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It's Metroid............ Metroid


DarkTone
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Member · Posted

Ok, here's a fair question--what is a "metroid"/"metroidvania" game?

IMHO, it's a side-scrolling adventure (vs. top-down) and you explore in all directions.  This means you need to be in the middle of a castle, on a big star ship or like in Metroid, exploring caverns.  Furthermore, you generally start out weak but gain strength by acquiring items to beef up your ability to attack.

With that generalized, personal definition I'm going to say that the genre is not overplayed.  It may largely lack creativity, but not overplayed.  One of the reasons why I loved Axiom Verge so much is because Thomas Happ really tapped in what makes this style of game really, really awesome but he had a fresh take that didn't feel like a Metroid-clone.  Sure, there were similarities but the power-ups and how you progressed through the game were very different.

But lack of creative story telling and environments is my main complaint and it's actually similar to RPGs.  In the case of RPGs, you play a game where you build up stats by leveling to beef up your party and progress through a story.  Battle attacks are turn based and I really like that type of mechanic.  But... RPGs are around 95% magic/fantasy based.  I'm not saying that can't be fun, but I'd really wish there would have been more creative breakthroughs in the past 35 years where good stories and games could be crafted in different types of worlds.  They exist, but they're rare.  The same is true with Metroidvania games.  They are called that because you are either running around caves (Metroid) or running around Castles and such (like Castlevania.) Regardless, fresh takes on gaming mechanics and new environments would be really awesome. I'm sure they exist but they aren't as common.

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Member · Posted

Also note, to me all of these games are 2D.  Are there games that are considered to fall into this category that are 3D?  I mean, I know Metroid made the 3D jump to fusion, but that feels less like a Metroid game and more like an FPS/Platforming game.  I'm not saying it's not fun and that "that's not Metroid".  It is, but not like the 2D games that legit built their own genre of game.

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Member · Posted

Huh? Too many Metroid games? Like what? Are you talking about platformers? If so I could see your point. Lots of platformers out there. Honestly not sure what the separation is from a metroidvania and a platformer. Isn't Metroid a game under the platformer genre? 

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There are enough Metroid games but I could definitely go for more Castlevanias.  Symphony of the Night is when the genre really took off in my eyes.

Can't have enough of these kind of games.  There are diverse settings, music, abilities, and enemies across the genre.  I can't see anything wrong with options.  Some of my favorites are recent titles.  Guacamelee, Hollow Knight (need to finish that one), Shantae (Vania light), and of course Bloodstained. 

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Member · Posted
5 hours ago, RH said:

Are there games that are considered to fall into this category that are 3D?

Arkham Asylum.  One big location to explore that opened up more as you acquired upgrades.  Later titles not so much since they had more open world/over-world design.

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43 minutes ago, fox said:

No those are divided up into individual levels and not an interconnected map.

That's the differentiator I would use too.  Shantae is the only game I can think of that bridges the gap.  Pirates Curse had regular side scrolling areas and dungeons that expanded based on abilities.  Guacamelee does it a bit too on the overworld. 

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These types of debates always fascinate me; I LOVE the psychology of people feeling the need to HAVE to choose one or the other, or bash one for completely irrational personal reasons - that are just as valid as the reasons they enjoy another game, lol.

I love ALL styles of Metroid. Metroidvania improved a lot of what the first two suffered from IMHO.

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Homebrew Team · Posted
On 6/27/2020 at 7:34 AM, Sumez said:

Tons of metroidvanias out there, but there's a severe lack of actual Metroid style games. The distinction is notable.

Why do you feel that way?  Is the setting and isolated felling?

I feel the opposite.  Plenty of games claiming to be Metroidvanias, but a severe lack of actual -vanias.  They are mostly Metroid style games.  They have the back tracking, exploration, unlocking the map attributes, but lacking inventory management, RPG elements, and increased action to make it a true metroidvania. 

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Member · Posted

I don't think superfluous padding like that is what makes a distinction, and it's definitely not what made any of the metroid'y Castlevanias great. Most action games are better off without that stuff, but I struggle to think of any modern metroidvania that doesn't let you upgrade the character's skills and stats along the way.

No, I'm thinking of the overall map design, not knowing where you are or where to go, the reliance on the obscure and hidden. The things that make Metroid Metroid.

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