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Maple Leaf
Aug 24, 2010

Let'en my post flyen true




Some history:

Metroid: Samus Returns was announced on June 13th, 2017, during Nintendoís live Treehouse segment at the Electronic Entertainment Expo. It was revealed less than an hour after Nintendo had already announced that another game in the Metroid line Ė Metroid Prime 4, of all titles Ė was also in the docket. Metroid: Samus Returns had been in development since only 2015.

Metroid: Samus Returns is a remake of one of Metroidís lesser-appreciated games, Metroid Prime: Pinball Metroid: Return of Samus for the Gameboy. While a technically acceptable game, Metroid: Return of Samus left a lot to be desired due to the Gameboyís limitations as a console and due to Metroid being gluttonous as a series: each Metroid title has featured huge, expansive areas, with emphasis on exploration. Metroid: Return of Samus stretched the resources of the Gameboy and its cartridges to their limits, to the point where the game was incapable of using a map system, and instead the game came with a physical map. You had to keep track of your positioning the old fashioned way.

Metroid: Return of Samus was released in North America in November of 1991. Twenty-six years later, it was remade as Metroid: Samus Returns for the 3DS Ė four handheld generations later. Now that computational power and hard-drive space are nonissues, the game could be reimagined in all the 3DSís glory.

The Letís Play:

Normally I wouldnít be especially keen on doing a Letís Play so soon after its release. As of this writing, the game has been out for five days. But there are a number of reasons why Metroid: Samus Returns is an exceptional case for me:

  • Frankly, I just love Metroid. Itís my favourite Nintendo IP.
  • The capture mod for my 3DS cost me quite a bit of money and Iíll take any excuse I can to use it.
  • Metroid: Samus Returns was announced just three months after the last update to my previous Letís Play, the double-feature of Metroid Prime: Federation Force and Another Metroid 2 Remake. AM2R was, in every respect, an amazing title, crafted with love and care by enthusiasts for the Metroid series that wanted to see Metroid: Return of Samus brought into the modern spotlight. AM2R was DMCAíd by Nintendo just one day after its release, and itís evident that Metroid: Samus Returns was why (on top of protecting their properties, of course). Milton Guasti had set an incredible bar for Nintendo to pass, and weíre going to find out if they did. In the spirit of my Letís Play of AM2R, I am also doing Metroid: Samus Returns blind.
  • Metroid: Samus Returns was produced by Yoshio Sakamoto, (I incorrectly state he had directed it in the first video) who, as far as Iím aware, had disappeared after Metroid: Other M until now. I have to know if heís learned.

Videos:

Episode 1: We Can Do Better
Episode 2: Think Like A Chozo
Episode 3: Like Getting Mad At A Bear
Episode 4: The Alpha Predator
Episode 5: The Ultimate Problem
Episode 6: I Like Game
Episode 7: How To Play Metroid
Episode 8: Other M Is [...] Good
Episode 9: We Done Goofed
Episode 10: You've Had Your Fun
Episode 11: Just Die, Whatever
Episode 12: More Answers Unquestioned
Episode 13: New And Exciting
Episode 14: Unscrupulous
Episode 15: Become A Criminal
Episode 16: Ludicrously Generous
Episode 17: Potential
Episode 18: It's Not A Bad Thing
Episode 19: Billy
Episode 20: School Him Absolutely
Episode 21: Just Two Guys
Episode 22: Do It Again
Episode 23: Come To The Conclusion
Episode 24: A Bunch Of Garbage
Episode 25: Completely Inappropriate

Chozo Memories:











Maple Leaf fucked around with this message at Feb 20, 2018 around 23:16

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Herr Tog
Jun 18, 2011




Grimey Drawer

I have one question: Is Adam in this?

Maple Leaf
Aug 24, 2010

Let'en my post flyen true


Herr Tog posted:

I have one question: Is Adam in this?

I can't imagine he is; the only two games he was prominently featured in were Fusion and Other M. Adam had no role in 2.

But I'm going in blind, so what do I know, really?

Herr Tog
Jun 18, 2011




Grimey Drawer

Maple Leaf posted:

I can't imagine he is; the only two games he was prominently featured in were Fusion and Other M. Adam had no role in 2.

But I'm going in blind, so what do I know, really?

well poo poo now I gotta follow along

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012




I'm about 3 hours in and there's not even a wisp of dialogue, my wrists hurt due to the crabclaw this game makes you do sometimes, but no dialogue.

Samus's bizarre ACTION COMBAT is 100% sakamoto though.

