A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Most of the game's plot involves simply shooting everything that moves while following through on a mission to eradicate an alien species threatening humanity.
Positive Role Models
Samus isn't just a strong female character -- she's a strong, heroic character, period. She can hold her own against any threat as well as any stereotypically male hero can. A key moment expands on her character; she proves she's more than just a hired gun, shows mercy, compassion.
Ease of Play
Simple controls, easy to learn; difficulty ramps up over time, but it's a gradual increase that should feel natural to most players.
Violence & Scariness
Players shoot lasers, missiles, bombs at enemy creatures, also use slashing melee attacks. Defeated aliens fall down, disappear. Some areas where alien corpses can be seen on the ground, in the background.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
If players beat the game quickly, they're given the option to play Samus without her helmet or in her leotard like "Zero Suit," but neither should qualify as suggestive in any way.
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Products & Purchases
Metroid franchise is a Nintendo staple, with Samus, other characters showing up in other games, merchandise, other media. Also features amiibo support, with certain optional features requiring specific amiibo characters, sold separately, to unlock.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Metroid: Samus Returns is a science fiction-based action/adventure game for the Nintendo 3DS. The game is an enhanced and expanded remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus, originally released in 1991 for the Game Boy. The new game features updated controls, which are easy to pick up and play, and expanded content, including support for certain specific amiibo figures, available as separate purchases. The game features a fair bit of arcade-style violence, with players using sci-fi weapons against alien creatures, though there's very little in the way of blood or gore.
Is It Any Good?
This sci-fi experience manages to craft an adventure that nearly redefines what a remake should be. Great care needs to be taken any time you decide to remake a classic. You have to walk a fine line between staying true to the original while also offering something new to keep things fresh. Metroid: Samus Returns does both. This isn't simply a shiny new coat of paint tossed onto an old classic. Aside from the new, fluid controls, the game also adds features like Samus' Grapple Beam, which wasn't around in the original Game Boy release. And yet the designers don't just incorporate it, they incorporate it in a way that feels like it always belonged. In fact, the entire experience has been rebuilt from the ground up, welcoming newcomers to the series while still offering up a nostalgic bit of déjà vu for longtime fans.
There are only a couple of minor gripes to be had with Metroid: Samus Returns. The first involves the game's amiibo support. Players who've managed to get their hands on the highly sought after figures not only get treated to in-game life boosts and art galleries, but also get access to a Fusion Mode, a new, more difficult mode that also gives players access to Samus' Fusion Suit outfit. Second, although the new controls add a new level of depth to Samus, they do take a little getting used to before you're able to pull off counterattacks and newer moves smoothly. Even so, Metroid: Samus Returns is a fantastic addition to the Metroid series, and a great example of how a remake should be done.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.