Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Metroid Prime Remastered: Hopes for the Sequels

staring at a detailed wall made out of hexagonal basalt

Playing Metroid Prime Remastered makes you immediately want more, where we have no idea how far Metroid Prime 4 is currently into development. It still could take years to come out, but in the meantime fans and new players alike will certainly be happy with getting remasters of Prime 2 and Prime 3 to pass some of that time.

Naturally, there have been many rumors about this, where I don't want to address a particular one. But I do believe that Retro Studios has been working on remastering the entire trilogy, before they were re-assigned to Metroid Prime 4. They have finished the first game nonetheless, but remasters of the other two titles are either on hold or got outsourced, where it's possible that some of the many other studios involved with Metroid Prime Remastered are now working on them.

But we do know for a fact that Metroid Prime Remastered has been finished since July 2021 (see here) and there must be a good reason why they have been waiting over one and a half years to finally release it. Either they wanted it closer to the release of Metroid Prime 4 or they wanted to wait until the other remasters are taking shape. Of course they also didn't want it to collide with Metroid Dread, but there was no need to wait that long.

In any case, remasters of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption should get the same level of detail as Metroid Prime Remastered. This is a very rare occurrence of a Nintendo title where the graphics are really the selling point. The game is simply a feast to the eyes and anything less for its sequels will result only in disappointment. They could just make remasters with upscaled textures, like it was done with Twilight Princess HD, but they really shouldn't.

staring at a sandstone wall with some metallic structures

Personally, I can't wait to see Agon Wastes or the Sanctuary Fortress with such detailed assets. The atmosphere of Metroid Prime 2 was amazing and the game had a "cleaner" look to it overall, where it would be a good match for the art direction of Metroid Prime Remastered. It doesn't really need much more for the second game in the Metroid Prime Trilogy, except that they should also simplify the menus to not use these rotating data bubbles. While it was very unique, it wasn't very convenient to use...

With Corruption I mainly hope that they will get rid of the credit and Friend Voucher system entirely and simply let people unlock the gallery contents in the same way as in Metroid Prime Remastered. Alternatively, they could turn the Friend Vouchers and some of the gold credits into ingame achievements, but I really wouldn't want to do "Flawless Escape" ever again.

On the other hand, without such a system there would be no real reason to hunt down the Red Phaazoids at all... But they could give you a better reason for this than just some virtual checkmark, where one simple idea could be that each of them increases your resistance to Phaaze.

The bumper stickers for your ship also will probably be removed entirely or at least updated to modern games. Would be cool to have a sticker based on Tears of the Kingdom, for example. But considering that they didn't even bother with the Fusion Suit, this feature is likely not to make a re-appearance.

And then there are the motion controls, where they need to be toned a bit to make the game work properly with a Pro Controller or in handheld mode. The novelty of throwing the Grapple Lasso with your Nunchuk or turning some devices with your Wii Remote got old quickly and never was fully reliable anyway. So, they should be looking at Skyward Sword HD here for how to do all this with traditional controls.

Both titles would also certainly profit from free button mappings. That's one of the few complaints that I have with Metroid Prime Remastered, where the many control options are very good, but not perfect. Just let the people fully customize the controls to be comfortable, where this also adds to the accessibility of the game.

Anyway, it will be nice to have the entire Metroid Prime Trilogy on the Nintendo Switch in the long run, but it shouldn't happen at all costs. They should give these games the same care as Metroid Prime, because they deserve it.

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