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Nintendo on why it's taken so long for another 2D Metroid, Metroid: Other M criticisms

Coming from a Kotaku interview with Nintendo's Yoshio Sakamoto...

On why it’s taken so long to make a new 2D Metroid game:

Sakamoto: I’m working on other titles outside of Metroid, of course. I’ve been fairly busy with stuff. There’s a lot of timing involved when all the pieces fall into place, and we have the ability to do some of these things we’ve been thinking about for a long time. I guess for us the timing was two years ago. Or now.

On how criticism of Metroid: Other M has affected the depiction of Samus

Sakamoto: To be honest, as far as wanting to change that depiction of Samus, I made what I wanted to make. It did give me some momentum, I guess, and the ability to look at Samus from a new viewpoint, and maybe reconsider what I wanted to show about her.

Comments

yomaru
Mon Jun 19 17 07:04pm
Rating: 1

I enjoyed Other M as a game, I didn't mind the linear aspect at all and considering it was the first Metroid title I ever played I genuinely enjoyed the hell out of it, but the story left something to be desired.

Samus depending on soldiers who are telling her what to do.. she felt small and weak instead of the strong bounty hunter so many fans recognize her as and it was disappointing. I think that's a reasonable complaint because it took away from what made her amazing in the first place.

Other M was a bit of a weird one. I hated the story, didn't care for the voice acting, wasn't a big fan of the linearity and the Wii Remote only decision was boneheaded. They did away with a lot of the Metroid mainstays all while characterising Samus very poorly. As a Metroid game it's not great.

That said, the third person gameplay was a lot of fun in my opinion and though the story was terrible the cut scenes were enjoyable. It looked nice and was in my opinion a great framework for a Metroid game, it was just a shame that they didn't build a proper Metroid around that. Far from being one of the worst games ever as many would claim but definitely not a great Metroid. Samus Returns looks like they're taking some of the better elements of Other M with the melee takedowns which I'm happy about. I really wouldn't mind seeing them going back to the 3D Other M gameplay (sans first person switching) and making a more traditional Metroid game around it in the future.

Sakamoto, don't even touch a PEN let alone the script please.

hamr
Mon Jun 19 17 07:36pm
Rating: 1

Sakamoto: So we flew to Spain. MercurySteam had created a small prototype for me to take a look at.

Uh huh...

Eurogamer said:
Enric Alvarez: So the image of the studio is bullshit, honestly speaking.

Is the rumour that you created a Metroid prototype for Wii U and 3DS also bullshit?

Enric Alvarez: That's more bullshit.

Really?

Enric Alvarez: People have a lot of imagination and time to think about stuff, but that's not necessarily the truth.

So you're saying, categorically, you did not work on a new Metroid prototype for Wii U and 3DS?

Enric Alvarez: This is exactly what I'm saying.

I agree with Other M's plot and Samus' characterization in that game being handled extremely poorly.
However, being a veteran of the series for so long and having written both Super Metroid and Fusion, I believe he deserves a chance to redeem himself.
It reminds me of the insane Miyamoto hatedom that began after Sticker Star.

Or the Iwata hate. He basically made the DS, Wii, and 3DS, and now even the Switch, but all it took was Wii-U for people to hate on him and demand him to resign. Mistakes and missfires are not allowed in the communities these days, it seems. Doesn't matter how much good you do. Do a mistake and all that is ignored.

So, yeah, I am more than happy to give him another chance. ^^

As for Other M, I played the game once more not too long ago, and it is much better when I play it and not trying to critizise it. Yeah, it is not a good story for a Metroid game and Samus is... very very odd. But it is a fun, cheesy action game and it has it's history in gaming.

I can never understand the hate that Satoru Iwata had during his time....really...reminding me about it is depressing after he died...

Tue Jun 20 17 09:12am
(Updated 2 times)

Because the most overzealous and immature fans think that a company has to bend to their will.
It's honestly really sad because I remember going to some Nintendo sites after the disappointing 2015 E3 show and seeing some really vile comments directed to him, with some even wishing him harm only for him to pass away a month later.

Ah. I'm sorry, did not mean to make you feel down. :/ I do miss Iwata.

Yeah, the hate for him during the Wii-U times was so weird. Yeah, he made some mistakes, but he was literally hated by so many during it, despite all the amazing things he has done and the amazing thing of Switch that he also did.

