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Samus Aran is about to shoot you--now in 3D.

Evil must be destroyed. But first, it must be found.
Tagline for Metroid Prime

Metroid Prime is a Story Arc offshoot of the Metroid series. It currently contains the following games:

These games were the first 3D Metroid games. Additionally, apart from Pinball, they all have First-Person Shooter perspectives. However, Nintendo themselves bills the series as a First-Person Adventure (think Zelda dungeon structure in a first person perspective)

The main installments of the Prime sub-series were developed by Texas, USA-based Retro Studios, and has proven rather critically and commercially successful.

The sub-series plot takes place between the original Metroid/Zero Mission and Metroid II, and involves a radioactive mutagen named Phazon that arrives on mysterious comets and wreaks havoc on planetary environments. Samus spends most of the sub-series trying to stop the Phazon from turning various planets into dead husks, while at the same time, her Space Pirate enemies are trying to exploit the mutagen for their own evil plans, much like they did the Metroids in the original games. In Prime, the planet hit happens to be Tallon IV, where Samus' Chozo guardians had a second home, and from which they have since vanished. This is due to a meteor charged with Phazon striking the planet, and spreading corruption in the form of Phazon, a dangerous mutagen and corruptive growth. Unfortunately, the Space Pirates see it as a valid power source to fuel their plans, and it's up to Samus to stop the Pirates and stem the tide of Phazon by entering the very meteor that began it all. Echoes sees a similar comet landing on a world named Aether, which is split into two worlds as a result of the crash. Corruption concludes the arc by having Dark Samus, a Phazon-borne copy of Samus, manipulate the Space Pirates into finding the source of Phazon, and assaulting the Galactic Federation with a multi-pronged attack, with only Samus having a chance at stopping the clone by using the power of Phazon herself.

Hunters is a Gaiden Game that takes place between Prime and Echoes, detailing a call from another galaxy about an incredible power available to the strongest warrior who comes to take it. Samus and six other Bounty Hunters step up to the plate, all for different reasons. Hunters' seven playable characters provided some multiplayer opportunities, but the game was criticized by longtime series fans as a pandering attempt to win over Halo-style gamers, with limited success at best. A demo of Hunters, titled Metroid Prime Hunters: First Hunt, was packaged with the original model Nintendo DS for a while - it featured three single-player game modes and a multiplayer mode. The multiplayer maps were reworked into maps used in the final game of Hunters but the demo otherwise has little to do with the final game.

Pinball is basically a retelling of Prime's story via multiple stages of a pinball table. If you're into that kind of thing, it can be fun, but it is canonically unimportant.

All three console games in the series were eventually re-released on the Wii as Metroid Prime Trilogy, together on one disc with updated Corruption-style controls for Prime and Echoes, along with a widescreen aspect ratio, bloom lighting and higher-quality textures - not to mention the token reward system and even more of the sequence breaks from the first two games removed.

In addition to all tropes at the main page, the Metroid Prime sub-series provides examples of