XavierGenisi
Nov 7, 2009





I have beaten this, and found it very enjoyable. I'm rather looking forward to seeing what you guys think of it.

Herr Tog
Jun 18, 2011




Grimey Drawer

XavierGenisi posted:

I have beaten this, and found it very enjoyable. I'm rather looking forward to seeing what you guys think of it.

IS THERE ADAM!?

Ometeotl
Feb 13, 2012

It's MISSEL! Or SISSLE!
I confused myself...






Maple Leaf posted:

Yoshio Sakamoto...who, as far as Iím aware, had disappeared after Metroid: Other M until now.

I believe Sakamoto was relegated to the Tomadachi Life series after Other M.

WilliamAnderson
Feb 13, 2010

We Can Do It!




Ometeotl posted:

I believe Sakamoto was relegated to the Tomadachi Life series after Other M.

And Picross! Can't forget Picross.

mateo360
Mar 20, 2012

TOO MANY PEOPLE MERLOCK!
ONLY ONE DIJON!


I really wish I could remap the buttons. The second Metroid fight I had I kept confusing my fire button with jump

Amppelix
Aug 6, 2010



Ok I got one objection: Your premise in the video seems to be something like "Nintendo shut down AM2R because they believed it to be too good/ they wanted to prove that we make the only good metroid" and just... no. There's no way that crossed anyone's minds who were involved with this. In fact I'm quite sure the developers of Samus Returns had absolutely nothing to do with it in the first place. It's a simple safe business move; take down the freely distributed copyright infringing product that could possibly negatively impact sales of their own, and also enforce their rights at the same time.

Still, I like listening to you guys' opinions about Metroid so I'm excited for this!

RickVoid
Oct 21, 2010


I'm super amused by the fact that the art used in the opening for AM2R looks super professional and fits in well with the official titles, and the art in the intro for this game looks like fan-trash culled from DeviantArt.

Power Beam looks and sounds super underpowered, and the impact against enemies is really unsatisfying. Melee counter is dumb, Samus should be super mobile and dodgy.

Why the hell did anyone let Sakamoto touch another Metroid game?

mandatory lesbian
Dec 18, 2012


Amppelix posted:

Ok I got one objection: Your premise in the video seems to be something like "Nintendo shut down AM2R because they believed it to be too good/ they wanted to prove that we make the only good metroid" and just... no. There's no way that crossed anyone's minds who were involved with this. In fact I'm quite sure the developers of Samus Returns had absolutely nothing to do with it in the first place. It's a simple safe business move; take down the freely distributed copyright infringing product that could possibly negatively impact sales of their own, and also enforce their rights at the same time.

Still, I like listening to you guys' opinions about Metroid so I'm excited for this!

yeah, like sure AM2R is good but the conspiracy theories people get in their head about it is kinda dumb

FruitPunchSamurai
Oct 20, 2010

The next step of human evolution


If Nintendo really wanted to be assholes, they could have DMCA'd AM2R any time, but instead they waited for it to be released. If anything, the reason why AM2R contributed to this game's existence is by showing Nintendo that people actually like Metroid and wanted another real Metroid game rather than them trying to one up the guy who made AM2R. It was developed by Mercury Steam, a third party studio that's never really made any super well received games up to this point. So really Nintendo didn't even make this game themselves, and they certainly didn't put a whole lot of money into it in comparison to their other big IP's. It seems like they just wanted to make a real Metroid game for the 3DS to test the waters to maybe make more real Metroid games again.

I was pretty pessimistic about this game when it was first announced. But after playing it, I can safely say that it's a good game. It definitely has some flaws, but overall I was pleasantly surprised with how it turned out. I feel like comparisons to AM2R are warranted, but I'm not sure that the developers really had it in mind while they were making the game. I look forward to hearing what you guys think as you go through the game, but I hope the LP won't be too much ragging on the whole "Nintendo did this because they thought they could do better" thing.

FruitPunchSamurai fucked around with this message at Sep 21, 2017 around 11:09

Amppelix
Aug 6, 2010



That can't be true either though, unless Mercury Steam were on a real slavedriver schedule. AM2R was released slightly more than a year before the release of Samus Returns. You don't just make video games in a year (before someone quotes Majora's Mask on this, yeah that was a tight schedule and with reusing every single asset they could get away with), especially ones like this where you need to create art assets and game engines from scratch. SR has to have been in development well into 2015, probably, and also probably got its inception with no outside input, besides Mercury Steam's that is. Unless I'm misremembering they had previously tried to pitch a Metroid game at Nintendo but they didn't take the bait back then. I think this must've been a dream project for MS.

