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Metroid: Dread - October 8th


mdn2
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I agree with quite a lot of what she has to say, actually, but I definitely don't feel it's a three star game. I also think it lacks atmosphere compared with the Prime games, and the likes of Hollow Knight, and, after 20 years since the last new 2D Metroid, it doesn't do much to push the series on. However, it's very polished, and it feels good to play (which she acknowledges a couple of times), and these are enough to elevate it for me, especially with the combat, and Samus's bad-assery.

 

I also wanted it to be slightly more special than it was, but it's still very good.

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44 minutes ago, Stanley said:

Me neither, I read the review and it at least backs up her opinion, although I don’t agree - I don’t think the game lacks atmosphere for example. 

 

I think atmosphere is one of the features I like least in this game. It plays like a dream and has fun challenges in bosses en hidden items, but graphics and style are very Saturday morning cartoon. Now Metroid has never been as dark as the film it was inspired by, but having a planet covered in huge buildings/installations that are all active to a certain degree, really detracts from the lonely in a strange environment vibe. I also feel that Fusion & Zero Mission's colour palette are seen as 'standard Metroid' now, even though those specific colours were chosen to compensate for the very dim unlit GBA screen (see also Castlevania Advance Collection). Both Samus Returns and Dread seem to have been designed with those colour palettes in mind, which is kind of weird considering the 3DS screen and the HDr/FHD/UHD tv-screens we use now.

 

In short, I expected more of a Deepnest (Hollow Knight) vibe and I got more of a Bottle Ship (Other M) one instead. I wouldn't say that's bad per say, just mildly disappointing, and I can certainly understand others not liking it.

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The atmosphere is definitely not on a par with Hollow Knight, or even Super Metroid, but to brand it a middling experience on that basis shows an exceptional lack of appreciation for how fun it is, how good it looks and sounds and how cleverly it’s been put together.
 

I mean, complaining that it lacks lore? That’s a completely misguided criticism. The opening lore dump, where the game blasts you with backstory, I felt was something the player had to endure to get to the good stuff. The very idea you’d want more of that? No, no. 
 

I’m not a fan of the linearity, and the game doesn’t get everything right, but it’s probably going to be in my top five of the year. It’s a great achievement. 

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I just don’t think any new Metroid game is ever going to match the impact of Super Metroid, or Metroid Prime (which, difficulty spikes aside, was as accomplished a 3D evolution as Super Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time had been).

 

Super Metroid I remember being previewed as this drab, Mega Drive-y looking game from an obscure Nintendo series which no one really expected much from. Reviews were often remarkably lukewarm, reading them again now (Edge). Yet it turned out to be one of the most accomplished and influential games of the mid-‘90s, one filled with bags of atmosphere. I compare it on some level to Goldeneye 007, an unexpectedly classic game. But which has aged better, for obvious reasons.

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I really really dig Dread’s atmosphere - it captures that lonely explorer on an alien planet thing that Metroid does

so well. It’s perhaps not as austere as ‘Super’ but I think it’s the closest that it’s come, and the underwater sections are an absolute series high. 

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Yeah, the shuttle into

Spoiler

Burenia in particular looks fantastic with the waves and the rain. It's like Kamino in Star Wars.

Anyone doing a hard playthrough? I'm about halfway through and determined to beat it now. I'm using parries for almost everything.

 

To really raise the game they should've had

Spoiler

a short scrolling ship shoot-em-up section to really bring back that '90s platformer nostalgia. When I saw those small ships docked in Hanubia I half expected it.

 

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Things just hit harder, but if you can dodge the majority of attacks you're fine. I feel like the average mobs on the map have had an HP boost, whilst the bosses take roughly the same amount of punishment. One-shot parries are very useful to get around faster. I took down the first boss, water boss, spear chozo first time. Kraid and the chozo soldiers took about five attempts but they always felt manageable.

 

Edit: ok, Escue is proving a massive roadblock. I'm not sure how to avoid fire when I can't yet spacejump. :(

Jfc this is infuriating. I've been killed twice now by its pathetic second phase. Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu-

Edit: FKN DID IT YES SON!!

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Holy shit, how have I just spotted this after 30 hours in the game: if you press left on the D-pad at any point the translucent mini-map in the top right expands to about three times the size and becomes opaque, showing you a significantly bigger and easier to read area of the map. It goes back to normal when you move, but it’s bloody useful!

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You can destroy every Chozo warrior’s shield by just hammering into it with rocket bursts. Takes a while though.

 

In other news, I’ve finally got 100% for every area, but still failed at the last boss, despite having 275 rockets, 15 power bombs and 1200 or so energy.

 

The fight is just interminable, and my hands and brain/eyes get tired long before it’s over. Might just YT the ending cutscene at this rate.

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Never played a Metroid game, and usually bounce off stuff like Hollow Knight, or anything particularly punishing.  But this one is starting to suck me in.

 

I have Super Metroid on Switch SNES games, is it worth just playing that first and seeing how I get on before shelling out the cash for this?   Or am I more likely to get on with this than the SNES one? 

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21 minutes ago, meatbin said:

...I have Super Metroid on Switch SNES games, is it worth just playing that first and seeing how I get on before shelling out the cash for this? 

Yes. Super Metroid is excellent.

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2 hours ago, jonamok said:

You can destroy every Chozo warrior’s shield by just hammering into it with rocket bursts. Takes a while though.

 

In other news, I’ve finally got 100% for every area, but still failed at the last boss, despite having 275 rockets, 15 power bombs and 1200 or so energy.

 

The fight is just interminable, and my hands and brain/eyes get tired long before it’s over. Might just YT the ending cutscene at this rate.

 

Come on, you can do it! If you've got 100% of the items then you can definitely take down the final boss. Suck it up and get it done. No YT for you.

