Metroid and The Loss of Originality and Innovation

For discussing ideas and thoughts on the Metroid franchise in general.

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Re: Metroid and The Loss of Originality and Innovation

Postby Emperor Ing » 02.25.12 9:55pm

Dragonheart91 wrote:This thread was interesting until it turned into another Other M rant thread with walls of text far too big to ever be read.

Seriously, if you're not going to contribute anything to a topic other than "Walls of text lol who reads those? lololol >_<X >_<X >_<X " then you're better off not posting. I haven't replied generally because I haven't read the entire thread yet, but the discussion is vigorous with many good points (like AU's recent post).
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Re: Metroid and The Loss of Originality and Innovation

Postby Zynux » 02.25.12 10:11pm

Dragonheart91 wrote:This thread was interesting until it turned into another Other M rant thread with walls of text far too big to ever be read.

:facepalm:

*Sigh*. Really? Obviously you didn't read the wall of text. But I don't really blame you, after all, it is a wall of text.

Let me summarize it for you: My main point in responding to AuroraUnitComplex was that just because a game transitioned genres twice (Metroid Prime and Other M) does not mean it evolved. This is why I extensively talked about both Prime and Other M (usually together!) because I disagree with AuroraUnitComplex that they were true evolutions in the franchise, and I stated my reasons why (whether you agree or disagree). He specifically mentions both Prime and Other M a lot in his post (which makes sense, since those were the two times Metroid really went outside its comfort zone). This is why it only makes sense that when I reply I not only mention Metroid Prime and Other M, but Fusion and the general Metroid franchise in general. You'll notice that the shortcomings I came up with Other M are the exact same shortcomings I explicitly stated for Prime and Fusion (and I did talk about Zero Mission to a lesser extent). Not only that, but there were many points that I agreed with him (especially with giving the Metroid series respect for at least trying). ANOTHER point of my argument is that the Metroid games keep removing features that set it apart, but fail to substitute these features with anything else that would help the franchise grow.


But of course, you didn't read the post so you wouldn't know. I AM DISAPPOINT.


Maetch wrote:The one game that took a radically-new direction for the series (Other M) was disliked for NOT being like the others, which pretty much tells Nintendo "make more games just like SM, because no one wants anything different for the series".


Which imo is a damn shame. I have said it before and I'll say it again: I'm all for Metroid for expanding in ways that many fans probably wouldn't be so keen on (Again, except for a Metroid Racer XD, which would be...odd). In fact, I wouldn't even mind if they didn't make 2D Super Metroid-esque for a while and made more 3D Metroids. While I don't really want anymore Prime (since imo its done and over with) I'd be happy with another Metroid 3D action-game that builds on Other M. Metroid has a lot of potential, but I believe it hasn't been reached yet.[/quote]

Trishbot wrote:Looking at what Metroid original was, like, ORIGINALLY, on the NES, it's weird to think that sandbox games like Saint's Row, Red Dead Redemption, and GTAIV are more like those original Metroid games than the recent games in the freedom it allows players to have. The freedom to explore where you want, when you want, and to discover new characters, enemies, story lines, quests, and upgrades is a powerful gaming tool to keep people playing.


Maybe its just my taste of games, but I always found that non-linearity/exploration was always generally more enjoyable than linearity and restrictions in where you want to go. I believe that Metroid's selling point should be to explore a massive, non-linear planet and blow aliens to bits. No, not make it another "Super Metroid" or another "Prime" but the exploration of a mysterious uncharted planet, unveiling mysteries, solving puzzles, and tackling monstrous aliens as you proceed. I'm also all for more plot and story in Metroid games. Yes, many people seem to make fun of Corruption (INEFFICENT) and Other M's (Confession Time) storylines but atleast they're trying; and I hope they don't give up at trying to deliver us an enriching, emotional story. Because I believe they can.

Basically, what was mentioned before by others, is that Metroid is removing elements from prior games but not substituting in something of equal or greater value to make these sacrifices worth it.


