User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 601 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 33 out of 601
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  1. Oct 21, 2017
    4
    Warning, this game suffers from poor controls and often unfair gameplay. Blind drops into pits of acid or lava, or just bumping against enemies or being hit by them when entering a room without having a moment to counter or avoid.

    Often the controls are frankly unwieldy, forcing you to have precise aim whilst using the grappling beam to swing from point to point over a pool of lava that
    Warning, this game suffers from poor controls and often unfair gameplay. Blind drops into pits of acid or lava, or just bumping against enemies or being hit by them when entering a room without having a moment to counter or avoid.

    Often the controls are frankly unwieldy, forcing you to have precise aim whilst using the grappling beam to swing from point to point over a pool of lava that does insane damage. In this scenario even the exact order of aim and button presses needs to be precise or you'll wind up doing something totally different from what you intended. Control direction that is inversed sometimes from what you would expect when using spider ball. Juggling to switch between aion powers with the dpad whilst holding the shoulder buttons and circle pad to aim whilst pressing face buttons to fire, it can be a bit too much. And quite frankly it brings back really bad memories from bad control schemes back in the nes & snes era.

    Add to that that the environment is extremely repetitive and boring, with no story and world building at all. And the most annoying part that the environment is built like a maze to be extremely obtuse to traverse, which is only made slightly easier down the line when extra abilities are unlocked. But unlike prime, where your abilities are keys to doors, here your abilities from even late game are needed for normal traversal in all areas. So be prepared to take that detour in a stupid morph ball maze for the first 6 hours of the game until you finally get the ability you need to just open the door to bypass that horrible experience. Prime games never ever used ability unlocks in that way, because that is very poor gameplay design.

    I will also challenge you to tell me the difference between each colour block you can blast or each door icon on your minimap. It's impossible. They are extremely non descript. Again, prime was simple in this regard, each color door corresponds to each beam type using the same color. Color association. It works. Here in Samus returns they chose to throw that out of the window. I'm also baffled by why every blastable bit or crack is hidden with little or even no sign that it is there. It's integral to actually playing the game. If it weren't for the scan pulse, you would be blasting and bombing every cell of the level to find where the exit of a room is. Yet again what's wrong with showing cracked walls ? Zelda does it, metroid prime does it. Seems like great game design. Yet Samus returns ignores that too.

    In the grand scheme of things these are annoyances that can be largely overcome or ignored, but there is one point in the game where all these bits come together in a glorious cocktail of infuriating madness. It's like it is specifically designed to test your determination to actually finish this game. All the bad parts meld together, punishing difficulty, controls that never seem to do exactly what you want. Unfair blind drops. Level design that is a horrible maze mess and annoying to traverse. It all comes together in this part where you'll genuinely question wether this is worth the effort.

    I also take issue with the worldbuilding and environment. It is extremely repetitive, as are the boss fights and all enemies for that matter. There is no logic at all to the setting of the environment. Gone are the regions of prime. With ruins, ice temples, crash sites, underwater areas, etc. Each area having defense areas, installations, power facilities, laboratories with a logical reason for it being there. In Samus returns it's just level arenas dressed up to resemble a jungle theme, ruins theme, lava theme. But with none of the intricate detail and worldbuilding, backstory and logic. Just some generic hallways in maze form to connect it all. It's a gigantic step down from prime in this regard.

    I'm terribly afraid of what this means for prime 4 if retro is not at the helm and Samus returns is heralded as being one of the best metroid games in years. To me this is metroid watered down. It's not a terrible game but there are things in there that I deem unacceptable. If the gameplay wasn't borked it would have received a 7.
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  2. Sep 30, 2017
    4
    Basically the game is really good. Graphics and sound are nice, the game is motivating and enjoyable. The overall difficulty is really challenging. Casual players probably will have a hard time now and then. Which leads me to the reason, why I do rate the game only with a score of 4. As aforementioned the game is, in my opinion, really tough to beat. That would be ok, but there are severalBasically the game is really good. Graphics and sound are nice, the game is motivating and enjoyable. The overall difficulty is really challenging. Casual players probably will have a hard time now and then. Which leads me to the reason, why I do rate the game only with a score of 4. As aforementioned the game is, in my opinion, really tough to beat. That would be ok, but there are several situations in the game, where the difficulty totally skyrockets through the roof. Close to the end is a stage boss, which is extremely hard to defeat. The fight is a sheer torment, which will make your blood boil. And soon after comes the final boss, which is an even bigger pain in the ass. I never had less fun (or was suffering more) while playing a videogame than while this fight (on which I just gave up after dozens of futile attempts). I don't know which audience Nintendo was targeting, but this game is definitely nou suited for casual players. I'd only recommend it for Metroidvania-experts and masochists. That's a pity, because apart from the game is really great. Expand
  3. Feb 8, 2021
    1
    linear design and a mediocre game, AM2R was way better and was done with 1/128 of the money used for this one. Why go 3d when you can make a true gem with 2d graphics?
  4. Dec 23, 2020
    0
    This is a horrible excuse for a Metroid game and I don't understand why people like it so much. It looks pretty, but it plays horribly. I absolutely hated it from about 10 minutes into it, till the time I took it out of my 3DS a few hours later. I only made it to the third area, and found the difficulty of the game to be purely masochistic. It doesn't feel like a proper 2D Metroid game.This is a horrible excuse for a Metroid game and I don't understand why people like it so much. It looks pretty, but it plays horribly. I absolutely hated it from about 10 minutes into it, till the time I took it out of my 3DS a few hours later. I only made it to the third area, and found the difficulty of the game to be purely masochistic. It doesn't feel like a proper 2D Metroid game. The game is actually WORSE than the original Game Boy game they tried to remake.

