In late 2007, Retro Studios developer and team member behind the Metroid Prime series Paul Tozer pitched the idea of Metroid Tactics, a Metroid title with game play similar to Fire Emblem or XCOM.
“It’s basically XCOM,” explains Tozer. “It was XCOM in the Metroid Universe except instead of fighting aliens, you’re fighting Space Pirates – who are also aliens but different.”
In similar style to Fire Emblem, Samus would have been the main character among an array of other soldiers fighting under the authority of the galactic federation commander named Justin Bailey, a throwback to a password for the original Metroid title on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) which removed Samus power suit.
It seems the developer was embarrassed by the name he chose some 15 years ago. “It even has a name for him,” Tozer chagrines. “I’m not going to repeat. Pretty stupid name.”
Unfortunately, the game concept was scrapped by Retro Studios and Nintendo never had an opportunity to hear the pitch. It is considered unlikely that Nintendo would have approved the game anyway, but perhaps they should have seeing that other Wii Metroid titles such as Metroid: Other M were so infamously disliked by fans.
Metroid Tactics would have been a “relatively cheap” project, laments Tozer, as the game could have utilized much of the Metroid Prime engine along with other assets from the earlier games.
For everyone who loves games like Final Fantasy Tactics and Fire Emblem, Metroid Tactics would have likely been a hit. Using the Wii’s motion controls, “the player can hire new units and upgrade all of the units in his team with many different kinds of new armor, weapons, skills, and abilities,” describes Tozer.
“GF [Galactic Federation] troopers will be able to equip pistols, duel pistols, assault rifles, heavy machine guns, sniper rifles, grenades, proximity mines, health paks, smoke grenades, and a great deal of recovered space pirate weaponry. As they level up, they will be able to select skills that increase their accuracy with specific weapons, provide additional action points to spend in combat, allow them to detect enemies at a greater range, or improve their ability to heal wounded comrades.” – Metroid Tactics Pitch Document
Story-wise, the game would have taken place before all other Metroid installments, “long before all other games in the Metroid series”.
“It marks the very moment when Samus Aran first separates from the Chozo who raised her from childhood, encounters humanity and becomes a bounty hunter. The game also marks humankind’s very first encounter with the Space Pirates and Metroids.”
Sounds pretty awesome to me.
For the rest of the story, check out Did You Know Gaming?‘s original video:
This article (“Metroid Tactics” – The Rejected Wii Title Pitched by Former Retro Studios Developer) originally appeared at Phillip Schneider and may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author credit, and this copyright statement.