Rippers are small insectoid creatures that are capable of hovering with little effort. They seem to have little-to-no intelligence due to their lack of brains and their excessively repetitive movements.
Rippers can only be destroyed by the Screw Attack or Speed Booster, although they can be frozen. Rippers are some of the most common enemies used as platforms for Samus when frozen. In fact, a section of Brinstar in Super Metroid requires their use as platforms. The X also mimicked them on the B.S.L research station.
There are three types of standard Rippers. There are Brinstar Rippers, which are purple, and normal, brown Rippers appearing everywhere else. There is also one unique Winged Ripper appearing in only one room in Metroid: Zero Mission while fighting the larval form of Kiru Giru. This special ripper cannot be destroyed by any means, not even the Screw Attack if it is obtained through sequence breaking. The purpose of this Ripper is for Samus to use as a platform once frozen to shoot down Kiru Giru. It is not necessary, however, as Samus can Wall Jump to reach Kiru Giru instead.
There are also faster, more advanced version of the Ripper aptly named Ripper II. These versions seem jet propelled. They deal more damage then regular Rippers and move at a much higher speed. They are seen shortly before obtaining the Screw Attack in Zero Mission.
The X-mimicked Rippers show no appreciable difference in behavior and appearance from the Rippers appearing in Super Metroid. It is interesting to note that because the X are a species with cognitive capacity, mimicking Rippers appears to lower their intelligence, considering that they are reduced to forward and backwards motions from their sporadic motions exhibited before.
Unused model of a Ripper from Metroid Prime
Side view of unused model of a Ripper from Metroid Prime
- The Ripper is one of only five enemies with entries in Metroid: Zero Mission's manual.
- Rippers were intended to appear in Metroid Prime, but were replaced with the Glider, a similar creature. In the game's files is a fully-textured model of the Ripper.
- "These strange creatures do not have brains. They simply fly around sluggishly in straight lines." Metroid Instruction Booklet, Pg 29
- "These slow creatures don't attack but fly aimlessly in straight lines. It is wiser to run away from them than to try fighting them." Metroid Instruction Booklet, Pg 31
- "The armor of these flying creatures is so strong that standard beams cannot beat them." Super Metroid Instruction Booklet, Pg 27
- "For the most part, these organisms just fly slowly through the air in straight lines. They are impervious to most attacks." Metroid: Zero Mission Instruction Booklet, Pg 32
- "In the case of the Ripper, it was eventually replaced with the Glider, with the hook on the bottom being used as a grapple point." Metroid Prime#Ripper, The Cutting Room Floor
- "A fully-textured model present in Phendrana Drift's files as well as the Phazon Mines." Metroid Prime#Ripper, The Cutting Room Floor