Metroid II: Return of Samus

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North American box art.

Metroid II: Return of Samus is a platform adventure game with a science fiction theme released by Nintendo on the Game Boy in November 1991 as the second game in the Metroid series. You again play the bounty hunter Samus Aran who is now trying to wipe out the last of the remaining metroids, which have begun to mutate and spread.

Since I didn't have a Game Boy growing up, I never played Metroid II when it came out, and I didn't even see it beyond a TV commercial until the late 1990s when a friend let me play his nearly completed save game. I didn't want to ruin the game, so I only played for a few seconds, but noticed the oddity of ducking, the tiny display window, and the interesting spider ball. It wasn't until the 2000s that I decided to play it. I enjoyed it a lot and beat it.

This is the first Metroid game to feature Samus wearing a unique Varia suit. Although the Varia exists in the first game, all it does is change your suit colors, it doesn't alter the appearance. In this game, when Samus obtains the Varia, her suit becomes more armored. In particular, the armor on her shoulders in increased. In the game, it looks pretty cool, but on the box art, the bulbous shoulders look pretty silly. Samus would already have poor peripheral vision because of her helmet, those giant balls on her shoulders would probably prevent her from even being able to turn her head! It's disappointing to me that her character designers kept that look throughout the rest of the series.

Status

I do not own this game, but have beaten it with a time of 6:20.

Review

  • Overall: 6/10
  • Best Version: Game Boy

Good

  • Having energy and missile banks that fill you up is so much better than having to farm enemies like in the first game.
  • The new power-ups like the Spider Ball, Spring Ball, and Space Jump are really cool additions.
  • The evolving Metroids which become more complex as time goes on is a nice touch.
  • The Metroid count is a nice way of letting you know how far into the game you are.
  • The final boss battle with the Metroid queen is nice and scary.

Bad

  • The scale of the graphics is quite large compared to the Game Boy's small resolution. It feels like you're looking at Brinstar through a hole in the wall.
  • There is a lot of backtracking in the game to get items you were too under-powered to get when you first encountered them

Ugly

  • Nothing.

Media

Documentation

Maps

Gallery

Videos

Credits

Role Name
Producer Gunpei Yokoi
Directors Hiroji Kiyotake, Hiroyuki Kimura
Main Programmer Takahiro Harada
Programmers Masaru Yamanaka, Masao Yamamoto, Isao Hirano
Graphic Designers Hiroji Kiyotake, Hiroyuki Kimura
Program Assistants Yuzuru Ogawa, Nobuhiro Ozake
Sound Programmer, Composer, Sound Effects Ryohji Yoshitomi
Designers Makoto Kanoh, Masafumi Sakashita, Tomoyoshi Yanane, Takehiko Hosokawa, Yasuo Inoue
Debuggers Kohta Fukui, Yuji Hori, Hirofumi Matsuoka, Kenji Nishizawa, Toru Osawa, Masaru Okada, Kenichi Sugino, Keisuke Terasaki, Hitoshi Yamagami, Katsuya Yamaoe
Special Thanks To Dylan Cuthbert, Sachie Inoke, Takehiro Izushi, Yuka Nakata, Daniel Owsen, Phil Sandhop, Tony Stanczyk, Hiroyuki Yamada

Titles

Language Native Transliteration Translation
English Metroid II: Return of Samus
Japanese メトロイド II Metoroido II Metroid II

Links