  • Actor Allusion: Starting in Prime, Samus obtains a hairstyle with an uncanny resemblance to Alexandra Roivas's, who is also voiced by Jennifer Hale.
  • Always Check Behind the Chair: Prime, prior to obtaining the X-Ray Visor, at least.
  • Ambiguous Robots: To a certain extent, Meta Ridley qualifies, as there's nothing to indicate how much of him is still living and how much is robotic. By the end of Corruption, he's healed enough that his new flesh is beginning to push out some of the robotic parts.
    • Also, while it is difficult to take a close look at him in Prime since he's trying to kill you most of the time, his model in Super Smash Bros. Brawl depicts many areas of his body that are still organic.
  • Another Dimension: Dark Aether in Echoes
  • Antagonist Title: Metroid Prime is the final boss of Metroid Prime. And a major antagonist and Post Final Boss in Echoes. And the Big Bad and final boss of Corruption.
  • Antimatter: The Annihilator Beam fires blasts of matter/antimatter.
  • Apocalyptic Log: Various lore scans. At various parts in all three games, the apocalypse described by the Pirate logs is Samus herself, as she rips through their forces, and generally leaves a wake of destruction and death. Played for Laughs in part of Echoes, when the Pirates realize they have not one but two Samuses attacking them.
  • The Artifact: Shooting doors to open them was breaking the lock/door. The visuals not only contradict the handwave, but Corruption has the oddity of doing it on a friendly base.
    • Echoes, at least, introduces a new Hand Wave by claiming that the doors are protected by low-power energy shields, designed to be deactivated by weapons fire, to prevent the local fauna from opening them.
  • Artifact Title: Only the first game mentions "Metroid Prime" by name. You do encounter and battle with Dark Samus in the second and third games, but neither of those games mentions that Dark Samus is Metroid Prime (or indeed, anything else about Metroid Prime).
  • Artistic License Nuclear Physics: Phazon, a highly radioactive, uncontrollable Eldritch Abomination with a Genius Loci planet that is attempting to spread everywhere, and it's supposedly stable.
  • Art Shift: Happens to the Space Pirates and Metroids in Corruption. Justified due to their extended exposure to Phazon.
    • Another possible explanation is that the Space Pirates are not a single species, but a collective of multiple races. This is not confirmed in-game, however.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: In the first game, it is implied that the Chozo did this. And then got pulled back by the Phazon meteor landing on Tallon IV.
    • Same thing seems to have happened to the Alimbic in Hunters, though they semi-inexplicably show up in the game's ending so Samus can wave at them. Interestingly, lore indicates that Gorea descended from an ascended state to a physical one just so it could destroy the Alimbic.
  • Awesome but Impractical: Most of the charged missile attacks from the first two games. Overlaps with Not Completely Useless, as they are often only useful in very specific circumstances.
    • Prime: The Super Missile was useful most of the time. The Wavebuster was good for robots and parts of the Ridley fight. The Ice Spreader was effective when the Final Boss was in ice mode and was weak to it. The Flamethrower was almost completely useless.
    • Echoes: Everything except the Super Missile was too slow or cost too much to be worthwhile against anything besides a select few foes.
      • The Power Bomb earns its keep against giant enemies like Ingsmashers, as well as one hit killing any Ing in a pinch.
      • The Dark Beam can also freeze enemies that aren't Ing, even possessed enemies. Then a missile kills them, like with the Ice Beam in Prime. The Sonic Boom (Annihilator Beam combo) is ludicrously expensive on ammo but can be very useful in some situations, and if you kill a lot of enemies in one go with it, you'll get almost as much ammo back!
      • The Sonic Boom is very useful against the Emperor Ing's first form, as it is so fast that one can fire it directly at the slit in his shield and score a direct hit. The Darkburst is a two hit kill against the Alpha Blogg. The Sunburst? It becomes available too late to be useful, as you've already acquired the Power Bombs, which do pretty much the same thing with a higher radius of destruction and a faster release.
    • Unfortunately, most of the Phazon weapons in Corruption aren't very useful compared to the standard hypermode hyper beam. Even the super strong Hyper Missile doesn't home in on enemies unlike other missiles, costs a hell of a lot of Phazon (though this can also work in your favor during corruption), and is relatively slow to fire compared to the rapid fire of the hyper beam. The Hyper Ball is a little bit like the Wavebuster, but not as strong or as costing on resources. It's just not quite strong enough to justify using in most cases.
  • Back From the Brink: The Ing were terrifyingly close to causing Echoes to be over before it even started. One of which was an unguarded elevator.
  • Back Tracking: As the exploration element is as strong as in any 2D Metroid title, the Prime series will make you backtrack to find keys to the final boss (though there are hints provided). In general, this sub-series is the de facto face of this trope as upwards of half of normal gameplay is solely this trope. Corruption lessened the problem by making more than half the keys optional and allowing you to find them through normal play.
  • Badass: Samus of course.
    • Corruption gives us the Hunters Rundas, Ghor, and Gandrayda.
  • Bait and Switch Boss: Done twice in Echoes. You fight two boss-versions of two enemies, called the Alpha Splinter and Alpha Sandigger. However, they get possessed by the Ing a few minutes into the battle, becoming the Dark Alpha Splinter and Bomb Guardian respectively.
    • Another one from Hunters. During the escape sequence after beating the first Arcterra boss, you run into a Guardian, who just love to ambush you during escapes. However, in just one second after it appears, a hunter, Trace, kills it and proceeds to attack you.
  • Barrier Change Boss: Both forms of Prime's final boss, and the first form of Gorea from Hunters.
    • The Quad CM and Ingsmasher from Echoes are a non-boss example. The two use shields that shift between light and dark modes, each being weak to their respective opposites or the Annihilator Beam.
    • Emperor Ing's final form also switches between being weak to the Light Beam and weak to the Dark Beam.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Ridley in Prime. He actually manages to one-up this by flying directly from an orbiting space frigate to Tallon IV,[1] surviving re-entry in the process.
    • The Phazon-Metroids in Corruption are also able to survive in space.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: Dark Samus in Echoes, the Hunters in Hunters, Ridley in Corruption.
  • Battle in the Rain: It's constantly raining on Talon IV Overworld, so you can have mini-battles in the rain all the time. You have a boss battle in the rain when you face off against Ridley.
  • Battle Tops: Echoes has the Quad drones as well as the Quadraxis boss battle, which can curl up into spinning top shapes. The former can only be stopped by bashing into them using the Boost Ball, the latter is difficult to stop but can be if you spam beams at its legs.
  • Bee People: The Ing. Their base is even called the Ing Hive.
  • Big Bad: Dark Samus who was once Metroid Prime, thus being the Big Bad of the first game too.
  • Big Damn Heroes: In Corruption, Samus and the other hunters are called to Norion to activate its laser defense system and fend off a Space Pirates assault. During this adrenaline-charged intro sequence (which counts as an example of this trope), Rundas' Establishing Character Moment comes when he saves Samus' life mere seconds before reaching the reactor of an energy shaft after she just dueled Ridley in free-fall.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Every game aside from Hunters. See the Bittersweet Ending page for details.
  • Blackout Basement: Removing some power sources or upgrades releases captured Metroids and shuts off the lights. The Space Pirate Base in Phendrana is an excellent example from Prime.
    • The atmosphere turns dim when you fight Chozo Ghosts. The first time, it is terrifying.
  • Body Horror: Phazon and the Ing, particularly in logs of victims. The already horrific Metroid Prime also suffers this when Samus overloads it with Phazon, causing it to multiply out of control until its some blobby thing, which then explodes.
  • Bonus Feature Failure: Trilogy kept the friend voucher system from Corruption... but made it so that you could only trade with friends who had Trilogy. With it being a limited-edition release, you can imagine what a bad idea this was.
  • Boss Remix: Pay close attention. The music playing when Samus fights Rundas is a remix of Phendrana Drifts music.
    • Also, the boss theme for Final Form Dark Samus in Echoes is a remix of the escape theme from the original Metroid.
      • And then there's a remix for that remix in Corruption
    • The boss themes for Amorbis in Echoes and the Arctic and Fire Spawn were remixed from the Parasite Queen's theme. On that note, the Parasite Queen's theme bears strong similarities to Mother Brain's theme in Super Metroid.
      • This was remixed again for the fight with Gandrayda in Corruption.
  • Boring but Practical: Super Missiles, compared to the other charge combos. It is also required to beat the games (as it is used to blow up locks), the other beam combos are not.
  • Bowdlerize: The version of Corruption in Metroid Prime Trilogy removes a single usage of "Damn!," for no readily apparent reason. After all, it's already a T-rated franchise, and there are other instances of "damned" and "hell" in the games.
  • Breath Weapon: Besides Ridley, since he is a Space Dragon, Metroid Prime, Sheegoths and the Parasite Queen.
  • Bullfight Boss: The Plated Beetle, Alpha Blogg, and others.
  • Bubblegloop Swamp: Torvus Bog, and a good part of the Tallon Overworld.
  • Camera Lock On
  • Cast From Hit Points: Hypermode in Corruption, which uses one energy tank for a limited amount of powerful Phazon-based attacks. Ending it early can let you keep some of the energy.
  • Charged Attack: Phazon Beam in Echoes is a Type 1 example. The other beams weapon in the series are Type 2 examples.
  • Check Point Starvation: The Phazon Mines. There's a save station, near the entrance. Better use it, 'cuz it's the last one you'll see for a long time. Getting to the next one requires you to run a gauntlet of shadow troops, mega turrets, wave and ice troopers, and two mini boss battles against an elite pirate and a cloaked drone.
    • The drone battle is especially cruel, as it takes place right when the player is likely to be low on health and, to add insult to injury, it ambushes you right outside the next save station, which is blocked by debris. The only way to clear away the rubble, is with a power bomb: earned by beating the drone then navigating an electric mini maze.
    • In all, it'll take you about half an hour or more of nonstop fighting and puzzle solving to get from that first save station to the next one. And if you die, at any point along the way, you get to do it all over again.
  • Chasing Your Tail: Parasite Queen.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In Echoes there is an active portal in the Hall of Honored Dead. You can't reach it, and scans say it is unstable anyway. After the showdown in the Sky Temple Gateway (the Dark Aether version of this), a wall of Phazon collapses revealing the still active portal. This is the portal that Samus then uses to escape.
    • In the first game, early on, you can scan lore in the Artifact Temple that discusses Chozo statuary, ending in the line: Those who destroy them will feel our wrath. Much later, Ridley finds out what that involves.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: In Prime, there are the Beam Troopers,[2] the Fission Metroids, and Metroid Prime. Their current color is the color of the only weapon type that can harm them.
    • The doors are colored based on what is needed to open them.
    • In Echoes and Corruption, scanned items are like this - red or blue depending on importance, and then green once scanned.
  • Continuity Nod: The remixed music found throughout the Prime games.[3]
    • A particularly hilarious Continuity Nod is in two of the GF Troopers' Logs. The first one complains about another Trooper raving on about how Samus destroyed an entire planet of Space Pirates, claiming it to be lies. You can later read the log of the Trooper who was praising Samus' feats, saying Samus would be in the thick of the fight.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: Averted. Without the Varia suit Samus will take damage from simply entering an area that has lava. This only applies to Prime, as Samus keeps the Varia Suit throughout the rest of the trilogy.
  • Cool Starship: Samus' gunship was already cool enough on its own, but the updated version in Corruption gains missiles, a multi-ton grapple beam, and a remote guidance system that allows it to perform automated airstrikes or come to the player's location at the press of a button.
  • The Corruption: As the subtitle of Corruption attests, Phazon.
  • Creative Sterility: Subverted, the Space Pirates steal a lot of technology, but are hardly uncreative themselves, and often improve on the designs they steal.
  • Critical Annoyance: Dua-dua-dua-dua-dua-dua. Few things are better motivation to search for energy. The Prime games up the annoyance factor a notch by adding a large, orange "Energy Low" warning to Samus' HUD in conjunction with the alarm.
  • Cut and Paste Environments: Some of the later dark areas of Echoes are pretty transparently Palette Swaps of their light counterparts, occasionally with a platform or two added or removed, though admittedly since it's an alternate dimension, this makes narrative sense. Many corridors in Prime's Chozo Ruins also look alike.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: Flavourtext power, in this case. The scan visor would have you believe that Hunter Ing are tremendously elite badasses. It's actually fairly rare for a fight with one to not end in its suicide-by-beacon, with this often occurring before it can actually do anything. They do take a long while to defeat conventionally if you do that for some reason.
    • Gorea is so built up by lore as being invincible so you'd think the final fight in Hunters would be massively challenging. Nope. Gorea is by far the easiest final boss of all 4 games, and is in fact MUCH easier to defeat than some of the previous bosses in that game that were placed there as tests of skill to prepare the hunters for Gorea. Which makes total sense when you think about it.
    • Also, in Corruption:
      • GAME: A basic Space Pirate takes two Charge Beam blasts to kill.
      • CUTSCENE: 1 to 3 regular Power Beam shots kills a Space Pirate.
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: For the most part averted, as most characters get along just fine with their cybernetically-enhanced Powered Armor... and then there's Ghor. While a cyborg Gentle Giant most of the time, when he "cybernetically fuses," he becomes cold, unfeeling, and aggressive. He only has 6% of his original body to begin with, but if that amount goes down farther, he gets nasty quick.
  • Cyberpunk: Sanctuary Fortress/Ing Hive.
  • Damage Sponge Boss: Gandrayda in Corruption can take an utterly absurd amount of punishment. Making things worse, your shots in Hypermode aren't significantly more damaging than normal shots, and she regenerates her health during the last third of the fight. Fortunately her health regeneration is quite slow and her attacks generally aren't too damaging, making the fight more annoying than super hard.
  • Dark Reprise: In Echoes, all of the overworld themes in Dark Aether are distorted versions of the ones in regular Aether.
  • Dark World / Dual World Gameplay: Dark Aether.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Many people dislike the control scheme in Prime and Echoes because the other analog stick (C-stick) is not used to aim, like in Halo or many other FPS games. This stems from the how common dual-analog control is and how many people view that control scheme to be mandatory for any game in First-Person. It doesn't help that despite Prime being advertised NOT as a First-Person Shooter, but as a First-Person Adventure, people still deem it to be an FPS game, just an unorthodox one.
    • Nintendo compensated for this in the Wii-versions of Prime and Echoes, by implementing the same control scheme as the one used in Corruption. In effect, this made some bosses (Flagraah, Meta Ridley and Metroid Prime) significantly easier. On the other hand, the Elite Pirates and Beam Pirates (Power, Wave, Ice and Plasma) were made harder, depending on how much the crosshairs move when rapidly firing.
      • Not to mention the turrets in Prime. The ability to aim in any direction within Samus' field of vision allowed players to take advantage of the Missiles' homing capabilities... by standing behind a corner and taking them out from a safe area or blocking their line of fire with a solid iron-beam and firing missiles around it.
  • Death World: Dark Aether. Even the atmosphere is deadly.
    • The Space Pirate Homeworld. From orbit, it looks like a volcanic wasteland, and on the surface it constantly rains acid that will kill you in seconds unless if you get the Hazard Shield.
  • Demoted to Extra: The role of the Metroids are extremely downplayed in Echoes, to the point of being merely cameo enemies. The Space Pirates also play a much smaller role in the story than they did in the first prime, possibly to give focus to the threat of the Ing and Dark Samus. Ridley, their leader and Samus's arch foe, didn't even manage to make an appearance in the final game.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: After defeating a particularly long boss, Chykka, scanning shows a slightly humorous message telling you that it is, in fact, completely dead.

