Metroid: Other M
It was as though it was crying specifically for me...
— Samus Aran
Metroid: Other M was released on the Wii on August 31, 2010. The game was developed by Team Ninja together with Nintendo SPD. It is the second to last game on the chronological timeline. Events in this game follow those after Super Metroid and precede those of Metroid Fusion. This game is the first Metroid installment to ever have a voice actor speak dialogue as Samus Aran. Rather than using Jennifer Hale from the Metroid Prime series, who only voiced Samus by making grunting noises after an impact from an enemy and the death scream, the game uses Jessica Martin to give Samus her first true speaking role.
The story begins with Samus reminiscing about her previous mission, particularly her confrontation on Zebes with the mechanical monstrosity Mother Brain. She awakes in a Galactic Federation facility and is directed to a training room by a quarantine officer, where he tests her various abilities. She then reports the results of her mission and presumably leaves. Sometime later, she receives a distress signal known as "Baby's Cry" from a decommissioned vessel later identified as the Bottle Ship. After boarding, Samus soon comes into contact with the Galactic Federation 07th Platoon, headed by her former commanding officer, Adam Malkovich. Samus tries to discern their reason for boarding, and she, as an "outsider," is denied this information, and the platoon moves on ahead. Samus meets up with them in the Main Sector's Control Room, where they find the corpse of a scientist. The Brug Mass is engaged shortly thereafter, and upon its defeat, Adam allows Samus to offer the platoon aid under the stipulation that she follow his orders. The platoon is then briefed, and exploration of the facility begins.
Samus rendezvous with the platoon in the Exam Center, located in the Biosphere Test Area. Before this, however, she encounters the body of another scientist (found in the Biosphere's Breeding Room) and a peculiar bird-like creature. Samus and the platoon learn that the Bottle Ship is operated by the Galactic Federation and was designed for the propagation of bioweapons. They are then distracted by a mysterious, reptilian creature, which assaults Samus before being repelled by Anthony Higgs and escaping. Samus is sent to the Pyrosphere in pursuit of this creature, but she is quickly directed to the Cryosphere, where she finds the body of Maurice Favreau and is attacked by the RB176 Ferrocrusher while in pursuit of an unidentified woman, who claims that Maurice was killed by another soldier. Samus calls this unknown assailant the Deleter. Returning to the Pyrosphere, Samus saves Anthony from the Rhedogian (first encountered on an elevator while leaving the Cryosphere) and, possessing conflicting feelings about Adam, remembers the events leading to death of Adam's younger brother, Ian Malkovich. Samus later encounters Ridley in the Geothermal Power Plant, and Anthony is seemingly killed. Contact with Adam is also inexplicably severed, and K.G. Misawa is incinerated in an unknown area of the sector.
Samus leaves the Pyrosphere and witnesses an unknown soldier (most likely the Deleter) entering the elevator to the Biosphere. She pursues him to a building in the rear of the sector, the Bioweapon Research Center. Here, she meets the woman from before, who identifies herself as Madeline Bergman. Bergman tells Samus that the Federation planned to create a force of bioweapons with Zebesians at its center, but that Ridley had caused them to go rogue. However, the Federation was also propagating Metroids from cellular material taken from Samus's Power Suit. Ridley was also created in this fashion, albeit accidentally. Bergman states that an AI program based on Mother Brain (called MB) was created to control the Metroids, harbored in a secret area known as Sector Zero. Samus heads to the Cryosphere to reach Sector Zero, encountering Nightmare on the way. Defeating the creature, she proceeds, reaching the hallway before the entrance. She is startled by an infant Metroid, and just as she is about to kill it, Samus is shot in the back by a Freeze Gun and is knocked unconscious. She awakes to Adam's voice. Adam tells her that the Metroids in Sector Zero are most likely unfreezable, leaving Samus with no means to dispatch them, though they can be killed if the sector's self-destruct protocol is activated. Adam leaves to do this, sacrificing himself in the process, driving Samus to tears. However, before he goes, Adam commands Samus to kill Ridley and secure the safety of a survivor in the Bioweapon Research Center's Room MW. Samus then retraces her steps as the sector detaches, and, unbeknownst to her, the ship's propulsion system activates.
