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Metroid Prime 2: Echoes Launches 277

Posted by Zonk
from the my-first-video-game-crush dept.
The sequel to Metroid Prime, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes has been released to consumers. Details on the sequel can be found via a Gamespy hands on look or a Gamespot review. A snip from the review: "If you've played Metroid Prime, you've essentially played Metroid Prime 2. Retro hasn't mucked with the original, winning formula, so veterans of the first game will feel quite at home resuming their position behind Samus' computer-enhanced visor."
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Metroid Prime 2: Echoes Launches

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  • by Breakfast Pants (323698) on Monday November 15, 2004 @06:50PM (#10824698) Journal
    Still no JUSTIN BAILEY leotard code? Dissappointing.
    • Re:JUSTIN BAILEY (Score:5, Informative)

      by Breakfast Pants (323698) on Monday November 15, 2004 @06:56PM (#10824750) Journal
      Offtopic my ass [cheatingdome.com]. JUSTIN BAILEY was one of the first name other than my own that I learned how to spell. The original Metroid for Nintendo was godly for its time.
      • by grungebox (578982) on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:05PM (#10824832) Homepage
        Humorously, when Metroid came out a kid in my kindergarten class (Justin Bailey) said the code was named after him because he wrote so many letters to Nintendo.
        • Re:JUSTIN BAILEY (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:26PM (#10825008)
          For the record, the JUSTIN BAILEY password (and its many variants) is almost certainly a complete coincidence. I spent hours reverse-engineering Metroid's password system, and it just so happens that the number of possible passwords (many of which will give the same results, and some of which will do unexpeced things such as locking up the game) is so vast that there are many, many passwords that spell interesting and novel things. In fact, you can put in any password at all, minus the last 2 characters (which encode a checksum) and calculate the final characters to make it valid.

          There is one password that is hard-coded into the game, and this can be verified with a string dump[1] of the ROM. The password is "NARPASSWORD" (speculation is that this stands for North American Release Password). Enter this while leaving the remaining characters blank (or equivalently filling them with 0s[2]) to get what I assume is some kind of debugging mode. There are a few notable things about it: 1) Samus is invincible, and has infinite missiles. 2) Samus has both the Wave Beam and the Ice Beam equipped, which results in a beam that behaves just like the Ice Beam, but the projectile appears to be a blue Wave Beam projectile. 3) Destroying metroids has a tendancy to freeze the game.

          Footnotes:

          [1] The strings are not ASCII. IIRC, the character set is laid out exactly as it is on the password screen, so the value 0 corresponds to the character '0', etc. Obviously, strings are not 0-terminated.

          [2] Unfilled spaces on the password screen are equivalent to 0s. The space character that you can enter is something different. In the case of the NARPASSWORD password, only so many of the characters are actually significant, so the last 8 or so characters can be anything. I've forgotten exactly how many are ignored.
        • Justin B in my first grade said the same thing...I swear...Lenexa
      • Re:Its not a name (Score:3, Interesting)

        by bludstone (103539)
        s o m e - 1 s e t - u p
        u s - t h e B 0 M B 1 1

        That works too :)

        No, seriously. Just make sure the 0 in bomb is a zero, not an O.

        So, does anyone know where the name justin bailey came from? Ive heard things from "its someone to nintendo" all the way to "Just In Bailey" and a bailey is a bathingsuit (is it?)
        • Re:Its not a name (Score:3, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          So, does anyone know where the name justin bailey came from?

          Yeah, I already explained this above [slashdot.org].

          The password itself "fits" exactly into the Metroid password system -- it's not recognized and treated differently in any way. Unless they specifically engineered the password system around this password (while at the same time taking the easy approach by hard-coding the NARPASSWORD password), it's completely spurious.
        • That is *really* scary since Metroid predates Zero-wing and AYBABTU. Could "ZIG" have NOT been an accident?!

          or maybe it just has the right checksum to work as a password...

          Things that make you go "uhh....."
    • ...yes, obviously I'm joking and this is not the sort of thing that could realistically be implemented as an Action Replay code.

