The Let's Play Archive

Metroid: Dread

by Maple Leaf

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Original Thread: Metroid "Dread" Has Reached Final Stages Of Completion



The Story So Far

Back in the mid to late 2000s, the Metroid franchise was riding a high that few others could hope to achieve. In 2002, Metroid Prime was released for the Nintendo Gamecube, a first-person adventure game that would define how a game like Metroid, a franchise built on and survived by its 2D platforming, could be interpreted in a 3D space, and, just one day later, we would also get Metroid Fusion, a more traditional take on the Metroid formula, and, up to that point, the final game in the chronological timeline. Metroid Fusion was the fourth installment in the story, succeeding Super Metroid which had released on the Super Nintendo back in 1994. After skipping an entire console generation, Metroid had come back with a ferocity unlike anything anyone else had seen.

The 2000s enjoyed two more Metroid Prime sequels, with Metroid Prime 2: Echoes in 2004 and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption in 2007. It also saw two spinoffs, with Metroid Prime: Pinball in 2005 and Metroid Prime: Hunters in 2006, both for the Nintendo DS. It was a good decade for Metroid and its reputation couldn’t be more spotless.

Three years after Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, the series got another installment on the Nintendo Wii: Metroid: Other M, chronologically taking place between Super Metroid and Metroid Fusion. It was… considered to be a misstep in a lot of ways. There’s a lot to be said about what Metroid: Other M did to the franchise and to Samus’s character, but that’s a story for another LP. The Metroid franchise would remain dormant until six years later, when it received another spinoff called Metroid Prime: Federation Force that, well, also wasn’t particularly well-liked. It wasn’t until one year later, with Metroid: Samus Returns for the Nintendo 3DS, a remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus, that the franchise was finally able to pick itself back up.

But let’s rewind a bit.

In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, there was one moment towards the end of the game where a scanned document would mention something called ‘Project Dread’ and how it was ‘nearing the final stages of completion.’ This was apparently just meant to be flavour, and the mention was removed entirely in the Japanese translation of the game, but that didn’t stop the rumours from forming that Nintendo was making another Metroid title and they were giving us a teaser via project title drop in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.

But the truth is that there was a game called Metroid Dread in development at the time. Remember that Metroid Prime 3: Corruption was released in 2007. Metroid Dread had been in development since 2006, and it had been cancelled twice since then. It wasn’t until a development studio called MercurySteam, by then best known for their Lords of Shadow installments in the Castlevania series, had created Metroid: Samus Returns that Nintendo felt confident enough in their abilities, and in the current technology, to see the vision of Metroid Dread brought to life.

Metroid Dread was formally announced on June 15th 2021, after sixteen years of on-and-off development, and was released October 8th of the same year. It’s the fifth entry to the chronological Metroid timeline, taking place after Metroid Fusion, and, according to Yoshio Sakamoto, the game’s producer (and notorious man of infamy), it’s the last game to feature Metroids as a common threat. It’s not necessarily the end of Samus Aran’s story – she may have other adventures in the future – but it’s the end of the Metroids.

The Let’s Play

If it isn’t obvious by now, I’m just a big ol’ nerd for Metroid. I’m not usually one for week-one LPs, but Metroid is a special exception to me. I may or may not jump straight into doing one for Metroid Prime 4 when that game finally emerges from the crypt some time in the distant future.

As usual for my past Metroid LPs, this is a totally blind Let’s Play. Even now, a week after the game’s release (as of this writing), I’ve done my level best to avoid as many spoilers as I could for the game: we’re getting a continuation of the Metroid story for the first time since 2002. And as such, I’d appreciate it if there were no spoilers for Metroid Dread as we progress. The rest of the franchise is fair game – the last new, non-spinoff, non-remake entry to the series was with Metroid: Other M over a decade ago.


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