    Things I liked:
    -Graphics. The game does look pretty.
    -Sound. The game does sound pretty.

    Things I hated:
    -Melee Counter: does not belong in a Metroid game. Whoever greenlighted this idea needs fired.
    -Aeion abilites: These comes off as more annoying than useful to me. Especially when you get to the third area that many monsters require the use of the rapid fire one. Oh yeah, it drains the aeion gauge in seconds. Garbage.
    -Level design: I expect a decent amount of mazes in a metroid game, but when EVERYTHING is a maze, it's not fun. It's way more complicated than the original for no reason whatsoever.
    -Overaggresive enemies: Pretty self explanatory. Enemies are overly aggressive for no reason, other than to shoe-horn in the previously mentioned garbage melee counter system.
    -Difficulty level: I can enjoy a hard game, but this goes way past hard into pure masochistic territory on the NORMAL DIFFICULTY. I'm a fairly seasoned Metroid player. I've beaten Super Metroid, Fusion, and Zero Mission multiple times, and the game boy game this was based on. This game gets the balance way too screwed up. Normal monsters do 1/3rd an energy tank of damage per hit AFTER THE VARIA SUIT. Metroids can take a whole tank at once. It's not fun, it's unfair and makes this game frustrating.

    TL;DR: Metroid Samus Returns is a game that looks pretty on the surface, and people raved over it because they thought it was a "return to form", but when you actually play it, the game is frustrating and a massive disappointment. Both the original and the fan remake AM2R(A PROPERLY REMADE METROID GAME THAT PLAYS LIKE A METROID GAME!) are infinitely better games than this officially released turd.
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  5. Sep 15, 2017
    2
    AM2R is much better and Nintendo completely wasted their time on this project.

    While Samus Returns is more flashy and follows the same Metroid formula you'd expect from a remake, it really doesn't rise above just that - it's exactly what you'd expect. Sorry Nintendo, I just played a Metroid 2 remake made by one person and it surpasses your in-house studio effort. Maybe you can come up
    AM2R is much better and Nintendo completely wasted their time on this project.

    While Samus Returns is more flashy and follows the same Metroid formula you'd expect from a remake, it really doesn't rise above just that - it's exactly what you'd expect. Sorry Nintendo, I just played a Metroid 2 remake made by one person and it surpasses your in-house studio effort. Maybe you can come up with something original next time that might be worth playing.

    In the meantime, I'll be waiting for Metroid Prime 4, which should have been announced back in 2012 and released already. But, game developers are lazier than ever these days. At least we got some footage at Nintendo's latest 9/13 direct... oh wait... at least we got Melee HD... nope, wrong again... oh, we got 20 minutes of Xenoblade Chronicles 2, a game no one cares about because it belongs on PC so that graphics don't look like they're from 1999.

    But I digress - this remake was poorly timed and utterly disappointing. Do not buy.
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  6. Sep 20, 2017
    3
    Made it to the 3rd section of the game so far. And I'm still fighting the same handful of enemy types that were in the first 2 sections: the frog things, the charging purple flying things, and spiky turtle things, etc. Where is the variety? Every other game in the series has enemies change when you take the elevator to a new area. Speaking of enemies, they respawn way too fast. I'll beMade it to the 3rd section of the game so far. And I'm still fighting the same handful of enemy types that were in the first 2 sections: the frog things, the charging purple flying things, and spiky turtle things, etc. Where is the variety? Every other game in the series has enemies change when you take the elevator to a new area. Speaking of enemies, they respawn way too fast. I'll be exploring a room, hit a dead end, then start to backtrack, and all the enemies I killed are already back, even though I never even left the room. Also the difficulty is way higher than any other metroid game. I have 300 energy. I have the upgraded armor that is supposed to make me take less damage. And I still die in just 4 hits from a metroid. FOUR HITS. Is this dark souls or metroid? The only positive part is that when that happens it starts me right outside the metroid's room instead of from the last save point. I'm a huge metroid fan, with zero mission and fusion being my favorites, but this game is a huge disappointment so far. Expand
  7. Sep 15, 2017
    1
    After Playing for 2 Hours i dont even want to go back and continue playing

