Reviews from

in the past

While I wouldn’t consider it as great as future installments, and while it is definitely outshined by its remake, the original Metroid is still a classic of the NES library, and it still holds up somewhat to this day. And of course, Nintendo being Nintendo, after seeing the success of the original Metroid, they went right ahead to developing a sequel. Unlike the sequels to Nintendo’s other games, however, this one would be released after a five-year gap of no games (which, let’s be real, Metroid fans are pretty used to at this point), and it would be developed for exclusively for the Game Boy. Makes sense, considering the producer of Metroid 1 and 2, Gunpei Yokoi, was the main creator of the system in the first place. So, after plenty of time, Nintendo then released Metroid II: Return of Samus.
As a follow-up to the original Metroid, as well as the first handheld title in the series, it manages to do a pretty damn good job at improving on the formula of the original, as well as being a great game all in its own right. Sure, I wouldn’t say it is too great, as certain problems still linger, along with new ones popping up in this installment, but it is still a pretty good continuation for the series.
The story is similar to the first, while also changing it up to where it feels unique, and makes the player want to dive right in and eliminate every Metroid in sight, the graphics are Game Boy graphics, but the sprite work is some of the best that the system offers, and it holds up extremely well, the music (and by that, I mean like the two to three real music tracks in the game) is not only pretty good, but also provides a great sense of atmosphere that not too many other Game Boy games can provide, the control is pretty good, even if it still feels a bit stiff, and the gameplay improves upon the original while keeping the same style and flow as the original, which I appreciate for a game like this.
The game follows a pretty similar formula to that of the original Metroid, where you travel through numerous caverns in the planet SR388, defeating enemies and bosses, taking out every Metroid you can find, collecting new items and upgrades to make yourself stronger, with minor beats of storytelling also present to keep the player intrigued as they keep going, such as Metroid carcasses lying around the environment, as well as the many different mutations that the Metroids can take. The selection of items this time around is pretty good, bringing back a lot of the same powerups from the original, as well as adding more that will become staples in the series, such as the Space Jump, the Spider Ball, and the Varia Suit, and with these new items and upgrades comes new changes to Samus herself, which are a welcome change from the original. Not only is her suit upgraded to what would become her most iconic version, but also you can now crouch, aim up and aim down in this game, making taking on enemies MUCH easier, and more satisfying overall.
In addition, the bosses this time around are also pretty memorable. While there aren’t that many, with the Metroids taking center stage for most of the game, the few that we fight are fun to fight, while also providing a good amount of challenge, especially with the Queen Metroid at the end of the game, with her design being the best in the entire game. Alongside her, the many different Metroids that you fight in the game are definitely the highlights of the game in terms of designs, which are amplified with you being able to witness them “evolve” into these forms as you encounter them, making them a more menacing and memorable threat.
Finally, if there is one thing that I will give this game a lot of props for, it is how it guides the player through the game. While there are no waypoints or maps, the game is structured in a way to where you will never get truly lost whenever you maneuver through the caverns, and if you just dedicate enough time to exploration, you will find your way to finding the Metroids that you need to eliminate. Thankfully, this is also aided with how a lot of the upgrades and items aren’t too out in the open, so it still encourages you to search around and explore more, to benefit the most from what you could find in the caverns. Yes, it is still a bit of a guide game, but it isn’t quite as bad as the original, at least in my opinion.
Now, with all that said, some problems are fixed in this installments, and with those out the door, new problems arise, with my main new issue being the main method of progression through the game. As I have mentioned plenty of times, you need to eliminate all of the Metroids not only to beat the game, but to also explore more of the planet to find more items, upgrades, and Metroids. However, as you would expect, this gets extremely repetitive and tiring after a while. Sure, the new Metroids you encounter keep you on your toes and keep you guessing as you play, but that doesn’t stop the game from getting repetitive, even after encountering these new Metroids.
Not just that, but there is still the problem of where you cannot carry all items at once. Sure, there are plenty of improvements in terms of Samus’s arsenal, such as having the Long Beam, missiles, and the Morph Ball immediately from the start, but you still cannot hold the Wave Beam, Plasma Beam, Spazer Beam, and Ice Beam all at once. You can only have one, and considering how the entire game is about killing Metroids, there should only be one beam that you would need throughout the entire game, making most of the other beams worthless in the long run. There are other minor issues that I have with the game, such as me taking a lot of damage at once a lot of times in the game, but that is just a skill issue, not something wrong with the game.
Overall, while it does still have its issues, this is a great improvement over the original Metroid, and a great sequel and continuation of the series. With that being said though, you would still be better off playing the remakes of the game rather than the original, fan-made or official.
Game #151