This. I'll even go as far and say that (with contradicting myself) that even if Metroid got rid of ALL nonlinearity for Linearity, I wouldn't mind as long as the series substituted it with something that would greatly expand the franchise in the end. Of course, and I state this in my response to AU, that this is not what they are doing, so then again lies my initial problem.
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Re: Metroid and The Loss of Originality and Innovation

Postby johnnypalooza » 02.27.12 12:21am

Zynux wrote:This. I'll even go as far and say that (with contradicting myself) that even if Metroid got rid of ALL nonlinearity for Linearity, I wouldn't mind as long as the series substituted it with something that would greatly expand the franchise in the end. Of course, and I state this in my response to AU, that this is not what they are doing, so then again lies my initial problem.


I agree 100%. As long as it's executed well, it doesn't matter if it's linear or not. I think some people get wrapped up to tightly into what a game series is supposed to be, you know? Imagine if Rockstar released a Grand Theft Auto game that completely ditched the sandbox style gameplay, but was still an amazing game by its own merit. You'd hear stuff like "It's just not GTA!" or "they changed too much!"
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Re: Metroid and The Loss of Originality and Innovation

Postby Zynux » 03.04.12 9:10pm

johnnypalooza wrote:I agree 100%. As long as it's executed well, it doesn't matter if it's linear or not. I think some people get wrapped up to tightly into what a game series is supposed to be, you know? Imagine if Rockstar released a Grand Theft Auto game that completely ditched the sandbox style gameplay, but was still an amazing game by its own merit. You'd hear stuff like "It's just not GTA!" or "they changed too much!"


I agree, this is what I generally find irritable about some fans in general. I understand that you will be skeptical if a game takes a new direction, but I see no reason to completely right-off a game just because it doesn't fit into what you think the game should be. Its all about the execution on the idea.

Anyways, with all this discussion about innovation, the question arises (which has been discussed ALOT on this forum): for those that feel that Metroid is not innovated enough, what needs to be done in order for it to innovate more? Here's some of my general ideas as to what may need to be done to the series so that it can "move forward" instead of "going backwards".


Warning, Wall of Text ahead!


Power-ups: Everything that I've said about the series not innovating (even when it changes genres), I put most on the blame on the power-ups. With power-ups mostly the same throughout each game, and with them functioning exactly the same the gameplay experience will be similar. Power-ups are real important because they provide much of the backbone of the gameplay. They can dictate your progression through the game, they dictate what puzzles you solve, what tools you have to kill enemies and bosses, and they even dictate the level design of the game (a very important one for me). Therefore, I stand by my stance that if one were to evolutionize the Metroid series, the power-ups would need to be the very first issue to be dealt with, and the most important one. My proposition is that the majority of the arsenal that Samus' has needs to be revamped completely and the more traditional ones that she keeps needs to have their core functions updated and expanded on for more complex level design (a simple example: I think the Grapple Beam should be able to latch on and throw enemies, break off objects (Prime 3: Corruption but expanded on), and you should be able to use the beam on most surfaces, not just those designated Grapple Points).


Level Design Themes: While the design of the levels themselves will be in the hands of what Power-ups we obtain in the game, I'm mostly dealing more with the artistic themes of these levels. I can't be the only one that is tired of Jungle, Fire, Water, and Ice: I mean c'mon. Another problem is that Metroid needs more "outlandish" themes instead of familiar ones. I'm sure that not all Alien worlds have similar characteristics to Earth, with the rain, snow, lava, etc. There has got to be alien worlds with much more crazy environments, creatures, climate, and weather. However, I much give credit where credit is due: it would be unfair to say that Metroid has failed in this department completely, which is surely not true, in fact I think most Metroid games have done pretty well with their environments, but while intentional or not I can't help the feeling that Tallon IV is just another Earth with a different name.


Combat: One thing that I have enjoyed about the Metroid series is that many of your power-ups that you obtain can be used during combat. However, with that being said I do sometimes feel that Combat can be more in-depth and involved then it has been so far. One of the main problems I feel is that there are not many Metroid enemies that actually put up a fight nor require the player to use any other strategy except blast them to bits. I wish that not only more normal enemies were as powerful and dangerous as Samus is but also require more utilization of your arsenal as well as more evasive maneuvers (in fact, I would be completely for a 2D metroid that had evasive dodges and the like). Another problem that is a bit more controversial is that some of Samus' arsenal is so over-powered that it sucks out the challenge of the game, though I will give the developers a lot of credit for being able to sometimes provide a challenge when you have Power Bombs, Super Missiles and the Screw Attack.


