Review by NeoNess

"Metroid Is Back - And Primed For Action"

Metroid? In 3D? And in First Person? Many Metroid fans were taken by surprise and even upset upon hearing the news. This series has been revered by many gamers, and this was a big change from the last Metroid on a console. But this is one 2D to 3D conversion that definitely does the job right.

» Story: (9/10)
Samus Aran docks a Space Pirate vessel near the planet Tallon IV. As she enters the quiet vessel, she begins to gather vague details of biological testing on the creatures native to the nearby planet. But something is amiss, and the Pirates have suffered casualties. Samus soon finds herself rushing to escape the Pirates’ vessel just before it is destroyed, sent hurtling toward the planet. She follows, and lands her craft nearby on Tallon IV. This is where your journey begins. As the plot unfolds you’ll learn many secrets of the Space Pirates and their research, as well as the mystical Chozo who once inhabited Tallon IV. The plot thickens as you play, and it doesn’t disappoint.

» Gameplay: (9/10)
Make no mistake, this isn’t a first person shooter. While at its core, it looks and behaves much like one, it’s definitely in a world of its own. Exploration plays a huge role throughout the adventure, and just like in past Metroid titles, you’ll be exploring the different regions of the planet, collecting various power-ups and upgrades, and blasting enemies all the while. The controls aren’t perfect, but they’re close. Moving around feels very natural, but the weapon and visor controls have a bit or a learning curve. You can lock-on to enemies, allowing you to circle around them, which makes dodging easy, and is sometimes required to get behind certain enemies that can’t be damaged head-on. You’ll find yourself bumping into some walls while you do this, which can be a bit annoying at times. Minor complaints aside, the controls work, and they work well. The areas you explore can range from mysterious and calm, to downright creepy or frantic.

» Graphics: (10/10)
Metroid Prime is, right from the start, one of the most beautiful games to date. The areas are all varying and greatly detailed, weapons effects are very nice as well. Even the visor has many effects, from very realistic raindrops hitting when you look up into the rain, to steam on your visor from water or extreme heat. At times, you can even see Samus’ eyes reflecting during nearby flashes. The graphics just draw you in to a breathtaking world of intriguing and bizarre environments that range from snow-covered area, complete with falling snow, to magma-filled caverns, glowing and blurring slightly in the heat in certain areas. The characters and life forms are all very well designed, many taken straight from the classic Metroid games and converted perfectly to realistic living things.

Good Points +
- Stays true to the Metroid series
- Tons of exploration to be done
- A good 2D to 3D conversion
- Breathtaking graphics that rival the best
- 30+ Hours of gameplay
- Link up with Metroid Fusion for bonuses, including a fully playable version of the original Metroid.

Bad Points –
- Controls can be troublesome at times
- Can be very challenging, even downright hard at times

Overall: (10/10)
What can I say? This is one of the most amazing games out there. From the exploration, to the graphics, to the absolute depth of information to be gathered, and all the while still remaining true to its predecessors. This game is almost perfect. Go pick up a copy, and while you’re at it, get Metroid Fusion too, as interacting the two adds that much more.

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 11/22/02, Updated 11/22/02

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