Super Metroid

That's how I roll...

My name's Frank, and I've never played Super Metroid.

I think I might have dabbled with one of the many games in the genre, but even then, it's best to assume I haven't touched the series, largely due to the fact that, besides the Game Boy, I just haven't owned Nintendo consoles, and that's where all those Metroids are.

It is the future, I guess, and Samus was just about to do something, when - what do you know - a distress call! We better get on it right away.

Fun Times

I don't know much of the plot dumped into my lap by the short introductory scene, save for the fact that it had flashbacks to previous games and German subtitles. I didn't intend for the German subtitles, but there we go - amateur mistake.

In no time at all we find ourselves emerging from a ship on a rainy planet and Super Metroid gets underway.

It is at this point where you might expect me to moan about lack of signposting and having to find everything, but because I've seen Super Metroid enough times in speed runs and the like, I know enough to know that there's generally only going to be one route open to me and I've just got to find it.

See a door? Yes? Does it open when I shoot it? No? Better find a stronger weapon before coming back here.
See a narrow gap? Yes? Do I fit through it? No? Better find a way to shrink before coming back here.

I eventually pressed 'down' a second time...

And so you make progress, filling in the map as you go, learning the fully customizable controls and the nuances that come with them. Jumping often caught me out a few times, because it appears like you can hold the jump button for height, for example, but can of course only go so far in a single leap. There's probably an upgrade for that, too.

Shots can be fired in 8 directions, with the shoulder buttons being used to aim your arm cannon, or whatever you have strapped to you, should you want to use it threateningly, rather than with a purpose. Unlocks including missiles and bombs will add to your arsenal and open up more and more places to explore.


That is if you don't die to the mini-boss who was holding one of those upgrades. Yeah... I wasn't terribly comfortable with the way the controls actually controlled by this point of my run and suffered defeat at this fish-man looking guy.  Ah well.

Final Word

There aren't any more frustrations besides getting lost at the minute because that's still all I've played of Super Metroid. As I say, I've seen enough of it to know the gist of things, but just like my time with A Link to the Past, seeing it in action just isn't the same as playing it for yourself, and just like A Link to the Past, I want to play Super Metroid.

I want to know where the story goes, and somewhat pay attention to it. Something about aliens, I suppose. Text usually gets skipped when you gotta go fast, doesn't it? And there's not a whole lot of text on display in this game either, so, at some point, I'm going to have to go slow with Super Metroid, because it deserves it.

Will it rank high on the top ten lists? I'm not sure.  Along with Castlevania, Super Metroid made a certain kind of game traversal quite popular, and I like how you're just left to explore without anything being too threatening or requiring you to hurry up - so far, at least.

Time will tell where Super Metroid sits in my rankings, but time has proven it to be somewhere in the top 1001 (as of 2010) at least, so go try it out for yourselves.

Fun Facts

See that map? The one that's actually pretty useful, and not just a world map with vague icons? Super Metroid is one of the first open world games to implement such a feature. Open world being in quotes, perhaps.

Super Metroid, Nintendo R&D1, first released in 1994.
Version played: SNES, 1994, via emulation.
Version watched: SNES, 1994 (Numerous, including SaikyoMog, Speedrunner Archive)