 Bioscan complete. Target Chykka has been terminated. Lifesigns are at flatline. No regenerative ability in effect. No evidence of symbiotic corpse possession. Resurrection does not appear likely.

  • Detachable Lower Half: Weavel can do this in Hunters, with his lower body functioning as a turret.
    • Same for the Quads in Echoes, although they prefer to fight with their heads attached to their bodies.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Despite that there's no way you should have it at the time, Thardus in Prime is still weak against the Plasma Beam.
  • Diegetic Interface: Courtesy of Samus' Powered Armor, naturally.
  • Disney Death/Joker Immunity: Happens to Ridley in Prime. He's pushed off a cliff by lasers, hits the ground, and explodes. He comes back in Corruption, however.
  • Doom Magnet: It seems Samus cannot escape the cold hand of destruction, whether it be a large base or the entire planet. So far, her "kill count" includes Dark Aether, Phaaze, Zebes and SR388, the third of which wasn't even her fault. Granted, the others were of her own doing, Phaaze because it kept popping out Phazon Leviathans to infect other planets, Dark Aether because it was just evil, and SR388 so she could wipe out the X Parasites, but still. Not even space stations are safe, since the Biologic Research Labs orbital station dies with SR388.
    • The Oubliette is also destroyed in Hunters, and so are the Orpheon in Prime and Ceres Space Colony in Super.
    • In addition, very few characters with personal connections to Samus ever survive. Ridley doesn't count.
    • Hence why she has, among some, earned the nickname/title "Samus Aran, Destroyer of Worlds".
  • Down the Drain: The Crashed Frigate, the Reactor Area in Torvus Bog. Doubles as a Scrappy Level for some.
    • Fully averted in Corruption. There are no submerged sections at all in this game.
  • Dueling Games: Halo, initially, but then it got weird as development for both series progressed. It was so surprising, that fans of both series wondered if the designers were inspired by either series. Weird stuff happens.
  • Dummied Out: Like Zero Mission's removal of Crocomire, Prime would have had a battle with an old boss... Meta-Kraid, which would have marked his first official 3-D appearance. A picture of what he would have looked like was shown by one of the modelers. Also, Echoes was to feature a battle with an Ing-possessed Ridley, as seen here.
    • Prime also had voiceovers that were supposed to introduce each area by name; all are still on the disc, but the scripting is broken. The only trigger that actually works is transitioning from Tallon Overworld to Impact Crater or vice versa. Additionally, an introduction to Samus and what she has done was voiced over in Prime - not the one that ended up in the game by the narrator, but Jennifer Hale herself!
    • Samus' ship in Corruption was going to have many more times when it could be used to help fight enemies, move objects and otherwise interact with the plot (which is why there are a relatively large number of Ship Missile upgrades), but most were left out and removed in the final game, leaving the ship with a lot of weapons and few places to use them.
  • Earthshattering Kaboom: Dark Aether in Echoes and Phaaze, the source of all Phazon, in Corruption.
  • Easter Egg: When you leave the GF ship on Bryyo's first mission in Corruption, you can faintly see Rundas watching you. If you shoot him with a charge beam, he'll fly away.
    • In the same game, inputting certain combinations into Samus's communicator will net you messages from Nintendo.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Phaaze, a sentient planet that infects other planets with living meteors. It is Phazon (hence the name). Also, Emperor Ing's final form. Not to mention Gorea, whose backstory is right out of the Lovecraft playbook: a formless, starborn evil who crashed into the Alimbic System and started killing everything in sight, absorbing and copying any and all weapons thrown at it. It eventually takes imprisoning it away in an extradimensional tomb. Needless to say, it wants out. Bad.
    • This entry is not complete without a mention of the titular Metroid Prime, a being gentically related to Metroids that was heavily mutated by Phazon. Its normal form looks like a giant black crab, but its second form...
  • Emergency Weapon: The "charged single shot" for ammo-dependent beam weapons in Echoes.
  • The End - or Is It?: The 100% endings of all the Metroid Prime games:
    • Prime: The hand from Samus' Phazon Suit (absorbed by the eponymous villain) pops out of a puddle of phazon with an eye on the back.
    • Echoes: The scene cuts to outer space, where a billion tiny bits of phazon converge on one-another to reform into Dark Samus.
    • Corruption: Samus rides off into space, only for a strange ship to follow her. This one has yet to be answered.
  • Enemy Scan: Extended to everything else as well, courtesy of the Scan Visor. Make sure to scan first and shoot later if you want Hundred-Percent Completion, since some scans (notably boss ones) can be Lost Forever.
  • Escort Mission: Two of them in Corruption, one of which involves Samus needing to escort a number of Galactic Federation bombers to a large door at the end of a series of Space Pirate-infested rooms. However, you are also assisted by a large number of GF troopers, who actually heavily outnumber the Space Pirates to the point that, while the Space Pirates are stronger on average, the GF troopers can outnumber them to the point that they can kill a few Space Pirates for you, or at least weaken them enough for you to deliver the final blow. Even against the Berserker Knight, the troopers can assist you in killing the massive beast.
    • While completing the escort is easy by standards of most Escort Missions, obtaining a Gold Credit for keeping every Demolition Trooper alive can be quite a challenge if you don't stay ahead of them or mess up against the trio of Commando Pirates.
  • Eternal Engine: Upper Phazon Mines, Sanctuary Fortress, and the Pirate Homeworld. Also Bryyo, to an extent.
  • Everyone Has a Power Ring: Phazon is a new substance in the first two games, with the Space Pirates going to great lengths to secure sources; in the third game, you can't walk two feet without bumping into phazon or something that runs on phazon (and that's not even counting yourself).
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Justified, because Phazon corrupts lifeforms, making them more aggressive and deadly.
    • In Echoes, we have the atmosphere trying to kill you.
      • Same thing happens in the final part of Corruption. It makes sense when you consider what Phazon tends to do to almost anything, especially organic beings, and how Dark Aether came to be...
  • Evil Laugh: Dark Samus. Especially in Corruption. Every time that you finish beating one of the corrupted hunters, before the final battle, even during the final battle!
  • Evil Twin: Dark Samus.
  • Evil Versus Evil: Echoes has scans that reveal the Space Pirates are having a hell of a time dealing with random Ing raids and Dark Samus.
  • Expy: Several enemies get retooled for each game, and the weapons tend to get this. Ice Beam becomes the Dark Beam, Plasma Beam gets Nerfed into the Light Beam, and Wave Beam gets buffed up into the Annihilator Beam.
    • Thardus is basically the Metroid universe's answer to Gorignak.
  • Eye Open: After saving, there's a brief closeup of Samus opening her eyes.
    • Also how Prime ominously ends.
  • Feed It a Bomb: Some enemies can only be killed by feeding them Morph Ball Bombs. A hilarious example is the Triclops/Mechlops, who actually tries to eat the bombs.
  • Final Exam Boss: The Metroid Prime itself's first phase. Also, Gandrayda assumes the forms of several bosses you've fought before, but is fought only about two thirds of the way through Corruption.
    • Especially in the NA version of Prime. Some Pirate Lores in the game tell you just what armaments Metroid Prime has, and even allude to its weakness.
    • Also every area has its own major boss that you fight before you go onto the next area, such as Chykka, Thardus, or Helios, that always require you to use the abilities you have found in that area, not always all the abilities you found but at least one of them, examples are that Thardus requires the Thermal Visor, Chykka requires the grapple beam, and Helios requires the seeker missiles etc.
      • In the EU Version of Prime, it is actually stated on some occasion EXACTLY WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO TO KILL THE BOSS! For Flagraah, the Scan entry says that "removing its source of solar energy will kill it" while the Elite Pirates and Phazon Elites (and the Omega Pirate) have a line of scan text saying "shooting the Phazon bubbles on the legs and shoulders will inflict heavy damage to the pirate". Thardus is a bit less tricky, as you have to remember what you can read on 2 different scan-notes in the Phendrana Drifts, one stating that "Phazon is highly visible through any means of heat-vision" and another one stating that "Thardus has Phazon infused into the rocks. Exposing the Phazon and blasting it might inflict severe damage."
    • Gorea in Hunters forces you to remember which color represents which weakness (much like the Metroid Prime and Emperor Ing did) and also to remember obscure lore you found throughout the game to know in which order to shoot crests on the walls with the proper weapon in order to get to its One-Winged Angel final form and the game's true ending.
  • Fireball Eyeballs: Ridley.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: the trio of beam weapons you find in the first game are the Wave Beam, Ice Beam, and Plasma Beam.
    • Likewise, the three hunters you ally yourself with in Corruption have a weapon that fits the trio. After you've killed all of them and taken those weapons, Samus herself has a version similar to the first game, but split between her three primary attack methods; her beam has fire, her missiles have ice, and her grapple lasso has lightning.
  • Fling a Light Into the Future: Samus was this for the Chozo, as were the countless power-ups they set up across the galaxy for her to find when she would need them.
    • In Corruption, the wall murals tell the story of the last of the Bryyonian Lords of Science. After pretty much the entirety of his species had regressed to a primitive, violently tribal state, he found an apprentice to teach both the high technology and the ancient magics of their people, then pulled an Heroic Sacrifice when they were found in the hopes that she would be able to one day restore their culture.
    • Similarly on Elysia, after Ghor succumbed to Phazon corruption and started infecting the robotic Elysians with a virus, one of the last left records of their culture for others to find.
  • Foreshadowing: In Prime 2, the Pirates witness a battle between Samus and Dark Samus, and wonder if they can work out some sort of arrangement with Dark Samus to kill their common enemy. Prime 3 involves Dark Samus joining forces with the Space Pirates, though not quite in the way they had envisioned.
  • For Science!: While the Space Pirates ultimately want to be the dominant force in the galaxy, this is largely how they go about their business.
    • For the Evulz: And this is how they go about it the rest of the time.
  • Four Is Death: You fight off against Dark Samus a total of four proper times in the series. "Proper" meaning not as the end-boss of the first game, of which it was Metroid Prime. The final one destroys her completely.
