Metroid: Other M Depicts Samus’s Human Side

By Ishaan . February 3, 2010 . 12:39pm


This week’s issue of Famitsu magazine features a one-page interview with longtime Metroid series director Yoshio Sakamoto. After recapping the information that is already available on Metroid: Other M, Sakamoto addressed topics such as the direction of the game.


"However, different from the rest of the series, this time we’re strongly depicting the human side of Samus through such things as movies. She’s a strong woman, but she also has a fragile side," Sakamoto told Famitsu, according to a translation by Andriasang, while discussing the series’ uncelebrated status in Japan. "We want to make a game whose charms can be felt from the story areas and these human touches as well. It’s an action game, but it’s capable of having a clear emotional side."


Do Nintendo hope Metroid: Other M will make the Japanese market more receptive of the franchise? Probably not, but it’s interesting that Metroid is possibly the property they’ve experimented with the most, within the main line of games. However, be that as it may, it seems Sakamoto still sees this game as a return to the franchise’s roots, albeit with some changes.


"This Metroid is being developed with the aim of the ideal form of the old Metroid," he stated in a separate quote. Sakamoto went on to say that the series is making the jump from the "2D jump-action" genre to 3D action, facilitated by Team Ninja’s development experience, and that the project is progressing "extremely well."


Metroid: Other M is scheduled for release this summer in Japan and sometime this year for Western markets.

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  • malek86

    I want to care, I really want to, but I honestly liked Metroid better before they added all the 3D and story bits. And unfortunately, from my experience, TN games tend to have unskippable cutscenes.

    Oh well, at least, from Team Ninja we can expect some good graphics. And hopefully it will be less boring than Ninja Gaiden.

    • Soma

      I’m also finding it pretty difficult to care about Other M.
      I loved the first Metroid game on the NES. Played it over and over again. Was very skeptical when Prime was released, but I played it, and it is fantastic. One of the three best games released on the Gamecube (other two games being Resident Evil 4 and Tales of Symphonia).
      However, the series really started to decline after that. Fusion on the GBA was pretty ok as far as game play goes, and I thought that the SA-X was one of the scariest things in a Metroid game yet, but there were all those story bits in which we got to see Samus Aran’s inner thoughts. I know some people liked to know what Samus was thinking and to hear about other characters, etc. But for me, it totally destroyed that feeling of isolation that really sets to mood in the game series.
      With Metroid Prime 2 (which had very little to do with Metroids) using the light and dark worlds, a really bad taste for the series was left in my mouth. Since then, I haven’t played any of the new games in the series. I hear that Prime 3 is an excellent game, but I just haven’t the time or the real interest in playing it.
      Other M looks like it will continue to broaden the series. Some may find this good, but personally, I’m not a fan of the direction in which the series seems to be heading.

      • Moriken

        I loved Super Metroid as a kid (you didn’t mention it ;_;), but since I switched over to other consoles in the CD-age because of the RPG issues that plague Nintendos console offerings, I kinda lost connection with the Nintendo franchises.

  • EvilAkito

    I’m approaching this game with a somewhat irresponsible amount of optimism. We don’t know enough about the game to make an educated assumption about its quality, but to me, that’s part of what makes it exciting.

    I may have loved Metroid Prime 3, but the problem is, I knew I would love it. I knew exactly what to expect from a Metroid Prime game, and when I finally played it, I had fun, but nothing about the game really stood out. When developer’s play it safe and stick too closely to the tested formula, a series can lose the spark that it once had.

    The Prime series may have been one of the best examples of a successful transition from 2D to 3D, but after three games it just felt like the scope was too limited. With Other M, it sort of feels like the series is being born again.

    I suppose it’s possible that Other M may not end up being the amazing game that I’m expecting, but at the very least, I’m confident that it will be a game of high quality. Not all of Nintendo’s games are gold (many are full of annoyances), but you still have to give them credit for consistently delivering some of the most polished games on the market. Given Nintendo’s track record, it seems that they’d sooner cancel a game that isn’t looking so hot than they would release it to the market in its less-than-stellar state. So if Other M turns out to the a total disaster like the more cynical of gamers are predicting, then I doubt it would even make it to store shelves.

  • JustAnotherTraveler

    In other words, they want to dumb down Samus so that she, like every other tough female character in Japanese media of all kinds, can show that fragile side just to make sure the gamers continue to feel that sense of superiority and “I must protect her” style that has become so popular.

    • cj_iwakura

      That’s one way of putting it. I’m also skeptical that they can make a 3d Metroid half as good as Retro did.

      • JustAnotherTraveler

        Well this is made by the creators of Ninja Gaiden right? With games like that under their belt, I would be surprised if this wasn’t an excellent game even if it might not really be anything like the other Metroid games.

  • thaKingRocka

    “She’s a strong woman, but she also has a fragile side…”

    No, she doesn’t. Shut up. You’re off the game. Even if she were to have a fragile side, it has no place in the Metroid series. A still image of Samus relaxing on the couch with some tea and a novel is about as much I’d be willing to accept of her fragility. Her humanity was always plenty strong in the games.

    • Moriken

      Of course, she’d wear her power suit on the couch!

      Well, anyway, bringing your “fragile side” to the surface in that line of work would probably be equivalent to being suicidal…

  • conchobhar

    So not only is Other M abandoning the isolated and lonely atmosphere of Metroid, it’s turning Samus from a strong character into one with a “fragile” side.

    And then Sakamoto calls it a return to form.

    Has he even played the series?

    • I’m almost certain sections of Other M will be remade levels from Super Metroid. Perhaps that’s what they’re going for here: traditional Metroid feel to the “flashback” Super Metroid levels, newer stuff in the present-day story levels.

  • malek86

    By the way, now that I think about it, has Team Ninja ever made a game with decent story and characters anyway?

    Chances are, we’ll be treated to either astounding levels of cheesiness or an unbelievable amount of clichè. Can’t say I’m excited about that.

    • Here’s how projects like these work: Team Ninja are in charge of things like programming, animation, creating the art assets etc. Story, design, maybe even level layout — overall supervision in general — are being done at Nintendo’s end.

      I don’t want to use the term “outsourcing” because Team Ninja are clearly involved on a deeper level than following orders, but they’re doing the “legwork,” so to speak, and design is being handled by SPD1.

      • malek86

        I don’t really remember Nintendo ever being geniues at storytelling though. Better than Team Ninja for sure, but still.

        • Yoshi’s Story has one of the most epic and touching stories I’ve ever played.

          “The page turned, and the Yoshi’s grew happier”

          • malek86

            Well, that’s true. They are pretty good at making that sort of stuff. But what about a serious story?

          • Soma

            I’m glad somebody still remembers this gem from the Nintendo 64.

  • Jaxx-Leviathan

    No time for elaboration. Just gonna say: want!

  • This is the only Wii game this year (other than Fragile) that I have any interest at all in.

    Very much looking forward to what I know will be a fantastic game!

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