Samus permanently defeats Nightmare and, upon reaching the Bioweapon Research Center, finds the body of James Pierce (on the way, Ridley is shown being killed by unknown means). She eventually stumbles upon Room MW, where she finds a female scientist in a holding cell. This scientist panics and opens a hatch. Samus enters and encounters a Queen Metroid. At one point in the difficult battle, the ship's PA system announces that the ship will intercept Galactic Federation orbit in thirty seconds. Just before it intercepts orbit, the engines are cut. Samus defeats the creature and pursues the scientist, who also identifies herself as Madeline Bergman. She tells Samus that MB was the person met earlier, an android created to establish a relationship with Metroids similar to that established between Samus and the Metroid Hatchling. MB developed emotions and began contradicting Bergman and the other scientists. They planned to reprogram her, but Ridley escaped the same day, and MB became violent. She telepathically commanded the creatures of the Bottle Ship to attack those on board. Samus deduces that MB was the one who activated the ship's propulsion system. Samus and Madeline are then interrupted by MB, who plans to kill them. A platoon of Galactic Federation soldiers rushes into the room, and MB unleashes Desbrachians upon them. Madeline freezes MB, who is then killed by the Federation soldiers, and Samus and Madeline are separated by a Federation colonel, who orders Samus to be escorted off of the ship. A soldier complies and, when stopped by the colonel, identifies himself as Anthony and as the one who cut the engines. Samus, Madeline, and Anthony then leave in Samus's ship. At Galactic Federation Headquarters, Samus resolves not to grieve Adam's death, but she does decide to return to the Bottle Ship, now marked for destruction, to retrieve Adam's helmet. She encounters and defeats Phantoon before escaping the facility in her Zero Suit. Samus then returns to her ship and flies off into the distance with the helmet beside her, closing another chapter in the hunter's saga.
Manual Intro to Plot
Metroid: Other M's gameplay is much different from the gameplay of the Prime series, as Metroid: Other M utilizes a third-person perspective rather than a first-person perspective. The gameplay in Metroid: Other M is unique in its own manner; certain events are scripted to occur to give the game a cinematic and "fast-paced action movie" feel. Samus appears to be more acrobatic and more flexible in this game, as she is able to perform athletic blows to enemies, such as the Overblast and various kicks and throws. Another unique addition currently exclusive to Metroid: Other M is the ability to dodge incoming attacks or obstacles by moving the D-Pad in any direction before the attack makes contact, a technique known as the Sensemove.
While the Prime series focuses heavily on scanning, it is not as important in Other M. Whenever something needs to be examined, pointing the Wii Remote at the screen turns the perspective from third-person into first-person. When the targeting reticule locks on to a point of interest, the camera zooms in and tells Samus what is needed to destroy or bypass the structure, whether it be items like Bombs or Missiles. Missiles work in the same manner in the first-person mode.
Because Samus Aran is being monitored by her commanding officer, Adam Malkovich, she needs to wait until Adam authorizes her power-ups instead of collecting them like in most Metroid games. An example of this is the authorization of the Varia Suit not occurring until Samus reaches her first objective in the Pyrosphere, a sector possessing extreme heat.
Metroid: Other M's control is very unique in terms of how to use the Wii remote to navigate Samus Aran throughout the game. To control Samus in her third-person perspective, the Wii remote is held sideways, similar to a Nintendo Entertainment System's controller. Because the Nunchuk peripheral is not used, Samus can only point and shoot while in first-person. Samus is rendered immobile, though she is able to dodge attacks via Sensemove, which is accomplished by moving the pointer off of the screen when Samus's visor turns green. Samus can switch to first-person to third-person at any time, unless she is in a "hunt the pixel" situation, a situation in which she is forced into first-person mode until she locates a point of interest. Samus can also switch from first-person to third-person in midjump, which can be effective in using Missile/Overblast combos on enemies.
