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on June 25, 2004
From the moment when the game says "Metroid IV" before the opening cinematic you know you're in for something special. It has been years since Metroid had seen a new title, and now it's back in force. Metroid Fusion is a departure from the norm, but it definately lives up to its Metroid name.
The story is as follows, you, Samus Aran, are sent to help scientists of the Biologic Space Labs study life on the planet SR388 after Samus removed the top of the food chain by exterminating all Metroids on that planet during Metroid II. This seems all dandy and peaceful until you discover a strange floating viral organism that infects Samus and her power suit. Samus' suit is cut away in attempts to save her life and she's given a vaccine of Metroid DNA, Metroids being the sole predator of the virus organism which is dubbed "X", so the vaccine kills the virus and as a side effect it allows samus to absorb the virus.
Samus is then sent back out to see to a problem at the Biologic Space Labs in her modified and weaker power suit only to find that all hell has broken loose. This is where the gameplay starts and the differences begin.
First of all you're on a space station instead of a planet (The different areas are built to look like different ecosystems on a planet anyway). The graphics are phenomenal and a big improvement over Super Metroid. The gameplay has remained largely the same but that's a good thing, you take a lot of damage which can be explained away since your power suit is crappier than your old one. Also on this mission you're given missions dictated to you by a computer named Adam. This takes away from the non-linear gameplay of previous metroid games and makes it a tad bit more linear but it also adds a welcome and cool science fiction story. Another twist to the game is the SA-X. It seems that the X virus can copy anything it touches, and since it infected Samus with all her best abilities it decided to copy her. Through most of the game you have to run from this fake Samus as it kills you in only a few hits and this adds for some tense and frightening moments.
The music in the game is also noteworthy, all the tracks fit their intended purpose from the creepy to the heroic. You'll want to use headphones for this game.
In conclusion it might not be Super Metroid, but it's Metroid and it is nearly as good. No Metroid fan's life would be complete without picking this one up.
For those of you new to the Metroid series, I reccommend buying the equally fantastic Zero Mission first.
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on May 16, 2004
See you next mission. Those were the words that video gamers got when they had finally completed 1994's Super Metroid for the Super Nintendo gaming console. Gamers were continually wondering just when that next mission would be. For years and years they waited... It took eight long years for the so-called "next mission" to arrive, but in late 2002, two new Metroid games were released. Metroid Fusion for the Game Boy Advance, which would continue the side-scrolling action/exploration stylings of Super Metroid, and Metroid Prime for the Gamecube, which would bring the series into the twenty-first century, with a full 3D adventure. Read on for my review of Metroid Fusion for the Game Boy Advance.
-IF YOU LIKED SUPER METROID, YOU'RE GOING TO LIKE THIS GAME. Super Metroid was the game that was the perfect fusion of action and exploration, and that won many a gamer over almost instantly. Metroid Fusion is likely to do the game. The game plays just like its old Super Nintendo counterpart.
-ALL THE CLASSIC ABILITIES YOU KNOW AND LOVE ARE BACK. The Wave Beam, Varia Suit, Gravity Suit, Morphing Ball, Bombs, and Plasma Beam have all returned for your gaming pleasure.
-IT'S ONE OF THE FEW METROID GAMES THAT HEAVILY EMPHASIZES THE STORYLINE THROUGH AND THROUGH - AND IT HAS A GOOD STORYLINE! Samus had finished eradicating a species of parasites called the X, or so she thought. One infected her suit, nearly killing her. Fortunately, she was saved through the usage of a Metroid-based vaccine. The X multiplied in a research-based space station, and now Samus must stop them once and for all. It's one of the best storylines in the series, and it is continually explored through the course of the game.
-THE GAME IS COMPATIBLE WITH METROID PRIME. If you use a GCN/GBA link cable, you can unlock special features, provided you have beaten one of the games. Beat Fusion and do this, and you unlock the original NES Metroid in Metroid Prime. Beat Prime and do this, and you'll unlock a new costume for Samus in Prime. Cool stuff.
-TONS OF HIDDEN STUFF. Like the previous Metroid games, this one has a good deal of things hidden through the layout of the space station - you'll need to find them all if you want to get a hundred percent rating when you complete the game.
-THE PLAY CONTROL FALLS BELOW THE USUAL SERIES STANDARDS. You must hold down the R button to fire your missiles, and use the L button to aim diagonally. If you've got big hands like me, using the Game Boy Advance's shoulder buttons can be nightmarish. Still, this probably won't bother you much once you get into the game.