Released on : GameBoy
played on : PC (Mesen)
What i liked :
I was looking foward to playing this one, hoping it would be a improvement at the so-so first game, and in some aspects it very much is.
once again venturing with a fan map to guide me through its smaller dungeon felt just as fun.
the planet is a bit smaller, and thats not a bad thing, its done before it becomes infuriating.
i like samus more chunky armored look, everything got that little unf in the height and art area, even the power ups received an upgrade, tho some are a bit clunky to use, and the beams still are worthless at the final boss.
i like how the creatures evolve, tho it comes to bite my ass at the end.
ThE bAbY !
What i didn't liked :
this is indeed an improvement of the first game but by god, some areas got even worse, you can and will softlock yourself in some areas if you don't have enough missiles or health to deal with it.
the last form of the metroids can go touch grass, how are people supposed to deal with it.
the bigger sprites do look nice, but they come at the expense of the camera sometimes hiding things coming straight towards you most of the time.
Overall : This is an improvement to the first game but still a meh experience that if you don't seek outside help like a map or guide, it will give you a very hard time, its frustrating but not in a fair way, but i somehow can't bring myself to dislike it like i do for the first game, both i respect, but don't have to enjoy, if that makes any sense, this one i like a bit better however, i can't wait to try super metroid and the remakes, specially AM2R

