Nintendo’s GameCube library is regarded as having one of its finest works in Metroid Prime. The series’ frantic action, vastly explorable environments, clever puzzles, and challenging boss encounters helped it make a seamless transition to the first-person genre. The subsequent 20 years have weakened the original release, but Metroid Prime Remastered restores the game to its full strength, much like Samus does at the conclusion of each game.
Because Metroid Prime still feels completely original, fans clamored for Nintendo to revisit it through a new game or a re-release. Although Metroid Prime is widely regarded as a masterpiece, there have been a few copycat games since it came out.
Instead, Metroid Prime stands out because it prioritizes careful, occasionally frustrating exploration over everything else. Only more Metroid Prime will satisfy your Metroid Prime itch, which is what makes playing the game again intriguing and rewarding because it’s like playing it for the first time.
This is a “remaster,” not a “remake,” according to Nintendo. Although arbitrary, the terms are significant. The conditions define the rules. A “remaster” is probably just a visual update with some quality-of-life enhancements to make it easier to play in the modern era. A “remake” is probably more ambitious and might change or add new systems to the game’s levels.
The already fantastic original game receives a fresh coat of paint with Metroid Prime Remastered. Although not unique to this release, we were impressed by how well Metroid Prime’s art style translates to contemporary visuals.
Painstakingly detailed textures and significantly improved lighting further accentuate the already stunning character models and environments. The sound has also improved, adding to the enjoyment of the fantastic soundtrack. Everything is so good-looking and sounding that a less experienced player might be led to believe that this is a brand-new release for 2023.
Although the visual enhancements are notable, the updated controls are downright revolutionary. Thanks to the game’s customizable control options, you can play Metroid Prime in various ways. Playing on players’ fond memories of those older platforms, the Classic and Pointer controls mimic single-stick GameCube and motion-control Wii settings, respectively. The best way to play Metroid Prime is with the new Dual Stick option.
In the best control modernization we can think of, this setting (the default) maps movement to the left stick and aims to the right. Our best compliment is that my modern first-person shooter brain intuitively knew how to perform almost every action with little instruction or guidance. This new control scheme makes almost no concessions in its updates. This game gives you the incredible power fantasy of being one of the galaxy’s top bounty hunters when combined with Samus’ suit’s lock-on system.
With these enhancements, Metroid Prime Remastered allows a new audience to enjoy one of the best Nintendo-exclusive games of the twenty-first century. The original Retro Studios development team understood how to adapt Metroid’s established formula of obtaining new powers to aid in carefully exploring an ever-expanding map to an entirely new genre. Exploring Tallon IV is an eerie and the atmospheric delight. Even with the addition of memorable boss battles, excellent environmental storytelling, and thrilling combat situations, Metroid Prime’s outstanding design still feels fantastic.
We finished playing Metroid Prime again with only minor complaints. In the grand scheme of this amazing remaster, the awkward camera when you’re in Morph Ball, the absence of a real waypoint system, and the cluttered HUD are minor gripes. Even the outdated checkpoint system and the excessive backtracking are minor quibbles that raise the stakes without being cheesy.
Metroid Prime Remastered is more than it first appears to be, demonstrating how magnificent and enduring the original design was. The visual and technical upgrades significantly increase its accessibility, but almost any other Switch shooter unmatches its control prowess. In 2002, Metroid Prime was a masterpiece, and in 2023, that opinion is still valid.
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