After handing over the last remaining Metroid specimen in the galaxy to Federation scientists, galactic peace is shortlived when Samus receives a distress call from Ceres Space Station. Samus’s final mission on planet Zebes puts her up against Ridley, Kraid, Spore Spawn, Botwoon, Crocomire, Phantoon, and Draygon, along with Zebesian Space Pirates, which are all being controlled by the resurrected techno-organic AI, Mother Brain. Samus must stop the Mother Brain’s plans once and for all, while attemping to rescue the stolen Metroid hatchling from its evil clutches.
- SNES/SFC Classic Edition Mini Console on September 29, 2017
- Nintendo Switch Online service on September 5, 2019
From the moment you push the power button on your Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Metroid takes you on a fantastic journey, accompanied by the most eerie, atmospheric music the console has to offer. Super Metroid's soundtrack is heralded as one of the best game scores of all time, and it certainly deserves it: Kenji Yamamoto and Minako Hamano have packed every second of music with some of the most solid compositions on the system, and their legendary collaboration has defined expectations for all Metroid scores to follow. And arguably, the standards set by Super Metroid have not yet been equalled.
The game opens with a powerful, foreboding arrangement of the main theme to the original NES game, serving as a dark premonition. From there, players are plunged into the pounding drums and intergalactic gladiatorial fanfare of "Theme of Super Metroid", a fitting theme for the greatest warrior in the galaxy. Pay special attention to the melody, which references the classic "Samus Aran Appearance Jingle". From there, Yamamoto-san and Hamano-san take players on an aural safari of Planet Zebes, from the electronic jungles of Brinstar, to the malevolent drumming and Carmina Burana-esque choir of the burning ancient ruins of Norfair, to the melancholy liltings of Maridia's forgotten depths. Surely, Kenji Yamamoto and Minako Hamano had no idea these tunes would be received so well by game fans, but the quality and passion portrayed through these tunes, albeit on extremely limited technology, allowed players to become more intimate with their experience than ever before.
Super Metroid's score is deeply beloved, as testified by the large amount of remixes and fan-tribute albums (scroll down). Kenji Yamamoto even brought back a few of these themes into the Prime series, with arrangements of Norfair, Brinstar, and Ridley's theme, the latter of which is now a staple for the series. It's a testament to the game's legacy, and Super Metroid's excellence is not only enhanced by its music, but, like the game itself, it set the bar for every atmospheric soundtrack to come after.
Super Metroid "Sound in Action" is both one of the most famous and crappiest Metroid soundtracks available. Sure, it has five totally awesome arrangements, but the rest of the soundtrack is poorly arranged and recorded, and nowhere is this more evident than the Metroid soundtrack section, which was horribly butchered. The game was recorded using a Famicom's audio out jack at poor quality, and a good half of the tracks contain sound effects. I can't fathom why they decided to record it this way, but it gave the original score a bad name for over a decade. The Super Metroid section was better, but half the songs are either missing the first few notes or are cut off early or abruptly. This is an example of how not to do a game soundtrack. Sound in Action's only saving grace is the selection of brilliant arrangements by Yoshiyuki and Masumi Ito that continue to stand over eighteen years later as some of the best Metroid arrangements of all time. The soundtrack is available here in both MP3 (lossy) and FLAC (lossless) format for your convenience.
In the early 90s, Nintendo of America began experimenting with releasing game music albums in North America through Nintendo Power magazine. The first of these was Play it Loud!, which, despite being labeled "Volume 1", is the only album in the series. The soundtrack included selections from Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Star Fox, F-Zero, and Super Metroid. The Super Metroid tracks were taken from the Sound in ActionCD, so although it is an excellent selection, it has all the problems the source album had. The only difference between this album and the source is the volume of the music has been boosted - they weren't kidding when they said, "Play it loud!"
Relics of the Chozo was the first album ever produced by Overclocked ReMix, marking the beginning of a long tradition of collaborative remix projects on the site. Released in 2003, RotC was conceived by Protricity, who also composed over half the music on the album, meaning most of it is in his style. An incredible feat, considering nobody had done anything of this scale before. RotC had a lot to live up to, but it maintains a consistent style similar to that found on the rest of OCR, with heavy doses of industrial and electronica. As Metroid Prime had recently been released, many of the tracks have significant references to the electronica style found in that game, particularly some of the opening tracks, such as "Premonition of Fell Purpose", "So It Begins...", and "Putting Down on Zebes". Check out the reference to "Kraid's Lair" in "Perceived by Cold Intelligence". A couple of my favorites are "Full of Life" and "Noumenon", but the whole soundtrack is pretty high quality and well worth the listen. VGM afficianados may also notice two the two tracks by Daniel Baranowsky, now famous for the Super Meat Boy soundtrack. Note the album was originally released in OGG and WAV, but since the former won't play on your iPod, and the second isn't practical, we've taken the WAVs and converted them to FLAC and MP3 for your greater enjoyment.