  • Four Man Band: The Bounty Hunters called in at the beginning of Corruption, with the Galactic Federation working as the Big Good/Mission Control.
  • From a Single Cell: Metroid Prime, and by extension Dark Samus, is absurdly hard to kill, surviving the destruction of an entire planet while being trapped in an alternate dimension at the same time. It seems capable of reforming from even the teensiest bit of Phazon leftovers. This is explicitly stated in-game.
  • Fungus Humongous: Lower Phazon Mines in Prime.
  • Gainax Ending: After spending the entire triology fighting Space Pirates, Phazon mutants, evil monsters in another dimension, former comrades, Metroids (and mutant Metroids), and Metroid Prime/Dark Samus, you think in the 100% ending, Samus' job is done. But no, a spaceship follows her. Suggesting a new game. But Nintendo hasn't made a new game involving this. Yet.
  • Genius Loci: Phaaze
  • Genre Busting: To this day, there is no agreement to whether it should be called a First-Person Shooter, a First Person Adventure, or a First Person Platformer.
  • Genre Savvy: One of the Pirate Logs in Research Lab Aether notes that the Metroid transportation protocols also apply to sedated and dead Metroids. Too bad for the pirates, this seems as close as they get.
  • Gentle Giant: Ghor in Corruption, just so long as he isn't cybernetically fused with anything. Or corrupted by Phazon.
  • Ghost Ship: The GFS Valhalla.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: Metroid Prime's first form certainly looks crablike.
  • Gimmick Level: Many areas in the series, usually involving the use of the Spider Ball. The Spider Guardian and Power Bomb Guardian in Echoes have you fighting them entirely in Morph Ball form.
  • Going to Give It More Energy: This is why the Luminoth first designed the Dark Beam in Echoes. It didn't work. They then designed the Light Beam which was much more effective.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Phazon corruption in the aptly titled Corruption creates scars and growths on Samus' face whenever she uses a great amount of Phazon to destroy the Leviathan Seeds.
  • Gravity Barrier
  • Great Offscreen War: In Corruption the Horus Rebellion is mentioned once, and never brought up again.
    • Most of the war that drove the Luminoth into hiding from the Ing is unseen, aside from evidence from the preceeding fight (eg Luminoth corpses and the like). This is because it happened long before Samus got to Aether.
  • Green Rocks: Phazon.
  • Hailfire Peaks: Tallon Overworld is mainly open forests with a few caves, but due to the frigate Orpheon crashing nearby there's a section that's Down the Drain combined with Techno Wreckage.
  • Healing Checkpoint: Save stations double as replenishing stations.
  • Heroic RROD: Part of the reason the third Prime game is called Corruption.
  • He Was Right There All Along: Parasite Queen, Hive Mecha, Plated Beetle, Sheegoth, Metroids, Thardus, Phazon Elite, Elite Pirate, Omega Pirate, Metroid Prime, Alpha Splinter, Alpha Sand Digger, Jump Guardian, Dark Missile Trooper, Amorbis, Boost Guardian, Alpha Blogg, Grapple Guardian, Chykka, Spider Guardian, Ingsmasher, Power Bomb Guardian, Quadraxis... It's probably faster to list the ones that don't do it.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Metroid Prime's only fatal weakness is Phazon, the very same substance it continuously generates and ultimately tries to corrupt the galaxy with. If it didn't keep feeding Samus the stuff it'd be literally invincible.
    • Also, in the first Prime at least, the Metroids would latch onto the Space Pirates and and kill them for you. These are the same Metroids that the pirates had bred.
    • Also, Dark Samus in Corruption, who is only Killed Off for Real because she decided to connect herself to Phaaze, meaning that when she is "killed", Phaaze explodes, destroying all Phazon and ensuring that she stays dead.
  • An Ice Person: Noxus, Rundas, and their respective species.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: How Rundas ultimately died.
  • Improvised Umbrella: Admiral Dane uses his personal flagship as one in the Space Pirate Homeworld where the rain is acidic.
  • Improvised Weapon: The Plasma Beam and Nova Beam in Prime and Corruption respectively were improvised from mining equipment.
  • Indy Escape: After snagging an Octolith in Metroid Prime Hunters, a countdown starts and you have to get back to the gunship before the security failsafe kills you.
  • In Series Only Known by Their Nickname: The Chozo called the Metroid Prime just "The Worm".
    • As always, the Pirates refer to Samus as "The Hunter", which gets extended in Echoes when they find themselves face-to-face with Dark Samus, whom they title "The Dark Hunter".
  • Interface Screw: A popular method of attack from enemies is hitting you with electrical attacks to make your visor fill with static for brief moments. An especially notable case is Rezbit [4], who has a special viral attack that actually causes Samus' suit to malfunction, both disabling her weaponry and causing a special kind of static to make it impossible to see.
  • Jigsaw Puzzle Plot: And you have to look for the pieces to find it. It's possible to go through the entirety of Prime without understanding the plot at all if you don't scan anything. Echoes and Corruption give you progressively more information.
  • Just Following Orders: Inverted; Samus, a bounty hunter, usually gets orders to the effect of "investigate X" and does everything else under her own steam. It can be imagined that her employers enjoy explaining this to her when it comes time to pay her. "Well, good job saving the universe, now here's your paycheck for checking up on our Marines."
  • Kill It with Fire: Both the charged Plasma Beam and its combo, Flamethrower.
  • Killer App: Prime was one of the reasons to own a Game Cube. For good reason.
  • Kryptonite Is Everywhere: Justified in that Phazon is trying to get everywhere.
  • Last of His Kind: Spire in Metroid Prime Hunters is looking for the remains of his people.
  • Late to the Party: All three console Prime titles.
  • Law of Conservation of Detail: All of Samus' explosives have a material they are most effective against: Brinstone for Missiles, Sandstone / Talloric Alloy for bombs, Cordite for Super Missiles (no Super Missile material in Echoes) and Bendezium / Denzium for power bombs. If any of these are mentioned in a scan, you will end up destroying the scanned item with the appropriate explosive. Corruption adds to this with Phazite, which can be pierced by the Nova Beam. If an enemy's scan mentions Phazite, it is vulnerable to a one-hit-kill from the Nova Beam/X-Ray Visor combo. Everything in Echoes is made of Denzium.
    • Also, note that any of the above mentioned can ONLY be destroyed by their specific weapon. Sandstone cannot be destroyed by a Power Bomb, despite the Power Bombs being several times more powerful.
      • This is explained in Other M, however. The Missiles cause a concussive blast. Bombs let out an electrical/electromagnetic pulse. Power Bombs let out immense heat, so immense that Adam or Anthony states that it can thoroughly cook a human being in a space suit within the 10 seconds it is active (this is also the reason they aren't allowed until the end, where the player has to figure out that he can use them... while being inside the stomach of a Metroid Queen).
    • This is seen in the game's physical layout as well. Any platform you can stand on is typically necessary to get somewhere, any Morph Ball tunnel or Spider Ball track is guaranteed to lead somewhere interesting, almost every room has at least one item hidden inside it or has a small, hidden tunnel that leads to a smal room with a hidden item... etc.
  • Ledge Bats: Fission Metroids in Prime, Rezbits in Echoes.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Magmoor mostly, and Alinos in Hunters also has elements of this.. "Bryyo Fire" from Corruption is an interesting case; it does have a "fiery" theme and appropriate colors, but the oozy stuff throughout the level is not lava, but a highly volatile chemical that is both corrosive and flammable. It still "behaves" like lava does in most games, though.
  • Let's Play: A truly excellent one of Prime, Echoes, and Corruption, done by Slowbeef himself.
  • Level Map Display: You can acquire the map, or explore everywhere to get the whole map layout.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading: The games are infamous for this. Shooting at doors triggers the games to first load what's on the other side, then open them. This can sometimes take a while, most notably in Corruption, which did away with the load-hiding corridors found in the first two.[5]
  • Lost Forever: Didn't scan that boss before you killed it, or scan something in an early area before passing the point of no return? Say goodbye to Hundred-Percent Completion!
  • Lowered Monster Difficulty: The eponymous creatures are the scourge of the universe in Metroid and Super Metroid, needing to be frozen and pelted with missiles to kill. Through the Prime series, they become progressively less of an actual threat. In Prime, a Power Bomb will kill any Metroid instantly (yes, even that kind), and after being frozen even Hunter Metroids shatter in one hit. In Echoes, they can be beaten with enough firepower from any of your weapons and even Dark Metroids can be frozen / shattered with the Dark Beam, and in Corruption, you eventually get the ability to kill them in one shot. Until then, though... In addition, no Metroid in the Prime series has ever got beyond the "Hunter" morph / instar, which does rather knock down their status as threats.
  • Made of Explodium: Lampshaded; one destructible material is called "cordite". Also the Sap Sacs; a scan notes that they developed their explosive nature because they were almost eaten to extinction; a little odd, since fruit typically spreads seeds by being eaten.
  • The Magic Versus Technology War: This is what shattered the civilization of Bryyo.
  • Malevolent Architecture: Samus finds this everywhere.
    • Also possibly for Ridley near the end of the Prime. Remember the Chozo Lore about their statues? They weren't kidding when they said to treat them with respect...
  • Mercy Kill: In the Echoes manga, a surviving Federation gunman considers this as such when Samus defeats some of the other platoon members possessed by Ing.
  • Matrix Raining Code: While you spent most of the area indoors, if you looked closely while standing outside in Sanctuary in Echoes, you would notice that it's raining. Look even closer, and you'll see its Matrix Raining Code, raining skyward.
  • Mauve Shirt: The GF troopers in Corruption; since they're already dead by the time you get there in Echoes, they still count as Red Shirts.
  • Melee a Trois: Samus vs Space Pirates vs the Ing in Echoes
    • And Dark Samus is in there just to get Phazon, destroying whichever of those three sides happens to be blocking her at the moment.
  • Metroidvania
  • Mirror Match: The Echoes multiplayer mode.
    • Hunters can do it too, with multiples of a character having alternate color schemes. The Hunters: First Hunt demo's Regulator mode ended with one of these.
  • Monochromatic Eyes: Samus, in the last stages of Phazon corruption.
  • Mook Horror Show: See Apocalyptic Log.
  • More Teeth Than the Osmond Family: The Bloggs from Prime 2 and a few of the unidentified creatures at Phaaze in Corruption.