The graphical detail in the several environments is overhauled, as the advantage of the Wii's expanded memory space and enhanced processor from the Nintendo GameCube gives Metroid: Other M a technical boost in visual flair. Although the game may look astonishing in many sectors during the adventure, some low-resolution textures are used to prevent gameplay slowdowns. The game mostly runs around a solid 50-60 frames per second (FPS) but will occasionally slow down if too much action is on the screen. Such instances are rare, however.
A variety of graphical techniques are seen throughout Metroid: Other M, such as complex bump-mapping, bloom lighting, and the use of Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI). The water effects on the surface of rivers make heavy use of bump-mapping and texture-mapping, as the reflection of the water accurately displays the reflection while maintaining a real-time flowing effect. Bloom lighting is very consistent throughout the game; it is used for many of Samus's beams as well as the beam attacks of certain enemies. Bloom lighting and afterimage techniques are heavily used in the Pyrosphere section, as the lava appears very bright onscreen and appears to "bleed" onto surrounding areas. The lava effects, however, are somewhat lacking in detail, as the effect is only a moving 2D plane. Despite this, its frame rate is steady for the most part, as mentioned above, even with these effects, a feat praised in many reviews.
The music in Metroid: Other M is much different than that of other games in the Metroid series. It is more ambient and atmospheric than the diverse memorable tunes from other games in the series. A prime example of this occurs on the game's title screen, which plays the main theme of Metroid with several ambient effects, adding tension and suspense to the game. The music in this game is orchestrated unlike that of the other games, which use mostly Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) effects or synthesizers used many times in the Prime games. It features a fast-paced beat with several panic-inducing effects such as loud percussion or the various musical techniques used by the strings, such as a vibrating tremolo effect. However, when the action cools down, the orchestra's mood changes with the current events Samus is experiencing. When Samus is investigating the sectors in the game, the music changes to a suspenseful tone, which often lets Samus know that something will occur and that she must stay on alert at all times. An example of this is the sudden beating of drums accompanying string instruments.
Compared to other entries in the franchise, Other M has received mixed reactions from critics and fans alike. Points of contention include Samus's voice acting and characterization, the game's lengthy and unskippable cinematic cutscenes, and its linear progression with a minimap marked to highlight the player's next destination. This latter trait contrasts with most other entries in the franchise, which place an emphasis on the exploration of diverse, open worlds and unknown objectives, though Other M is not unique in this respect. Other entries that have deviated from this formula in some way are Metroid Prime 3: Corruption and Metroid Fusion.
- Brug Mass
- Fune and Namihe
- King Kihunter
- Mystery Creature
- RB176 Ferrocrusher
- Queen Metroid
A screenshot released in E3 2009 of creatures resembling Reos.
An E3 2009 released screenshot of Vorash.
Samus's First Person Mode, similar to that in the Metroid Prime games.
Samus being swarmed by Geemers.
Samus using a Missile while grabbing onto a ledge, portraying various gameplay tactics.
Reos viewed up close. It is notable that when Samus has low energy, her visor's illuminated display flashes red.
Samus and the Galactic Federation squad, the 07th Platoon.
Anthony Higgs turns to Samus, hinting that some cutscenes will be taking place in First Person View.
Samus runs through a dark setting, indicating the structure of the Bottle Ship.
Samus taking down an enemy from up close. The move being performed is the Overblast, one of Samus's several close-range attacks.