I was waiting for one of these interviewers to bring up the Other M bomb. HOWEVER I'll still stick by my opinion and say Other M was a good game IMO. The story was weak as was the voice acting, the controls could've been wayy better considering how many control options the Wii offered, and the first person pixel hunting was attrocious at times. But I did like the game play for the most part and I didn't mind it being linear since it was trying to appeal to a wider audience.

I never got past the Metroid Queen. Going into 1st person for missles was so disorienting. I just stopped playing.

Sounds like a mea culpa to me.
Considering the game screws up the Metroid lore something awful, I think its best to forgive and forget the "Other M" experiment. Samus Returns is looking really good, nonetheless.

And that just proves that this dude has nothing to do with Metroid. Metroid was Yokoi's and Kobe's creation not his. He wasn't even involved witm Metroid II. His Metroids were sales bombs and nearly detroyed the series with MOM.

When you people will realise this? why you keep worshiping him?

The guy who was behind Super Metroid and the original Metroid? Come on now

I think you're misunderstanding the point here... Gunpei Yokoi was the producer of the series, not the creator of it. The real creator is none other than Satoru Okada and Yoshio Sakamoto is the co-creator of the series.

However, since Yokoi-San has passed away and now that Okada-San is retired as well, Sakamoto-San seems to be the only one in charge of Metroid now considering he's the director of Super Metroid, Fusion and Zero Mission. The only game he wasn't in charge with is Metroid 2 but that is now changed with the remake.

I do agree that blaming him for other M's failure is not fair and bickering at him for no Metroid releases also isn't fair either considering that by now, Nintendo should have a good team that can handle Metroid.

Also fun fact. Intelligent Systems also helped develop some of the Metroid games as well.

fish
Mon Jun 19 17 10:11pm
Rating: 1

I loved Other M. I didn't have any problem with the gameplay or the story.

Oh, are we all sounding off about where we stand on Other M?

Just went through it again recently, actually -- Hard mode, and with the skip-cutscene button mercifully authorized.

Conclusion: Not the worst thing Sakamoto has ever made (hi Fusion), but outside of a very small handful of nicely-done segments, it is mostly just a bland, generic action game. If the Metroid IP had not been awkwardly crowbarred into it, no one would even remember it.

That level of direction was two gens too late. It felt like it stumbled in the same ways the first dino crisis did in terms of tone and pacing.

Still from what I remember the camera was better than the ninja gaiden games except in certain corridors while backtracking.

My main gripe is how inconsequential the game is for Samus. Most of the conflicts were solved by the Federation marines. And even if you don't like fusion at the very least that game was about Samus.

Now we just have to wait getting Metroid Prime Covenant/Prometheus and have Sylux do his best Michael Fassbender impression.

hamr
Tue Jun 20 17 03:32am
(Updated 1 time)

"Still from what I remember the camera was better than the ninja gaiden games"

I dunno if I agree with that, but I guess I can see argument -- albeit only because the camera in most of the rooms is basically fixed like Resident Evil games in the PS1 era. (Hence why it breaks down when the player tries to go backwards). Not really all that noteworthy.

That said, MOM did nail the third-to-first-person-and-back shifts.

"And even if you don't like fusion at the very least that game was about Samus."

Samus has slightly more agency in Fusion, but the game is not really about her. 90% of those pages and pages of unskippable text boil down to either 'Oh noez the X are up to no good' or 'Hey, did I tell you how awesome Adam was?'

Still in Fusion all the conflict is solved by Samus.

- Containig the X.
- Preventing the station to self destruct.
- Rescuing the animals (Which for some reason are the only creatures that weren't infected =-O )
- Collisioning the station in SR388.

Narrative wise its also more connected to Super Metroid as the "baby" did save her life with the DNA. And the SAX was a dark reflection showing what her abilities could do if she went rogue.

Other M could have at least explained how she lost the hyper beam. Though it'll still have had the metroid breeding as a plothole in Fusion as she should know the Federation have been able to do and keep doing that.

"Still in Fusion all the conflict is solved by Samus."

A lot of it, but not all of it.

She does not kill the first Sax that comes after her; the Metroids in the Research Lab do that. She does not kill the second Sax either; the Omega Metroid does that. Nor is she responsible for the destruction of the Metroid breeding facility; the first Sax does that.

