Some useful and interesting tricks and techniques to help Samus traverse Zebes!
THE WALL JUMP
This is the most important technique you can learn to master advanced Super Metroid gameplay. It's not in the manual, but it's demonstrated to you in Brinstar by the Etecoons (the three little green goblins). The Wall Jump technique breaks down like this:
- Spin jump (jump while running) at a wall so that Samus touches the wall.
- When Samus touches the wall, press and hold the control pad away from the wall.
- You should see the Samus sprite momentarily look like she's clinging to the wall. At that moment, press the Jump button again. Samus will spring off the wall in the opposite direction.
Practice this technique until you can keep Samus from touching the ground for as long as you wish. In narrow vertical shafts, Samus can bounce back and forth between walls by performing the move in opposite directions. It can also be used to climb flat walls. Once this move is truly mastered, the player can explore areas and obtain items which otherwise require the High Jump Boots or Grappling Beam to reach. Note that until you obtain the Gravity Suit, Samus cannot Wall Jump under water or lava.
CHARGE BEAM SCREW ATTACK: After you get the Charge Beam, you can do a sort of Screw Attack move without having the actual Screw Attack. Just charge up your Charge Beam, keep holding the fire button so that Samus is still flashing, and spin-jump through an enemy. It'll take the enemy out just like a Screw Attack, but once you use it, you need to charge up again before you can do it again.
CHARGE BEAM BOMB SPREAD: This one's simple. After you obtain the Bombs and the Charge Beam, just charge up your beam, then turn into a ball. Samus will spew forth 5 bombs all around her. The longer you hold DOWN when Sam balls up, the higher the bombs will fly.
POWER BOMB/CHARGE BEAM +1 WEAPONS: NOTE: You MUST have Power Bombs and the Charge Beam to use these weapons. Here's how to activate them:
- Select your Power Bombs
- Turn off all your beam weapons (on the Samus subscreen) exceptthe Charge Beam and ONE other.
- Hold down the fire button as you would if you were charging up yourcharge beam, but DO NOT realease it
- Secret Weapon will fire on its own and use up ONE (1) Power Bomb
...Depending on which beam weapon you leave on, the Secret Weapon will bedifferent. Here's how it breaks down:
- ICE BEAM: A rotating ice sheild.
- WAVE BEAM: Four small purple orbs that orbit about Samus and fly off in alldirections, all over the screen. Lasts quite a while.
- SPAZER BEAM: Several small vertical Spazers which encircle Samus then flyoff vertically.
- PLASMA BEAM: Four large green orbs which rotate around Samus, the circlegetting larger, then smaller, then larger until they fly offscreen.
You can further alter these weapons by firing one off, then quickly switching to Samus' equipment subscreen, turning one beam off and turning on another. When you return to gameplay, the weapon's appearance will be altered according to which beam you chose, but this is little more than a graphical trick and has no real strategic significance.
THE CRYSTAL FLASH
This is the energy recovery trick seen in the intro after the game is beaten; the official name of the technique is the Crystal Flash. It's a little tricky because the conditions have to be just right for it to work, although it's helpful in a bind. NOTE: Samus must have under 50 units of energy (this means any Reserve Tanks must be drained as well), and a minimum of 10 Missiles, 10 Super Missiles, and 11 Power Bombs in order to do this trick.
- Select the Power Bombs
- Hold DOWN, L button, and R button all at once
- Set off a Power Bomb while holding down all the buttons
...Samus will be engulfed in a glowing orb and her missiles will be converted into energy units.
KRAID: Despite his huge size, Kraid's not as strong as he once was. A mere 4 Super Missiles fired into his open mouth will take him out.
PHANTOON (The Wrecked Ship Boss): You may have tried to use Super Missiles on the Phantoon and found that it really cheeses him off, in that he then starts throwing out streams of fireballs that are very difficult to avoid. However, the Super Missiles do considerably more damage to Phantoon than the regular Missiles, so it's tempting to use them. Here's what to do: Just hit him with a Super Missile, then turn your missiles off. Charge up your Charge Beam, and do the Charge Beam Screw Attack (see above) right through those streams and they won't affect Samus at all. With practice, it's possible to avoid the circular streams just by jumping, but using this Charge/Screw method makes it less of a headache.
DRAYGON (The Boss of Maridia): Draygon is a pain if you try to defeat him the normal way. But there's a secret method to defeat him quickly and easily. A word of caution: Make sure Samus has plenty of energy before attempting this move, as it drains a lot from her in a short period of time.
- Eliminate all the "cannons" on the sides of the room so that they're allsparking electricity
- Switch to the Grappling Beam
- Allow Draygon to grab Samus and carry her around
- Keep trying to fire the Grappling Beam at the destroyed cannons on the wall
- Once the Grappling Beam connects with a destroyed cannon, hold it there. Draygon will be fried in a matter of seconds. However, it drains quite a bit of Samus' energy as well.
RIDLEY: Unfortunately, there aren't any easy ways to destroy the King of Norfair, Ridley. There are, however, a few things you can do to make taking him down a little easier. For one, start off by using Power Bombs. They'll soften him up quite a bit, plus he won't breathe fire at you for a few seconds after a bomb goes off. Secondly, Ridley's fire won't injure you if it hits you while you're Screw Attacking, so use the Screw Attack/Space Jump and Wall Jump to get yourself in a good position to unload Missiles or Super Missiles on him in midair (but avoid his tail -- it'll hurt you even in a Screw Attack). Finally, Ridley will sometimes self-destruct near the end of the battle, but I have no idea what triggers it. Once he's very close to his demise (ie, his color is bright red), sometimes Ridley will grab Samus, carry her up a short distance, and simply start to explode without being hit by any more weaponry. Try this at your own risk, but don't rely on it!
You can shave a little time off your final escape with this technique. One door before the vertical escape shaft modeled after the one in Metroid (in "Old Tourian," which leads to Crateria), get a good running start and charge up for a Shinespark. Run through the wall that gets you into that shaft (you'll blow through a couple Zebesians on the way), carefully position yourself on the left edge of the shaft, and jump. You'll shoot all the way up to the top in just a couple seconds.
MAKE RIDLEY DROP THE METROID HATCHLING
In the opening sequence on Ceres station, you can make Ridley drop the Metroid Hatchling during your fight with him. While you cannot actually defeat Ridley at this stage, if you can avoid letting your energy drop to 29 and hit Ridley enough times, he will drop the Hatchling's container, then pick it up again and fly away. When he does, the self-destruct countdown begins, the same as it does when Ridley escapes after inflicting enough damage upon Samus.
Try wall-jumping off of different things -- you'll find that some objects "vibrate" when you do. Notable items that go "boing" include those little blue heads in "old" Brinstar, the metallic pipes that rise out of the ground, and Spore Spawn after you've defeated him.
SAVE YOUR PALS
To slightly alter the ending of the game, it is possible to rescue the Dachola and Etecoons just before escaping the planet. On your way out during the final escape sequence, take a short detour in Crateria and go back to the room where you fought the first Torizo to obtain the Bombs near the beginning of the game. Here you'll find the Dachola and Etecoons trapped. Simply shoot the wall on the right and a passage will open up, through which the creatures will escape (Samus, however, cannot). Then get back to Samus' ship. Now, when the ending sequence shows Samus' ship escaping from the planet's explosion, keep an eye on the right half of the screen, and you'll see a tiny speck of light speeding away from the planet, letting you know your friends made it off safely.