Metriod II - Return of Samus Review
The Metriod series always seems to give the fullest sense that you are on another planet, finding new life forms that are trying to kill/eat you, or very rarely just finding new life forms. It was the closest to the real thing. It was almost like the film "Alien", only you could see the alien in the first place....and they were easier to kill....and you have a life support suit which you could heal on energy pellets that were dropped by enemies....not to mention finding new weapons which are used to open doors.....yep, quite a bit different to the film. So what exactly makes them so good? Get your power suit on, and lets go to a new planet as we look at The Return of Samus.
The story follows the first game. Space Pirates found a new life form called "Metriods", which is kind of like RedRum, only see though. What's RedRum? I have no idea. Something that attacks your head or something. You go to the planet Zebes and foil their plans for the Space Pirates to use the Metriods for their own purposes, remember? Now the Galactic Federation sent teams to SR388 (catchy....what was so wrong with calling it a name like "Zebes"?) , but none have returned. They sent you personally, Samus Aran, to go to SR388 and kill the rest of the metriods so the Space Pirates don't try the same plan twice. Just repeating the same plan would totally screw us over. Now go!
*ahem* Now, at the time, when the first game came out, everyone though Samus was a man. "Isn't he?" I hear you ask? Well, when you die, you notice that you are in fact a lady! This shocked many people at the time. Now we have that cleared out of the way, lets continue. You start your game on the surface of SR388 by your ship. You then go down below the surface and the exploring begins. The Metroid series is praised for having the ability to explore around a completely new planet. But half the time, I have no idea were to go! The first parts are easy, get the ball power up, sneak through the small gap, and continue.....how on earth....er...I mean, how on SR388 can she fit into that small ball? It just doesn't seem possible. the ball is smaller than she is, even if she curled up into a ball....
After a while, you'll find a fork in the road, then a fork in that road, then a couple more forks on those roads, and then finally a dead end. You then back track to the last fork in hopes that you are going the wrong way. If I found the right way, I would continue, and then get lost. If I find all the dead ends, then at least I explored every nook and cranny there is, and maybe a power up or two. You come across these creatures called Metriods that will try to kill/eat you. As you get further, the more they mutate. If your not careful, you can get lost and miss a few Metriods along the way. You need to kill these things to get deeper into SR388. There's this acidic water that eats at you when your in it. Killing a certain amount of Metriods will lower the water line with an earthquake.
You can get power-ups such as the famed "missile", the ball bombs, the ice beam,the skrew attack, and many more. You can even get capsules that increase your life (this is a life saver for sure. I can't stress how amazing it is to have more life in this game, they are even kind enough to have little balls of light around the place that heal you completely ^^) and missile packs, to hold more missiles. Some doors only open when you use a certain beam on them, or missiles (you need to press select to use a missile, by the way). The game offers save points at certain points of the game. You stand on them, and you save. Simple. It even saves how much health you have left. That's nice of them ^^ The enemies are quite creepy. There are Metriods, plants, things I can't even describe are out there. They got blades for wings and move in a diamond pattern. You also get these platforms that rise and fall after a while. When you get a decent distance in the game, it takes "search every nook and cranny" to the next level. You will seriously search every were and every place.
The music is a little plain. But it's music that sets the mood. It's atmospheric music. I think it does the job well, and kinda makes you flinch when you meet a Metriod and the music suddenly changes. Although not the scariest, it certainly it a great feeling to meet something that wants to kill you when you have been wandering aimlessly for the past hour. I confess, this is one of the very few games I have played, but never completed. It's not that it's too hard, I can deal with hard. It's just that I have no idea were to go. Yes, I have looked up a map of SR388, and it didn't help at all. the problem was I didn't know were the hell I was. I couldn't find my way back to my ship, I was lost, marooned, with nothing but a pot noodle with me....and I didn't want to start again.
Overall, I give it a 7.4/10 The graphics were pretty good at the time compared to other Game Boy games, and the music was not that bad, if a little annoying after a while. The game play is great, the controls are fluid and smooth, but the fact that you need to go forward, then forcing to go back because you missed something makes a very boring game after hours of aimless wandering. At first, the game was awesome. If you plan on playing this game, then make sure you know were you are, you'll need it.