Metroid Prime Trilogy Review - IGN (2023)

Metroid Prime Trilogy

Three spectacular space adventures.

Metroid Prime Trilogy Review - IGN (1)

ByMatt Casamassina


Aug 16, 2021 7:43 pm

(Video) Metroid Prime Trilogy Review


Aug 21, 2009 10:32 pm

Retro Studios' Metroid Prime Trilogy is one of the greatest videogame sets that money can buy. And really, is it any surprise? We're talking about three titles which scored 9.5 or better, usually garnered straight 10s in the categories of presentation and gameplay, and are generally viewed by Nintendo supporters as some of the best interactive experiences available today. So when you slap them all together in a collector's edition box, add in some welcomed new features, make some tweaks here and some refinements there, and cram it all onto a single Wii disc alongside an art booklet, do I really need to spend words and time telling you that it's just as good as you think it is? Just in case you answered yes -- well then, it's just as good as you think it is.

I've spent the better part of a decade shamelessly drooling all over these games so I'll just redirect you to our reviews of Metroid Prime 1 and Metroid Prime 2 for GameCube and Corruption for Wii, where you'll find ridiculously in-depth analyses. What you need to know for the purposes of this review is that the Metroid Prime series takes the very essence of the classic 2D titles starring space bounty hunter Samus Aran and transitions it to the third-dimension. All of the acclaimed adventure-heavy gameplay mechanics that defined those titles now define these ones, which come to life by way of a stylish first-person perspective complemented by various visors that the heroine dons.

Metroid Prime Trilogy Review - IGN (2)

Without diluting Nintendo's pioneering work on Super Mario 64 -- a title that dragged the publisher's famous plumber kicking and screaming into 3D -- Retro's accomplishment with the Prime franchise is every bit as notable, if not more so. Nintendo revolutionized the platformer with Mario 64, but from a development standpoint, the title at least kept a third-person perspective, which no doubt made the transition more intuitive. Retro, on the other hand, had to completely re-craft the fundamentals of the Metroid series in order to make them fit in the first-person view. That it succeeded so brilliantly is a remarkable show of skill.

Prime successfully revitalized the franchise on home consoles, where it had gone neglected too long. The original game was a work of genius -- with Resident Evil, it has earned the highest IGN review score of any GameCube game during the entire life cycle of the system; 9.8 if you're wondering. The stunning and polished first-person adventure set the mood for the sequels to follow, thrusting you into the role of Aran and challenging you to explore an isolated planet, solve environmental puzzles using her multitude of gadgets (from the morphball to bombs and missiles), shoot down enemies, navigate platform-heavy obstacle courses, fight bosses and more. With tight controls and insanely clever level designs mashed together in one believable world, it was incredibly fun and satisfying.

(Video) Metroid Prime Remastered Review

Echoes was the series' Majora's Mask in that it had a darker tone that became evident from the very beginning, as Aran fought her own comrades in battle, all of whom had just risen from the dead. It was also the most difficult of all three Prime games, due in part to the project's always-present dark world, a sometimes-frustrating purplish dimension that housed creepy Ing characters. Some of the game's boss battles were of the kind that makes gamers throw their controllers and curse out loud. But I'll be damned if it wasn't an entertaining romp through and through, even with some design inconsistencies.

And Corruption -- you should know this one -- brought the series to a climactic end on a brand new console with the same amazing production values and awe-inspiring level designs that have made Retro's franchise a winner across the years. Unrelated to content, the biggest addition to the third and final entry in the franchise was its completely overhauled control system, which took full advantage of Nintendo's remote for faster aiming and turning, not to mention the ability to free look as Samus ran and jumped through stages.

All of these superb projects arrive in Metroid Prime Trilogy with welcomed improvements. Prime 1 and 2 now boast 16:9 widescreen modes and, more importantly, the same Wii remote-enhanced control configuration that made Corruption the best-playing offering in the franchise. I recommend playing with the advanced control setting for the fastest turn and aim speeds. Once I experienced Corruption, I never wanted to go back to the GameCube pad and now I don't have to. Also, the series meshes together more coherently now that it plays the same through all three acts. That said, with efforts like Medal of Honor Heroes 2, The Conduit and Red Steel 2 taking control customization on Wii to the next level, Retro's selection of three pre-defined schemes now feels inadequate, a truth that I realize only some might lament.

