Review by Shockna
"A great revolution in the Metroid series"
Here we have Metroid Prime, the great 1st person revolution in the Metroid series... Metroid Prime
Very good story, though you have to see the log book entries to see it(The real story, that is), you hear logs of the space pirates as they try to manipulate an energy/element called "phazon"(Pronounced Faa-zaan or fay-zaan) to mutate organisms and manipulate entire planets, and you will read lore from the well known "Chozo" race, as they describe there descent onto planet Tallon IV, the peace they recieve there, a horrid catastrophe, and their battle with "the worm", they also use great word choice in these logs, they easily draw you into the story and go full speed, the space pirates tell of experiments and projects, simulations, and these make you feel that the space pirates are not merely creatures you do battle with, that they are a race of human-like intelligence, the web that the lore and logs create is amazing... and at the end, the lore wraps it up perfectly, and even though at the beginning, the space pirate logs seem insequential, this problem goes away as the game progresses, and the lores, straight from the beginning, make it seem as if your walking on ground that they once walked, not like other games with these kinds of dialogue(Even though its not spoken), you get the feeling that you are the only one who can do anything about the problems and warping(Not literal) that os going on.
Gorgeous scenery from the minute you land on Tallon IV, the environments are greatly and beautifully detailed... I could watch the rain in Tallon overworld fall for hours... The Chozo ruins are... are... so real... make you feel like there were actually people walking here long before you arrived, the area looks so desolate, and now the only living beings are creatures hostile to you, 2 other areas are the magmoor caverns and Phendrana drifts, not dont complain because they are the "cliche" fire and ice levels, because they are well done and perfectly executed "fire and ice" levels, the magmoor caverns are... you guessed it, full of molten lava and cooled magma, before you get a suit upgrade, just walking into the caverns takes away 10 health a second, but after that, you get to see the true beauty of these flaming and burning tunnels, the lava looks very realistic, several seemingly inanimate objects give of gases that can kinda to badly blur your vision, but these also look amazingly real... The Phendrana drifts are great looking too, snow falls in most areas, space pirate facilities ties into the environment, but not only do the areas above look great, retro studios even made every little underground area look detailed, and the space pirates labs in the drifts? greatly technological and much like the ones you would expect out of such a race, the environments in general, are great and gorgeous.
Innovation: Greatly innovative game this one is, its sheer innovation is one of the reasons it was so greatly successful, it has so many ideas that work greatly, and before this, no one else would have thought of it! The foremost innovation is scanning, by scanning, you get enemy data, space pirate logs, chozo lore, and by reading enemy data, you often get great strategies and weak spot info, and generally scanning allows new gameplay methods to evolve and develop, just scanning had to be the greatest innovation in this game, and its very simple to use, another innovation is the different visors, combat visor, scan visor, thermal visor, and x-ray visors all open new puzzles, some of them rather difficult, so if thinking isnt your thing, go get a friend or a FAQ, because alot of the puzzles require rational thought about them, the x-ray visor allows you to see things you normally see, track things previously hard to track, and allow you to see things you normally cant, the thermal visor allows you to see in temperatures, hot things are white, yellow, orange or red, where as cold things are black or gray, though there are a few glitches with the Ice beam and such, but those are really just pointless, the combat visor is just your normal visor, ther one you use for fighting enemies and bosses and the like, most things will be visible to you in this visor, you can also use this and the scan visor to lock on to enemies and attack them locked on, you can double your movement while locked on by strafing and dash jumping, allowing you to dodge most enemies attacks, and the next innovative twist is the new use of multiple beams, on old metroids, the beams would change you shot, and in this game, you use the C stick to switch beams between power, ice, wave and plasma, though you only start out with the power beam, but gain more as you go on, but unfortunately, the other beams are really just keys after you get the plasma beam, which makes most enemies just fat pidgeons at your mercy, each beam, like in other metroids, will open up different doors, though the old missile blast caps doors are still around, just in a smaller volume, and the space pirates are much different from past games, but most people will agree, they look less like crabs in this game, which is a very good thing, some scenes are new and original, lights go off, forcing you to view the area from a thermal prospective, so the scenes of adrenaline arent limited to an escape sequence, but those are still in this game, but only one or two few and very, very, very far between each other, the scene with an old rival(so to speak), tell the tale of innovation in its purest...
The controls prove how fit the gamecube controller is for this genre of game, the controls give you perfect and total control over all of samus' abilities, allowing you to enjoy battle to its fullest, it seems like Retro were really thinking when they made this game's controls, they beat up other less free control schemes, and also, the game control allows you so much movement and attacks without difficult button combos, you will definitely love the controls of these games...
The gameplay is absolutely great! fun puzzles, fun bosses, fun enemies, the gameplay visors and heads up display all add to the gameplay experience significantly, the bosses, lets do them first, the bosses are made up of main bosses, you know, the kind in games where you hear, "bosses of <insert game here>", you think of those bosses almost automatically, and mini bosses, like the powerful guys who are considered bosses but dont have a health bar or severly powerful attack, but require good tactics to kill, dodging them can be difficult, and one boss made a good transition into 3 dimensions, but not in his second form... ugh, that was hard... next up, the enemies, normal enemies range from pathetic creatures a two year old wouldnt lose to, and nasty foes who give you an exercise in masochism, the enemies are well balanced and provide good challenge, most of the time anyway... the puzzles are next up, the puzzles are well-executed and articulate, and other than that, I think you know quite a bit from the innovations section of this review, the heads up display comes up next, the menus and statistics are all in perfect order, counters and meters never interfere with each other, all in all, the heads up display is the most perfect in a first person shooter to date, the pause screen allows you to access your log book records, including chozo lore, space pirate logs, enemy data and artifact records, and multiple other pieces of data, as well as being able to call up the records on your suit upgrades, samus' notes on use of the upgrades effectively, as well as text explaining the function and how to use it in general, these also say what metals these upgrades can break(weapons only), like, for example, morph ball bombs break sandstone, and power bombs break bendezium, the pause screen no longer comes with a map, you use that by pressing the "z" button, and in this one, each room has its own name, so all in all, the gameplay is the best of any first person shooter on the market.
This game has loads of replayability due to one thing called "sequence breaking" sequence breaking is described as, getting items and upgrades out of the projected order, like, you would usually need item a to get item b, which is needed to get item c, in a sequence break, you would use a variety of techniques to get item c before item b or item a, and these techniques are easily the biggest factor in replayability, also, you have hard mode, where you can test your skill because in hard mode, enemies have 2x as much health, and do 1.5x as much damage, but its very replayable.
Buy or Rent? Buy. period.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/03/05
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