Metroid: Zero Mission Walkthrough – Shinespark Puzzles & Shortcuts

Metroid: Zero Mission has a litany of expansions and secret passages hidden around Zebes that require precise execution of your Speed Booster and Shinespark ability in order to acquire them. See below for details and video on how to successfully pull off these manuevers.


Missile Expansion #43

Location: Crateria

Requirements: Speed Booster, Morph Ball, Power Bombs

Make your way to the top right portion of the area, referred to as the Chozo Ruins. About halfway up the far right wall is a blast door inside the mouth of a Chozo Statue. We’re going to refer to this door as the Chozo Door. Head back towards the Chozo Door, and let your Speed Boost charge up. Crouch as soon as you go through the door and, while your Shinespark is charging, drop down to the platform directly below the Chozo Door. Get into Morph Ball form and release your Shinespark to the left, and you should go crashing into MISSILE EXPANSION #43!


Missile Expansion #44

Location: Tourian

Requirements: Speed Booster

Make your way into the hallway to the right of the Mother Brain room (and to the left of the Save Station) and get to the far right side. Start running towards the left, crouch and charge your Shinespark, and get back into the Mother Brain room. Above you and almost directly above the blast door, you’ll see a block in the ceiling. Jump up so you’re level directly underneath the block and release your Shinespark to the left. You’ll have to jump high to get the spot right, and it’s tricky to describe, so this might take a few tries, but once you get it, you should go crashing right into a room with a bunch of debris. Get rid of it and soon enough you’ll see MISSILE EXPANSION #44.


Missile Expansion #45

Location: Kraid’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Gravity Suit, Morph Ball

From the main elevator, take the second blue blast door down on your left hand side. You should see a bunch of lava Pits on the floor. Press towards the left, and when you see the third lava pit, drop down and destroy the blocks so you fall, fully submerged. Destroy all the blocks in front of you and start running towards the right. When your Speed Boost kicks in, get your Shinespark ready, go to the left side of the little slope in the ground, Morph down, and release your Shinespark to the right. You’ll go crashing into MISSILE EXPANSION #45.


Missile Expansion #49

Location: Ridley’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Power Grip, Bombs, Morph Ball, Space Jump (optional but recommended)

Make your way to the bottom right Save Station, the one next to the ginormous hallway on the bottom of Ridley’s Lair. Get into said hallway, and towards the ceiling of the hall, you’ll see a small platform behind some mesh that’s just big enough for you to fit inside. Get in there and start running towards your left. What you’ll want to do is go far enough for your Speed Boost to kick in, and then turn around and start running back towards the Save Station. Just before the platform runs out, crouch and quickly run into the Save Station. Release your Shinespark in the actual Save platform and run through the right door. Crouch again and quickly jump up to either of the small platforms that are level with the blast door. Release your Shinespark to the right and you’ll be in a new room.

That’s only half the fun, though. Back up a bit and start running towards the right, through the door. You’ll be in a new room, running fast towards the right. When you’re about to hit the little spire sticking down, crouch and charge your Shinespark. Roll under the spire, and then stand up, face left, and Shinespark straight up. You’ll grab a ledge which you can roll into. Now, finally, bomb the block in front of you and you’ll quickly see every block start to crumble in a big chain reaction. You’ll need to be quick. While still in Morph Ball form, drop down and roll towards the left, under the pillar, and quiiickly un-morph yourself and JUMP! This is where the Space Jump helps so much – just jump in place in mid air until all the blocks have given away. Once everything is clear, jump over and grab MISSILE EXPANSION #49.


Missile Expansion #50

Location: Ridley’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Missiles

Immediately after dropping down to the floor after nabbing Missile Expansion #49, get yourself to the right-hand side of the room and start running towards the left. Once you pass through the door, you’ll see a little nook in the ceiling that’s just begging to be destroyed via Shinespark. Oblige the ceiling and go crashing upwards. You’ll land on a new platform with a door to your right. Go through it and start running.

This will be tricky. There’s no Shinesparking here, only precise Speed Boosting. You should enter this room running, with your Speed Boost kicking in shortly. While you’re running, you’re also going to need to shoot two sets of blocks in front of you; doesn’t seem like a big deal, except that the second set of blocks has a missile block in the centre, so you’ll need to switch from your beams to your missiles while Speed Boosting. Don’t worry, you don’t need to change your aim to hit the block, just remember to use missiles before you get too close.