- "A dream—I had been reliving the tragic moments of my recent past. Thanks to the Hyper Beam, which was given to me somehow by the baby, I laid Mother Brain to waste." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "Code name: "Baby's Cry." A common SOS with the urgency of a baby crying..." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "Rescue signal origin - Model number - Unknown (destroyed) - Terraforming type - Accumulation of space dust/high density gas emissions - Shield leakage detected - Airtight colony - Bottle Ship - Rerouting - Destination - Bottle Ship - Generator at full power" —Gunship instrument panel (Metroid: Other M)
- "That information is not for an outsider." —Adam Malkovich (Metroid: Other M)
- "The large, cagelike booth looked like something had been raised in it, and in one corner was the miserable form of a researcher's corpse. " —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "This BOTTLE SHIP is under management of the Galactic Federation. In these facilities, life-forms from each planet have been raised and researched as possible bioweapons." —Exam Center computer (Metroid: Other M)
- "How can I trust you when your troops are willing to kill each other?" —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "At this rate, the plan the Federation wanted to keep so secret would be revealed. So they sent in an assassin. Someone to wipe out any survivors as well as anyone who learned about the secret project. K.G., James, Anthony, and... Adam. Could one of them really be a traitor? Until I found out who it was, I decided to call the traitor the Deleter." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "Behind closed doors, the Galactic Federation was trying to create a special forces-unit composed of bioweapons. In order to make it happen, they were attempting to create an organization modeled after the Space Pirates, with the Zebesians at the center. But, because of a certain...presence, the life-forms became ferocious. We were no longer able to control them." —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "They were reproduced from a piece of cell structure salvaged by the Federation, and they are in this facility." —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "At first no one thought that the creature was Ridley." —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "We developed an AI program that would reproduce Mother Brain's thought processes." —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "They're in an area called Sector Zero. It's a unit that doesn't appear in any of our map data." —MB (Metroid: Other M)
- "There's a strong likelihood that the Metroid's mortal weakness, the vulnerability to cold, has been overcome through genetic manipulation." —Adam Malkovich (Metroid: Other M)
- "...Sector Zero has a self-destruct protocol. If the sector receives a significant amount of damage, the unit is programmed to detach and self-destruct. A powerful explosion will eliminate the Metroids and MB without leaving a trace." —Adam Malkovich (Metroid: Other M)
- "I've located a survivor in Room MW toward the rear of the Bioweapon Research Center. Whoever it is will be a key witness. Secure the survivor's safety. And defeat Ridley. He's as much of a threat as the Metroids." —Adam Malkovich (Metroid: Other M)
- "This facility will intercept Galactic Federation orbit in approximately 30 seconds." —Bottle Ship PA system (Metroid: Other M)
- "What you met was MB. She's an android. She was created with the intellectual data of Mother Brain and consequently developed Mother Brain's consciousness as well." —Madeline Bergman (Metroid: Other M)
- "Because we needed the first Metroid hatchling to recognize MB as its mother, she had to take on the form of a living thing. With that as our theoretical basis, we were able to create the ideal relationship with the Metroid. One that wasn't based on dominance or control." —Madeline Bergman (Metroid: Other M)
- "When it attacked Mother Brain in order to save me—that was the result of the kind of ideal relationship they were trying to develop with MB." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "She developed emotions. Then a nascent sense of herself. She began asserting her own thoughts, and her opinions began to contradict ours." —Madeline Bergman (Metroid: Other M)
- "My presence that day caused a disturbing reaction within her." —Madeline Bergman (Metroid: Other M)
- "Once she felt abandoned and hunted by that same Madeline, MB telepathically commanded the special forces to revolt. The facility fell into complete chaos and suffered widespread damage." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- "Time for the lady to go home. Someone escort her!" —Galactic Federation Colonel (Metroid: Other M)
- "Anthony Higgs, sir. Galactic Federation Platoon Seven." —Anthony Higgs (Metroid: Other M)
- "..But man, you guys made it here quick! I mean, if I hadn't stopped the engines, we might've missed each other." —Anthony Higgs (Metroid: Other M)
- " I heard Adam's voice in my head, and I knew in my heart that he had made the right decision, just as he had so many years ago. In that moment, I swore not to grieve his death." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- " Ultimately, the decision was made to destroy the BOTTLE SHIP, a mission that will most likely be carried out in the next day or two. I'm heading toward the BOTTLE SHIP now. I'm going to rescue something that was left there...something that can't be replaced." —Samus Aran (Metroid: Other M)
- Official Website (North America)
- Official Website (Japan)
- Metroid Recon's game maps of the sectors in Other M's Bottle Ship