(This is the 48th game in my challenge to go through many known games in chronological order starting in 1990. The spreadsheet is in my bio.)
I think if you're looking to get into the much-beloved Metroid series for the first time, Metroid II: Return of Samus (Dev: Nintendo R&D1 / Pub: Nintendo) won't be the best place to start. The game released in November 1991 for the Game Boy, unlike the original which came out for the NES, and if you really don't want to pass by this game, you would probably be best served going for its remake from 2017 for the Nintendo 3DS.
The game isn't 'objectively bad', not even close actually, but it suffers from pretty much all the lack of QoL features that you'd expect from games of this time. This makes it tough to play unless you don't mind looking for the way forward for, potentially, hours at a time, and even then, the future releases will serve you with much more enjoyable gameplay in pretty much every way. But all of that I talk about in detail below.
As in the original, you play Samus Aran, who is a Space Hunter working for the Galactic Federation. Her goal is once again to go to the planet SR388, where she is to exterminate the remaining Metroids after both a ship full of researchers and armed soldiers went missing. All of this can be found in the manual. In the game, you press START and are immediately loaded in and stand in front of your ship and are not given any further information.
The main things you will take away from this game in terms of story/characters are the following
Samus is a badass character just simply based on design and she gets shit done when others can't (not unlike many other one hero vs the world games, but effective)
The fact that there was no color for the Game Boy meant that the devs had to add the round metal shoulder pads to differentiate between her Power Suit and Varia Suit, a feature that has stayed with Samus ever since
POSSIBLE SPOILER: The ending cliffhanger, without dialogue and voice acting, is really well done. Samus finds an egg of a Metroid hatchling, which follows her to her ship. What will this cause in the sequel?
So Metroid II doesn't really do much different from many other platformers / Action Adventure types like this in terms of story, but it does manage to stand out a bit thanks to its ending and its main character.
You will most likely be familiar with the Metroid formula by now. Start with limited abilities, explore multi-pathed levels multiple times by leveraging new abilities that you gain constantly as you progress. It's a pretty popular genre, and Metroid games pretty much pioneered them. Unfortunately, early iterations come with some growing pains as the developers looked to find a balance of their vision and what they could realistically expect players to be willing to push through.
Before we get there, here is the gist of how this game plays. You control Samus in a 2D side-scrolling game where you can shoot projectiles, jump and even roll up into a ball to squeeze through holes. Your goal is to traverse this map and find all Metroids, which are parasitic creatures that, unsurprisingly, form the main enemy types in this series. Throughout your journey you get access to new skills and attacks, which not only allow you to stand a chance against later bosses, but to also unlock areas that were previously inaccessible.
I personally have a mixed relationship with Metroidvanias, though "utility-gated progression" usually isn't my main issue but rather the convoluted design of the maps and/or the gameplay itself, and both creep up their ugly heads here as well, though I can excuse it much more for a 30 year old game rather than some of the newer entries into the genre.
Firstly, this is a Game Boy game, and unlike the NES version, Samus covers 1/4 of the screen here, which from the get-go makes for an awkward affair when trying to dodge enemies reliably. Her jumps are not sensitive to button presses at all, so you need to press JUMP quite a while in order to make a long jump, and in areas where platforms are separated by some sort of health-evaporating substance in between, these jumps can become quite unreliable and hence frustrating.
Frustrating is actually a big thing with this game. The reason why you want to take hits as few times as possible is because there are few save points here and they are pretty far from each other, so you will constantly find yourself warp all the way back to the checkpoint whenever you die. And due to the level amount of health you're playing with, you'll find yourself die a lot. There are no immediate do-overs. Die and you go all the way back.
The worst part however is the fact that there is no map. So you either have to draw the map along as you play or have great memory. Plus, progress forward isn't as cut and dry as moving forward. Sometimes, progressing means finding some randomly placed hole in a wall that you can only reach by turning into the balled-up shape I was just talking about. It doesn't help that many areas look exactly the same in this game, adding to the confusion of it all.
Overall, the concept of this series I definitely like. This one just didn't age well and I don't know how children at the time could possibly beat this unless they'd spend dozens and dozens of hours of running through walls and having to rely on magazine guides, and whether it's fun to have to use those sources to beat a game is in the eye of the beholder I suppose.
No voice acting. There is an interesting that happens from time to time where the music simply cuts off and you're left playing for a while whilst just listening to the sound effects. It's odd on the one hand, but satisfying on the other because I actually like the various sound effects that you hear, whether it's shooting your projectiles, the sound of each step you take, collecting items and some beep sounds that play that apparently are part of the "Caverns 1 Theme". Whenever the music does play, you've got to understand the limitations of the Game Boy sound engine. So what they managed to do with that is pretty impressive. Obviously, if you give a listen to the 3DS remake OST, you'll see what increased technical capabilities will allow you to do, but the soundtrack here plays into the atmosphere of the levels very well here, and gets downright eerie whenever you get into a boss fight. In contrast, the surface of SR388 theme sounded a bit too playful to me, but I get it considering that's the music that kids will spend most of their time listening to. Do you dare and get further into the game than you're expected to? That's where you are met with tracks that match the increased tension and where this gets a lot more atmospheric.
If you rate this based on the capabilities of the Game Boy, the game doesn't look all too bad. If you rate it compared to what you would have gotten had this been an SNES game, it doesn't rate quite well. If you go somewhere down the middle, you can appreciate that this game was the reason that the Samus sprite got changes to it that would last until today, that the Metroids look positively disgusting and .. well yeah, that's pretty much it. The blackground is simply black, levels look very similar in design, the sprite size of Samus looks kind of awkward and creating holes in walls that hide progress and not giving any graphical indicator that something might be behind there is just an odd choice. And overall, the game simply doesn't look so good due to being a Game Boy game, which you might like yourself but is what I'd call an "acquired/nostalgic taste".
The game does a pretty good job actually of throwing you into hostile territory filled with vile and disgusting creatures. Whenever the non-music track plays or the tracks that hit the eerie tones of the graphical presentation play, this can become quite atmospheric and immersive, and downright scary I'd imagine for young gamers whenever a Metroid is chasing you down.
CONTENT | 5/10
Many different abilities that you can get your hands on as you play the game. The journey there can be rough however, as you will spend many hours trying to figure out where to go next, which some might call intentional and I'd call boring and not well executed here. Apart from that, there isn't much content here, but if you enjoy the bashing your head against walls aspect of it, this will be enough to keep you occupied for a dozen hours+.
I appreciate the idea behind this game of having to traverse a hostile environment and find your way through it without any hand-holding. Unfortunately, my idea of a fun game is in contrast to what the game design philosophy of Metroid's creators is, at least for the early entries in the series. No map is tough on its own, but progress hidden in walls (forcing you to check every wall), same looking areas and abilities that don't control all that well (the spider ability) makes for too many (subjective) issues here.
The concept remains intriguing, though I'd say the sequel has not yet gotten it to where it will eventually go in this series.
There isn't really any particular reason/motivation given for replaying this. Chances are, if you somehow beat this, you'll be satisfied and ready to move on.
The game worked well at all times.
OVERALL | 53/100
Unless you really enjoyed the original or really, really enjoyed the later entries in the Metroid series, I think this game is very skippable. Even if you did enjoy later Metroid games, you will likely miss the QoL features that will be introduced later. What this game does well is create a tense atmosphere, but I would agree that that's the gist of it, unless you are a big fan of the concept of hitting early wall to see if you can go through some of them, or if you enjoy drawing a map as you go. Otherwise, you will likely have to rely on guides to make progress, and have to do so many times. So right now I would call this a good proof on concept, just like the original, but the next step hasn't really been taken yet in my opinion.