-THE GAME IS JUST TOO SHORT AND EASY. I completed the game initially in under four hours - and I didn't even need a player guide or an FAQ/walkthrough. If you go into battles fully armed, you're not going to have a lot of trouble winning. A few fights will challenge you, but for the most part you probably won't have a lot of trouble. Another thing that makes the game too easy is its linear nature. The game is essentially "holding your hand" all the way through, with computer stations offering you advice on how to win.
Overall, this is not a perfect game, and it's not as good as Super Metroid (it's doubtful the series will ever top THAT masterpiece.) But nonetheless, Fusion is a solid entry in an excellent series, and if you're a Game Boy Advance owner who likes games of this sort, you'll be doing yourself a real favor by purchasing it.
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on March 16, 2004
Hmmm i loved this game. I remeber when i got it at a shopco and the friend i was with murmered what a nerd i am. (huh huh huh funny) Anyways i played this game for about a week and i beat it which is teh same with most metroid games (exept metroid prime unless you like play it all the time but the gameboy is so much more mobile) Anywho, this game is awsome. Its kinda more colorful then the other games as by meaning its the most like cel shading (like zelda: wind waker) but its barley noticable. I thought the game had an amazing plot and really interesting bosses (yes -sigh- ridley AGAIN) it was definatley a cool idea but truthfully i kinda wondered if samus is stuck in that suit i thought she wasnt like i read it somewehre but theres lots of liars out there. Anywho, i would recremend this game to anyone even if you dont play the series the only thing thats kinda previous is the baby metroid DNA and the whole metroid sr388 planet thing but besides that nothing new here. Exept ridley i guess (curse you ridley!!!!) But buy this game (well you dotn have to....) but i advise it.
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on February 22, 2004
I first got this game on Christmas Eve 2002, expecting some good ol' classic Metroid gameplay with storyline/graphics that keep you hooked. I wasn't disappointed! This is by far the BEST Metroid sequel since "Super Metroid" (a.k.a. "Metroid III"), which hit the SNES in 1994. The storyline is far more compelling out of all the others (even the original!), and the graphics almost seem to go beyond any other GBA game! (with the exception of "Golden Sun" and "The Sword of Mana"!) Samus is also more powerful, faster, and intelligent than ever after becoming infected by an unknown virus that nearly takes her life but transforms her with a higher bodysuit upgrade! When the game begins, she seriously opens up a can of Whoopa$$ on her enemies!!! There are also more abilities, hidden areas, items, and big bad BOSSES than ever before, and the whole layout itself is both suspenseful and intense!
(WARNING: You'll sometimes have to run from Samus's old bodysuit which also becomes possessed by the virus and actually tries to hunt you down, until the final battle near the end!)
Some other old familiar characters return as well including Samus's old indestructable nemesis, Ridley, and the friendly creatures from Planet Zebes on the previous installment! You'll have to watch yourself at ever corner and keep moving fast until you reach the ultimate enemy of them all... THE 'OMEGA METROID'!!!! Or face certain destruction! OVERALL: I give it a 10/10! I HIGHLY RECCOMEND THIS GAME! ADD IT TO YOUR 'M' COLLECTION NOW! I also reccomend: "Super Metroid" & "Metroid: ZERO MISSION"! They are some of the best!
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on January 4, 2004
This game is great but kinda scary knowing that the SA-X could just be around the corner. Heck I was pretty egotistical about facing the SA-X and when I did this is what I looked like afterwards "........" this is just to tell you... STAY AWAY AS MUCH AS YOU CAN FROM THE SA-X!!! However I figured out that you only have to run away from/face her 3 times.
And what REALY frustrated me was you could beat the game 100% in less than 2 hours. And I have been spanding weeks on this game.
but if you somehow do so you get a REEEAAAALLLL good picture of Samus without her suit.
But hey. I will give you a hint that can realy save you from getting stuck in a boss level.
When Adam asks you to activate auxiliary power, you will go thru level and eventualy fall in a pit. Then you will see Three fire balls raining down upon you. when the spider(Yazuka) starts ricocheing around, turn into a morph ball and go next to any fire ball but the middle one. When the fire balls disappear, go directly the the closest wall and stay there untile it opens its mouth. Shoot a load of ice missiles in his mouth and repeat the beginning from when I said the fire balls are raining down upon you until he looses his legs. After that just keep shooting upwards with ice missiles and stay in one place.
And the core x isnt as powerful so you dont need a hint for that.
And it could just be a bit hard getting used to your technology.
(I am NOT telling what it is)
use the pit as a safe spot to practice with it and when you are ready you will use it to get out.
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on February 5, 2004
Let's get down to the basics.
+New exciting Plot involving new creatures and enemies and some old.
+Same Metroid style gameplay with new additions.
+Fun, very fun.