Zoig
Oct 31, 2010



Yeah, if I recall they were pitching a remake of fusion I think, the dmca is just Nintendo protecting their properties most likely, not anything relating to this game.

Speaking of, this game is really good. It really feels like a proper metroid game, and the things changed feel like they work pretty well. On top of that, a lot of quality of life features really help. The biggest issue i have is that the counter system probably doesn't need be something you can do to almost everything, combat just kinda becomes waiting and countering.

Serifina
Oct 30, 2011

So... dizzy...


The DMCA was definitely just protecting their IP. And in regards to the comment of "the game was under development for five years but they waited until it was released to smack it down!" Of course they did. It is not worth their time and money to chase down unfinished projects. There could be dozens if not hundreds of unfinished fan projects of their IP, and until said projects finally put out a product, they're meaningless. Particularly since most of them never actually release anything.

Comparing this game directly against AM2R is, perhaps, a little ridiculous. Both are very, very different in actual execution of the same basic idea. And from what I've seen of Samus Returns, it's an excellent game. Can't they both just be good games with different driving visions behind them?

Anyway, on to the actual game.

The artwork of Samus landing on Zebes - that ship is the one they showed in Zero Mission, the one that got shot down as she was escaping.

The free aim is actually nice and a good thing to have. Like, saying "how many angles of fire do we need" is a little silly. There've been plenty of times when I've played 2D Metroid games and been frustrated by the locked angles.

Overall, I love the revamped artwork. And the melee counter, unlike the melee finishers of Other M, seems to fit well into the flow of Samus's fighting style (aka, blast things into little pieces).

FoolyCharged
Oct 11, 2012

Somebody call for an ant?



I mean, but the fact that they are different executions of the same idea makes them very comparable. Its interesting to see what the two groups thought were important and what neat new ideas each brought to the table side by side.

Ometeotl
Feb 13, 2012

It's MISSEL! Or SISSLE!
I confused myself...






RickVoid posted:

I'm super amused by the fact that the art used in the opening for AM2R looks super professional and fits in well with the official titles, and the art in the intro for this game looks like fan-trash culled from DeviantArt.

Power Beam looks and sounds super underpowered, and the impact against enemies is really unsatisfying. Melee counter is dumb, Samus should be super mobile and dodgy.

Why the hell did anyone let Sakamoto touch another Metroid game?

These totally seem like good faith arguments and not at all whiny complaint-hunting by someone still mad about AM2R

bladeworksmaster
Sep 6, 2010

Ok.


Comparisons to AM2R are pretty much inevitable with this game, but I think this game more than holds its own against it and then some. More on that as things progress, but I'm looking forward to watching more!

Viewtiful Jew
Apr 21, 2007
Mench'n-a-go-go-baby!

Ometeotl posted:

I believe Sakamoto was relegated to the Tomadachi Life series after Other M.

Do not forget the Samus lore in the Tomodachi series marketing.

Part one.

And then Part two in English for the sequel.

Maple Leaf
Aug 24, 2010

Let'en my post flyen true


Serifina posted:

The free aim is actually nice and a good thing to have. Like, saying "how many angles of fire do we need" is a little silly. There've been plenty of times when I've played 2D Metroid games and been frustrated by the locked angles.

Honestly, I've found that when I do these LPs live, I sometimes tend to get a little over-critical in order to fill time. I ended the "how many angles do we need" thing with "I don't know, I guess we'll find out" because I didn't really believe my own criticism. It's something I'll try to keep in mind for the future.

On the DMCA thing, of course Nintendo did it to protect their properties first and foremost. It's just difficult to not draw parallels, considering they're the same idea (remake Metroid 2 with modern assets) released so close to each other. Nintendo also has an awkward relationship with fan projects, e.g. the famous Project: M mod for Super Smash Brothers Brawl existed in a public state for so long before Nintendo finally shut it down. Compared to that, it feels like AM2R was targeted. Which I know is wrong, but, that's how it comes off.

MachuPikacchu
Oct 15, 2012

Sacre vert! Maman!


Viewtiful Jew posted:

Do not forget the Samus lore in the Tomodachi series marketing.

Part one.

And then Part two in English for the sequel.

Thank you for reminding me of that Nintendo Direct. That was really a thing.

Geostomp
Oct 22, 2008

Unite: MASH!!
~They've got the bad guys on the run!~

Hopefully we can say that that taint of Other M is fully cleansed.

