Review by Ali_X_Rexus

Reviewed: 11/25/08

If I bought this in 1987, I would give it a ten.

However, I don't review games for what they were, but I review them for what enjoyment they provide in a gamer setting at the time of writing the review. This original title was one of the first to feature non-linear gameplay at its time, but it had major flaws, especially when today I can relate it to future incarnations, mainly the highly establish Super Metroid for the SNES, a game leagues and bounds ahead of this title.

The game started the story of Samus Aran, a bounty hunter out to get the Metroids, a species that sucks life force out of other races. A group of space pirates are utilizing these Metroids for their own terrorist ends, and it's up for the bounty's sexiest hunter to bring them to a halt, and so Samus departs on her first adventure, powered by a password system to keep track of her game progress.

This is one of the first games to ever use a password system, a sort of foreword to the save system of today. Even though it's archaic to jot in a password to get to your point of reach, it's better than not having anything at all, since the game takes a while on your first run.

Reason behind why it will take a while is the lack of any map which would make life much more simpler (like Super Metroid's map). Another hit on the game is that you can't shoot diagonally or even shoot while ducking--this limits the potential of a more maneuverable Samus, but the game still manages to keep things at a pace.

One of the winning points behind the Metroid series is the Metroid gameplay in which progress plays a main role. You start out with a water gun and a basic jump, and from there you build up your arsenal with an Ice Beam, Rocket Launcher, and Energy canisters. One power-up for example would open up the ability to unlock certain doors, say doors that need to be shot with rocket launchers. Now you can access a new area, in which you'll acquire a new ability that will help you get to an area you passed by previously feeling helpless.

This game-play stay in the Metroid series is a huge part in what makes the game great, so why does the game only garner a 5? Mainly because it feels like an old game with old mechanics. The graphics are dull today and the password system archaic, Samus' inability to shoot diagonally or while crouching gives the hunter sort of a crotch feeling, and the lack of any map or direction hurts progress.

All of these setbacks were handled in future incarnations, so Metroid fans, yes, play this game to see how great things sometimes start, but to those looking for a good Metroid experience, start with something else.


+ Power-ups
+ Relation of power-ups to progress
+ Audio


- Archaic password system
- Dull graphics today
- Samus can't shoot diagonally/while crouching
- No map/feeling lost
- Feels really old compared to Super Metroid and other future titles in the series

Story - 9
Visuals - 4
Audio - 8

Gameplay - 5
-FUN Factor - 5
-Controls - A
-Difficulty - Normal

Lifespan - 6

Overall - 5

In the world of the Metroids, this is nothing special

Rating:   2.5 - Playable

Product Release: Metroid (US, 08/15/87)

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