Without the Sax there is also no way she takes out the Omega Metroid either (even though she was doing that fairly easily back in M2), and without The Animals from Zebes there was no ways she was getting off the station because her new ship could only be manually piloted (even though her old one was controllable by remote through her suit).

"Collisioning the station in SR388."

She only does that because someone else tells her to, though. She was just going to blow up the station through the normal self-destruct mechanism, which would not have done anything to stop the Federation's nefarious-yet-completely-incompetent plot to try to use the X as bioweapons.

Adam has to explain that her plan is not going to work (and he does so in the most dickish way conceivable for some reason). And then because he comes up with the idea of 'Make the explosion bigger', she calls him the perfect military mind.

"And the SAX was a dark reflection showing what her abilities could do if she went rogue."

And... had brain damage?

Spoiler

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Not the worst thing Sakamoto has ever made (hi Fusion)

Woah now...I think Fusion had a great sense of plot and while its not very deep, its certainly a good story of its own.

"its certainly a good story of its own."

Like I said, the story is decent and not so great.

I suppose its more or less a subkective matter. I personally like it as it has deep moments like Sax being a threat.

"Like I said, the story is decent"

Sorry, but I cannot agree with the sentiment that 'Our experiences are the limits of our consciousness' is decent writing, lol. That is some 14-year-old-goth-girl-posting-poetry-on-tumblr stuff right there.

"deep moments like Sax being a threat."

I have difficulty respecting a narrative threat when it is not reflected in actual gameplay.

Samus and Adam constantly trying to tell me to be afraid of this thing is deeply alienating.

I feel like I'm in the minority in regards to Other M in that I thought the story was fine (note: not great, but very few games in general have good stories imo) but what really ruined it was the gameplay - I just hated the constant dodge mechanic spam. The ambient-ish soundtrack was also pretty terrible after all the great music in the Prime series.

HOWEVER, I don't agree with those who think that the game should be made non-canon just because they personally didn't like it. It's here to stay. All you can hope for is that Nintendo has learned something from its reception.

pieces
Tue Jun 20 17 12:26am
Rating: 1 (Updated 1 time)

I enjoyed the gameplay for Other M, and I always saw her following Adam's orders out of a deep respect. Like why can't a character be multifaceted and have such feelings for someone and also be a badass.

Although, yes ... Samus, if you're life is in jeopardy, to rubbish with said orders.

Other M had a lot of potential gameplay-wise. Movement was very smooth, but crippled by the lack of analog stick movement, its dynamic animations were great. If it wasn't for the "point to screen to go to fps mode" gimmick, the game would have been much better. Those awkward pixel scan sections were really bad as well.

As much as Team Ninja gets shit on about Other M, it was the parts Nintendo decided on that crippled the game. TN did an amazing job on their part.

Outside of her backstory, Samus really isn't that deep of a character and I honestly don't get how people like her personality that much. She is one of the most depressing characters that Nintendo has created to the point that even Fire Emblem characters aren't anywhere as "dark" as her.

I do wonder whether that will change once Nintendo decides to take place after Fusion.

Personally, I couldn't stand the 'Where's Waldo-esque' pixel hunts. It really took the momentum of the game, what little there was in it, immediately away.

One thing about Other M criticisms that I never understood was the "She listens to Adam and isn't a strong 'Bounty Hunter' of solitude. However, she is following the agreement she made at the beginning. While the Unlock system was shoehorned in, the actual taking orders from Adam makes perfect sense. The GF commander let her stay on board a GF controlled ship on the terms that she would follow Adam's orders. Seeing as she used to be under his command, following his orders in that situation is, in theory, an easy transition to make for her.

In terms of actual game-play, I loved it aside from the Wiimote and first person aspects. The voice acting is another story (I enjoyed the Japanese voiceover [yay understanding Japanse]). Some of the translations were...interesting...to say the least ("Time to go" still gets me every time).

TN did a good job I think in blending the shooting action with more dynamic fighting. I've always seen Samus as more of an acrobatic fighter, one who can use close range combat on top of the long range combat we normally see. It was nice to see that in Other M and now Samus Returns (in a sense).

I enjoyed the idea of the story enough that I would like to see a prequel with the events of what occurred when Samus was in the GF.

Oh no! Samus respects authority and works with others! Character ruined. /sarcasm

I liked Other M. Only problem I had was the anti-climatic end boss, but that was made up for with the secret end boss. I actually watched the Other M movie as well.

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