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4 minutes ago, HarryBizzle said:

How far after the chozo warrior I’ve mentioned is the final boss? I’ve only got about 6 energy tanks and not sure I can be bothered with either the fight or YouTube. 


You’re probably about 1/4 the way through the game.

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1 hour ago, meatbin said:

Never played a Metroid game, and usually bounce off stuff like Hollow Knight, or anything particularly punishing.  But this one is starting to suck me in.

 

I have Super Metroid on Switch SNES games, is it worth just playing that first and seeing how I get on before shelling out the cash for this?   Or am I more likely to get on with this than the SNES one? 


Definitely don’t play it first; if you’ve started Dread then crack on… but do play it - it’s amazing! Like Super Mario World and Link to the Past, it holds up extremely well. 

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2 hours ago, Jamie John said:

 

Come on, you can do it! If you've got 100% of the items then you can definitely take down the final boss. Suck it up and get it done. No YT for you.


Thank you. YT on hold. Too pissed to try it now, but I shall defeat him tomorrow.

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3 hours ago, HarryBizzle said:

How far after the chozo warrior I’ve mentioned is the final boss? I’ve only got about 6 energy tanks and not sure I can be bothered with either the fight or YouTube. 

You really wanna know?

Spoiler

The final boss is the one after, a few rooms and a lift away. You'll probably want to hunt out more energy tanks...

 

1 hour ago, jonamok said:


Thank you. YT on hold. Too pissed to try it now, but I shall defeat him tomorrow.

If anyone needs any advice for the final boss, this helped me a lot...

Spoiler

Throughout phase 1+3, he fires floating black holes and stops moving for a few seconds. Focus on immediately taking them out with a volley of four missiles. This will give you health and missiles.

During the second phase, there's no pickups. Use spacejump and dashes to circumnavigate him during his rapid fire attack.

In phase 3 he puts a glowing sphere into the air which eminates damaging waves. Planting a super bomb will destroy it making life a lot easier.

 

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I should have mentioned it when I first saw on my third playthrough but since no one else has mentioned it regarding the final boss:

Spoiler

The opening cutscene shows you the correct method for fighting Raven Beak including what his pattern and tells are.

 

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I think I'm done with this. I just can't be bothered going on. I don't hate it, I just don't think it's very good.

 

It feels like a bit of a mish-mash of a game. There's no real sense of exploration - the map is terrible and most of the "go back and unlock that thing from before" is tied directly to the critical path. I'm now near the end but can't be bothered going around hunting out energy tanks now that I have all the powers. It would have been nice to be able to do enough of them along the way.

 

The combat is fine. The bosses feel pretty tough but not unsurmountable. I've enjoyed a couple of them, but there's a lot of reuse of the chozo soldiers and the chozo bots and I don't think there's enough there to keep them feeling interesting, while still being difficult enough to be annoying when you're facing them for the third or fourth time. Apart from the reused minibosses, I did like Kraid, the underwater one and the one in the furnace.

 

The EMMIs are rubbish. As has been previously said, they're very RNG on where they spawn and most of the time you're better off just sprinting through. They all end in the same way that requires you to tilt the stick ever so slightly, to melt their faces off, which is a bit fiddly on the switch's analogue sticks and makes what is already tedious into something annoying.

 

And maybe I'm an idiot, but a lot of the game feels very obtuse to me. I don't think the EMMI mechanics are well explained, and Shinesparks might as well not be in the game for how little I've used and understood them. The counters are a bit odd - it feels like sometimes you're waiting for the enemy to attack and sometimes you have to go out and attack them when they flash. Then there's stuff like the Z57 fight, where you can suddenly do a load of damage in what is essentially a cutscene. The first time I did that, I just sat there and watched Samus ride it without doing any damage to him at all. 

 

So yeah, maybe I'm a bit thick or have been a bit grumpy but this just hasn't clicked with me at all.

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1 hour ago, HarryBizzle said:

I think I'm done with this. I just can't be bothered going on. I don't hate it, I just don't think it's very good.

 

It feels like a bit of a mish-mash of a game. There's no real sense of exploration - the map is terrible and most of the "go back and unlock that thing from before" is tied directly to the critical path. I'm now near the end but can't be bothered going around hunting out energy tanks now that I have all the powers. It would have been nice to be able to do enough of them along the way.

 

The combat is fine. The bosses feel pretty tough but not unsurmountable. I've enjoyed a couple of them, but there's a lot of reuse of the chozo soldiers and the chozo bots and I don't think there's enough there to keep them feeling interesting, while still being difficult enough to be annoying when you're facing them for the third or fourth time. Apart from the reused minibosses, I did like Kraid, the underwater one and the one in the furnace.

 

The EMMIs are rubbish. As has been previously said, they're very RNG on where they spawn and most of the time you're better of just sprinting through. They all end in the same way that requires you to tilt the stick ever so slightly, to melt their faces off, which is a bit fiddly on the switch's analogue sticks and makes what is already tedious into something annoying.

 

And maybe I'm an idiot, but a lot of the game feels very obtuse to me. I don't think the EMMI mechanics are well explained, and Shinesparks might as well not be in the game for how little I've used and understood them. The counters are a bit odd - it feels like sometimes you're waiting for the enemy to attack and sometimes you have to go out and attack them when they flash. Then there's stuff like the Z57 fight, where you can suddenly do a load of damage in a what is essentially a cutscene. The first time I did that I just sat there and watched Samus ride it without doing any damage to him at all. 

 

So yeah, maybe I'm a bit thick or have been a bit grumpy but this just hasn't clicked with me at all.

I totally agree with this. 

 

If it didn't have the Metroid branding it would have got 6/10 across the board. 

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