Super Metroid for Super Nintendo

Super Metroid for Super Nintendo

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Super Metroid (SNES) - In my top 5 SNES games.

Jul 28, 2012 (Updated Jul 28, 2012)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Incredible game play, outstanding graphics and music score, plenty of abilities

Cons:Not too story driven, easy boss battles

The Bottom Line: Many hail this as a classic, and many hail it as the best SNES game ever. Not too sure about that last part, but it's a great game.

The inter-galactic bounty hunter Samus Aran discovers an egg that immediately hatches revealing a small Metroid larva. The creature becomes attached to Samus thinking her as its mother. Samus takes the creature to a group of scientist on an asteroid known as Ceres Space Colony for testing, and learns that the creature has incredible energy levels that can be harnessed for good. After leaving the colony, Samus receives a distress call, and upon returning she's thrust into a battle with a creature that makes off with the larva. She follows the creature to the planet Zebes and begins a search mission. -summary

To say that Super Metroid was mind blowing when it was released back in 1994 wouldn't be an exaggeration. Nintendo completely out did themselves with this one, and it was an excellent follow up to another one of their mascot characters. Super Metroid is universally praised and is hailed as one of the best, some feel THE best for the SNES. Personally, it's in my top 3 of SNES games and I can still play this even now. The game is virtually flawless and it still holds up pretty well even now.

Game Play:

Super Metroid is a free-roaming 2D action adventure game. It takes place after the events of Metroid II: The Return of Samus, and follows Samus Aran as she navigates through different sectors of the planet Zebes. Along the way, she will encounter various monsters with different damage levels and abilities. In the beginning, the player is armed with a generic blasting weapon and no real abilities.

The game is basically like Zelda, where you have only one life and the freedom to visit and revisit many areas. Some can be accessed right at the beginning, while others can be opened up after performing some type of requirement or gaining a weapon. The amount of pick ups are enormous, and during the combat scenes, in which there are plenty, you will find yourself searching for items more than anything else.

Samus is capable of handling a vast arsenal and abilities consisting of freeze rays, missiles, super missiles, super speed and jumping, a morphing ability, energy tanks, and other things. These features enhance the game play a great deal and there's always this sense of accomplishment when finding that next item.

The stages follow the traditional plat-former scheme with some creative stage segments that features a lot of jumping and maneuvering. There are no instant fall deaths here, but there are levels that will kill you slowly, simply because you're missing some type of item. One stage that stands out is the fire area that drains your life quickly, unless you have the body armor that withstands incredible heat.

The enemies in the game are vast, and some of them can give you a good pounding, but if you learn which weapons are best, then you can dispose of many of them easily. Super Metroid also has its fair share of boss battles with some very big creatures. Although the fights are fairly easy, they aren't over all that quick. And that's only one of my real issues with the game. This is something Nintendo is notorious for, they will put together some game that can feel like it takes forever to beat, but they will pack the game with some boss battles that really aren't fulfilling. Another thing that bothers me, is that the game could have also used some small dialog segments similar to Zelda: A Link to the Past, to help make it more story-driven. Until the end, the story really doesn't kick in and I always found that disappointing.


The control set up is easy to understand and easy to master. You can go to your select screen and change your equipment around or switch beams. The controls are very responsive also, making moving around and jumping to different platforms easy. I can't think of any problems in this area at all.


Visually, the game was impressive then, and I think it's still awesome up to now. The frame rate is very fluid, and the animation is just top notch, watching Samus run at super speed is always cool. The overall design of the character is awesome as well. I like the various designs of the creatures, and the enormous bosses deserve a mention too. Some of the bosses have an intimidating feel to them. I also like the small details such as the small particles of ice falling and dissipating in the air when the freeze beam is fired.

Super Metroid is consumed with style and there's this fantastic cohesion between visuals and sound, which is especially noticeable in the beginning. The dark and creepy like atmosphere compliments the music score very well. The first instrumental feels like a cross between The Terminator and The Predator, and I think it creates the perfect sci-fi battle setting. I also enjoy the opening fade in of the songs when entering a new stage, and then it suddenly goes full throttle. The use of music in this game was very well handled. There are some nice sound effects with clear distinctions between some of the weapons; the freeze ray sounds completely different from the other rays, and the super missiles hit with more impact. 


Once the main game is finished that's it really. Completist will return trying to find all of the missile and super missile icons they left. And since the game can take a very long time to beat for newcomers, probably around 6 hours or more. You might want to try and lower your time.    

Final Thoughts: 
Even though Super Metroid is the type of game you finish and then move on to something else. I always found myself coming back to it. The game play is about as deep as some RPG's; it's incredibly stylish, and for me, that memorable soundtrack and fast paced climax always pulls me back for occasional replays. Back in the early to mid 90's you really didn't have many games that came together so well. I heard that the game is downloadable for the Wii and I don't doubt that at all. I highly recommend playing it if you missed out on it during its original run. I consider it one of the best plat-formers of all time. 

Overall Rating: 9/10 

Recommend this product? Yes

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