Tuesday, July 16, 2024

‘Metroid Prime 4’ Gets a Release Date After Years of Troubled Development

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Metroid Prime 4 is alive. During today’s Nintendo Direct event, the company revealed that the highly anticipated sequel, now called Metroid Prime 4: Beyond, is headed to Switch next year.

It’s been roughly seven years since Nintendo first announced the game during 2017’s E3 event with developer Bandai Namco attached. At the time, Metroid Prime 4 was expected to close a decade-long gap between itself and the 2007 Wii game Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. Other titles in the overall franchise, including Metroid: Other M, which got a lukewarm reception, and a remaster of Metroid Prime, had dropped in the meantime, but none had satiated the desire for a new full Metroid release. Metroid Prime 4 was intended to do that—until it disappeared.

Years into development, the entire project was scrapped and started again from scratch in 2019 after it failed to hit “the standards we seek in a sequel to the Metroid Prime series,” Nintendo said at the time. Retro Studios, the series’ original developer, was brought on board for this second shot at Samus Aran’s return, but after their work began news about the game’s development was scant.

In addition to revealing that Metroid Prime 4: Beyond will be available for Switch some time in 2025, Nintendo released gameplay footage that includes Samus scanning aliens, shooting everything in sight, and turning into a nice neat little ball—the classics, as it were. Few other details were given as the game closed out today’s Nintendo Direct, which also included news of a new Legend of Zelda game, but it felt like a deluge after the five years of information drought that preceded it.

Metroid Prime 4: Beyond appears to be arriving near the end of the current Switch’s lifecycle. News about the console’s successor is expected with every new Nintendo event, but so far there has been none. Still, Metroid fans are ready to welcome Samus back. Or, as one person put it on X with a screenshot of a 2018 receipt: “My preorder finally means something!”



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