ethnicroadkill: (Sailor Moon)
[personal profile] ethnicroadkill
So, I decided to play Metroid: Other M. I beat it and here are my impressions.

The bad:

- The game REALLY should've just used the nunchuck + Wiimote. It would've made so much more goddamn sense, especially with first-person mode. Don't get me wrong, the controls are honestly fine as it is, just, nunchuck would've been a lot better. Here's my take on how it could've been utilized.
Exploration Mode:
Analog stick - move
A - Jump
B - Shoot; lay bombs in Morph Ball Mode
C - Interact (More on that later)
Z - Dodge (More on that later)
+ - Main menu
- - Options menu (More on that later)
D-pad up - Enter Search Mode
D-pad left/right - Toggle aim lock on/off in Exploration Mode; strafing in over-the-shoulder sequences
D-pad down - Enter/exit Morph Ball

Search Mode would pretty much stay the same, except the functions of A and B would be swapped, and you wouldn't need to flip the fucking controller to enter it.

- Three save slots is too little. It should have at least 18, I think, with an option to switch between them in pages.

- Why aren't there more options in the Options Menu? This game was released in fucking 2010. The barebones options menu Other M currently has is unacceptable. It needs:
1. Brightness settings
2. Alternative control schemes
3. X/Y axis inversion for Search Mode
4. Stereo / mono / surround sound choices
5. Volume control (Music / sound effects / voices)
6. Tutorial messages on/off
7. HD input on/off
8. Choose whether special noises come from Wiimote or TV speakers
9. Vibration function on/off

- Voices are kind of hard to hear at times, which is why we need volume control. I had to turn subtitles on for Other M, and I try to avoid doing that in video games.

- It's too easy to Sensemove. I think if they wanted to incorporate dodging, they should've just assigned a regular dodge button to the B Button and D-pad in Exploration Mode. Alternatively, they could have just made the timing for Sensemove tighter.

- If the default control scheme were to be kept, here's another alternative use for the B Button in Exploration Mode: interact with objects. Waiting for Samus to do things on her own doesn't take that long, but it's a little tedious.

- Enemies should just drop missile refills and energy capsules like they did in previous games. Concentration is kind of lame. It fully restored my health and missiles the first time I used it. If Concentration were to be kept, I would just have it restore something like 30% of Samus' max health and half of her missiles, and give it a cooldown period where you have to defeat a certain amount of enemies until she can use it again.

- Jessica Martin's voice is fine for Samus. I like it, and it suits her. When Samus is actually speaking as per the story allows, there's no issue. But the narration tends to be rather sad-sounding. I feel like there should've been different voice direction here. It does appear to improve as the story goes on.

- The tutorial section where Samus gets a checkup was kind of annoying. I think there should've just been a line from the scientist saying, "If you forget what to do, go and stand in the corner for a few seconds and I'll repeat myself." And there should've been a bright red or orange square in one of the corners so it's obvious where to go.

- The part where it shows a system message declaring that "Samus has decided not to use any Missiles or Bombs unless Adam authorizes it," was beyond stupid. Either Samus should've been stripped of her missiles and bombs as a result of escaping Zebes, the level design should've been made to not sequence-break until Adam officially commissions her, or place that scene a little earlier.

- Actually, I think NPCs shouldn't repeatedly remind you what to do at all. Or, if they HAVE to do that, make it once every 2 minutes you're wandering about a room or something. Not once every 3 seconds. Adam was reminding me to go to Sector 1 as I was leaving his post. Calm down, Adam, I'm fucking going.

- I think Samus should've just story-wise lost the Varia and Gravity Suits' data to make the lava-crossing part make more sense. It's not logical that Adam wouldn't permit the Varia Suit's use when Samus has to go through intense heat. It doesn't make any sense PERIOD as to why the suits aren't permitted, actually. Like, at the very least, realistically he would let her activate it at the second superheated area.

---

The good:

- I like the 60 FPS, it's very fluid and I only encountered a small handful of drops throughout the game.

- Other M is truly beautiful graphics-wise and a great example of what the Wii can do, from what I've seen of it.

- I love the battle system. It feels like a natural progression from the 2D games.

- Boss fights are fun, which goes with the above. Simple to grasp and easy to play.

- Though they're too easy to do, I do like the concept of Sensemove and what they tried to do for Concentration.

- Overblast is amazing. I have nothing but good things to say about it. It's such an awesome, raw display of badass power from Samus that really exemplifies how cool she is.

- The story so far is interesting. I've read the manga, so I know why Samus may have some hangups meeting Ridley again later in the plot.

- Platforming is very natural. The eight-way movement of the D-pad is actually a lot more fluid that I thought it would be.

- I actually kind of like the switching between Exploration Mode and Search Mode. Though again, if the nunchuck had been utilized, it would've been waaay more natural.

- Overall this feels like a really solid entry into the Metroid series. I like it better than Metroid 1, but not as much as Super Metroid or Metroid: Zero Mission.

- I'm really glad I was able to explore prior to facing the final bosses.

- Jessica Martin's narration definitely gets better as the game goes on. She really nailed the ending narration.

---

Not sure what to think:

- The Ridley scene. I can understand the angle they wanted to run with it. Canonically at this point, Samus has faced Ridley four times. (Once in the manga where he triggered her flashbacks and brought about her PTSD, once in Metroid / Metroid: Zero Mission / the end of the Metroid manga vol. 2, once at the start of Super Metroid, once in an actual fight in Super Metroid.) I can understand why she would quaver in fear and start flashing back--of all places for Ridley to show up, he'd show up here? How? Why? But at the same time, the same scenario was presented in Super Metroid and she had no opinion of it then. We didn't get to see Samus' reaction to Ridley stealing the baby Metroid.

It could've been handled better, and it was bad, but it wasn't THAT bad. Overall, it's a little dumb and fairly short and she snaps back into action when Anthony becomes the "man in distress." I take more issue with the authorization system as a means of locking up Samus' powerups.

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