Reserve Tank: VARIAtions was a tribute album for bLiNd (Jordan Aguirre), a well-loved arranger on OverClocked ReMix who came down with colitis, an incredibly painful disease. DarkeSword and several other arrangers came together out of friendship for bLiNd and created a remix album for him based on his favorite game, Super Metroid. The album quality varies from poor to excellent, but the album was ultimately a tribute, an outpouring of love and support (along with dozens of Brinstar mixes), so there wasn't much in the way of quality control: you don't return a "get well soon" card because the handwriting sucks. Still, because there's close to two hours' worth of music here, I'll list a few of my favorite tracks: Heat Vision, Edenal, Lonely Petals, bLiNd Metallic Hope, bLiNd's Snowy Brinstar, The Galaxy Awaits, Kindred, and The Man Who Could Suddenly See. There are plenty of liner notes as well as some original art on the album's homepage. And bLiNd (who did not die) went on to arrange dozens more songs at OCR and added his own excellent "thank you" remix.
Game Music Concert was a series of orchestral arrangements of Nintendo game music by the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. For their fourth album, they produced a glorious orchestral arrange of Super Metroid. This magnificent epic contains masterful arrangements of "Theme of Super Metroid", "Crateria - The Space Pirates Appear", Green and Red Brinstar, and the ending theme. This piece is still used today in part by Video Games Live. The second piece is an arrangement from the 2010 concert Symphonic Legends, held 23 September 2010 in Cologne. The concert was conducted by Niklas Willen and arranged by Jonne Valtonen. This piece is darker, and almost entirely amelodic, similar in style to Strakovsky's "Rite of Spring", though this distorts many of the tracks, which include "Space Pirates Appear", "Theme of Samus", and an incredibly eerie "Tourian"). The rip was provided by PrimeBlue and was taken from the live audio streaming, which was broadcast at 128kbps, hence the bitrate. As of this moment, it is the highest-quality recording publicly available. Also included are the MC's comments (in German).
[HEY GAIYZ WE MISSING TRACKZ HERE]
THE BOMB JUMP
The Bomb Jump is Samus’s “original” secret technique. In the first Metroid game, Samus could be propelled upwards from the explosion of her own bombs. This was then improved upon in Metroid 2 allowing you to Bomb Jump infinitely. In Super, the Bomb Jump can also be timed in such a way that you can infinitely propel Samus vertically, and for those who are advanced enough, can even go diagonally!
The timing of the Bomb Jump is extremely difficult to master. Follow these rules:
- Lay a Bomb.
- If you’re starting from the ground, lay a Bomb right before the first Bomb you laid goes off.
- At the height of when Samus has been propelled, lay another Bomb.
- If your timing is right, then the second Bomb will detonate and immediately propel you above the third Bomb you laid, which will then propel you again. You can keep chaining these together with precise timing to continuously jump in the air.
Trivia: You can watch this technique being performed during one of the game’s Attract Mode sequences.
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 rabbit-monkey things). 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 in the opposite direction as 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.
This is another easy trick that allows you to get to areas that may not have been easily accessible, or allows you to reach Morph Ball-sized tunnels and shafts from the bottom-up.
- Press the Jump button.
- Immediately after Samus lifts off the ground, quickly push ⬇️⬇️.
Samus will Morph while in the air, and the momentum of her jump will carry along with her. Mastering this technique is paramount to speed running!
This is a very nifty trick which allows you to combine the momentum of Samus’s run speed with the speed in which the Morph Ball rolls, allowing you to roll underneath lowering gates!
- Take a running Jump. While you’re in the air, aim downward with ⬇️.
- Almost immediately when Samus is about to touch the ground, Morph Ball by pushing ⬇️ again and continue to hold the direction you ran. The momentum should carry you along with it and your speed should remain the same.
- This trick allows you to get the Super Missiles early, allowing you to completely bypass the Spore Spawn battle.
- You can use this trick along with the Mid Air Morph, to get the Ice Beam early.
CHARGE BEAM SCREW ATTACK: A.K.A. “Poor Man’s 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 Morph Ball. Samus will spew forth 5 bombs all around her. The longer you hold ⬇️ when Samus balls up, the higher the bombs will fly.
POWER BOMB/CHARGE BEAM COMBOS: 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) except the Charge Beam and ONE other.
- Hold down the fire button as you would if you were charging up yourcharge beam, but DO NOT release it.
- Secret Weapon will fire on its own and use up one Power Bomb.
Depending on which beam weapon you leave on, the Charge Beam combo will be different. 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 ⬇️, L button, and R button together.
- Lay a Power Bomb while continuing to hold down all the buttons.
Samus will be engulfed in a glowing orb and her missiles will be converted into energy units.
KRAID (The Boss of Brinstar): 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 Boss of Wrecked Ship): 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 (The Boss of Norfair): 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 do this 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 THE ANIMALS
To slightly alter the ending of the game, it is possible to rescue the Dachora 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 purple speck of light speeding away from the planet, letting you know your friends made it off safely.
Super Metroid has three different endings, and like its predecessors, how fast you beat the game determines what ending you get. The endings are as follows:
Time to Beat
|Best Ending (Suitless Samus, Samus takes her hair down)||<3 Hours|
|Good Ending (No Helmet/Visor, Samus gives thumbs up)||3-10 Hours|
|Fair Ending (Suited Samus, Samus gives thumbs up)||>10 Hours|