      BUT I CAN DREAM
  • WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by oGMo (379) on Monday November 15, 2004 @06:52PM (#10824713)

    Why is it in every review they make the point to emphasize "this is not full of revolutionary new gameplay"? If I get a Metroid game, I don't want revolutionary new gameplay: I want Metroid. Metroid Prime was good despite the new 3D stuff, because it was still essentially Metroid.

    What we should be asking is "is this game a new Metroid game with good story, level design, secrets, etc.", and it sounds like it is. After all, the first thing we asked about MP1 was not "does this have revolutionary new gameplay", rather "is this still the Metroid we love?"

    Anyhow, point made. I hope this one has more secrets and stuff than the last. Sounds like it does, but that's one of the few things I thought the original (Prime) lacked.

    • Re:WTF? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cubicledrone (681598)
      Why is it in every review they make the point to emphasize "this is not full of revolutionary new gameplay"?

      Because the game media (and therefore the entire entertainment media) is only impressed with companies that spend enormous amounts of money on "new, unproven technologies," therefore they must remind everyone that every other project is "not different enough."

      Without such confusion, they wouldn't be able to write articles like "Polar Express is an awful movie and oh yeah, someone wasted umpty billi
    • They're doing us a FAVOR! This way we know that they haven't dicked around with the interface and play control to add some pointless tweaks for the sake of "revolutionizing" the gameplay. While I have loved Metroid since I played the first one in '86, I'm generally an RPGer. Whenever I read about an RPG being "revolutionary" in 2004, it generally means the same 2 things: 25-minute cutscenes (AKA "Xenosaga Syndrome") and that goddamn Real-time-battle-with-idiotic-AI bullshit that only me and Tycho [penny-arcade.com] seem to l
    • Re:WTF? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by antoy (665494)
      I couldn't agree more. I remember reading the Gamespy review of Soul Calibur 2. A page was dedicated to let every reviewer to express his opinions: All of them but one (I think Fargo was the exception) whined about how they expected it to be 'revolutionary' and a 'huge leap forward for fighting games' (the way Soul Calibur 1 was).

      Thankfully, I had already played Soul Calibur 2 and I knew how fantastic a game it was. This game magazine mentality results in stupid reviews. For now, the only people I trust on
    • Re:WTF? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Guppy06 (410832)
      "Why is it in every review they make the point to emphasize "this is not full of revolutionary new gameplay"?"

      Because they have to write something in order to justify their paychecks. Things that are different are easier to write about because you can point out how it's different. "It's still good" doesn't fill up a page.
  • by centauri (217890) on Monday November 15, 2004 @06:56PM (#10824748) Homepage
    Somehow, I'm guessing you don't really mean that [wordiq.com].
  • Ah, indeed. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Rickz0rz (831049)
    With HL2, Halo 2, MP:2, and DooM3 (for us people who are lazy to buy games now) to name a few, this shall be a very nice holiday. Wooty. I still have to get Ace Combat 5. And The Minish Cap. And a bajillion other games.
  • awesome (Score:3, Insightful)

    by grungebox (578982) on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:01PM (#10824804) Homepage
    Metroid Prime is one of those rare games that got pretty much everything right. The only thing missing was a more engrossing story, as that might draw you into the experience a little bit more, but that was minor. If Echoes is more of the same, then that's fine by me. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. But...there are notable changes such as the light/dark worlds and light/dark weapons, the echo and dark visors.
  • welly well well (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ImTheDarkcyde (759406) <ImTheDarkcyde@hotmail.com> on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:03PM (#10824816) Journal
    looks to me like the good folks at gamespot have a case of "halo fanboy-ism"

    they honestly do not point out ONE flaw worthy of crippling this game a whopping 0.9 from the sheer perfection it is. Show me a more beautiful game, and i will weep.
    • The control scheme for one. A first person game that does not have first person controls. Inconsistant locks on flying enemies for two. Sometimes while trying to lock onto a flying enemy, something else would be locked onto.
  • all sequels.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Folmer (827037) on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:19PM (#10824947)
    What about something completely new?
    All ive seen in the last couple of months is sequels:
    Half-life 2, Halo 2, GTA:SA, Everquest 2 etc...
    • Re:all sequels.. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by kid-noodle (669957) <jono@ n a n o s h e e p .net> on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:54PM (#10825250) Homepage
      Ok, here's a crazy thing to say:

      Who cares? Really. Why does it matter, that we have franchises? Why is it important (and here's my caveat) as long as we innovate and improve within them.