As if all this wasn’t enough, you’ll need to perform a fairly precise jump from left to right while Speed Boosting to break all the Speed Boost blocks. Imagine the top half of a circle; that’s the shape and curve you’re going for. If you did all of that right, then you’ll land right beside MISSILE EXPANSION #50!

Super Missile Expansion #1

Location: Brinstar

Requirements: Speed Booster, Morph Ball

Once you’re back in Brinstar, head left into the hallway we fought Deorum in earlier.We can actually get an important item here much earlier than the game intends for us to. I usually try to write these guides in a “the way the game intends you” kind of way, but this one is easy enough, so it’s up to you whether you want to do this or not. Let’s get started.

Once you get to the flat part of the room (this will line up to where the dot on the left side of your map is), start running and shooting. Your Speed Booster should activate right after you go through the blast door. As soon as your Booster kicks in, CROUCH! You’ll have about 3 seconds to act, so move quickly! Head back through the blast door into the room you came from and head down that little slope. Quickly turn around, fire the door open, get into Morph Ball form and activate your Shinespark. Head to the left and you’ll go crashing through a wall into a secret room which will house MISSILE EXPANSION #24! But wait – there’s more! Roll back out and repeat this process – run, crouch, Morph Ball, Shinespark. This time, when you get into the secret room, press down on the D-pad! Do this after you’ve destroyed the two Rippers with your Shinespark. You’ll have another 3 seconds to work with here, so quickly lay a bomb on the ground, closer to the right side of the room. The ground will give away and you’ll be on a small ledge (not the bottom most part, but a slightly raised ledge off the ground). Shinespark to your left, and you’ll go flying into another secret room which houses SUPER MISSILE EXPANSION #1! Congratulations – you just pulled off a sequence break!


Super Missile Expansion #15

Location: Crateria

Requirements: Speed Boost, Power Bombs

Once you arrive, make your way to the top right portion of the area, referred to as the Chozo Ruins. About halfway up the far right wall is a blast door inside the mouth of a Chozo Statue. We’re going to refer to this door as the Chozo Door. Head towards the Chozo Door and Speed Boost towards the door and crouch as soon as you go through it. This time, *quickly* jump upwards and get yourself on the upper slope. Shinespark towards the right and grab SUPER MISSILE EXPANSION # 15.


Power Bomb Expansion #7

Location: Crateria

Requirements: Speed Booster, Power Bombs

From here, make your way to the elevator that takes you from Crateria to Norfair. Instead of going down, though, head towards the left (our goal is the room where Samus’s ship used to sit, RIP). Along the way, you should see two Power Bomb block on  the floor; destroy them to get rid of them permanently. Start Speed Boosting and run towards the left. When you get to the room where Samus’s Ship was, crouch and charge your Shinespark. Jump up on the little ledge and position yourself on the little platform that seems a bit more level than the rest of the slope. Morph down and release your Shinespark, BUT – release it to the Northwest (up and left)!! You’ll go flying like a little cannonball and eventually crash into the cliff wall. If you positioned yourself right, you should have created a little tunnel that, once you lay a Power Bomb to clear the rest of the blocks, you can grab POWER BOMB EXPANSION #7 in.


Energy Tank #10

Location: Chozodia

Requirements: Speed Booster, Screw Attack

Exit the Save Station to the right and drop down a bit. Go to the left and run towards the right again. When your Speed Boost activates, hold it down to charge your Shinespark. Quickly jump up to the ledge above you and release your Shinespark in the direction of the slope to the left. When you hit the slope, you’ll start running again; Again, crouch and hold your Shinespark. Jump up the next ledge and repeat the steps, release towards the slope and charge your Shinespark when you start running again. Do this a third time and then a fourth at the top, and you’ll start running towards the door on the top right. Run through it, and as soon as you go through, charge your Shinespark! Quickly Screw Attack the blocks in front of you and you’ll start to fall down; on your way down, you’ll see a little alcove on your left with a slope. Land there and release your Shinespark and then quickly charge it again! Drop down to a small platform hugging the wall on the right and release your Shinespark towards the wall. You’ll to flying across multiple screens, eventually landing beside ENERGY TANK #10!


