Game Groups > Metroid series

Metroid is a series of sci-fi action games starring the bounty hunter Samus Aran, who works for the Galactic Federation. Her missions mostly involve protecting the galaxy from the Space Pirates (usually led by the recurrent antagonist Mother Brain), who try to harvest the powers of alien creatures (such as the titular Metroids) for their evil purposes. In order to stop them, Samus has to travel to and explore various hostile planets.

The first game in the series, Metroid (1986), defined its gameplay concept and most of the features. Metroid games typically combine platforming (as in Mario games) with free exploration, taking a cue from Zelda. As opposed to other platform games of its time, the player is not required to proceed through a series of linear stages in one direction, but rather explores large and complex interconnected areas. In Metroid Prime (2002) the series switched from 2D platforming to a first-person shooter format.

Clad in her cybernetic space suit, Samus can acquire various powers, which are scattered around the game world. Often it is required to obtain certain abilities in order to unlock new areas, return to explored locations with new abilities to enter previously inaccessible parts, and discover secret areas. Some of the recurrent powers are a Morph Ball, which allows Samus to roll through tight spaces; missiles, which open special doors and cause more damage to boss enemies; energy tanks, which increase her overall health; and others.

Metroid games usually have a somewhat dark setting, and are notable for their almost complete lack of dialogue and other characters except Samus herself, attempting to create a solitary, foreboding atmosphere. Together with Castlevania, Metroid series lead to the concept of a sub-genre dubbed Metroidvania, in which traditional platform elements are combined with heavier character customization and a large game world that the player can explore in a non-linear fashion.

A Nintendo-owned franchise, games in this group have only been released for Nintendo consoles.

This is the order of the games chronologically in the Metroid universe:

  1. Metroid/Metroid: Zero Mission
  2. Metroid Prime
  3. Metroid Prime: Hunters
  4. Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
  5. Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
  6. Metroid II: Return of Samus/Metroid: Samus Returns
  7. Super Metroid
  8. Metroid: Other M
  9. Metroid Fusion
  10. Metroid Dread


Samus Aran made a regular appearance in the Valiant comic series Captain N: The Game Master, replacing the TV show's regular character line-up of Mega Man and Simon Belmont. Samus would often compete with Princess Lana for Kevin's affections. The comic series was different as it used only Nintendo licensed characters, and not the 3rd party heroes.

Information also contributed by Guy Chapman

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