      The Mario games are an uber-franchise, Mario 64 was both evolutionary and revolutionary. Metroid Prime is part of the Metroid franchise. Are you going to tell me that it didn't innovate within that?
      Half-Life 2, happens to be the sequel to Half-Life. That's a problem?

      Here's something - franchises allow innovation with minimal risk for the developer. They can almost certainly know they'll make money, because they've got a huge whack of good will, and brand recognition. They've got carte blanche to experiment within the framework, with minimal risk, which is more of an incentive to take that step. I'd call that a Good Thing.
    • Couple of MONTHS? Where were you the two years before that (Hint: More of the same)?
    • Re:all sequels.. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by patternjuggler (738978) on Monday November 15, 2004 @11:45PM (#10826767) Homepage
      All ive seen in the last couple of months is sequels

      This argument keeps coming up again and again here and elsewhere on the internets.

      There's always this unspoken implication that sequels are inherently bad. I would guess that the reason is that if all the big games are sequels, and all franchises eventually get boring and old and no one buys them anymore, then therefore the industry is in trouble because all the games are sequels and nothing will replace them when they die out. Or, the other reason is this argument keeps coming up is that the proponents of it are incredibly jaded, incredibly nostalgic for their lost youth spent playing more primitive games, or just don't have the same tastes as the majority of the gaming public so therefore anything new is not automatically good, but at least has a greater chance of appealing to their tastes than a tried-and-true formula that they know they'll dislike.

      The other thing I hate about this "too many sequels" whining is that there are a lot of original games out there. Granted a lot of them were made on small budgets and don't get a lot of press (and are complete crap)- so what the critics are saying is that they'd like more game companies to make huge investments in experimental games, and that the press should devote more time to it accordingly, but without presenting a business case for why this is superior to making games that consumers unquestionably desire. My suggestion- if you like innovative and original games, go out and spend money on them. Talk them up on websites. Etc. And just ignore all the press the sequels are getting.

      In movies there's this whole self-sustaining world called 'independent film' (someone needs to create that for games)- it wasn't created by critics, it was created by film-makers and supported by small but devoted audiences.
  • by Ghostgate (800445) on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:25PM (#10824996)
    resuming their position behind Samus

    I'm sorry, but that just puts all sorts of naughty ideas into my head!
  • What happened..... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rooked_One (591287) on Monday November 15, 2004 @07:25PM (#10824997) Journal
    to the good old side scrolling games? I mean, we had 3d games isolated to the PC and the side scrollers for consoles, and while some games on the XBOX and PS2 like Sudeki are very cool, they are not first person and save a certain aspect.

    I look at all the people, including me, who would like a side scroller with outstanding graphics - which could be done quite easily, and I don't see it happening.

    Did companies either...

    a - decided that side scrollers aren't popular enough, or

    b - decided that its easier to basically copy the computer industries years of work?

    Sorry for the ran, but i'd just like to see a super graphical mario brothers, or better yet, Metroid. The real metroid - the first one. After they turned it into 3d blasphemy they should have renamed it.

    • I look at all the people, including me, who would like a side scroller with outstanding graphics - which could be done quite easily, and I don't see it happening.

      Get a gamecube. Paper Mario is a side scroller, Viewtiful Joe 1 and 2 are side scrollers.
    • to the good old side scrolling games?

      A lot of them went to the Gameboy Advance... including a remake of the original Metroid, and a new, stellar Metroid Advance. I guess though with the Nintendo DS, they're going to start recycling all the N64 3D games, so that legacy is pretty much over.

      Check out Viewtiful Joe for the Gamecube though - a great reinvention of a sidescrolling game for the modern gameplay ear.