an improvement in many ways - better art and animation, expanded and improved mechanics, more engaging and thoughtfully designed boss encounters - and a step back in a few others, namely the level design. not nearly as cohesive as the first game, which so beautifully imparted the sense that samus was learning how to navigate this vast interconnected alien lair over the course of the playthrough. the areas here being connected by barriers that crumble after you kill a certain number of metroids, as opposed to elevators that you can only access once you’ve acquired key abilities, feels like some video game nonsense and, for me, makes for a much less immersive and convincing experience. the individual areas themselves, while certainly more ambitious than the first game, are not as satisfying to master, either. they’re split between massive and cavernous spaces that feel overly laborious to explore and tiny, linear hallways that don’t offer anything in the way of exploration with very little in between. the game boy aesthetic definitely doesn’t help here; on a moment to moment basis monochrome suits the material quite well, at its best delivering a sense of desolation, loneliness, and dread (seriously underrated how well these work as horror experiences) that the first game can’t match, but it starts to feel a little…stale over the course of 4 hours (or however long it takes you). there’s just very little room for variance visually or mood-wise and the game is exceedingly difficult to navigate on account of every room looking more or less the same…i should be clear that the game is pretty terrific in spite of all this, would be hard to completely bungle the formula i’d imagine and it generally plays better than it’s predecessor which already played just about perfectly. it’s just a bit frustrating since the pieces for a truly transcendent sequel are all in place and for a number of reasons it can’t quite get there. ah well, maybe next time