  • Multiple Endings: The Prime series have extended ending sequences if you collect a lot of items. Hunters does away with this and has two different endings based on how you approach the Final Boss.
  • Natural Spotlight
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Thanks, Samus, for releasing Metroid Prime (aka Dark Samus) from its confinement so it can wreak havoc across the galaxy.
  • Nice Job Guiding Me Villain: If the Pirates weren't on Aether looking for Phazon, Samus would never have wound up there herself.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Ridley started as a dragon space pirate, and adds more to this title in the Prime games, culminating in him being a mutant zombie cyborg dragon space pirate.
  • Non-Indicative Name: The Ingsmashers. Their name was accurate for a while until they were corrupted, many now serving or even acting as hosts for the Ing they're supposed to be smashing.
  • Nonstandard Game Over: What occurs in Corruption if you overdo it on the Hypermode. Also, failing the escort mission on the Pirate Homeworld.
  • No OSHA Compliance: All over the place, but Elysia is the worst offender. Somewhat ironic, because they seem to be one of the 2 most likely to HAVE an OSHA equivalent, the other being the GF, but Samus seems to be a trouble magnet for their ships.
  • Noodle Incident: The Horus Rebellion in Corruption. The only known details about it are that it was the only known time that a large amount of Stiletto-Class Fighters were scrambled aside from the attack on Norion at the beginning of the game, and that it was heavily implied to have resulted in a lot of casualties on the Galactic Federation's end.
  • Not Completely Useless / Revive Kills Zombie:
  • Nuke'Em: To destroy the shield on the Elysia Seed, you need to assemble and deploy a Theronian Thermonuclear Warhead.
  • Oddball in the Series: The two Nintendo DS games, namely:
    • Hunters, so very very much. Takes place in another galaxy, implies technology that is millennia ahead of anything we've seen in the rest of the series, features new characters that are never seen or mentioned again, is the only game in the entire series not to feature any Metroids whatsoever, has an online multiplayer mode that is significantly deeper than the single-player campaign, and just generally doesn't even follow the Metroid formula. No wonder it's Fanon Discontinuity.
    • Pinball, which is (as of this writing) the page image for this trope.
  • Oh Crap: The Pirate Logs tend to become this when they start talking about Samus; especially in the second game when they realize Samus and Dark Samus are two different beings. "Surely, we are cursed."
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: The title/menus themes in the first two Prime titles, Magmoor,[6] and too many to count in Corruption...
  • One-Hit Kill: In Corruption, the X-Ray Visor coupled with the Nova Beam grants one the ability to shoot straight through Phazite-armor on enemies and hit their internal organs. In Prime, the Plasma Beam could incinerate nearly any enemy with a single charged shot.
  • One-Winged Angel: Metroid Prime and Emperor Ing. They become less disfigured in each change.
  • Outside the Box Tactic: Several enemies in 3 can be killed in a single strike of the Nova Blaster augmented by the X-Ray Goggles, due to the limitations of their Phazite armor.
  • Palette Swap: Most of the enemies from Metroid Prime. And between games, Echoes has a recycled horned creature and a mechanical version of a small bug.
  • Phlebotinum Muncher: The eponymous beastie of Prime, and its reincarnation as Dark Samus in Echoes and Corruption.
  • Phlebotinum Dependence: Samus in Corruption; the typical "Health Orbs" are actually made of Phazon.
  • Phlebotinum Overdose: In Corruption, too much exposure to Phazon or spending too much time in Hypermode causes Samus to go into Corrupt Hypermode, and the energy bar for it fills rapidly. The only way to get out is to dump all of the energy or prevent the bar from filling for half a minute. Fail, and Samus turns into another Dark Samus. Ironically, this trope is also how the original Dark Samus is destroyed each time. Scan data frequently refers to her being made "unstable" due to Phazon overdosing.[7] Also, this is actually forced onto the player in the end of Corruption, when Samus goes to Phaaze to kill it. Samus is practically immortal, as long as one doesn't let the Phazon regenerate too fast. This also counts as a Point of No Return, as Samus' Gunship doesn't even recognize her any longer, thus preventing the player from saving their game.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: The pirates do undertake some pillaging and rampaging, but it usually ends up with them setting up shop on the planet they plundered and using it to conduct biological and weapons research. Their main goal is to gain ground and resources to expand their research rather than simply take from their victims.
  • Pivotal Boss: Amorbis fights like this, as well as the Parasite Queen, the Incinerator Drone, Flaahgra and Emperor Ing's initial form.
  • Point of No Return: Phaaze in Corruption is explicitly referred to as this.
  • Power Crystal: The Lensman-like hand crystal on the back of Samus' left hand. Originally just a visual effect, Corruption uses it as the source of the Grapple Beam.
  • Power-Up Magnet: Holding down the charge beam.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy:
    • Ice-themed people, of which we have seen two: Noxus (from planet Vho) and Rundas (from planet Phrygis). Noxus is fairly low-key, but Rundas definitely fits. Samus herself is also an example: modern Chozo are/were a peaceful people, but had a strong warrior tradition in the past.
    • The Luminoth have shades of this themselves. Due to the Ing, though, they had to be.
  • Psycho Serum: Phazon.
  • Puzzle Boss: Many, including:
    • Flaahgra in the first Prime.
    • There's so many in the late stages of Echoes (Spider Guardian, Power Bomb Guardian) that it becomes a relief when you fight Dark Samus for the second time: there's no tricks about it, just a good old fashioned shoot out.
    • This even extends to a substantial portion of Echoes' (and to a lesser extent, Prime's) enemies. Your weapons can take down most enemies when you first encounter them, by dint of skillful playing. Then you get a weapon or item that can let you one-shot them—such as the classic freeze-and-shatter, or the Plasma Beam's tendency to incinerate enemies with one charged shot. The killer insane suit-hacking, laser-shooting Rezbits could get a freeze-and-shatter from the Dark Beam—if you're quick enough, you can prevent their impenetrable shield from coming up. Likewise, the game's giant bruisers can be taken down with a Power Bomb dropped near them.
  • Race Against the Clock: It's Metroid, so this should be rather obvious:
    • Prime had the escape sequence in the beginning, where you have 7 minutes to escape from a falling frigate that's plummetting towards the ground.
    • In Echoes, we had the very last battle against Dark Samus: A fair fight in a different dimension that is on the verge of collapsing. The fight cannot take more than 8 minutes. And that's including travel time from the previous boss.
    • In Corruption, by the time all the reactors on Norion have been activated, a meteor is about to crash into the planet. If the player hangs around for too long instead of hurrying to the ground-based Satellite Cannon, the meteor will kill everything on the planet. And this is the only Metroid game to NOT have a timer visually show you how long time you have left before you die. However, the nice announcer system lady who voices the klaxon horn alarm speech will say "X minutes until impact".
    • The battle against Ridley in the beginning is this as well. You're both falling 18,000 meters at a pace saying 100 meters a second. That means you have 3 minutes to shoot the ever-loving crap out of Ridley or fall to a painful death alongside him.
    • Elysia has the escape pod on the Theronian Bomb; You had to repair something to escape from the bomb before it was dropped onto the planet's Leviathan with you on it. Then there was Phaaze, where, given the circumstances, your health acted as a timer that you could add to.
  • Rainbow Speak: In scans to point out what something is made of, so you know what to use to blow it up.
  • Real Time Weapon Change: In the first two games, where you chose among the four by flicking the right analog stick (or d-pad).
  • Recurring Boss:
    • Aside from the other hunters and Gorea, there are only two bosses in Hunters that are fought again and again. They change attack patterns, but the way you beat them is usually the same.
    • Dark Samus in Echoes.
    • Metroid Hatcher in Corruption.
  • Regional Bonus:
    • In the first game, some bonus, some not: Samus' suit has additional dialog, and there are larger missile pickups and some interface and gameplay tweaks, one of which is a slower map loader that prevents crashes suffered by the original North American version. On the other hand, the previously easy Security Drone enemies are upgraded to full-on Goddamned Bats with tripled energy, and the plot is somewhat mutilated due to fears that the series would be poorly recieved; the PAL version removes references to Samus' previous life with the Chozo, along with references to the Space Pirates entering Metroid Prime's lair and building its armour. Later games don't have much in the way of bonuses. The Space Pirates failing to enter Prime's lair is due to it contradicting the entire purpose of needing the Artifacts to open up Prime's lair. The Chozo sealed Prime, and no amount of tunneling or digging on the Pirate's part is meant to breach that seal without the Artifacts.
    • Many sequence breaks are also removed in the PAL version, though not as many as in the ironically-titled North American Player's Choice version. Scandashing is impossible, a lot of areas have Bendezium rubble that can only be removed with Power Bombs added, and geometry in some rooms was removed or made insubstantial to prevent it being used. The Player's Choice version even goes so far as to add locked doors that only go away when you've picked up things you're supposed to have, though it doesn't include any of the actual Regional Bonus content. Apparently Retro really, really want you to play the game "properly". Echoes had a few similar changes made for the EU release which just require different speedrunning tricks, and one in the Japanese version that stops a no boost ball speedrun cold in the room "Crypt" in Dark Torvus.
    • In Prime, Meta Ridley also has more attacks and isn't as easily beaten (oversights in the NTSC were sorted out), making it pretty hard (though it's hard anyway). Flaahgra's boss theme looped incorrectly in the original NTSC version as well, playing only the first part over and over, which is rectified in the PAL version.
    • Most, but not all, of these changes were included in Metroid Prime: Trilogy.
  • Riding the Bomb: Justified. When the SkyTown pod carrying the Theronian Bomb is deployed, the Space Pirates launched a counterattack to protect the Leviathan. Samus had to stay with the pod to fend off the Pirates, or else the pod and the bomb would be destroyed, along with the only chance to save Elysia.
  • Rule of Cool: Samus should not be able to arc weld delicate circuitry with her plasma beam, but it is awesome.
  • Sad Battle Music: Corruption has sad but intense music during the battle against Rundas.
  • Sanity Slippage:
    • Private Haley from Echoes really loses it on Aether.

