Review: Metroid: Samus Returns (Nintendo 3DS)

Brave the hostile terrain of an alien planet teeming with vicious life forms as legendary bounty hunter Samus Aran. Her mission? Terminate the Metroid menace in this masterful reimagining of her 1992 Game Boy adventure.


  • Really nice looking graphics.
  • 5,462 Block download size.
  • Full 3D implementations.
  • Three save slots.
  • Gamescreen on the top screen, Bottom screen is your map and items.
  • Basic tutorial pop ups.
  • 2D platformer gameplay.
  • Re imagineing of the 1992 Gameboy game.
  • Controls- Analog, L to aim gun, R and X to fire missiles, R to fire guns.
  • Hidden collectibles to increase health, Ammo, Energy.
  • Classic Metroid story.
  • Save points scattered around the levels.
  • Teleport stations- Fast travel between areas.
  • Gear- Unlock new abilities like freeze gun, Morph ball and sticky ball etc.
  • Can place pins on the mini map to mark points of interest.
  • Map has a legend system.
  • Scan pulse- Scans the immediate area and higlights breakable blocks.
  • 3D is really well done adding a lot of depth and atmosphere to the game.
  • Amiibo support.
  • Kill enemies for health, Ammo and energy.
  • New combat system. Time a melee hit with X and stun the enemy then shoot them. Really solid and works well especially as your gun locks onto the enemy after stunning them. Proper meaty.
  • Smart level design from secret routes to hidden areas to unlcoking new areas and routes by progressing the story. (Being vague as to eliminate spoilers)
  • Slick animations from morphing into a ball to shooting to ledge hanging.
  • Tight controls.
  • Decent pacing.
  • Explore the game and play how you want within reason.
  • Gallery- Unlock artwork.
  • Save shows your overall percentage.
  • Boss fights through out.
  • Captures the Metroid feel and look perfectly.
  • Map shows up icons for save points, Teleports and a handy icon that guides you to where you have to go.
  • Satisfying game play especially when you get the melee combat down or take down a boss.
  • Minimal soundtrack but when it kicks in you get a audio treat.
  • Map uncovers as you explore.
  • Each area has its own percentage of progress.


  • Only one control layout.
  • Only Metroid Amiibo are compatible.
  • Blocks and enemies spawn back quickly.
  • Controls take a while to get used to as they are awkward.
  • Can feel lost at times.
  • Few moments of tedious platforming.
  • A lot of back tracking.


Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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