+/-Computer Tells you everywhere to go and everything to do for the most part
+/- New look for Samus
- If you Aim for 100%, the computer makes it very difficult for you at the end when you are locked out of nearly every section before the inevitable showdown
+ One or two little surprises at the end. Hehe
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on January 3, 2004
When I started this game, my heart sank. A full five minutes of "cinematic" sequences with no way to skip them!? Five minutes of staring at white text and boring still graphics? What were they thinking?
Thankfully, the game is a whole other deal. Once you survive past those inexplicably long "cinematics", you're up for a side-scrolling shooter that puts its focus on the more important things. The graphics are nothing to write home about, but the mechanics are extremely responsive, the controls intuitive, and the gameplay engaging. I was surprised at the number of different moves, manoeuvres and weapons they were able to cram into this game, and it quickly draws you in.
There is also a "puzzle" element to this game as you navigate through a grid-based system of rooms looking for a way to get across. Some of these are a little obscure for my taste -- I prefer nonstop action when playing a side-scroller -- but it doesn't overuse the frustration factor.
The one major complaint I have is that this game is a long linear storyline with absolutely no alternate ways of playing. This also means if you get stuck, that's it -- no more game left to play. It would be so much better to be able to choose to replay levels you've already passed after you've completed them, to boost the replayability factor. And the very long opening sequence can't be skipped, so I'm also discouraged from future replays. Why this colossal blunder in a very simple part of games nearly impossible to get wrong?
Metroid Fusion is a very good game that charms by virtue of its old-fashioned side-scrolling simplicity. Too bad about the two issues above -- they serve to substantially reduce the fun factor. I'd still recommend this game, because there aren't that many meat-and-potatoes side-scrolling games left anymore.
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on November 19, 2003
As soon as Metroid Fusion was announced I ran to the store, anxiously waiting to get it home. I remembered how Super Metroid was such an improvement over the original and I was hoping that this game would be even greater. Now Metroid Fusion has all the trimmings of an excellent Metroid game, with its detailed graphics, good soundtrack, and improved story. However, one aspect of the game is a bit off, and unfortunately it is the most important aspect of all, and that is the gameplay. More on to that a bit later, so read on my friends.
The graphics of the game are excellent, and is by far the strongest point of the game. Nintendo did a great job using the Game Boy Advance's full potential for this game, and it really shows. The backgrounds and lighting effects are all above par, and should make any Metroid fan happy. From boiling rooms erupting lava, to sub zero rooms overflowing with ice, to artificial jungles, to the basic save and recharge room, the games graphics are very detailed and vibrant. Nothing negative to say about the character designs either. Each enemy has a classic Metroid feel to it, and Samus has never looked better...
If you enjoyed the sound from Super Metroid then you will like the sounds of Metroid Fusion just as much. The only gripe I have is the the music is recycled, and usually repeats whenever you enter a different sector. It is disappointing that each sector doesn't have its own theme music, but you really can't expect too much from the limited power of the Game Boy Advance. However, the sound effects of the game are fine. Explosions, evaporating enemies, flips, nature effects, etc. are all above par, and sound fine.
Unlike the sound and graphics, the gameplay of Metroid Fusion is sadly disappointing. Instead of the great exploration that took place in the previous Metroids, you are left with a game that instead, tries to walk you through it. The game play's in a mission based format, and forces you to take on different objectives. While this may seem interesting, this is a direction that the Metroid series shouldn't have taken. The primary problem with this is that the game gives you a map, too detailed descriptions of what you are supposed to do, and you are even told what exact area you are to go to. Instead of exploring the different sectors to complete the objectives, you are left with an annoying computer giving you too much information in every single level. This aspect makes the game too linear, and takes away the thing that made Metroid so great. The primary flow of the game is get a mission and map of the sector you are going to. Then use that map to know exactly where to go in that sector, finish the objective, and go back to the computer. Even more annoying is sometimes you will backtrack to previous sectors, a gameplay element that seemed to flow into Metroid Prime as well. Now while it is fun to blast enemies, and experience the new elements of Samus, the fact that the objectives of the game are so linear is a let down.
Apart from the story and objective part of the gameplay is the actual action based fighting part. Just like the traditional Metroid games you have your laser cannon, bombs, missiles, and the energy tank. A new idea thrown into the game was the parasites, which when absorbed allow you to recover your health or missiles. The interesting part of this is how if you don't absorb the parasite it can sometimes transform into an enemy. This quick aspect of gameplay is another interesting idea thrown into the game. Also, you can find upgrades in the game to increase their power, or add for more of those weapons to be stored. Despite the fact this game is mission based, it is still fun to fight enemies and search for some secrets hidden in each sector. The classic Samus gameplay, hidden secrets, and fact that the game is not TOTALLY linear, is why this game is still a fun game, and didn't turn into a total disaster.