Rewards: While I love searching for expansion packs, Missiles, and other expansions for my arsenal, I think its starting to get a bit old. For one thing, I hardly find having 250 missiles rewarding because I don't ever need such an obscene amount of missiles; you can beat most of the enemies with just your beams with no trouble. Unless you're a completionist (which I am somewhat), I still have to admit that there is very little reason as to why you should go out of your way to get all of the expansions, save for maybe the energy tanks.

I don't think most people will agree with me on this point though: afterall it seems that most Metroid fans are fine with going on a hunt to collect everything, and I'm the type of person that likes to do the same, but a part of me does want a little more incentive for collecting everything except for just a picture at the end (and bragging rights I guess for your completed time). But honestly this point isn't all that important anyway.


Plot/Storytelling: This one is very controversial and I know many people don't know exactly how the series should handle storytelling. Should it be all environmental storytelling with no dialogue (Super Metroid)? Should it be filled with Cutscenes and Dialogue (Other M)?. Or should there be a balance between the two (Prime 3)? Or should it vary from game to game (I'm personally leaning more toward this one honestly. I think there is a time and place for story-filled Metroid games as well as environmental storytelling Metroid games)? While I'm sure we all have our views of what type of storytelling each game should be, I'm more focused on what the Metroid series could benefit from when it comes to storytelling, no matter what type of storytelling they are going to use.


Addition of More Villains: Samus is the greatest Bounty Hunter in the galaxy, and has thwarted many evils, so I'm pretty sure that the Space Pirates (and now the Federation) are not her only enemies she must face. Personally, I find that fighting the same enemies over and over gets old. Therefore, once Metroid 5 comes out (and hopefully somewhat concludes the whole "the Federation is evil" thing) that we may expand the villains that Samus fights in her games (including run-ins with Space Pirates and Federation). Hell, I'm sure there are other crime syndicates and mafias, both alien and human, that are terrorizing the galaxy. Not only that, but we need another addition of a character that can rival Samus' abilities. The SA-X and Dark Samus were cool and all, but there were two main flaws with their character: one was that they didn't have the intelligence of a human nor the motives of a human, so in our eyes they were a little more than mindless monsters devouring everything. The second flaw is that they were Samus clones, which seems to keep reinforcing the fact that the only creature that can take on Samus is Samus herself, which is quite boring imo. Sylux has huge potential to be a great candidate for a rival that can match Samus, but of course they never really developed him all that well. Which actually brings another problem with Samus' villains.


Villains need to be more developed and actually villainous: The game often tells us that the Space Pirates are vile creatures bent on destruction, but are they really? I only have the game telling me that they are and am expected to take their word for it, but all I see is incompetent footsoldiers that have hardly done anything "terrible." If they really are Space Pirates/terrorists, then I want to see them actually commit some real atrocities for me to believe that they are actually a threat worth taking seriously, but we have virtually none of that in the game except "LOL clone Metroids! OH SHIT they escaped their stasis tanks again!" or "Let's rebuild Ridley again! because that worked so well last time!" I mean hell, I would love to see something where the Pirates actually released Metroids on innocents to further their larceny, but again we have nothing.


Oh, and Ridley. What the hell is the point of hyping up an Arch-Nemesis who we know virtually nothing about? So he killed Samus' parents. Great. Now what else? What are his motives? Why did he become a Pirate, and how did he become the Leader? What does he even think of the K2-L attack? Does he laugh about it? Or was it just a normal day for Ridley? What does he think of Samus' pursuit of him? Does he laugh about it? Does he enjoy it? Or does he not really know or care to know who she is, and just finds her a nuisance? Is he even aware that he killed her parents? Afterall, he could seriously have no clue that he killed her parents and is just bewildered as to why she keeps pursuing him. Does he enjoy warfare and destruction? Or does he actually have a more concrete agenda as to why he plunders and kills? What's even worse is that we don't even know if he killed her parents directly. Though such a scenario is portrayed in the Manga (where he kills the Mother directly), other sources are less clear on what his role really was.


Okay, I'm done for now, I think those are the 5 big ones for me (Power-ups, Level Design, Combat, rewards and story-related stuff). Please feel free to rip this post apart ;)
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