Metroid: Zero Mission – what an awesome game. It is basically a remake of the original NES game, with an amazing facelift and a bunch of added areas. The story of this game takes place first in the Metroid timeline. Space pirates have stolen Metroids – organisms that can drain the life of living things – and have created a research base on planet Zebes to attempt to replicate them in order to use them as a biological weapon!
The design in this game is excellent. In traditional Metroid fashion, Samus starts out barely able to jump, but as she moves though the game, gains more abilities which open up new areas for exploration. There is a real sense of exploration here – similar to Super Metroid – although its made a bit easier this time around because the game always points you in the right direction. One addition that I really enjoyed is that I very rarely found myself repeatedly killing enemies to fill up my energy tanks as there were refill stations sprinkled throughout the game. This did not make the game easier – just more enjoyable – as refill stations were usually found after difficult sections of games or right after getting an upgrade.
Graphically, this game is beautiful – even more beautiful than Super Metroid. Each area has a every distinct feel. Music does a great job setting the mood, and the sound effects make it satisfying to kill enemies and get upgrades! After the game is completed, a hard mode is opened up which really fixes some of the concerns tat I had with the difficulty. In addition, the original NES game can also be unlocked so you can compare the two versions!
Overall, this is one of my favourite GBA games thus far. It has great design, great graphics, and delivers a real sense of exploration when discovering all the secrets on planet Zebes! I give this game a score of 9/10.
FINAL SCORE: 9/10