  "I hear. Them. Everywhere. They're coming. Can't sleep. Ever. They'll eat me. Eat".

    • Also, the Pirate Logs from Corruption. At first, they're scared shitless of Dark Samus. Then they suddenly become her "first disciples." And it only goes downhill from there.
  • Save Game Limits: Sometimes you have to walk abusive distances (with boss fights in-between!) from one save room to another.
  • Save Point: Much like the main series, the second type of save point is a common sight. However, unlike the main series, every save point in the Prime games refills health. Samus' gunship continues to act as a save point on its own, and Corruption's ability to remotely fly the ship to various locations adds a useful portable save system to that game, although it's limited to designated landing zones.
  • Scenery Gorn: Crashed Frigate and Impact Crater in Prime, any of the Dark Aether environments in Echoes, and the GFS Valhalla in Corruption is probably the most destitute locale you pay a visit to.
  • Scenery Porn: Phendrana Drifts in Prime, Sanctuary Fortress in Echoes, and Bryyo and Skytown Elysia in Corruption are all exceptionally beautiful. Though for Skytown, just try not to accidentally fall off an edge while staring at the scenery. Sanctuary Fortress is less dangerous on the "falling to your doom" end. For that matter, the entire trilogy trigegrs this as well as Scenery Gorn.
  • Schematized Prop: Many of the later games have taken up this trope, most notably using a Power Suit schematic as the item/weapon status screen (Zero Mission, Prime, Corruption, Super, Fusion; the schematized suit was also seen in the instruction manual for Metroid II). Other examples include the model of the FS-176 solar system in Metroid Prime (who knew Zebes and Tallon IV were in the same star system?) and the detailed descriptions of items, ships and upgrades throughout the Prime games.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale:
    • Metroid Prime: Hunters provides some very interesting numbers on the weapons of the Metroid universe. The Volt Driver apparently has enough juice to power countries, the Judicator approaches Absolute Zero, the Battlehammer contains a nuclear reactor, and the Magmaul utilizes hydrogen the same way stars do. If that isn't enough, the Annihilator Beam from Echoes combines matter and antimatter, the Dark/Sunbursts are a portal to hell and miniature star, respectively, and the Sonic Boom's description says it breaks reality. At this rate, it'll be able to compete with 40K in over-the-top weaponry.
    • Additionally, Hunters stated to take place in another galaxy. Not only does this imply that the Galactic Federation in general and Samus' gunship in particular has technology that allows it to span the intergalactic void in trivial amounts of time, it also causes issues when recurring enemies (like Zoomers, War Wasps and Blastcaps) appear. Blastcaps are even stated to have spread from Tallon IV using space spores. Assuming spores that don't travel faster than the speed of light, the time this would take is far greater than the age of the universe - and that's not even counting the time it would take them to have evolved on Tallon IV in the first place.
  • Scoring Points: Present in Hunters: First Hunt, unlike every other non-pinball Metroid game, including the final version of Hunters. The points for each hit increased as you continued to hit enemies without missing, encouraging careful aim.
  • Scrapbook Story: The Lore/Data scans.
  • Sean Connery Is About to Shoot You: The covers for Hunters and Trilogy; the picture at the top of the page comes from Hunters. In Trilogy you spend the menu screen inside Samus' arm cannon.
  • Sequel Difficulty Drop: Corruption compared to the first two, or so it seemed. It was later realized that this was simply because Corrupion's default difficulty level is "easy", below the Normal and Hard of the previous two games. Corruption also contains Normal and Hard difficulties (Renamed Veteran and Hypermode, while the easy difficulty is labeled Normal) that are on par with the first game for the most part. For that matter, Trilogy also includes the new "Normal" mode (easier than the original Normal) for both of the first two games, with the Normal and Hard relabeled to fit Corruption's difficulty schematic.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: Echoes compared to the original.
  • Sequel Hook: See The End - or Is It? above. Also, scanning a certain monitor in Corruption gives you the message "Metroid project 'Dread' is nearing final stages of completion". In real life, Metroid Dread, was rumored to be in development for an incredibly long time—but never saw release. It was hotly anticipated, mostly because it was suspected that it would return to the franchise's side-scrolling roots. Word of God is that it hasn't been officially cancelled and may still come out someday, hence the nod in Corruption.
  • Sequence Breaking:
    • It's a Metroid game, so this is in effect, though much of it requires the exploitation of glitches and tiny little ledges in the scenery. This series of videos takes it to the extreme.
    • Thanks to a possible case of trying to fix this on Retro's side, the developers seemingly to want to force a subversion of this, particularly in the first Prime. When Retro saw how many ways the game's sequence could be twisted and mangled, the game's Player's Choice re-release saw the removal of an important sequence breaking move (the Scan Dash) and impenetrable locks that won't release until you have done the required tasks.
  • Serial Escalation: Pretty much everything in the trilogy. The highlight is Phazon, which is constantly spreading and invariably made almost everything in the games berserk and badass.
  • Shapeshifter Baggage:
    • In Corruption, no attempt is made to explain where all that extra mass comes from when Gandrayda turns into Ghor in his ginormous powered armor. Lampshaded in the Federation logbook entry for "Hunter Gandrayda" that says, "Can assume the form and abilities of most living things, including bioforms considerably larger than the subject".
    • This trope applies to Samus as well... there's no way she would be able to fit into her Morph Ball form without, well... morphing. This is lampshaded in one of the Pirate Logs you can find in Prime. While the Space Pirates have been diligently reverse-engineering all of Samus' technology as soon as they get a peek at it, after enough test subjects wound up with broken spines they abandoned Morph Ball research.