Energy Tank #11

Location: Chozodia

Requirements: Speed Booster

Get to the Pirate Ship bridge. From this room, head up and through the top right door. Press forward until you get to a longer hallway with enough room for your Speed Boost to activate in. Go towards the right side of the room and start running towards the left. When you get to the ledge, instead of crouching and charging your Shinespark, just jump! Make it a short, tight jump so that you land just before the door and if done properly, a pathway to the lower level will reveal itself.

This lower level is full of lasers, and if you touch one, you’ll activate a gate that will stop you from getting the Expansion. You’ll want to go back up and start running again. This time, instead of jumping, charge your Shinespark and jump down. Jump and perform a midair Shinespark; you’ll want to have Samus’s legs in basically the same height as the platform you landed on. Once you’re at that spot, fly right and grab ENERGY TANK #11.


In addition to the above puzzles, there are a handful of optional Shinespark shortcuts you can utilize in your journey through Zebes to speed things up a bit. These can be very helpful when shaving off time if you’re attempting to get one of the low-time Ending Images, but they can also be pretty fun in their own right! Check out these featured spots where you can put your Shinesparking abilities to work!


Shinespark Shortcut #1

Location: Kraid’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster

Right after defeating Kraid and grabbing the Speed Booster, get to the corner under the Chozo Statue and start running towards the right. Soon enough, your Speed Booster will kick in, so just keep firing in front of you to open all the doors you need, and eventually after a few rooms, you’ll crash through some blocks and be in a long vertical hallway. Crouch immediately after running through the blocks and shoot yourself upwards to quickly reach the top of the the shaft.


Shinespark Shortcut #2

Location: Kraid’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster

Right after the previous shortcut is a room containing MISSILE EXPANSION #21. The Shinespark is NOT required to get it, but we can use it to navigate this room (and potentially a couple more) much quicker. Start out in the shaft just outside the room and charge your Speed Booster. Once activated, crouch just before the acid pool to avoid falling in. Get yourself to the slope until you’re about 1 square higher (you can do this by Shinesparking right and crouching as soon as you touch the slope), then Shinespark to the left through the hallway.

If you went more than 1 square higher when lining yourself up, you’ll crash right into the wall. HOWEVER, if you did line yourself up correctly, you’ll come into contact with another slope on the other side just before the wall containing MISSILE EXPANSION #21. Crouch when you hit the slope, shoot the bottom of the wall to reveal the prize and grab it. Now while your charge is still active, move over roughly to the point where you came into contact with the slope and Shinespark to the right to exit the room in style.


Once you hit the initial slope at the start of the room, keep running and open the door back into the shaft. Crouch after you load into the shaft and use a Wall Jump to quickly get onto the platform (check the Special Abilities section for more info on this technique). You need to do this WITHOUT using the Power Grip, otherwise your charge will almost certainly expire. Once on top, do a “Single-Wall” Wall Jump to get yourself on top of the platform above. Open the door to the left and Shinespark through. Don’t forget to shoot the purple block after you hit it, as the Shinespark sadly has no effect on it. If you don’t, you’ll sink through the acid pool back into the hallway directly below you, which would make the incredible feat you just pulled off significantly less cool.


Shinespark Shortcut #3

Location: Norfair

Requirements: Speed Booster

Right after getting off the main elevator from Brinstar, head right and start charging your Speed Booster. It should activate in the large room after the Save Station. Crouch just before falling into the magma and shoot yourself to the right. You’ll crash through the barrier you usually have to go around, saving you a LOT of time. Once you hit the slope, keep going, shoot the next door in your way, run through and you’ll break the blocks in the next room that you need to progress forward. You can also Speed Boost through these rooms in reverse order on your way back to the elevator!


Shinespark Shortcut #4

Location: Ridley’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster

Go into the upper section of the mesh catwalk you used to access MISSILE EXPANSION #29 and MISSILE EXPANSION #30, this time running to the right instead of left. After entering the Speed Booster state just shoot out the blocks at the end, crouch, drop down to the ground and Shinespark to the right directly through MISSILE EXPANSION #31 to the end of the hallway.


Shinespark Shortcut #5

Location: Norfair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Missile, Super Missile

This shortcut is meant to be used on the way to and from SUPER MISSILE EXPANSION #5 and MISSILE EXPANSION #40. It features the same setup as the unintended method for Early Screw Attack, so if you’re familiar with that then this should be a breeze.