The original metroid on nes isn't the most flattering game out there, it has its rough edges but I can ultimately appreciate what it goes for and it's place in gaming history. So, it was a shock to my system that the metroid game on gameboy (essentially a portable nes) was actually a considerable step up from its console counterpart.
I know its odd to call a gameboy game atmospheric but Metroid II finds a way. The faint hints of music sounding like the organic life of this alien planet, the fantastic spritework and art direction, and the black and grey color pallet of the gameboy pocket really elevate the feeling of exploring deeper and deeper into the depths of an underground cave.
This is all just to say that Metroid II is a survival horror game. Encountering a metroid borders on being a jumpscare, with the mutated aliens making their presence known with their harsh and sudden theme contrasting brightly with the atmospheric tunes prior. The metoids' freakish mutations as you delve further into the caves of SR388 also don't let up and can kill you at a moments notice if you aren't on your toes. Just like a good ol' classic survival horror!
This may be one of the most linear metroid games, if not the most linear. However it's linearity encourages exploration as you explore left behind ancient ruins and hunt down every single last metroid hiding in the caves. It feels like every single nook and cranny rewards your exploration with some goodies. The constant stream of abilities you gain all feel meaningful towards further expanding your moveset, and are fun to experiment and play around with. The exploration ties beautifully with the gameplay, which is a significant step from Metroid I. Finally being able to crouch and shoot in more direction feels like a relative breath of fresh air combined with the tight movement.
Overall, Metroid II is a classic example on how you shouldn't judge a book by its cover. "How good can it really be? It's just a gameboy game after all," I foolishly thought before playing. But Metroid II proves to be a great time throughout, despite some annoying Metroid moments™ here and there.

é impressionante como conseguiram fazer uma ambientação assim num GameBoy

More solid and stream-lined than the first, but it's not quite there yet. It's more linear and the bosses can be a bit repetitive, but the new upgrades Samus gets are a nice addition to the series.

The first two Metroid games did not age well. The 3DS remake is much more enjoyable, even though this version still has its merits.

Super underrated but still flawed for sure. Probably the best thing is the atmosphere this game makes. There's such an eerie, claustrophobic feeling you get plunging deep into the caverns of an alien world, hunting for metroids that are gradually becoming stronger and more horrifying as you progress. And the ending sequence is incredibly cinematic and terrifying for a Game Boy game from 1991. But the fact that most rooms look exactly the same so you get lost easily and the somewhat clunky controls make it a bit hard to recommend. But if you can push through all that, this game is a great experience for any Metroid fan

I didn't play this game back in the Game Boy days and it is pretty rough to play today on the Switch's emulator. It's no wonder we've gotten both a great official and unofficial remake for it. I shouldn't be too hard on it though. It was doing some cool stuff for the Game Boy. It feels pretty atmospheric with some interesting music and you do feel like you're descending into this scary alien planet. Unfortunately, the lack of map and all the environments looking very similar (especially when it never got a colour version for the GBC) make it incredibly difficult to navigate. I know getting lost can sometimes be the point of these games but when you can't discern one area from another, it just becomes a frustrating experience. I did still get some enjoyment from hunting down all the metroids despite the repetition. I'm glad to have played through it but any revisit will be through either of the remakes.