 Pirate Log (excerpt): "Aran's Power Suit technology remains a mystery, especially the curious Morph Ball funciton. All attempts at duplicating it have ended in disaster: four test subjects were horribly broken and twisted when they engaged our Morph Ball prototypes. Science Team wisely decided to move on afterward."

  • Shapeshifter Swan Song: Gandrayda, again.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Agon Wastes.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog: If you don't get the best ending in Hunters, then the Big Bad's spaceship blows up with Samus still on it, killing her.
  • Shoulder Cannon: Elite Pirates have shoulder-mounted plasma cannons. The Omega Pirate has two of em. Their Suspiciously Similar Substitutes from Echoes, the Ingsmashers, have these as well.
  • Shoulders of Doom: The PED Suit in Corruption makes the normal Varia Suit versions slightly smaller, but the Hazard Shield add-on bumps them back up to Varia size. The Dark Suit in Echoes has ridiculous looking shoulders. The Light Suit actually makes them... normalish.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Several to the Alien franchise. Ridley the pirate is named after director Ridley Scott, and the opening shot of Prime is almost identical to that of the first film. A blink-and-you'll-miss-it example is the name of the planet that houses one Federation shipyard, where the GFS Olympus and Samus' gunship (the one used in Echoes; she goes through gunships like other people go through tissues) were built: Aliehs III.
    • A "Horus Rebellion" is mentioned early in the third game and can be taken as one to the "Horus Heresy" of Warhammer 40000.

 "The Pirate attacks must have the old man nervous."

"No kidding. Last time this many fighters were scrambled was during the Horus Rebellion."

"That was some nasty business."

"I have a feeling this will be worse."