We’re gonna start off at the door directly across from the Norfair Map Station entrance. Open the door, but before running through to charge your Speed Booster, point your arm cannon diagonally downwards and arm your missiles. The next room is filled with infinitely spawning bugs that will cut off your run upon contact, plus your standard beam is also ineffective at taking them out fast enough before impact (hence why we have missiles armed). As you approach the first spawn pipe, start spamming missiles and DO NOT STOP until you enter the Speed Booster state. You’ll have a door coming up shortly, so while keeping your momentum be sure to let go of the directional aim button and fire your beam to open the door quickly. Otherwise you’ll be slamming into it like a rogue Tesla.

As soon as you load into the next room, crouch and store your charge. If you don’t, you’ll run over an unrelated Speed Booster block that will kill your momentum. Fire a Super Missile at the green door across from you, run into the bottom of the small dip and Shinespark right through the door. You’ll immediately revert back to the Speed Booster state when you come into contact with the top of the dip before entering the room. Once through, crouch again to store your charge and somersault jump onto the floating column in front of you. Do another somersault jump from the column and quickly perform a mid-air Shinespark when your head touches the ceiling. If you’re too slow, you won’t get enough height and end up crashing into an obstacle.

After collecting SUPER MISSILE EXPANSION #5 and MISSILE EXPANSION #40, exit the fake magma and wait for the block you just shot to respawn. From the end of the room, start running left to charge your Speed Booster. Once activated in the next room, just crouch and Shinespark to the left.


Shinespark Shortcut #6

Location: Norfair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Super Missile, Varia Suit, Morph Ball, Hi-Jump, Bomb

In the long hallway before the corridor containing MISSILE EXPANSION #41, run to the left to charge your Speed Booster. Crouch before falling into the magma, bust open the Super Missile door and Shinespark through it. You’ll shoot just past the expansion but don’t worry, we’re gonna grab it on the way back!

In the next room containing SUPER MISSILE EXPANSION #6, if you placed the bomb correctly then you should still have some floor beneath you. Grab your prize and charge your Speed Booster as you exit the room. Crouch on the other side before falling into the magma, somersault jump into the ceiling, then perform a mid-air Shinespark to grab MISSILE EXPANSION #41 and traverse back through the hallway. The timing here is TIGHT, so be quick with your button presses! I recommend holding your thumb over both the “shoot” and “jump” buttons and pressing them down simultaneously with more weight on the “shoot” button so that it comes out first in the sequence.


Shinespark Shortcut #7

Location: Ridley’s Lair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Charge Beam, Wave Beam, Missile, Morph Ball, Bomb

This shortcut is required if skipping Super Missiles in a low% run, and is the quickest way to reach MISSILE EXPANSION #49 and MISSILE EXPANSION #50 if you’re going for them at the end of the game. The Shinespark is just 1 method to access the shortcut, but can also be accessed via infinite bomb jumps or by freezing the bugs that spawn from the nearby pipe.

Go to the room left of the Save Station next to the elevator from Norfair. Run to the right to charge your Speed Booster. After entering the Save Station, fire a single shot to open the next door and then starting charging up your Charge Beam. When you exit the Save Station, release the Charge Beam while the game is loading in the next room. If done correctly, you’ll fire a large blast that will take out all of the blocks that would have otherwise stopped you. Speed Boost into the next room and immediately crouch as soon as the room is loaded. Go to the block with the dark line in the middle and fire 3 missiles upwards to open a passage, then Shinespark upwards, holding right as soon as you hit the ceiling. Use bombs to carve out the rest of the path until you’ve successfully broken into the other side of the room.


Shinespark Shortcut #8

Location: Norfair

Requirements: Speed Booster, Morph Ball, Hi-Jump

This is basically the reverse order of SHINESPARK SHORTCUT #3 with some extra sauce. We’ve been able to use reverse order before to make our way back to the elevator connecting to Brinstar, but this shortcut will allow us to go much further and save time during the 100% item cleanup when moving from Norfair to the final boss. First, charge up your Speed Booster like usual from the far right vertical hallway from the Brinstar elevator (check the 100% Map if you’re having trouble pinpointing it). Once you’ve entered the Speed Booster state, keep running until you’ve crashed through 2 sets of blocks, then crouch just before falling into the magma. This is where we do a couple of additional steps.