Sadly, the replay value of the game is poor, as in this case correlates to the challenge of the game. This game is very easy, and can be completed in anywhere from 4-8 hours. The game's lack of levels, linear gameplay, and small amount of secrets will be the primary reasons you most likely will not go through the game again. The key reason that the challenge of the game is so simple is of the fact that the map feature was included. The mission objective story would have blended so well had the game not been so linear. The things that made the Metroid series so great was that every time you went in a level you could explore it differently than you had before. You could go to levels in any order you wanted, and the freedom kept you hanging, yet constantly interested. It is a shame that this game couldn't have gone in the same direction.
Overall, this game is just missing something. It could be the linear gameplay, simple premise, or lack of hidden secrets that made both Metroid and Super Metroid so fun. I still enjoyed Metroid Fusion, but after beating it, I just wanted more. Those that don't care for the Metroid series don't even give this game a second glance. However, I recommend fans the series to give this one a go. All in all, Metroid Fusion is an interesting result of the new steps Nintendo was trying to create. However, these new steps is what took away the gameplay that made Metroid what it was. I can only hope that the next Metroid follows the path it should have took.
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on August 21, 2003
This game is probably another one of the greatest games of all time. Along with Super Metroid it's easy to say that Metroid Fusion is one of the best. The gameplay of this one is a lot like Super Metroid in many aspects. It's been eight years since Samus last had an adventure and this is by no means a disappointment.
The storyline of this Metroid is that Samus went to planet SR-388 where she encountered a new lifeform only known as the X-Parasite. She get's infected with the X-Virus (her power suit actually) and the only thing that can save her is a Metroid Vaccine gotten from a Metroid. Thus this makes Samus half Metroid and half human (hence its called Metroid "Fusion"). The catch? A space station where her power suit parts are stored comes under attack by the X as they've multiplied themselves and not only that but with the X being able to mimic it's prey that means that Samus has a clone that YOU have to stop! This is THE best damn storyline in Metroid history! Filled with tons of plot twist and the new story scenes better enhance the storyline (something that actually could've been used in Super Metroid.)
There are a few things that this game misses as far as Metroid goes. thing really. I didn't mind that you had to hold a button down to fire missles and use power bombs (I rather liked that aspect as in Super Metroid I constantly used a power bomb without meaning to because I forgot to cancel the damn thing). This is easy to get used to. The one thing this Metroid misses is that element of exploration. True you do get to explore but only in the areas that the game has you go to first as often times closed doors will block you from going back. This is different from Metroid but it DOES work for this game as most games nowadays have gone down this linear path, but at least it makes the game focus on storyline.
The only other gripe I had with this game was that compared to Metroid (the first one) this is a very easy game. It's about as easy as Super Metroid was to me and that means that it wasn't very hard and I didn't die much at all. There are a few hard parts in the game which actually make it slightly harder than Super Metroid but still, the game is simple.
Now I know everyone is complaining that this game is too short but it really isn't THAT short. Sure you can blast through this game in 3 hours if you go as fast as possible, but I can blast through Super Metroid in TWO hours and people consider that game long? OK granted, the game is short but it has replay! Different endings of the game enhance its replay value and just the fact that the game is just a gem. So I didn't mind how long it was as you could go through any PS2 action/adventure in the same amount of time.
You'll notice several elements from Super Metroid here. But Samus has new abilities now. She can now hang off ledges and climb ladders. There are also bars along the ceiling in most areas so as you might have guessed that the grapple hook is now gone. Oh well.
Overall this is the second best Metroid game of all time. First would be Super Metroid. It's much better than Metroid Prime is and has one of the greatest storylines of all time. This game is just what the GBA needs right now!
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on July 21, 2003
A newbie to the GBA and inexperienced with games like Metroid Fusion (I am an RTS and strat game player), I admit that I find this game harder than many of the other reviewers.
I have not finished Metroid Fusion in "a few hours" and this is good because I wish to savor each and every level of this game to the fullest. Graphics are excellent, the game operates very smoothly, and as a teaching tool for games of this type it would be hard to find anything better for newbie players. Patience and persistence always pay off!
I also have a high-end computer system with the latest games and I find that I am neglecting them completely while I play Metroid Fusion. So complaints about the 2D graphics and the "side-roller" style should not be taken too seriously. The graphics are easy on the eye (I rather like them myself), game operation is smooth and predictable, and the gameplay can only be rated superior. If you have never played a game like Metroid Fusion before, be forewarned that 1) some techniques take a while to learn, and 2) the "bosses" can be very tough challenges for new players.
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