Waypoint 101 – Super Metroid

Hello, Waypoint community! Waypoint 101 has returned, and for this entry, Waypoint will be playing through and discussing Super Metroid!

The Metroid series has recently been awakened from its cryogenic slumber, and this October, Nintendo plans to release the first 2D Metroid game in almost twenty years, Metroid Dread. In light of that, it only seems fitting to return to the third game in the Metroid series, and what might be the most influential game ever made: Super Metroid.

The game was originally released in 1994 for the Super Nintendo. Since then, it’s been re-released on the Wii, the Wii U, the 3DS, and the SNES Classic. Currently, it is available with a Nintendo Online subscription on the Switch.

So hop into your power suit, and get your blaster ready! Join us as we journey through Zebes with Samus for this installment of Waypoint 101!

The podcast discussion will be available on the Waypoint Plus podcast feed, which you can subscribe to here. If you are not subscribed to Waypoint Plus, you can still watch the team play through the game on Waypoint’s Twitch channel.


Day 1 VOD:

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As someone who has never completed a Metroid game, I’m excited to join Austin on his first metroid.

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Oh I love this, I love this so much!

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I don’t know that I’ve ever completed a proper Metroid game… I loved the Prime series, but never got through a 2d one for some reason. I actually just started playing Super Metroid before this was announced, so perfect timing!

I played Super Metroid last month, and it truly is one of the most influential games ever! You play a lot of old games and say “I can see how they went from this mechanic to the mechanics in modern games”, but it’s different with Super Metroid. An entire genre came out basically fully formed with the game, and it’s kind of astonishing how little people change about the formula 20+ years on! The only other games that I can think of that compare are RE4 and DooM.

I’m excited for people to play or replay this! It’s a good game!

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I’ve tried to play Super Metroid several times over the years, but never finished it. The first hour is incredible, delightfully moody and with a strong forward velocity. But then around hour 2 or 3 I get lost and my interest peters out. I think my main issue is that I got into metroids with the last decade indie boom, and so I’ve seen so many games that take lessons from the seminal work and iterates upon it. But I can totally see why SM is so well regarded, it did some truly groundbreaking things!

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I played this back when I like the SNES Mini a few years ago. Sadly, can’t say I loved it. Respect the hell out of it, love the atmosphere, but gameplay-wise, there’s something really clunky that never felt right. The techier moves like wall jumps are more obnoxious than really ever need to be…

Guess I’m Team Castlevania in the Metroidvania divide, I dunno.

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I played Super Metroid recently as well. Found that I liked it a lot better after I was done playing. Agree with others, a bit too much getting lost for me. Glad Austin has a free tips line playing with him.

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The only distinct memory I have of getting lost in Super Metroid was taking a while to figure out to use a power bomb in the glass tube. Otherwise scanning the map and looking at where there were doors I hadn’t gone through or dead ends usually got me to the next step pretty quickly.

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I’ve had a similar history with it. It starts hitting an old school difficulty level at some point, and I just didn’t like it enough to want to get over that hill.

I certainly got a lot further with it than I ever did with Super Castlevania. Which always felt extremely stiff. It’s remarkable how well Super Metroid moves relative to other non Mario/Sonic games of that era.

Thematically though, it’s definitely something that stuck with me, and games and media that offer a similar premise to Metroid get a boost in my mind from that early influence.

EDIT: I agree with everything that Austin has to say about DKC. Damn, that game is divisive :slight_smile:

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I’m reluctant to admit this for fear of having my gamer card revoked but I booted up Super Metroid about a month ago and got stuck in the first 5 minutes. Left the ship, went down a pit, got the morph ball, couldn’t work out where to go next, turned it off.

Not that I think it’s that valuable to add to the list of people with similar experiences but… yeah, I’m another person who started playing Super Metroid [several years ago in my case], and found it initially pretty cool, great music and atmosphere… and then fairly quickly hit a difficulty/technique wall (walljumps are definitely too hard for me to do consistently), and got lost one too many times whilst doing so. And then I stopped playing.

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The movement in SM has a lot of nuances that aren’t particularly intuitive.

For example, to walljump, the timing isn’t particularly strict, but you have to press away from the wall before hitting jump, which is not how it works in basically any other game. Also, since there’s no way to return to the somersault state midair, you have to be very careful not to accidentally hit up or down, which on some d-pads is downright herculean.

Great game tho.

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I started Super Metroid just over a year ago during a move, and so stopped riiight before the end despite rather enjoying it. I’m quite interested to test whether recapping the game through these streams will be enough for me to jump right back into my own save at the end, especially with so much explicit discussion of the controls.

I started playing Super Metroid last weekend in preparation for the stream and waypoint 101. There was definitely a point where I got stuck and after wandering around I checked a guide and realized that not everything would be as clear as a more modern Metroidvania. I’m now not following the guide strictly but using it to make sure that I don’t miss anything important or get too lost again.