were bundled together on a single disc as Metroid Prime: Trilogy, released in North America on August 24, 2009. Both Prime and Prime 2 contain all of the enhancements found in their Japanese New Play Control! counterparts.
|GameRankings||96/100 (87 reviews)|
|Metacritic||97/100 (69 reviews)|
|Electronic Gaming Monthly||10/10|
Metroid Prime became one of the best-selling games on the GameCube. It was the second best-selling game of November 2002 in North America, behind Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and hit 250,000 units in just one week. The game has since sold about 1.49 million copies in America, earning more than $50 million in revenue. It is also the eighth best-selling GameCube game in Australia, and sold more than 78,000 copies in Japan and more than 250,000 copies in Europe, thus entering the Player's Choice line in the PAL region.
Prime was also critically acclaimed, including a perfect review score from Electronic Gaming Monthly, and numerous Game of the Year awards. It was praised for its detailed graphics, with special effects and varied environments, moody soundtrack and sound effects, level design, immersive atmosphere, and innovative gameplay centered on exploring as opposed to the action of games such as Halo while staying faithful to the Metroid formula. Criticisms included the unusual control scheme, which Game Informer considered awkward; lack of focus on the story, making Entertainment Weekly compare the game to a "1990s arcade game, filled with over the top battle sequences, spectacular visual effects – and a pretty weak plot"; and backtracking, stated by GamePro that inexperienced players "might find it exhausting to keep revisiting the same old places over and over and over".
On GameRankings, Prime is the fifth-highest rated game ever, with an average score of 96.26% (as of June 2009), making it the highest reviewed game of the sixth generation. The video game countdown show Filter named Prime as having the Best Graphics of all time.
Prime was also chosen for lists of best games: 24th in IGN's Top 100, 29th in a 100 game list chosen by GameFAQs users, and 10th in Nintendo Power's "Top 200 Nintendo Games Ever". GameSpy chose it as the third best GameCube title of all time, behind The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and Resident Evil 4, while IGN put it at first in a similar list. Metroid Prime also became popular among players for speedrunning, with specialized communities being formed to share these speedruns.
Three other Metroid games in the same first-person style were released after Prime, as well as a pinball spin-off. The first was the sequel Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, released in November 2004 for the GameCube, in which Samus travels to planet Aether and discovers that a Phazon meteor crashed on the planet creating an alternate reality, while fighting a mysterious enemy called Dark Samus. It was followed by Metroid Prime Pinball, a spin-off game developed by Fuse Games and released in 2005 for the Nintendo DS. Prime Pinball is a virtual pinball game that features the locations and bosses of Prime.
The next game released was Metroid Prime Hunters for the Nintendo DS, with a storyline that takes place between the events of Prime and Echoes. A demo of the game, titled Metroid Prime Hunters — First Hunt, was released with purchase of a Nintendo DS, and the full game was released on March 20, 2006 in North America, and May 5, 2006 in Europe. The storyline follows Samus trying to discover an "ultimate power", while facing six rival bounty hunters. Hunters was not developed by Retro Studios, but by Nintendo's Redmond-based subsidiary Nintendo Software Technology. The game is more centered on first-person shooter aspects than Prime and Echoes, with removal of assisted aiming, more action-oriented gameplay, and various multiplayer modes.
Prime's second full sequel is Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, which closes the Prime series. It was released on August 27, 2007 for Nintendo's Wii. In Corruption's story, Samus is corrupted by Phazon after being attacked by Dark Samus, who has become the leader of a Space Pirate group and is sending Phazon Seeds (called "Leviathans") to corrupt planets. Corruption makes changes in gameplay from Prime and Echoes, such as trading the assisted aiming for free aiming with the Wii Remote, and changing the interchangeable beams for a stackable upgrade system.
Elements of Metroid Prime have appeared in other games, such as Super Smash Bros. Brawl, where the Frigate Orpheon is a playable stage, featuring the Parasite Queen in the background and several tracks from the game for background music. Metroid Prime's style of gameplay and HUDs also led to influence and comparison in later first-person shooters, such as Geist and Star Wars: Republic Commando.
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|Followed by||Metroid Prime 2: Echoes|
After seven long years, Nintendo's most famous bounty hunter finally returned in Metroid Prime. This game took the traditional 2D side-on view of previous Metroid games and dragged it kicking and screaming into the 3D world. Sporting amazing graphics, a musical score to kill for and some of the most intense and involving gameplay on the GameCube, Metroid Prime was an instant classic and is still loved by gamers everywhere.
At first, Prime was supposed to be for the N64, but progress was delayed due to the fact that there "weren't any concrete ideas" for it. It ended up being held over to GCN, where it was made into a collaboration project between Nintendo and Retro Studios. Their main focus was on Prime, but this led to the cancellation of 4 other games (one being Raven Blade). Kenji Yamamoto and Kouichi Kyuma composed music for Prime, using remixes of Metroid games to "satisfy old Metroid fans". For example, Lower Norfair was used for Magmoor Caverns and the Brinstar theme was used for Tallon Overworld.
|Portal: Action/Adventure||Metroid Prime at
|Release date||November 15, 2002 (NA)
|Genre||First-person shooter, Adventure|
|Age rating(s)||ESRB: T
|Media||GameCube Optical Disk|
|System requirements||3 Memory card blocks|
|Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough|
Metroid Prime was released in 2002 for the GameCube, the first Metroid game in eight years. It introduced a radical change to the Metroid series series by being the first to be a First-person shooter and in 3-D, when all other Metroid games were 2D platformers. It was met with critical and financial success, cementing the rookie developer, Retro Studios, as a major company.
