The Metroid series is known for many things and speedrunning is no doubt one of them. Super Metroid alone appears quite frequently in speedrunning events, though you’ll certainly find many of the other 2D titles popping up. In fact, Dread has also become quite popular among the speedrunning community. So much so I’d say it has the potential of becoming more popular than Super.
But what of the non-2D titles? Metroid Prime for example. It’s often touted as the greatest Metroid game of all time, and yet it often sits idle within the speedrunning community. Looking over the top 20 or so submissions at Speedrun.com, you can see how dated the game has become there.
To better understand why such a popular title like Metroid Prime receives so little attention in speedrunning, Samura1man offers his thoughts in a recent video called “Why Does Nobody Speedrun Metroid Prime?” In his video, he explores the tactics often used in speedrunning Prime, and why those tactics make it such a difficult game to speedrun.
One such example is the need for the Scan Dash. In Prime, Samus normally moves a bit slow. And of course when speedrunning, you don’t want that. To move more quickly through the world, players can scan a nearby object and use the dash. This not only gives players a much faster movement speed, but it’s also used to cover large gaps and access abilities like the Space Jump before you’re supposed to.
The Scan Dash is essential in speedrunning Metroid Prime, and unfortunately, I think to Samura1man’s point, it’s a likely candidate for why so few people attempt it. It’s not at all an intuitive form of movement; you have to move sideways which means you need a very good understanding of your surroundings. Additionally, scans do not reset. So every scan you do slowly completes to the point where you can no longer perform a Scan Dash on that object. This makes practicing the ability very difficult.
Overall, it’s a steep learning curve for speedrunning Prime, but it’s certainly not impossible. Check out his video below. He covers a variety of cool things you can do in Prime. So, even if you’re not interested in speedrunning, there’s still plenty of fun things to try out for the heck of it.
Are you a fellow Metroid speedrunner? What do you think about Metroid Prime? Let us know in the comments below!
Daniel is a Website Reporter for Omega Metroid and an avid fan of the Metroid series. You can find me most places as AFallenApple.