      • by Osty (16825)

        and a new, stellar Metroid Advance

        Did I miss a Metroid game somewhere? Are you referring to Metroid Fusion (a "new" Metroid game in that it's not a remake like Metroid: Zero Mission, but it's not "new" as it was released a few years back)? Some would say that Metroid Fusion was a departure from the normal Metroid formula. The addition of the ship computer giving you missions added a sense of urgency and linearity to the game that other Metroids didn't have. Because of that, you were often limited on

    • Uh, 'Viewtiful Joe [capcom.com]' is a modern sidescroller. It topped the charts here in the UK for a while, so they're still popular. 'Paper Mario' sounds like it might be basically a side scroller, too.
      • 'Paper Mario' is a RPG game in a 3d environment with an unusal graphics style and a nice round-based fight system that still requires timing, but its by far no classic sidescroller. It however contains many mixed in elements of the 'good old days' and makes fun of the older games here an there. But one really shouldn't expect a new MarioBros game of PaperMario, but more kind of like a 'FinalFantasy in comic-look'.
    • Viewtiful Joe is one of the best side scrollers ever.

      Paper Mario looks fun.

      Alien Hominid will rule.
    • Amen to that.

      I *loved* the original metroid series. So when I saw Metroid Prime on the gamecube, I had to have it. While its a pretty nifty game, and still has a lot of the elements of the originals, I felt the controls were cumbersome and distracting. The field of view is horribly narrow, forcing me to spend most of my time running a bit, scanning, running a bit, scanning..

      It might work better if I had a mouse for rapid movements, but it doesn't work well with the standard controller.
    • You mean like Metroid Fusion [nintendo.com] or Metroid Zero Mission [nintendo.com]?

      Given, the graphics aren't necessarliy "outstanding" but the engine is an enhanced SNES port. Zero mission is basically the original metroid, extended, with SNES graphics.

    • As others have mentioned, there's Viewtiful Joe, as well as the GBA Metroid games. I also hear that Gradius V is supposed to be a pretty good version of the old 2D space shooters...
    • Check out Viewtiful Joe. It's a 3D side scroller. You control the character as if the game were a pure side scroller, but he sometimes turns corners and the graphics are 3D, which is an interesting combination and it makes it a fun game :)
    • You want duke nukem manhattan project. A bit old now, but still cool. It plays a lot like the old 2d duke scrollers.
    • to the good old side scrolling games?

      You mean games like Viewtiful Joe [capcom.com]? They're still around. Plus there's a ton more 2D games on Gameboy if that's your interest. They also happen to have outstanding graphics, witness Castlevania Aria of Sorrow.

      There's also many genres of games besides platformers and action games that are not affected by 3D: sports, racing, puzzles, RPG. Yes, I miss games emphasizing detailed enviornments and music rather than the novelty of navigating a 3D world with a 2D device,

    • The easiest way to get today the 'daily fix' of sidescrolling action on a Gamecube is to get a GameBoyPlayer to play all the GameBoyAdvance games on it, since thats where the sidescrolling games are today. It won't look much better (lower res, but more colors and effects) then SNES games ten years ago, but I for one had much more fun with MetroidFusion than with MetroidPrime.

      The reason why they aren't doing any 3d games is probally because they simply sell less, or well, if marketing department thinks they
    • Side scrollers aren't completely dead.
      R-Type Final [gamespot.com] is an amazingly good (and faithful to the original) side-scroller for the Playstation 2. It combines the 3D engine with the side-scrolling genre to produce some amazing effects.

      Also note in the gamespot review for Metroid Prime 2 that there are certain side-scrolling elements in it as well. The example they gave is a boss that you fight in ball-mode from a fixed, 2D perspective.

      That strikes me as a cool hack. I don't see why games should pin themselve
    • by tukkayoot (528280)
      Though I agree with you to a certain extent, that there aren't enough quality sidescrollers out there, I really do think that the jump to 3D has greatly improved the Metroid Series. There have already been several good sidescrolling Metroid games (although I never was really a fan of the series until MP), I think it's good that they continue to experiment and take the game in a somewhat different direction.

      Metroid Prime is probably overall favorite console game to date. I guess it might be "blasphemy" t

    • Metroid Fusion is an excellent side-scroller, to start off with.
  • SCREW ATTACK! (Score:4, Informative)

    by Jace of Fuse! (72042) on Monday November 15, 2004 @08:25PM (#10825485) Homepage
    Just two words...

    SCREW ATTACK!

    YES YES YES!

    It has made it's way into Metroid Prime 2!!!

    I loved the first one, and literally went without sleep for days playing it, even replaying it on hard!