RickVoid
Oct 21, 2010


Ometeotl posted:

These totally seem like good faith arguments and not at all whiny complaint-hunting by someone still mad about AM2R

Lol, I will 100% admit that I do not trust Nintendo to make an actually decent Metroid game anymore.

mandatory lesbian
Dec 18, 2012


RickVoid posted:

Lol, I will 100% admit that I do not trust Nintendo to make an actually decent Metroid game anymore.

i didn't either, but this game is pretty much exactly what I wanted from a new 2d metroid from what i've played (other then going from sprites to models, grrr i love fusion's spritework, hate to see it go) so you're coming across as just being a whiny idiot

Qylvaran
Mar 28, 2010


Only thing worth complaining about so far: Why, in 2017, make a 2D game with N64/PSX era 3D graphics. They nearly always look worse than 16 bit sprites. Admittedly, this is not a complaint specifically about this game, but it definitely applies. AM2R looks much prettier.

Crosspeice
Aug 9, 2013

Zzzz... sploosh... zzzz... KABOOM... zzz... sploosh...

Cause apparently the 3D in this game is great. Please do confirm Maple Leaf.

Also it's bound to happen that a portable handheld now has the graphic fidelity of an early home console. It'll only keep getting better, next up is PS2/Gamecube/XBOX the 1st that's not the One on the 4DSXR

Bruceski
Aug 21, 2007

The tools of a hero mean nothing without a solid core.


Qylvaran posted:

Only thing worth complaining about so far: Why, in 2017, make a 2D game with N64/PSX era 3D graphics. They nearly always look worse than 16 bit sprites. Admittedly, this is not a complaint specifically about this game, but it definitely applies. AM2R looks much prettier.

Because 3DS stuff needs to be made with the 3D settings in mind and that cuts the system power in (at least) half. The Fire Emblem games for example look like crud when 3D is turned on because everything's made to look pretty in 2D so it de-resses in noticable places.

FruitPunchSamurai
Oct 20, 2010

The next step of human evolution


Bruceski posted:

Because 3DS stuff needs to be made with the 3D settings in mind and that cuts the system power in (at least) half. The Fire Emblem games for example look like crud when 3D is turned on because everything's made to look pretty in 2D so it de-resses in noticable places.

Is the 3D really such a widely used feature that that is actually the case? I thought the rationale behind using polygons is that they're easier to animate. Instead of having to redraw every frame of Samus' spin jump, they can instead just rotate the model. I don't know much about game development, but I feel like that might be a more compelling reason.

Commander Keene
Dec 21, 2016

This avatar helped buy Lowtax a new back.



3D models also allow for a wider range of angles and activities than sprites do. The free aim in this game might be possible in a 2D game without looking like poo poo, but it would take a completely unnecessary amount of time and effort.

Maple Leaf
Aug 24, 2010

Let'en my post flyen true


Crosspeice posted:

Cause apparently the 3D in this game is great. Please do confirm Maple Leaf.

I could turn it on, I guess, but it obviously wouldn't show in the video.

Bruceski posted:

Because 3DS stuff needs to be made with the 3D settings in mind and that cuts the system power in (at least) half. The Fire Emblem games for example look like crud when 3D is turned on because everything's made to look pretty in 2D so it de-resses in noticable places.

The problem with this argument nowadays is that the 3D functionality is slowly being phased out. Pokemon X/Y only had 3D for the overworld iirc; Pokemon Sun/Moon only has 3D for the photograph minigames; Hey! Pikmin says right on the box that it doesn't use 3D at all. The 2DS exists, and now they have a New 2DS XL that is literally the exact shape as a 3DS, but with no 3D functionality. It was a fun, neat gimmick, but the 3DS has been out since 2011(!), and after six years, everyone, including Nintendo, is letting it go.

The whole point to what I'm trying to say is, Metroid: Samus Returns could easily have been made without 3D if they were really concerned with saving its computational power for graphical fidelity and they would have a ton of precedence for doing so.

FoolyCharged
Oct 11, 2012

Somebody call for an ant?



FruitPunchSamurai posted:

Is the 3D really such a widely used feature that that is actually the case? I thought the rationale behind using polygons is that they're easier to animate. Instead of having to redraw every frame of Samus' spin jump, they can instead just rotate the model. I don't know much about game development, but I feel like that might be a more compelling reason.

Easier for the artist, maybe. 2d is waaay easier coding side in my experience.

