Gaming

7 Years Later, Nintendo Finally Reveals Metroid Prime 4 — And It Looks Amazing

Nearly seven years to the day after it was first announced.

Samus Aran in her Power Suit crouches on a metallic surface, a spacecraft hovering ominously behind ...
Nintendo

Metroid Prime 4, the next entry in Nintendo’s sci-fi action-adventure series, finally has a proper name and release window nearly seven years to the day it was first announced.

During Tuesday's jam-packed Nintendo Direct showcase, Nintendo debuted an action-heavy gameplay trailer for the new game, now titled Metroid Prime 4: Beyond. The two-minute-long trailer showed Samus landing near a Galactic Federation Research Facility during an explosive conflict between the Space Pirates and the allied space authority.

The trailer suggests this game will play similarly to past Metroid Prime games, with familiar elements like Samus’ morph ball ability and the subseries’ signature first-person combat being shown. Viewers also got a look at the game’s villain, the returning bounty hunter Sylux, flanked by two Metroids. The world premiere closed with Samus landing on what appeared to be a second, serene jungle planet.

Despite being a beloved core franchise for Nintendo, the Metroid Prime series has had a few, sporadic releases since it launched on the Gamecube in 2001. Metroid Prime 4: Beyond will be the first new game in Metroid’s first-person subseries since 2007’s Metroid Prime 3: Corruption on the Wii. Nintendo has instead released Metroid games more aligned with the original NES and SNES games in Metroid Dread, and more experimental titles like Team Ninja’s Metroid: Other M and the 3DS co-op shooter Metroid Prime: Federation Force.

The new Prime has been a long time coming. It was first announced during E3 2017, just a couple of months after the launch of the Switch. The sequel was originally being developed by Bandai Namco. However, in 2019, Nintendo announced that this version of the sequel was being nixed because the game had “not reached the standards we seek in a sequel to the Metroid Prime series.”

In Bandai Namco’s place, Retro Studios, the team behind the first three award-winning games, restarted the development of the long-awaited sequel.

Metroid Prime 4: Beyond looks like it will largely stick to the formula of the first three games in the beloved series.

Nintendo

Despite the production woes, Nintendo’s senior managing executive promised that the game would “stand shoulder to shoulder with past Metroid Prime series titles.”

With Retro Studios at the helm, Metroid Prime 4 will likely be another fantastic entry in the overlooked series. But the most curious thing about its impending release is its 2025 due date. It’s widely known that Nintendo’s Switch successor will be released sometime after March 2025. If the dates line up, Metroid Prime 4 could be the perfect send-off for the mega-successful console-handheld hybrid, as well as an intriguing first-party launch title for Nintendo’s next console.

Nintendo is no stranger to launching big, anticipated games across old and new hardware. The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess was released on the Gamecube and as a Wii launch title back in 2006. In 2017, Nintendo also released the excellent The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild on Wii-U on the Switch’s launch date. Bundling their next console with a Metroid Prime game could also be a great way to stir up wider interest in the series, which has never been as popular as Nintendo’s more widely recognizable franchises like Mario and Zelda.

Metroid Prime 4 is coming to the Nintendo Switch sometime in 2025.

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