    My only real complaint was the lack of Screw Attack! And it's in there now!!!!!
    • Ok, that frightens me a little bit...

      While the screw attack does, indeed, r0x0r your b0x0rz, it is, at it's core, a "flip" move (thus the name).

      I REALLY hope I don't have to land jumps while flipping in First-Person mode...
    • Hmm... So what happens when you combine the Screw Attack with "... resuming their position behind Samus' computer-enhanced visor."?

      Apparently, a good game. Hopefully, a good naughty game. :)

      Metroid Hentai... You know you want to play it..
  • My 2 Cents (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ripbruger (312644) on Monday November 15, 2004 @08:46PM (#10825638) Homepage Journal
    I've been reading the comments posted before this one, and I have to agree with a few in that the tag line left behind my gamespot puts a negative slant on the game. At the same time, I've read the complaints that others have posted about how this is just an incremental update; and I don't disagree with that claim either. The way I look at it, however, is that at least when I go to drop $60 (that's Canadian $) on the game, I'm not going to be overly disappointed. I really loved the first game, and I'd be kinda P.O.'ed if the game was way different than the original.
    It's the same when playing something like Half-Life 2; while I agree the game is big, and has a lot of hype behind it, it's still a continuation of the gameplay in the original game. The difference between Metroid Prime and Half Life, is that one had a longer development time than the other, so you're going to see more changes on the technical level.
    I guess it doesn't matter what the reason is why you like or don't like the game, it's how much fun you have with it, and how much you're willing to invest in future releases. The people who like the series will most likely buy the game. Those that don't, obviously won't. I really can't see why people have to complain about something they're not going to play or bother with.
  • Sequence breaking? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Spleener12 (587422) * on Monday November 15, 2004 @10:50PM (#10826444)
    I'm curious as to whether or not Retro managed to make this game as sequence-breakable as its predecessors.

    Prime contained a lot of ways to do things out of order to the point where it was possible to finish the game in a little over an hour (impressive given the fact that it's designed to be done in 7-15 or so). But then someone between them and the Nintendo higher-ups (I'd like to think it was Nintendo) ordered as many of these to be removed as possible in later (PAL, Japanese, NA Player's Choice) versions- for example, in the original it was possible to get to the Plasma beam room without the Spider Ball or the Grappling beam, but in the Player's Choice version there was a lock placed on the door to the room that went away when you got the grappling beam. I'm surprised you didn't get a picture of a middle finger when you scanned the thing.

    Hopefully over time people will discover as many ways to sequence-break Prime 2 as they did Prime 1. At the very least it won't be as bad as Fusion in this regard.

  • My hopes for MP2E (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Argon Sloth (655369)
    Like many other posters, I was utterly appalled when I heard Prime would be a FPS. It didn't turn out to be, but it was very close. After seeing the reviews, I was prompted to play it. Once I reached Flaagra, I became a convert. As think was officially added into the standard FPS formula of point & shoot. The one thing I found missing, however, was the game still felt too linear to me, for something labelled Metroid. I noticed Fusion had the same problem. The key powerups must be found in a set order.
  • I have two friends that played Metroid Prime for 12 or more hours a day for 3 weeks straight, and still didn't get anywhere near done with it (I think they said roughly half-way through).

    If you think the mazes in the original Metroid films were convoluted and long, you've seen nothing yet. The Metroid Prime 2 game needs a better map system so it's not frustrating and maze-like.
    • Re:dear god (Score:4, Funny)

      by Hormonal (304038) on Tuesday November 16, 2004 @10:11AM (#10829455) Homepage
      Were your friends dropped as children? Microwaved? Eat a lot of paint? If they couldn't make their way through the game with a map that often shows the next objective, perhaps it's because they kept drooling on the controller, making things hard to control.

      Methinks they played the game so ferociously because they couldn't find their way out of the room with the TV, and nobody checked on them for 3 weeks.

  • Memories... (Score:3, Funny)

    by DaneelGiskard (222145) on Tuesday November 16, 2004 @02:59AM (#10827649) Homepage
    ...I played the original Metroid on the NES...and I loved it...along with Ikarus...Zelda...Ice Breaker was great too ;-) Maybe I should get a console again :-)

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