Ayndin
Mar 13, 2010


Even with the super-duper 'no really we want to try and make this work from more than a three degree range of vision' thing on the New 3DS, moving the system around winds up screwing up the effect and making games harder to play. I don't hate it when I can get it to work, but a lot of the time I find it more trouble than it's worth, so I just leave it off unless I hear that you really want/need to use 3D for a game. I've been playing this with it off and have no complaints.

I'm about halfway through this game and I'm mostly enjoying it, though I'll agree with people's complaints about hand contortions at points due to heavy use of shoulder buttons and the crosspad, and I find that the game can be a little reluctant to put you in Morph Ball mode without using the lower-screen-tap 'shortcut'.

The melee counterattacks are certainly a thing here, and I'm of two minds on it. Just to clarify how it works: once your counter connects, the enemy gets knocked back and stunned; you have to hit the shoot button to actually counterattack, and if you do this in a short enough window of countering, you'll autoaim and oneshot the enemy (boss monsters excepted, as we'll see before long). They really do expect you to use it constantly; charging monsters can do huge damage - I've taken hits from normal enemies that do nearly a full tank of damage, with the Varia suit on - and a lot of the enemies are bullet sponges otherwise so the oneshot speeds things up. One problem I've been having is that the lockon after countering doesn't always seem to work right; I've countered quite a few enemies and jammed on the shoot button immediately after to find Samus not aiming at them at all, let alone instakilling. Maybe my reflexes are bad? That said, the extended stun after is usually enough time to laser the enemy to death the normal way, but it feels bad to go through the motion and not get the reward. Also as far as I can tell you can only counter one enemy at a time, and you can't really spam it, so situations where you have multiple enemies on you at once can get real ugly real fast. Lastly - and this is pretty subjective - as someone who has almost exclusively played the 2D Metroids, the whole thing feels sort of alien to the series, like it doesn't fit in with the 'run around and shoot stuff and do crazy jumping puzzles' gameplay I'm used to. That's a bit offputting, but when the counter works right - and particularly in boss fights - it does feel pretty good, even if it's not quite what I'm expecting.

The pacing of the game has struck me as a little weird, too, but that's verging into spoiler territory to talk about so I'll let it sit until the LP has progressed more. Could be just a holdover from the original game; I haven't played that in probably 15 years so I don't remember it much at all, and I've never tried AM2R so I don't have that to compare to.

Ayndin fucked around with this message at Sep 22, 2017 around 03:00

Genocyber
Jun 4, 2012



The 3D in this game looks pretty good, imo. In general Nintendo's been smart with their 3D 3DS games by having them have art styles that work well with the low resolution (which also happens to coincide with these games looking gorgeous when up-rezed in an emulator). I definitely would have preferred 2D spritework but I can understand why they didn't do that.

Ometeotl
Feb 13, 2012

It's MISSEL! Or SISSLE!
I confused myself...






If Samus doesn't autoaim after the counter, you either took too long or were holding a direction, which overrides the autoaim.

Ayndin
Mar 13, 2010


Ometeotl posted:

If Samus doesn't autoaim after the counter, you either took too long or were holding a direction, which overrides the autoaim.

Probably the latter. Good to know, thanks!

Glazius
Jul 22, 2007

Hail all those who are able,
any mouse can,
any mouse will,
but the Guard prevail.


Clapping Larry

Running through tutorial-land, the mechanics look just fine.

We'll see how they hold up once things start getting harder.

Morroque
Mar 6, 2013


I loved AM2R, but if there is one point I would give to this game's credit -- even after only seeing the first video -- is that the combat will be better in the least.

AM2R absolutely nailed the exploration and movement options of a good Metroid game so well, that it was honestly hard to notice the combat was a mess. Normally it wouldn't be a problem if it weren't for how mini-boss heavy the game was compared to other Metroid titles. Samus traditionally can only operate at range, so the combat in usual Metroid games was against bosses who also operate primarily at range -- and this is true even of the usual larger bosses in AM2R as well. However, the metroids were primarily melee attackers, which made getting into a good position to even attack them fairly difficult, and even then it was just missile spamming or damage racing. There were so many times I wished I had a charge missile, or something that would at least introduce some variety in action. This game giving Samus an actual close-ranged option balances things out -- at least, theoretically.

It's still up in the air if this game will do better overall, though. Part of me is wondering if it will have the same large and open-ended areas that AM2R did so well, or if it will opt for the more traditional narrow corridors of a normal Metroid game.

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HenryEx
Mar 24, 2009

...your cybernetic implants, the only beauty in that meat you call "a body"...


Grimey Drawer

This game has probably some of the largest single areas in any Metroid game.

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