Why oh why would I talk about this awful game. Good question, maybe it’s because I’m insane but I wanted to I guess get out a decent list of why this game’s story and characters fail miserably. I’ve had the discussion enough times where I guess I feel like this is warranted. And it’s scifi so it fits RIGHT in. Also I like discussing games and especially scifi. The reason that this became a rant is because of how vocal the defenders are. Don’t like it? Well prepare for excuses that don’t work. So, here’s my reasons why those excuses don’t work! 😀
Samus, as with all Nintendo characters has always been a silent protagonist. Both done for hardware limitations and more recently with the Prime series done artistically to give the player a means of self inserting themselves to feel more connected. Even as early as Prime 1 they had considered and even voiced Samus and it’s on youtube but they decided against it. However, she does emote quite a bit in all of the more recent games. From Zero Mission to Prime 3 to Samus Returns, she’s expressive in her actions.
Okay, for those of you that care, Other M spoilers as well as spoilers for other Metroid titles are going to be posted here after okay? Okay.
SPOILER ALERT FOR -ALL- METROID TITLES
Samus in Other M:
Samus was utterly ruined in Other M, she for some reason became a meek greenhorn who was incapable of making her own decisions and utterly failing at her job later in the game. Now, her following orders isn’t the problem, but some points seriously do not make any sense. I’m aware some of this is partially attached to gameplay but it doesn’t make you think any better of the character. Samus running head long into a lava filled area that is literally burning her to death, she has a suit power she’s not activating because she and the player are forced to wait for orders from the mission commander because he feels there may be civilians whom Samus could hurt.
Fair enough, she has quite the arsenal but…the Varia suit which protects against fire damage is entirely passive and doesn’t have any offensive or dangerous abilities attached to this… So she’s just letting herself burn and waiting for orders. It’s dumb, even if it’s gameplay is used as an excuse they could have given a reason she couldn’t use it. Like, the function requires some form of power to reactivate.
Onto the BIGGEST problem which I’m going to shred apart because I’ve heard the dumbest excuses for this crappy story.
Who transforms into this part way into the game after eating enough:
Motherly attachment to something no mother could love:
Samus upon seeing Ridley revived has a nervous breakdown where her suit for some reason cannot maintain itself while she’s in this distracted state. The excuses I’ve heard is that Samus is suffering from PTSD because the baby Metroid she rescued in Metroid 2 was killed in Super Metroid. Let’s clear this up, she’s emotionally torn up because the one creature she spared in a genocidal mission to kill ALL Metroids on the planet, nevermind Metroids found on OTHER planets has her emotionally destroyed with PTSD?
Let’s really get this clear. The Chozo created Metroids to be a weapon, a predator to another more dangerous race. They’re not exactly a dog or a cat that’s got emotions and wants to hang out. Their purpose and design is to kill. A Metroid bonding to Samus later on doesn’t redeem the thing nor does it change what it is. All it did, was act instinct. She saved it, dropped it off without a second thought and it saved her later. I just can’t see getting emotionally attached to something that she spent an entire game killing indiscriminately. Again, no emotions, just a creature designed to kill and act on instinct.
Right, PTSD. Okay, well that’s fascinating as it’s never shown in any shape or form except in this game that she has an emotional link with this artificially created monster. She’s lost friends/battle brothers and sisters in previous titles where she’s had to kill them but she still does her job. It’s PART of the job. She’s never let it get in the way. I’m not saying she’s gotta be heartless about this, but I’m saying she she isn’t stupid. There’s a time and place for lamenting those you lost, and it’s not when your biggest nemesis that you’ve had to kill several times is staring you down. I’m sorry I don’t buy this crap the fans of Other M’s story kick out.
To top this off the first thing she did with this baby Metroid was to hand it right off to scientists and leave. She figured if it could do some good, then they’d be able do to do, so have it. So the ride home she somehow bonded with the thing? Or the fact it saved her? I don’t buy it.
P.T.S.D. and sloppy writing vs hyper advanced armor:
Nevermind how stupid it is that her suit can FAIL in a moment of panic. Or that being shot in the back with a weak galactic federation ice beam would also not only disable her suit, but knock her out? It’s the most advanced armor in the known universe, armor which they have tried to copy but cannot get anywhere NEAR that level of advancement:
She’s been hit by surprise attacks before, that’s kinda what armor is for and it fails for the weakest reasons? Well I guess sloppy awful writing can break any armor can’t it?
Imagine her getting blown out into space suddenly and agh! Scary! Oh no my suit failed and -dead. This has happened before in Prime 3, she got blown into space but her suit did it’s job and didn’t fall apart for no stupid reason.