Metroid Prime now shines -- literally, I suppose -- with full bloom lighting throughout the entire adventure, an unexpected addition that layers more polish to an already-beautiful game. Unfortunately, the same technique could not be applied to Echoes, which utilizes different rendering methods. But, Retro took a look at some of the common complaints of Prime 2 and found that many users said it was too difficult and particularly unbalanced during some key fights with bosses like the spider and boost ball guardians, both of which have been made just a little more manageable in Trilogy. Meanwhile, the developer made some random tweaks to all of the games, omitting small technical glitches once and for all (try that speed run to the space boots in the original game now, suckers!), replacing blurry textures with crisper ones in certain areas, and even quickening loads in Corruption. On top of everything else, the achievements system from the third game now encompasses all three and yeah, you can still trade your medals with friends over WiiConnect24. The entire package is just much more thoughtful and comprehensive.

Metroid Prime Trilogy Review - IGN (3)

Metroid Prime Trilogy lets players revisit all three Retro classics.

And for once, Nintendo has paid a little service to the fans because all of these improvements come to you in a collector's edition package -- a gorgeous metal case, translucent slip cover, art booklet and biography on the series -- and for just $49.99, the same price as any old Wii game.


I've spent this entire review raving about Trilogy -- and for good reason. So what's the catch? Actually, there's just one, and it's obvious: If you've played all these games before, you'll find some fabulous enhancements waiting, but the actual content is still roughly the same. You'll have to decide if the special edition set and the promise of new widescreen modes and Wii controls for the first two titles in the series is enough for you. For me, there's no question that the compilation is worth every penny.

If, by some lucky twist of fate, you fall into the category of Wii owners who have never played any of the Prime games before, Nintendo has with Trilogy delivered you a box set of holy proportions. For a bargain price, you will receive 80-plus hours of the best adventuring found on any home consoles in a decade. And the craziest part is that Retro's artists are so good that the Prime titles they released back in 2002 still look better than the majority of Wii efforts. Yeah, these games are still at the cutting-edge on Nintendo consoles.

In This Article

Metroid Prime Trilogy Review - IGN (4)

Metroid Prime Trilogy



ESRB: Teen


Wii UWii
(Video) Metroid Prime - IGN Plays
(Video) Metroid Prime 3: Corruption Nintendo Wii Review - Video

Metroid Prime Trilogy Review


Review scoring


Retro Studios' Metroid Prime Trilogy is one of the greatest videogame sets that money can buy.

Matt Casamassina

(Video) Metroid Prime 2: Echoes GameCube Review - Video Review


Is Metroid Prime Trilogy better than original? ›

The games themselves are the exact same so there is no difference, except for the fact that the trilogy is only for the Wii and not the GameCube.

Why is Metroid Prime so good? ›

Not only in terms of its excellent visuals but also how it plays nearly identically to the original. Even for a game that's now over two decades old, Metroid Prime still feels as fresh and as functionally relevant as ever. If only more modern first-person games had level design as good as this.

Is Metroid Prime a masterpiece? ›

Metroid Prime is one of the greatest games of all time and Metroid Prime Remastered is even better. For starters, this remaster is stunning. Retro Studios did an incredible job making this game look and feel like a modern release.

Is the Metroid Prime Trilogy canon? ›

The Metroid Prime series refers to several 3D adventure games in the Metroid series, which are played as "first-person adventures" rather than from a third-person perspective. The series is a canon, contained story set between the original Metroid (and its remake) and Metroid II: Return of Samus (and its remake).

Do I need to play Metroid Prime 1 before 2? ›

Again, it's not necessary, and you don't even need to play them in that order! But those are the main pieces of core story that also represent 2D Metroid at its best.

How old is Samus in Metroid Prime? ›

However, Other M concept art states that she is "about 4-6 years old" around the time of the K-2L attack, and "approximately 15-17 years old" in her Federation military period.

Is Metroid Prime a long game? ›

When focusing on the main objectives, Metroid Prime is about 13½ Hours in length. If you're a gamer that strives to see all aspects of the game, you are likely to spend around 17 Hours to obtain 100% completion.

Was Metroid Prime a success? ›

Metroid Prime received acclaim and sold more than 2.8 million copies worldwide. It won a number of Game of the Year awards, and is widely regarded by many critics to be one of the greatest video games of all time, remaining one of the highest-rated games on Metacritic.

Does Metroid Dread Reference prime? ›

Metroid project "Dread" was a Space Pirate project involving Metroids. It is mentioned in a scan in the Metroid Processing room on the Space Pirate Homeworld in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.

