Metroid Dread is the Metroid franchise’s long-awaited return to its roots as a side-scrolling 2D-platformer. It’s the fourteenth game in Nintendo’s successful space franchise, and it’s available exclusively on the Nintendo Switch.
As well-received as some of the 3D installments have been, particularly 2002’s Metroid Prime, fans and gaming commentators have been waiting for Metroid to return to its classic format for years. In fact, this game has been 15 years in the making. Metroid Dread was initially developed in the mid-2000s for the Nintendo DS, but the platform’s technical limitations led to its cancellation. After Metroid: Samus Returns was released on the 3DS in 2017, Yoshio Sakamoto, who has steered the franchise since 1986’s original, got MercurySteam to bring Dread back to life.
Metroid Dread is a direct sequel to Metroid Fusion, the last Metroid side-scroller released on Gameboy Advance in 2002. It picks up the action-adventure story after famed bounty hunter Samus Aran has wiped out the lethal X parasites and destroyed planet SR388. When a video transmission reveals the X parasites may not be as dead as they thought, the Galactic Federation dispatch Samus to planet ZDR to investigate. It’s not long before Samas loses her suit upgrades and her way back to the planet’s surface after a fierce battle with a mysterious figure in a Chozo Power Suit. Ominously, the Chozo are the ancient alien species responsible for the creation of Metroids.
While Dread is a return to the side-scrolling gameplay of classic Metroid games, it also incorporates free aim and melee attacks, as seen in Samus Returns. Players will also need to get stealthy when an underpowered Samus avoids indestructible EMMI robots that arrived on the planet just before her.
How Long is Metroid Dread?
As fans of the franchise will expect, players can choose different ways to play Metroid Dread. Depending on whether players complete just the main story or all the extras, they can expect to finish the game in seven to nine hours. Completionists determined to meet every goal and collect all the items available in the game can expect to spend about 11 hours on Dread.
However, some may be irritated by a quirk in the game’s time recording. The in-game system doesn’t pick up time spent replaying any missions. So, If you want to record your accurate game time, you’ll need to do it manually.