    The Game dosen't play and feel like a 2D Metroid game, the 360° makes the game too easy and the Melee attack too hard And the worst thing is that the beams dont get combined like in Super Metroid so that means when you get the Ice beam there's no reason to use it since it does 0 Damage And the most
    After Playing for 2 Hours i dont even want to go back and continue playing

    The Game dosen't play and feel like a 2D Metroid game, the 360° makes the game too easy and the Melee attack too hard

    And the worst thing is that the beams dont get combined like in Super Metroid so that means when you get the Ice beam there's no reason to use it since it does 0 Damage

    And the most challenging thing in metroid (Walljump and Bomb Jumping) just got way to easy, for Wall jumping just jump to a wall and press A and for bomb jumping you just spam Y

    probably the worst 2D Metroid game out there
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  8. Feb 13, 2020
    1
    Fun to start with but the difficulty ramps up to insane levels. So sad I was really enjoying this but now I am stuck and can’t get any further, it’s not fun dying endlessly on the same bit over and over again. Won’t be buying any Metroid games ever again, staying clear of this bait and switch.
  9. Jun 24, 2021
    4
    In light of the new Metroid 5 being announced, I felt the need to revisit this trainwreck falling off the Hindenburg. I was not disappointed, it was as aggravating as I remember. Now, before the calls of, "git gud", or "this is how old school Metroid used to be!", I'd like to say I was playing Metroid when there was only one game; it had yet to be a franchise. I could avoid going inIn light of the new Metroid 5 being announced, I felt the need to revisit this trainwreck falling off the Hindenburg. I was not disappointed, it was as aggravating as I remember. Now, before the calls of, "git gud", or "this is how old school Metroid used to be!", I'd like to say I was playing Metroid when there was only one game; it had yet to be a franchise. I could avoid going in depth by saying just one thing: the game has a very, very generous continue system for when you die. The programmers knew you'd be dying a lot, and rather than do their jobs and balance, they decided smoking crack was a reasonable substitute. There's a chase scene that has multiple continue points inside it. So, if they were going for old school Metroid feel, they wouldn't have a continue system. It's a catch all for their lazy programming.

    Speaking of which! Samus apparently attended that crack party with the programmers, bc she now controls and aims like a refrigerator full of Mogwai that just devoured all the food half past midnight. Her aiming is *abysmal*. I actually took a photo of my thumb holding the direction I wished to aim, with her laser pointer in full view. They were not pointing even at an attempt in the same direction. I'd say a ten to fifteen degree difference at minimum. Now, this problem is negligible if you're taking a nice, peaceful interplanetary stroll. The game, however, forces you to utilize aiming, quickly and precisely, several times. Sev. Er. Al. The previously mentioned (instant death) chase scene comes back to mind here, though it's far from the only one.

    Finally there's the counterattack function. Dear gods somebody had some unearned pride over this, bc they shoehorn it in EVERYWHERE. Gone are the days of running and blasting through filler tunnels. Now you're stopping every five seconds, waiting for the counterattack signal.

    In closing, anyone who gave Other M crap, but fluffed this games...ego....are probably the same people who liked Daikatana; it just feels like the Venn diagram between those two is a giant circle; this game is very lazily programmed, but with just enough fluff and filler to try to distract you from it. Insult to injury? You unlock a hard mode upon completion. No thanks, I have teabagging a hungry crocodile JUST above playing Samus Returns ever again. Once I cross that off the list, we'll see.
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  10. Oct 16, 2021
    3
    Doesn't hold up to the classics like Super Metroid, Fusion or Zero Mission. The artstyle doesn't fit and lacks the atmosphere previous titles had. As a remake of Metroid 2 I expected much more, nowhere near as good a remake as Zero Mission was.
Metascore
85

Generally favorable reviews - based on 83 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 77 out of 83
  2. Negative: 0 out of 83
  1. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Feb 16, 2018
    80
    Metroid: Samus Returns brings to the 3DS a pearl of the genre with all its plus and minus that you can expect, beautifully crafted with time-consuming repetitive gaming. [Issue#279]
  2. CD-Action
    Dec 19, 2017
    75
    I’m not emotionally attached to Metroid series, so for me Samus Returns is just a solid metroidvania game with a bland art style, devoid of the spark of individuality that turned Ori, Apotheon or Hollow Knight into memorable gems. [12/2017, p.45]
  3. Dec 7, 2017
    70
    It definitely overstays its welcome, and it's far from the best in the series, it's been so long since there was a Metroid game that it's nice to see it back here on the 3DS. I feel like they've built strong mechanics, which can hopefully serve a more varied and interesting quest in a future entry to the series, maybe one that DOESN'T involve doing the same fights over and over the entire game. Samus Returns is definitely a step up from the original Metroid 2, but it is unable to touch the heights of both the series and the genre.