  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Phendrana Drifts, Bryyo Ice, Arcterra.
  • Space Pirate: The Space Pirates. It seems more a name than a description, though.
  • Space Marines: The Galactic Federation Marines in Echoes and Corruption. Of course you can't have pirates without the Marines, because Space Is an Ocean.
  • Spikes of Villainy: Creatures tend to grow a lot of these when possessed by the Ing. They also tend to grow hair, for some reason.
  • Sprint Shoes: The Boost Ball, as a replacement for the Speed Booster of the 2D games.
  • Starfish Robots: Hunters has robots on the Vesper Defense Outpost that resemble pillars with several short legs.
  • Stealth Pun: In Echoes, the Upgrade Guardians are Ing-possessed creatures with a "Boost Guardian, Grapple Guardian, etc" naming convention. Boost Ing, Grapple Ing...
  • Steampunk: Elysia in Corruption.
  • Stop Helping Me!: If you have hints turned on, expect to see a reminder about where you should go next appear every few minutes if you ding around too much. Fortunately they can be turned off.
  • Sucking-In Lines: Most of the beams while charging.
  • Superweapon Surprise: Don't mess with Chozo statues... just, don't: "Those who defile [our statues] shall know our wrath, unfettered and raw."
  • The Swarm: Ingstorm. It's like not having the Dark Suit all over again, except the Ingstorm does considerably more damage. Seriously, don't go into Ingstorms without the Light Suit. It's one of the single most damaging hazards in the series, moreso than superheated rooms or lava or anything except possibly the acid rain.
  • Sword and Gun: Energy Scythe and Blaster, rather, for the Prime-series Pirates.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil:
    • Justified in Prime, a pirate log notes that the weak enemies in the first part of the game was the result of an attempt to avoid detection by a federation battle cruiser. Now that the cruiser is gone, they can appear out in the open and fight Samus with full force. Echoes makes a mention that controlling three sectors instead of four means the enemy can concentrate its forces better.
    • Meanwhile in Corruption, on the Olympus, each turret you summon and destroy as a result of being less-than-nice with your blaster summons a more powerful turret. The third turret is an instant kill, no matter what.
  • Tactical Suicide Enemies:
    • Periodically, the Pirates in Corruption will throw Phazon grenades at you. In either of the previous two games, this probably would've done significant damage to you. But in Corruption, it automatically throws you into Super Mode for free, meaning those pirates are typically dead about 10 seconds after they throw the grenade. However, if you are already in Hypermode at the time, it causes a Hypermode failure.
    • There are also many regular Tactical Suicide Bosses, like Metroid Prime itself.
  • Take My Hand: Rundas literally snatching Samus out of Ridley's jaws in Corruption.
  • Taking You with Me:
    • Metroid Prime in the first game attempts to absorb Samus's phazon essentially for this trope.
    • After Dark Aether begins to implode and Dark Samus is defeated, the Ing attempt to prevent Samus from escaping their world so she'll die with them.
  • Take Your Time:
    • Subverted in Corruption; When a meteor is coming down on Norion, you can take all the time you want and it will never get any closer. However, once you defeat Meta Ridley, you have 5 minutes left before impact regardless of how long you took to get to that point.
    • Echoes features generously placed cigarette breaks for the player. Found a light beacon? Great, go have a smoke and you get all your health back. This in theory makes it one of the rare games to heal the character using the player's hitpoints.
  • A Taste of Power: Occurs in the first two. Not in the third, since Retro thought doing it thrice wouldn't add anything.
  • Techno Wreckage: The Crashed Frigate in Prime and the GFS Valhalla in Corruption.
  • Technology Porn: Present throughout the entire series, especially in the cutscenes. Sanctuary Fortress in Echoes basically takes it to Scenery Porn levels.
  • Temple of Doom: Sanctuary Fortress, which also doubles as Eternal Engine.
  • Teleporters and Transporters: Chozo Ghosts, Space Pirates, Warp Hounds, Reptillicus...
  • Teleport Spam: Chozo Ghosts and Warp Hounds, but the Pirate Commander takes the cake.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill:
    • Shooting regular enemies (particularly weakest ones such as wasps) with missile combos. Waste of ammo, but entertaining.
    • Hitting Plated Beetles with the Wavebuster will cause them to have a spasm.
    • Blasting one of the various large groups of tiny enemies with the Sonic Boom (the strongest Missile Combo in Echoes) is nearly guaranteed to give Samus a full power-up in terms of ammo and energy, making it an interesting case of Video Game Cruelty Potential.
  • Too Awesome to Use:
    • The Annihilator Beam, though very useful, eats through your ammo rather quickly. On the other hand, because of the way enemies drop ammo, using the Annihilator Beam on swarm enemies like Hydlings tends to result in getting more ammo than you began with.
    • The Sonic Boom charge combo takes this Up to Eleven; ten missiles and thirty shots of both beam weapons all compacted into a single blast. Expensive, but it is every bit as powerful as the ingredients, and the name, suggest.
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • Cordite is a propellant explosive used in large-calibre naval guns. The Chozo made wall hangings from it and the Space Pirates use it for hatch covers. How their entire civilisations avoided spontaneously exploding is not particularly clear.
    • The Triclops in Prime will eat Morph Ball Bombs if you lay one in front of one.
    • In Echoes, if you energize a Light Crystal/Beacon with the Annihilator Beam (and therefore both Light and Dark beams), any Ing nearby will be attracted to it and incinerate themselves.
  • Toxic Phlebotinum: Phazon.
  • Tron Lines: Used frequently throughout the series, depending on what kind of technology Samus is currently dealing with. Most commonly used to indicate active power lines, often as a puzzle requiring Samus to re-arrange component parts to power specific items. And as Samus gets progressively more Phazon corrupt through Corruption, her PED Suit shows these. Particularly prominent when you go into Morph Ball mode.
  • Troubled Production: The first one was really hard for Retro. (the second had just one problem: the tight deadline)
  • Updated Rerelease: Metroid Prime Trilogy is just that: Prime, Echoes, and Corruption on a single Wii Disc, with Prime and Echoes getting Corruption's control system and achievement-like unlocking system. This can also be considered a Regional Bonus, as the Trilogy collection is only getting released in western countries with the extra content, the Japanese market having received the two older wii-makes as separate games earlier in the year.
  • Underground Monkey: Echoes recycled a lot of enemies from Prime with new models. Some were barely changed (like the recoloured Triclops) while others were given a complete overhaul, the Beetle becoming the much smaller Splinter, the Elite Pirate the Ingsmasher, Baby Sheegoths becoming Grenchlers, Chozo Ghosts becoming Pirate Commandos, etc. There's also a few examples in the games themselves, like the normal / ice / plated Parasites in Prime and the light / dark creatures in Echoes.
  • Unflinching Walk: Samus partakes in one of these whenever she finishes off a Leviathan in Corruption.
  • Unwinnable: A couple of glitches in the original games can cause this; if you leave a room before collecting an important item for triggering all the switches in a single go, then save, consider your game screwed. Thankfully, later releases fixed these problems.
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: Each game ends in a really climactic area.
    • Prime ends in the Impact Crater, the impact site of a meteor carrying a horrible toxic mutagen that is the cause of the entire planet's corruption.
    • Echoes ended in the Sky Temple, the main fortress of the Ing which is also ringed in by the same mutagen from the first game. It is also the dark version of Where It All Began
    • Corruption tops them all, however, seeing how the final dungeon is you storming Phaaze, an evil sentient planet that is the source of the mutagen that's been the chief cause of the trouble through the whole trilogy.
    • Hunters deserves honorable mention for ending in the prison to a species-killing Eldritch Abomination, accessible only by blasting a hole in reality.
  • Unreadably Fast Text: The corrupted data at the beginning of Corruption; it includes the words "Wii Format", and some German text with the word "Kaempfen (to fight)".
  • Video Game 3D Leap
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • It is entirely possible to free Metroids in rooms containing other enemies (like Space Pirates), then leave the room (unless the door locked behind you) in Prime. And then there's the room that actually encourages it: There's a force field keeping Metroids penned up, with Space Pirates in a lab on the other side. This force field is in your way. The controls can be scanned from too far away for the pirates to notice you, and you can easily wait in the upper section for the Metroids to finish off the Pirates.
    • In the Chozo Temple's grand entryway, you can see a bird-like species flying in the sky. Careful aim will reduce them to an explosion of feathers. There is no advantage or reason to do this except to twirl your Snidley Whiplash moustache.
  • Villain Based Franchise: Though it stars Samus... Whose name is in the title? That's right. Who's the final boss of all three games? That's right. Interestingly, the Metroid Prime doesn't reach Big Bad status until the third installment; spending the first game sealed up in a cave, and the second gorging on Phazon and taking pot shots at Samus.
  • Villain Decay: The Space Pirates get hit hard with this in Echoes—after being the driving menace of the first game, they are abruptly downgraded into a recurring nuisance to Samus—but this can be justified by the game wanting to play up the threat of the Ing and Dark Samus, and the fact that the Pirates on Aether were a small, marooned colony that got many of their crew killed or Ing-possessed. They also go through this in Corruption, in which they become mind-controlled pawns of Dark Samus. Though to their credit, having her leading them did make them a rather serious threat to the galaxy, so to some degree it's an inversion.
  • Voice Grunting: Samus.
  • Wake Up Call Boss: Flaahgra is one of the earliest bosses yet is pretty tough for first timers. Especially if said first-timers miss the Charge Beam. It's fairly conspicuous, but if you don't explore much, you will miss it.
  • Walk, Don't Swim: Until Samus gets the Gravity Suit, at least.
  • The Walls Have Eyes:
    • here are hallways where the walls are covered in eyeball enemies that shoot lasers as they look around. Echoes also had numerous decorations on the wall that resembled eyes; scanning them reveals that they're biological cameras transmitting images to U-Mos.
    • In Corruption, the interior of the Leviathan starship is covered in dozens of eyes. You can even shoot them for an achievement!
  • Warp Whistle: Echoes enables travelling in temple Pillars of Light, and Corruption allows landing on certain areas with the gunship.
  • Weakened by the Light: the Ing
  • What Happened To The Missiles: Toward the beginning of Echoes, Ing steal 7 of your items, including the Missile Launcher. While you get a brand new Missile Launcher not too long after, the other 6 are retrieved from those very Ing that stole them in the first place. Which means there's still a Missile Guardian wandering around somewhere. Though it's likely that the Dark Missile Trooper that Samus fights near where she first entered the area was the Missile Guardian.
  • What the Hell, Player?: Attacking GF troopers in Corruption, to the point where if you do it too much, you will die.
  • Womb Level: The Leviathans are Womb Boss Chambers, Phaaze is a living planet (Aesthetically similar to the insides of the Leviathans, but brighter, more open, and with copious amounts of rocky Phazon ore making it more like a cavern with a few organic structures), and the final part of the final battle in the first game is presumably in part of a Leviathan (The rest of the Impact Crater seems to be just that; the crater around the Leviathan).
  • Yin-Yang Bomb: The Light and Dark Beams in Echoes combine to form the Annihilator Beam.
  • You Had Us Worried There: The end of the third game with the obligatory Earthshattering Kaboom.
  1. an impossible feat, considering that space has no air molecules to push against in flight, though his "flight" may have been powered by his mechanical parts, with the wing flapping as just muscle memory
  2. in Power, Wave, Ice, and Plasma flavors, to match your beam weapons
  3. Tallon Overworld's first theme is a remix of the first Metroid's Brinstar, Tallon Overworld's second theme is a remix of Green Brinstar, Magmoor Caverns is a remix of Lower Norfair, Hydrodynamo Station is a remix of Red Brinstar/Maridia, Berserker Lord Battle is Arachnos Battle, Pirate Homeworld is Crateria, and the Multiplayer is Green Brinstar. Not to mention several of the usual Leitmotifs
  4. AKA Vinnie the Virus
  5. The corridors were small and low-detail, meaning the Gamecube had more power for the subsequent room.
  6. a remix of Super Metroid's Lower Norfair
  7. Note, that's "destroyed" not "killed" - she gets better