With Metroid’s 30 Birthday happening this year, it feels like the perfect opportunity to revisit the games that made this franchise so great and maybe play some games that I’ve never completed. Metroid Fusion is one of those games: I tried several times to play it, but never managed to reach the end. This changed this week, as I picked the game to be the first one I livestreamed over at my new Twitch channel. Not only was live-streaming it a fun experience, but the game overall was really enjoyable.
Metroid Fusion was the return of the franchise after a long absence. In many ways, the game had to live up to a lot of expectations, especially since it is the 2D-follow-up to Super Metroid, a game many think of as the best ever made. Metroid Fusion does not live up to those expectations, but it’s still a really fun game and probably one of my favourites of the franchise. There are many reasons for this: The atmosphere is dense and quite typical for the franchise, the exploration and shooting is fun, the sense of discovery is strong and it looks and feels like a typical 2D-Metroid game.
Especially the look manages to be pleasing and different at the same time. While Super Metroid still holds up in that department after all these years, Metroid Fusion manages to cram in even more details and – most importantly – more colours and thus shows off a more varied look. All the areas of the space station you’re exploring are different in their look and feels and it really helps characterize this environment for you. Too bad the soundtrack doesn’t quite live up to the legacy of the franchise, even though there are some memorable melodies at hand.
A lot has been said and written about the linearity of the game. And it’s true that compared to other games in the franchise, the overall structure and design is very straightforward. But the game still rewards exploration and compared to Other M, it’s still very close to what makes Metroid special. Sure, there’s more story around this time, but it’s not a huge thing in this game and I found it to be both simple and enjoyable at the same time. It’s certainly not the overwritten mess that is Other M and does a way better job at conveying the relationship between Samus an Adam Malkovich.
I enjoyed Fusion a lot and I think I will replay it at some point, if only to find all the upgrades that are in the game. While there were a few frustrating moments in the game, it was a blast to play. Too bad it makes me yearn for a new 2D-Metroid game even more.
If you want to pick it up, the game is currently available on the Wii-U Virtual Console.