Is Metroid Prime a girl? ›

Metroid introduced gamers to intergalactic bounty hunter Samus Aran. At first players were led to believe that the hero was a man - the game's accompanying booklet referred to Samus as a “he”. But those who completed the game fast enough were in for a shock: at the end Samus revealed herself to be a woman.

Is Metroid Prime OK for kids? ›

Metroid: Samus Returns

This game was rated PEGI 7 for violence that lacks any apparent harm or injury to human-like and fantasy characters, and pictures and sounds likely to be scary to young children.

How long is Metroid Prime Trilogy? ›

Powered by IGN Wiki Guides
Main Story2546h 27m
Main + Extras2646h 29m
Completionist1764h 58m
All PlayStyles6851h 6m

Is Metroid Dread prime 4? ›

Metroid Dread, a new 2D installment not tied to the Prime series, released in 2021, but that was put together by MercurySteam, the talented developers behind Metroid II remake Samus Returns.

Will Metroid Prime 4 be after Dread? ›

Metroid Prime 4 Should Take Place After Dread

Thinking purely of the franchise's canon, each of the Metroid games that have released already tie into each other pretty cohesively.

Does Metroid Prime have multiple endings? ›

There are three endings in this game, with differences between Normal, Hard and Fusion Mode.

Should I play Metroid in chronological order? ›

If you want to play through the exact experience that Metroid fans have enjoyed over the last few decades, you might want to play the Metroid games in order of their original release dates. If that's what you fancy doing, this is the order you'll need to work to: Metroid (1986, NES)

Is Metroid Prime Trilogy a remaster? ›

Nintendo Switch players now have the opportunity to delve into Metroid Prime 1 Remastered, and thanks to a refined control scheme and top-notch visual qualities, it's a stunning remaster of a legendary title that's aged very well.

Is Metroid Prime in the same timeline? ›

The Metroid Prime series is set between Metroid and Metroid II. In Metroid Prime, Samus travels to Tallon IV to stop the Space Pirates from exploiting a powerful radioactive substance named Phazon, where she defeats the titular enemy, a Phazon infected Metroid.

Was Metroid Dread a flop? ›

Metroid Dread is now the best-selling Metroid game ever by virtue of having sold about 2.9 million copies so far. That means that the best-selling Metroid game ever has sold less than 3 million units.

Why did Nintendo make Samus a girl? ›

We wanted to prepare a reward for people who cleared it more quickly,” Sakamoto says. “Then someone said, 'It would be a shocker if Samus turned out to be a woman! ' And everyone thought that would be interesting and wanted to do it, so we decided it right away.”

Why is Samus called Lady? ›

Samus met Adam when she joined the Galactic Federation Army. Adam joked with her after his briefings by asking "Any objections, Lady?" as she was the only female under his command.

What is the largest Metroid game? ›

The Metroid franchise has a varying track record when it comes to game length: the longest Metroid game in the mainline 2D franchise is Metroid: Samus Returns (clocking in at around 15 hours), while the Metroid Prime subfranchise's longest entry is Metroid Prime 2: Echoes (which could've taken you 22 hours to beat).

Why is Metroid Dread so short? ›

Speaking of upgrades, Metroid Dread's shorter length allows the developers to better pace out the drip-feed of new upgrades in a way that maintains a brisk pace for players. Just when you think you've gotten stuck, a new upgrade suddenly opens up whole sections of the map.

How tall is Samus Metroid Prime? ›

Samus is 6 feet, 3 inches tall, according to the Super Metroid Nintendo Player's Guide, although there's some dispute among fans as to whether that figure refers to her height in her suit or not. Regardless, 1 meter is a little over 3 feet, so Samus' height and the morph ball's height seem about right in Metroid Prime.

What is the strongest Metroid? ›

Some of his DNA was also donated to Samus when she was a child, enhancing her further and helping her grow into the powerful warrior she became. On a personal level, there's no denying that Raven Beak is undoubtedly the most powerful warrior in the galaxy.

Is Metroid Prime popular in Japan? ›

However Metroid seems to be unique in that it is a franchise where most of its fanbase exists in West whereas Japan has been, on average, indifferent to the franchise; so much so that Nintendo outsourced the Prime series to a Western game developer.

Will there be a Metroid Prime 5? ›

Nintendo announced it's going to skip the highly anticipated Metroid Prime 4 and go right to Metroid Prime 5, which is beginning production now. Skipping a number in a series is my favorite joke.

Why was Metroid Dread cancelled? ›

A direct sequel to Metroid Fusion, Dread was planned since 2005 for the Nintendo DS, but cancelled because of technical limitations. It lingered in development hell for 15 years until it was revived following the success of Samus Returns.