After crouching, somersault jump over the magma gap and quickly run into the Save Station directly in front of you. Once inside, run into the dip and Shinespark to the left. If done correctly, you should hit the top of the dip on the opposite side, putting you back into the Speed Booster state. Make sure you open the door before smashing into it if you haven’t done so already. In the Brinstar elevator room, crouch again to store your charge and open the door on the other side. The final step is to activate your Morph Ball and Shinespark to the left. This will send you flying through the next hallway and place you just outside the Crateria elevator.

Congratulations, you’ve just successfully Speed Boosted through the ENTIRE width of Norfair!


Shinespark Shortcut #9

Location: Chozodia

Requirements: Missiles, Super Missiles, Speed Booster, Morph Ball, Hi-Jump

This final shortcut is fittingly the hardest one to pull off. Not only does it require more setup than anything we’ve done yet, but you only get ONE chance to pull it off. During the final escape sequence, every single door from the previous room will lock behind you. In other words, if you mess up after leaving the initial room we start in, you better hope you’re playing on something with a rewind feature.

We’re gonna start off in the 2 level hallway which is 4 rooms away from the Escape Craft. Check the 100% Map so you know exactly where to find it! Instead of using the Morph Ball to bomb underneath like usual, this time we’re going to shoot upwards as soon as we enter the room to reveal an access point to the upper level. Once on top, start running to the right until you hit another of one of our favorite golden droid units. We’re on the clock so we don’t have time to patiently wait for it to move. Arm whatever Super Missiles and/or standard Missiles you have left and spam away so our friend can meet their cardio quota. You don’t need Missiles at any other point during the escape so let-er-rip!

Once you push R2D2 all the way to the right, go back to the left side of the room, then run to the right again to charge up your Speed Booster until you crash through some Speed Booster blocks leading back to the lower level. DO NOT GO INTO THE NEXT ROOM YET. First, take out the Space Pirate floundering below so that we don’t have to worry about him messing up our run. Next, go back through the opening you just created to the upper level and once more go left then run right to charge your Speed Booster. Crouch before running through the gap, drop down to the lower level again, open the door and Shinespark through.

We have now entered the point of no return. Everything executed from here must be perfect and precise. No 2nd chances!

As you Shinespark through the next room, you’ll hit a slope reverting you back to the Speed Booster state. Hit the slope and crouch before colliding with the wall to store your charge. If you collected ENERGY TANK #10 earlier, then you should be very familiar with the road ahead. You have a multi-story vertical shaft with a slope on each level. You have to Shinespark to each slope, crouch, jump to the next level before your charge expires, then rinse and repeat. You’ll have 4 slopes in total to Shinespark to, including the initial one you crouched on when entering the room. Most of the slopes are a level above the previous one, however the 2nd slope is 2 levels above the ground. This will be the hardest one to overcome. Be quick, making sure that you’re using your somersault jump so that you don’t accidentally activate your Shinespark. There will be a Space Pirate on the 2nd level, but you should be able to Screw Attack through him just fine.

If you successfully Shinesparked to the slope on the 2nd level, the hardest part of this sequence is finished. You just have to do this 2 more times with each slope much closer within reach. Again, carefully somersault jump to each level and Shinespark to the corresponding slope. Don’t be afraid to use your Space Jump to get some extra leverage, it’s better to overshoot than undershoot your jump! Once you reach the top of the room and Shinespark to the final slope, crouch before hitting the door and fire it open. All you have to do now is move to the top of the slope if you’re not already crouched there, enter Morph Ball and Shinespark on through. Not only will you go through the next room, but the game will courteously leave the door to the room following open for us, letting us continue our way through 3 rooms in total all the way to the Shuttle Room in 1 straight shot!

Take out the Pirates guarding the area, get into the Escape Craft and pop yourself some champagne as you’ve just hit the single most difficult Shinespark run in the game to victory!


Walkthrough | 100% Map | Missile Expansions | Super Missile Expansions | Power Bomb Expansions | Energy Tanks | Shinespark Puzzles & Shortcuts | Boss Fights | Special Abilities | Sequence Breaks | Endings