A talented Metroid fan is working on a retro 3D fan game that presents Samus Aran as she could have looked on the classic Nintendo 64 console.
A talented Metroid fan is working on a retro 3D fan game that presents Samus Aran as she could have looked on the classic Nintendo 64 console. The beloved franchise gained some attention from fans in February when an image believed to be teasing the long-awaited Metroid Prime 4 was released on Twitter.
Fan-made game projects require massive amounts of time and dedication to pull off, but the results can be very impressive. As they are made by fans, they often focus on fan-favorite ideas, and as such can become very popular. Like mods, they allow gamers to explore possibilities that a franchise may never officially visit, often switching genres or otherwise adding themes that the developers would never allow. For example, one first-person shooter Pokémon fan game injected a notable amount of violence into the normally family-friendly world. However, as with many other notable fan games, its growing popularity quickly became its undoing when Nintendo issued a takedown notice for the project on copyright grounds.
Twitter user and indie game dev Luto Akino is no doubt hoping that their new Metroid project, Metroid 64, will be able to avoid such a fate. As reported by IGN, they have uploaded a video of their work in progress to Twitter, showing a 3D Samus exploring a purple cave, shooting at placeholder enemies, and even using her Morph Ball and bombing abilities in the process. Although actually developed in Unity, the game’s graphics are a perfect fit for the Nintendo 64, being highly reminiscent of actual games from that era like Super Mario 64. While Metroid did not have a game for the N64 itself, many other top franchises did, and some of these games have now been ported to Nintendo Switch Online. However, it must be said that these new ports have turned out to have a number of issues, in some cases missing key features.
Although the Nintendo 64 did not have a Metroid game, it should be noted that its successor console did. The Game Cube was the home of the acclaimed Metroid Primewhich proved popular enough to spawn its own subseries of the same name. Metroid Prime was notably also the first 3D game in the franchise. However, thanks to advances in technology, its graphics were much more advanced than those of N64 games, and by extension those of Luto Akino’s work. Thanks for its innovative gameplay, Metroid Prime is now regarded by many to be one of the greatest games ever made, but it could have been even better; it almost included an emulation of the similarly-acclaimed Super Metroid.
Although it is obviously doubtful that Luto Akino’s Metroid 64 will quite match the standard set by Metroid Prime, the project still shows great promise. Even in a rough state, it is incredibly appealing to see the nostalgic N64 aesthetic applied to the Metroid series. Samus’ model is very well made, giving great hopes for what her enemies might eventually look like. And seeing Samus jump from platform to platform, the viewer could be forgiven for thinking that the footage is that of an old playtest build from Nintendo itself. In reality, the company’s attention is a concern for the future of the project, as Nintendo is well-known to be very protective of its copyright and has taken down other Metroid fan games in the past. However, barring this scenario, it seems that Metroid 64 is well on track to being an interesting experience for any Metroid fan.
Next: Metroid Prime: Hunters Is The Series’ Most Underrated Game
Source: Luto Akino/Twitter
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