Well, finally. After a hectic last couple of months, I finally got my hands on this game, as my friend Spence and I rented this game and also Godzilla Melee (which is a fun rental for four players, by the way). So lets get to it.
Title: Metriod Prime System: GameCube Genre: 1st Person Shooter/Adventure Requires: 1 Controler, 1 Memory Card Players: 1 Forefathers of Note: Metriod 1 and 2 (NES), Super Metriod (SNES) Price: Around $69.99 Canadian. Also, Nintendo has now offered that if you buy a GameCube, you can get Metriod Prime for free.
Overview: It took a few years, but bounty hunter Samus Aran is back. The last game we saw her with a leading role so-to-speak was in the classic SNES game Super Metriod. As a whole, the Metriod series has been incredible, offering great gameplay and overall great presentation on the systems it has been on, which is why it's suprising Nintendo has waited this long to come up with a new Metriod game. After literally years of clamering, finally they've come up with not just one, but two new Metriod games. Metriod Prime and Metriod Fusion were these two games. Fusion was made like the original Metriod games in 2d. The GBA being a 2d powerhouse, everyone expected it to be fantastic and had no concerns. Meanwhile....
Early screens and movies showed Prime to be breaking away from the traditional 2d and being a 3d, first person shooter. To boot, this was also during a time when the new Zelda game introduced IT'S "new look", which caused many to think Nintendo and Mario/Zelda/Metriod creator Miyamoto to be going crazy. I mean, many games have been re-done on a nextgen system and wound up being aweful (see the PSone Contra games). And to boot, little known Retro Studios was entrusted with the task of developing Prime. There were a lot of critics about all of this Of course, what all these people may have forgotten was one thing....
Miyamoto. With him involved in the project there was always a chance that the game would be good.
The long story short here is the Chozo (an old race of aliens) have left some very interesting things on the world of Tallon IV, which the Space Pirates wish to use to geneticlly engineer creatures. The Chozo were all but destroyed. Meanwhile....one Samus Aran has tracked the Space Pirates to Tallon IV, with the intention of kicking butt and taking names.
Whats New?: It's a FPS now, not 2d. A new funky 3d map as well. The nice thing is what's NOT new. Most, if not all, of the usual Metriod gear is actually in the game, which is great.
Graphics: From the opening to the middle (haven't quite beat the game yet), this game is without a doubt the BEST looking game on the GameCube. Period. Little things like seeing Samus' face through her visor in cut scenes, the nice shiney morph ball, and the SPLAT of your prey when you blow them up near your face. The animaton is smooth as silk, no lagging/jagging/slowdown. The best example I can give is the most simple thing; the transition from normal combat mode to the morph-ball. Incredible. I'd go on, but I can't do it justice. I shudder to think what this would look like in Progressive Scan mode. This game is a piece of art, visually. 5/5
Sound: The sound effects are very solid. Squishy SPLAT sounds to go with the SPLAY graphics, the energy sounds of the charge beam, the roars of monsters, everything fits and is properly timed with the graphics. My only complaint about the sound so far is the music, as at times it gets a bit repetitive....but the music does get much better during boss fights. The quality of the sound is very good, although not the realm of Rogue Leader (which IMHO, is still the reigning GameCube sound champ). 4/5
Control: Ah yes, the control. What to say about the control? Well how about this; the control is as good as the graphics. Seriously. Metriod has the best control scheme for a FPS I've used, period. Every button has a purpose, and the default layout is great. The control is tight, you will NOT be able to say the controls made you make a mistake. I found even that jumping was simple, which has long been my own personal weakness in FPS games. If you've played other Metriod games, you're going to have some fun with this. Because some how, some way, these guys were able to get the 2d style Metriod controls into this game, and maximizing the GameCube controler. To borrow a word from before, incredible. 5/5
Fun level: Forget the story for the moment. Just focus on how the game looks and how it controls. Focus on hearing the sounds. Take a step back and look at the overall presentation. Pickup the controler after doing that and just go through the motions of blowing up space aliens. Right there this would be 5/5. But if you add the interesting story (especially if you've played the previous Metriod games) AND the fact if you have a GBA, Metriod Fusion, and the link cable, you get some fun goodies (like being able the play THE ORIGINAL METRIOD!!!!), then you got an even more fun game. 5/5
Final Score: 19/20
Final Note; You know, sometimes a game comes along and it's a systemseller. GTA III, for example, had many people buy a PS2. If you own a GameCube, buy this game now. If you don't own a GameCube....consider getting one since you can get Metriod Prime for free. Seriously, this game is that good. All the big fuss about Rare leaving Nintendo is moot now, as Retro has stepped up in a large way and has simply put together a masterpiece. Miyamoto has once again proven many wrong.
Next month Zelda comes. I for one, am not doubting at all.
(edited by El Nastio on 28.1.03 0241)
Next VG Review: Metriod Prime Next OSVG Review: Blaster Master
Gamespot has an interesting article up reviewing real life as though it were a MMOG. I don't know if their evaluation of race is appropriate, but for the most part its a cute look at what some gamers might be missing out on.