Nintendo dropped the what might be the biggest bomb of E3 this morning when it confirmed that Metroid Prime 4 is in development for Nintendo Switch. All it showed was the teasiest of teaser trailers, implying that this long-awaited sequel is still a ways off. But later during the company’s ongoing E3 Live broadcast, Nintendo Of America President Reggie Fils-Aimé announced another new Metroid will be launching in the meantime: Metroid: Samus Returns, scheduled to release on September 15 of this year.
A 3DS remake of the Game Boy’s Metroid II: Return Of Samus, it’s being developed by MercurySteam, the creators of Castlevania: Lords Of Shadow who were rumored to have been pitching Nintendo on a Wii U Metroid game. Samus Returns is a traditional 2-D Metroid with a couple of new twists. The intergalactic bounty hunter can stop in place and aim her arm-cannon in a full 360-degrees, and she also has a new “melee counter” that can repel attacking monsters.
Metroid II has long been the series’ black sheep (at least, until Other M came along), and a game that fans wanted to see live up to its potential. Last year, an excellent fan-made reimagining called AM2R (Another Metroid 2 Remake) was released and promptly cease-and-desisted by Nintendo’s eager legal department. It’s still not the best look, but at least it makes more sense now.