The other reason is, “Ridley killed her parents, so it’s natural she’d be scared of seeing the monster!”. A photo is worth a thousand words as the cliche goes so, here’s a few of them:
|Metroid Zero Mission:||Metroid Prime 1 & 3:||Super Metroid:||Samus Returns|
||[no images found, bah]
She’s fought him now fewer than EIGHT times and killed him at least SEVEN times before Other M. (2x Zero Mission, 1x Metroid: Samus Returns, Prime 1 and 3, Super Metroid) She’s shoved her gun into his mouth, she’s slapped him around, stood on him, fired missiles at him and how many different beams -and it’s never, ever been brought up in the games. “But they didn’t have the technology to show such a thing” of course they did, even at Super Metroid they had a whole exposition at the start of the game, they could have inserted SOMETHING given titles as early as the NES/Master System had some form of art or captions to show this fear represented in Other M. Samus had numerous times where she spoke via text, or responded with actions, she’s NEVER been scared of this guy. Actually, I take that back, in Zero Mission when Ridley swoops in, you get this:
Which is a pretty fearful stance. But she still fights, because it’s what she’s been trained to do. She’s rightfully scared, but the difference is several kills later why would she be so scared she can’t move? So a game that takes place AFTER Super Metroid has no place showing this kind of response. “But Mike! The PTSD!” But, weird fans, the Genocide of the entire Metroid race!
My favorite one: “With Super Metroid she really thought she killed him, so it was devastating to see him again” She killed him so bad in 1 he needed a robotic body, she then killed that and then he proceeded to self destruct the ship he was on. She shot the crap out of him in Samus Returns and buried him under rubble. She literally blew him up and sent him off a cliff in Prime 1, I could go on but how much more FINAL do any of these gotta be? Even in the more narrative driven Metroid Fusion she doesn’t say anything when seeing or killing his X-Parasite clone.
It’s bad story telling. If it was a reboot, it’d have been forgivable, but it’s way too far into the series. It doesn’t, make, sense. PTSD also doesn’t work. She’s blown up planets, genocided a race, faced down godlike monsters from other dimensions. PTSD from a baby monster artificially designed to kill? C’mon.
“But in the Manga…” Is the manga referenced in any of the games? Is it included with any games like many other titles have done? “No but they said it’s canon”. WELL, given how wildly source material of books/comics can vary from movies and games I’m going to have to say I disagree and it doesn’t work. If Samus in Other M is how she’s portrayed in the comic, then we’re looking at two entirely different individuals between that, the comics and the other Metroid titles. They can’t be linked because they don’t act the same at all. You can’t have a game series where a character is established then build up a different character arc in a manga/comic that’s never brought up, referenced in the games and expect people to accept it, it doesn’t work.
The two clash, they just don’t make sense together. Looking into it, they exist in their own universes. It feels like trying to like a Marvel movie with a Marvel comic. No events or characterizations line up.
A better, more reasonable excuse:
Here’s an excuse you Other M defenders can use, no, really I’m a big scifi fan and enjoy viewing/playing and creating stories and events. So I have a perfect explanation for why Samus acts the way she does and why her armor is so awful in Other M. I promise, it’s a good one and feel free to use it in your defense of this terrible game in forums or youtube comments sections, really where you see fit!
Samus in Other M? She’s a clone. The federation cloned her along with the alien DNA found on her suit from Super Metroid. They found a…”beta suit” the real Samus wore and it wouldn’t work without her DNA So, they cloned her, supplied her with the inferior ‘beta suit” they found on a small Chozo testing facility that only works with her Samus’ DNA.
Since the clone would lack the training of the Chozo and experience with the Galactic Federation so her seeing a Ridley sends her back to a fleeting moment of another life that sends her into shock, causing the imperfect suit to malfunction. It also explains why she doesn’t use any of the later functions, because she doesn’t know about any of her suit functions! It also explains why she’s so poorly
voiced emotive, she doesn’t understand how these emotions work as she has little experience with them.
It is the only, in canon explanation I can come up with for why Samus acts so different, is weirdly attached to a jerk and has such long pauses of thinking about what people are saying to her. She’s a clone strutting about as the real Samus with none of the experiences, combat time or anything. Which could be it’s own interesting spinoff but, I digress.
Well, that was a long ass rant. But hey I like scifi and I think it’s worth talking about. I bought Other M when it was new because many fans insisted Nintendo can do no wrong and it’ll be great. I beat the game, and hated every minute of it. The best part was selling it to get most of my money back for a better game. The weak combat mixed with the gimped controls didn’t help a game that had the least amount of exploration of any of the titles.
With all that said, if you enjoy the game? That’s perfectly fine. No reason you shouldn’t if you find value in a title. I like some janky games and whatever floats your boat!
The reason I wrote this because there’s a number of fans have been pretty aggressive about their stance with the game and frankly I find all the excuses easily countered. And if you’re going to be aggressive about about an opinion about a game, you should at least be able to back it up.