Review by LuigiRulesYou
"First-Person puzzle game?..that's a new one..."
I'm a great fan of the Metroid series. Maybe not too devoted...but still a fan. Now, this series is reknown for its solid adventure/puzzle gameplay...but taking it into the third dimension? Seems a bit difficult,if not impossible at any angle, but RETRO STUDIOS has, for most people, pulled in a great addition to the legendary series.
True to the trademarks of Metroid, you'll be working on figuring out numerous puzzles spread through the planetary system Tallon IV. Samus Aran utilize all sorts of equipment while exploring the many environments of this world of diverse ecosystems, each with its compliment of other wordly monsters and natural hazards.
Let's start with Mrs. Aran's offensive equipment. In the beginning of your quest, you start with a simple, yet reliable Power Cannon. As you progress through the game, you will locate more weapon add-ons like the well-known Missiles and Wave Beam to the newer Plasma Beam (these are just some of the equipment mind you).
Remember, as this is also a puzzle game, you must be constantly aware of what is around you. Vague wall writings (which you can analyze with the Scan Visor) can be the weakness to a boss. Foreign, vibrant objects could be pieces to a master switch. Different colors, extraordinary shapes, barely-distinguishable patterns...anything might be the key to unlocking secret passages and accessing new rooms.
Ah...also a new addition to the Metroid series. Samus Aran can now utilize the effects of up to four different visors to traverse terrain and/or defeat the deadly monsters of Tallon IV. The Combat visor shows things as the human-eye would see, allowing for maximum combat ability and use of target-lock capabilities. The Scan visor is used to analyze targets to find weaknesses, translate unknown text for you, etc. It is an incredibly versatile piece of hardware...yet you won't be able to wield your weapons in this mode. Thermal Detection is quite effective in zero-visibility conditions. While the actual view of the environment is distorted somewhat, things that give off any form of heat or energy will appear brightly amid the screwed up colors. This makes it a necessity to make ways through darkened trails. The X-Ray Sensory visor allows Samu's vision to penetrate weakened walls so that she may find more secrets or perhaps obstructed switches.
GAMEPLAY EASILY PICKS UP A 10/10.
Actually...you can't really say much for this. Graphics have never made a game before, so I'll keep it short. Metroid Prime's visual show is incredible. Lighting effects will actually come into the gameplay during some puzzles. Special effects are beautiful to say the least...what do you expect from this game? The enemies reminisce of the older games. Zoomers, Space Pirates, the whole lot is back with a slick 3D look. Blood, water, and condensation effects on your visor are not just for some very impressive show...they come into the gameplay as well.
GRAPHICS LOOK GREAT FOR A PERFECT 10/10.
Althought unable to live up to the previous categories, the Audio to this game is generally a mixed bag. On the good side, adrenaline-pumping battle themes and enough suspense music to cool your blood a little (not to mention fry your senses). The sound-effects are very well done. Monsters screaming, high-powered weapons tearing apart flesh, violent explosions. Everything you want is here in this mini-category. I guess what brought it down were some of the...less-than quality tracks of the game. Boring music might come around every once in a while. Uninspiring at max...you'll loathe the areas where this might fall into play. Other than that...the game's audio is awesome.
AUDIO PULLS OUT WITH AN IMPRESSIVE 8/10.
While there is a problem with wanting to play the whole dang game again (it is a very long game...jesus christ man...), you are sure to get sucked into such when you get started. Finding clues of, not just the quest, but of the origin of the mysterious Chozo, the endless toil of the vicious Space Pirates, and even the history of our heroine, Samus Aran. This plus the superb gameplay will keep you in for a long time.
REPLAY VALUE MAKES A KILLING WITH 9/10.
+Great cooperation of the FPS, Puzzle, and adventure genres
+Some music themes are very well placed and composed
+The story you live through is deep and quite immersive
-When the music is bad...it is bad...
-Controls start off somewhat...weird
-Metroids are the scariest darn things
-I shall shoot the person who did not put Multiplayer here
BUY / RENT / DITCH
If you are a fan of puzzle games, Metroid fan, or like science fiction, I definitely recommend you give this game a go around. For FPS people, the pace might be a little slower since it's also adventure/puzzle, so you might want a rent. Only those who love to be closed minded (or are blind, have no fingers/hands/arms) or don't like FPS, Puzzle, or Adventure games, you might ditch it because the game is long...but I still suggest a rent to see how it looks.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 12/02/02, Updated 12/02/02
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