This one stings a little. In a video to fans waiting patiently (and I am sure some not so patiently), Shinya Takahashi of the Nintendo development team had some bad news. Metroid Prime 4 is going back to the drawing board.
According to the video Nintendo is not happy with how the new title has been progressing or the quality of it. As of that, they have decided to scrap what has been created and start fresh. The producer of the series, Kensuke Tanabe, will be returning to Retro Studios to begin the project with them. Retro was the studio responsible for the original three Metroid Prime games, so they are a bit familiar with them.
So just what should all of this mean to you? Well, there is positive and negative.
- Retro Studios
As mentioned above, these are the guys who made the first three. Should not that guarantee the most success? The last time we had a Metroid game not made by Retro, Other M was critically taken well, but the players thought it at best mediocre. These guys have not been working on anything as of late (that we know of), so putting them to work on what they know would be best.
- Better good than bad
We do not know how Retro’s vision will turn out (more on that below), but if Nintendo did not think their fans wanted what was being made, best to trust them. No one in the business besides maybe Rockstar takes more time and is more meticulous with their games than Nintendo. If anything, it is more a surprise that Nintendo let this out of the bag early enough in development for a full reboot to be possible.
- Nintendo may not know what they are doing with Metroid Prime 4
It has been nearly 15 years since Metroid Prime 3. The last true console Metroid game was a bust according to fans. Nintendo is 1 for 2 on 3DS releases, with a terrible multiplayer one and a remake that should have been nearly impossible to mess up. Nintendo sure has it when it comes to Mario and Zelda, but do they truly know how to approach a Metroid game any longer?
- Retro is not exactly Retro
The “original cast” so to speak, has had a few “re-castings”. Of the bunch, only four remain, one of who was already on the Metroid Prime 4 team (Kensuke Tanabe). With over half the dev team removed, do we really have the guys who know the best back? Are they not just “the guys who made Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze” five years ago? It would be like saying season 9 of Scrubs was still a season of Scrubs (even Zach Braff agrees with me on this).
- Delay, delay, delay
The biggest negative of it all is this officially means no Metroid this year, no Metroid next, and a good chance none in 2021 either. With a restart, who knows if and when we actually get one (or if it does not just get cancelled). Maybe we get one good thing out of this and they finally port the Metroid Prime Trilogy over to the Switch.
What do you think of the news? Are you saddened? Are you optimistic for Metroid’s future? Drop a comment below and tell us about it.