The game became the first in a trilogy of games, which included Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.
The version released in North America has several storyline differences with the one released in Europe. The versions released in Japan, Europe, and the North American Player's Choice versions have also had a number of gameplay modifications implemented to prevent players from using certain tricks to play the game out of sequence. Certain aspects of difficulty have also been increased. The general story takes place between Metroid and Metroid II, according to the official Metroid timeline.
An important part of the Metroid Prime storyline is a highly mutagenic radioactive substance of unknown origin known as Phazon. Direct exposure to this electric blue-coloured substance results in either a violent death or the rapid addition of new abilities and/or organs. Another, more powerful, Phazon is bright orange and is only found in Tallon IV's core. It seems to exist naturally as a solid and sometimes as a liquid, but its solid form may be considered more common---and possibly a metal---as many Space Pirate log entries call for mining of Phazon ore.
Phazon was spread throughout Tallon IV when a meteorite containing it crashed into the planet's surface. The Phazon immediately began negatively influencing the indigenous flora and fauna �?¢â�??¬â�?��? it either killed them or severely mutated them. A group of Chozo colonists tried to seal away the Phazon source with a mystic seal called the Cipher, which was an enormous temple linked to twelve artifacts, which they then spread across the planet. Some Chozo lore texts suggest that Chozo who were exposed to Phazon became violent and destructive wraiths. A long time after the Chozo contained the source of the Phazon, the Space Pirates picked up on an unknown and powerful energy signature. After their first defeat on Zebes at the hands of bounty hunter Samus Aran, they were eager to find a powerful energy source to rebuild their army, and so tracked the energy signature back to Tallon IV. The Space Pirates tried to use the substance, now dubbed Phazon, to mutate various species for use as biological weapons, including some of their own people and even some native materials. Scans of Space Pirate computer terminals verified a high death rate in many subjects, especially when the descendants of the original Phazon-exposed creatures were exposed to the substance.
Most of the items from previous Metroid games make appearances here; however, the functions of many of them have been altered.
Glitches can allow knowledgeable players to receive items much earlier than intended, or to bypass collecting them altogether. The current world record for lowest item pickup percentage at the end of the game is 22%.
Unlike Super Metroid, Metroid Prime does not allow the player to combine separate beams into one, due to the fact that each of the four main beams has a unique use. Also, each beam has a Charge Combo that can be acquired that utilizes Missiles to perform a more powerful attack.
The Morph Ball is another Metroid trademark. After finding this item Samus can roll into a ball and access narrow passages that she could not otherwise access. There are a number of upgrades Samus finds for the Morph Ball.
Allows Samus to break certain objects, activate some devices, and damage enemies. The force from the bomb can also catapult her up a short distance in Morph Ball form. Samus has an infinite number of these, but can only use three every few seconds.
Replacing Super Metroid's Speed Booster to a certain extent, this item allows Samus to build up energy and release it in Morph Ball form, resulting in a burst of speed that can, when applied correctly, allow her to travel up half-pipe structures and activate certain machines.
Metroid Prime is the second game to use this item (the first being Metroid 2: Return of Samus); however, where Metroid 2's spider ball allowed Samus to go up any wall, Prime's spider ball can only travel up designated magnetic rails.
These are a more powerful version of Samus' normal Bombs. While she only gets a finite number of these and must replace them as she does with Missiles, Power Bombs have a much greater destructive ability.
|Metroid - Metroid 2: Return of Samus - Super Metroid - Metroid Prime - Metroid Fusion - Metroid: Zero Mission - Metroid Prime 2: Echoes - Metroid Prime Pinball - Metroid Prime: Hunters - Metroid Prime 3: Corruption - Metroid Prime Trilogy - Metroid: Other M|
Mother Brain - Ridley - Kraid | Metroid - Phazon
Space Pirates | X Parasite | SA-X | Ing
|Metroid timeline - Samus's suits - Samus's visors - Samus's beams - Morph Ball -Screw Attack - Speed booster - Galactic Federation - Chozo
Planets: Zebes - SR388 - Aether
|Release date(s)|| NA November 19, 2002|
JP February 28, 2003
PAL March 21, 2003
|Rating(s)|| CERO: All ages|
|Media||1 × Nintendo GameCube Game Disc|
|System requirements||3 memory card blocks|
Metroid Prime is a first-person action-adventure video game made by Retro Studios and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo GameCube game console. It is the first 3D Metroid game, and it had a lot of controversy over it. It has had a lot of follow-up titles. It has had two sequels called Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, a side game called Metroid Prime Hunters, and a spin-off called Metroid Prime Pinball. It takes place after Metroid, but before Metroid II: Return of Samus.