Did Metroid Dread sell well? ›

In the United States, Dread debuted at #3 and sold 854,000 copies in its first month, making it the fastest-selling Metroid, according to Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser. In Japan, it debuted at number one, selling 86,798 retail copies in its first week of release.

Why was Metroid Prime 4 Cancelled? ›

Is Metroid Prime 4 canceled? Metroid Prime 4 has not been canceled and is still in development. Nintendo and Retro Studios have been largely silent about the state of the next installment in the Metroid Prime series, but that's not because development has been paused.

What gender is Dark Samus? ›

Dark Samus is female, as she is composed of Samus's DNA, which would contain female chromosomes (XX),the one true way to define gender, other wise it wouldn't be Samus's DNA, .

What gender is Samus Aran? ›

As a woman in a male-dominated role, Samus has been widely considered a breakthrough for female characters in video games, and is one of the most beloved video game characters of all time.

How tall is Samus in suit? ›

Over 6 feet tall with her Power Suit on, Samus Aran is easily the tallest main character in Nintendo's roster. Even if you were to remove her Power Suit, she'd still tower over her male counterparts.

Is Metroid Dread too violent? ›

Cutscenes include more dramatic instances of violence, often depicted close-up with screen-shaking effects: robots pouncing on Samus, shooting a spike into her chest; Samus shooting a robot in the head; Samus rolling into a ball and attacking a giant alien from inside its stomach.

Why is Metroid rated T? ›

This game is rated T for Teen, likely due to the fact that shooting energy projectiles, firing missiles, and planting bombs is central to the gameplay. Most relevant to the rating is Metroid Dread's deployment of also deploys light horror.

Is Metroid inappropriate? ›

Metroid Dread's dangerous E.M.M.I. robots appear quite terrifying, but the Nintendo game avoids true horror and is likely safe for older kids to play.

What does Metroid Prime Trilogy add? ›

Metroid Prime: Trilogy is a compilation of action-adventure games from the Metroid franchise developed by Retro Studios and published by Nintendo for the Wii. It features three games from the Metroid franchise: Metroid Prime (2002), Metroid Prime 2: Echoes (2004) and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (2007).

What is the difference between normal and veteran in Metroid Prime trilogy? ›

Compared to Normal Mode, enemies on Veteran Mode have twice as much health and deal twice as much damage. In Metroid Prime Remastered, Veteran Mode is renamed back to Normal.

Is Metroid Prime different from Metroid? ›

Metroid Prime is a 3D action-adventure game in which players control series protagonist Samus Aran from a first-person perspective, unlike previous games of the Metroid series, with third-person elements used for Morph Ball mode.

Is Metroid Prime one of the best games ever? ›

The original Gamecube title has an astonishing 97 metascore on, which would be tied for 2nd if metacritic included legacy platforms in their all-time rankings. Metroid Prime released in 2002 from the relatively unknown Retro Studios.

Is Metroid Prime 4 happening? ›

Metroid Prime 4 is still coming, despite the years of silence. It's now been four years since Metroid Prime 4 restarted its development, and it's beginning to feel like this is Samus' most difficult mission yet.

What is Metroid Prime weakness? ›

Metroid Prime can become vulnerable to cold when its carapace markings switch to a white-blue coloration. At this point, it can be temporarily immobilized with the Ice Spreader, and Fission Metroids will occasionally be given weakness to the ice beam.

Where does Metroid Prime fit in the timeline? ›

Taking place between the original Metroid and Metroid II: Return of Samus, all three Prime games center on the exploits of a substance called Phazon, and Samus' interactions with it as she does battle with a mutated version of the titular menace (the Metroid Prime).

Which Metroid Prime is the hardest? ›

Echoes stands out in the trilogy as being the longest and hardest of the Metroid Prime games.

What is the longest Metroid game? ›

According to How Long to Beat, the longest game in the "Metroid" franchise is "Metroid Prime 2: Echoes." Long-time fans of the series will recall that the sequel to the intergalactic first-person adventure was released for the GameCube back in 2004 and sees Samus trying to help the Luminoth to rid their planet, Aether, ...

What is the highest selling Metroid game? ›

Metroid Prime received acclaim. It sold 2.84 million copies worldwide and was the best-selling Metroid game until Metroid Dread (2022). In 2002, Nintendo released Metroid Fusion, a 2D game for the Game Boy Advance (GBA). It was developed by R&D1 and written and directed by Sakamoto.


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