If there ever was some good to come out of the NSO service, it would be the new opportunity to find out just how much Game Boy games rule. After enjoying Wario Land 4, the Japanese app's catalog planning to include the never localized The Frog for Whom the Bell Tolls was the kick I needed to finally find it on the information superhighway, and it was a blast too. The misadventures of the Prince of Sable (Note that hurts me to write: the Assist Trophy guy that turns into a frog) got me thinking about how the console's library tends to stick out from a lot of Nintendo's usual lineup. I was originally going to write something longer about that game itself, pointing to how Game Boy games having a smaller technical scope, and perhaps a looser leash than their console counterparts, could enable them to explore more unique narratives. In particular, the role of the protagonist is oddly subversive across the library. The aforementioned and often incompetent Prince of Sable, the way in which the Mario Land series was supplanted by its own antagonist, or even the bittersweet nature of Link's quest in Link's Awakening. But I could never really get beyond that thesis statement. Sure, I could point out how telling it was that the Prince had to buy his own transformation items, but nothing ever came together in an interesting way.
Well, the latest game for the system that I played, Metroid II: Return of Samus, turned out to be the final piece of the puzzle I was trying to construct from my previous thoughts. This comes in part from how cruel and callous the whole journey felt, distorting the role of a video game hero well beyond the lighter satires of Mario and Zelda I had checked out before. It's a game where the only goal is to exterminate the whole species of the Metroids, a fact that even the UI makes inescapable with the everpresent Metroid counter. The act of fighting these bosses should characterize the whole experience, and the game chooses to make them rather static and predictable fights in which you blast them apart with missiles. Especially as I found the Varia Suit, these creatures who were supposed to pose an unknowable threat in the last game devolved into a pretty mindless chore. The original Metroid didn't have particularly interesting bosses, but the likes of Kraid and Mother Brain at least put up a fight. Here, what you would expect to be the highlights of the game end up being a curbstomp, and I think that's telling of the kind of story they were going for.
In games, combat often empowers and uplifts the player by having them overcome obstacles, marking your proficiency and domination over the game's systems. The Metroidvania genre in general loves to use your ever expanding arsenal to facilitate a power trip in locations where you once struggled. However, Game Boy games, running on hardware far less suitable to twitchy action than the contemporary SNES, often deemphasize the role a player has in fighting through their play space. Wario, for instance, does not get damaged by enemies at all in his second and third outings, as an effort to alleviate the problem of enemies bumrushing your small screen in the likes of Super Mario Land 2. Without the stakes of violence inflicted upon him, enemies often serve as minor inconveniences or puzzle solutions rather than something to gain instant gratification from besting. Likewise, the Prince of Sable's cartoon dustcloud slapfights are purely automated, doing more to characterize him as feeble yet well-meaning than as to reward the player. In Samus Aran's case, the rote boss fights deglamorize the violence she is committing towards the Metroids. It takes relatively little effort to blast these creatures out of existence, all the while hearing their singular cry of pain. The fights in the game's 3DS remake would contrast this simplicity, obscuring a lot of this violence behind complex aiming challenges and flashy cutscenes. Meanwhile, the barren fights of the original leave no room to hide the brutality of your hunt.
If the Metroids can't stop Samus, then nothing else stands a ghost of a chance. The wildlife of the planet are often just weird and in the way, and it's almost trivial to rip most of them to shreds. Even outside of the creatures, the whole space of SR388 feels incredibly disposable. Part of this owes to the linear structure, where you rarely have any reason to look back unless you're in dire need of a recharge station. Beyond that, though, SR388 itself is characterized as being irrelevant. Outside of long decayed Chozo temples, there's no culture that can be deemed as significant. There's hardly any backgrounds either, further decreasing the vibrancy of this world. Even the name is based on the convention we assign to (presumably) uninhabited celestial bodies in real life. Each bit of this design contextualizes this planet as an empty husk to run over in pursuit of your mission, with no need to regret anything caught in the crossfires. Sure, the Metroids seem to be relatively sustainable predators on the food chain of SR388, as most life does just fine staying out of their nests. But yet the political tensions of completely separate planets necessitate that this natural equilibrium gets demolished with no regard for any consequences. From what I've learned of this series through cultural osmosis, that will probably not go so well in the future.
Outside of the violence represented through gameplay, one thing that stands out about this adventure is the soundtrack. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say soundscape, as when leaving the overworld theme, much of the songs devolve into discordant beeps. As these weirder tracks play in the areas more inhabited by the Metroids, they enhance the unease of hunting them down. The low health sound also stood out to me as having this unbridled annoying smoke alarm energy, droning on constantly and even warping in pitch based on health. I can't even put into words how these sounds get so... invasive in my own thoughts, the kind of thing that just makes me think way too much about what's going on. Even the ever sudden return back into the overworld track functions more like a gasp of fresh air than simply getting back to a better tune. It's certainly a hard sell, but I can't think of a better way to capture the soul-crushing mundanity of Samus's mission.
And that's probably how I'd describe Return of Samus as a whole. The Game Boy's low fidelity works full throttle to wipe away the heroics you would expect from most Metroid games, leaving you on your own to think about how it feels to go along with this extermination. I finally understand why there's been so much discussion of this game on the Internet, as it leaves so many interesting ideas up to interpretation. Even the final twist of sparing the baby Metroid feels so open ended as to the motive that it's hard to pin a particular meaning to it. It's no wonder that a game that accomplishes so much in such a small form factor stuck with people enough to be remembered so many years later, to the point of getting remade twice. That being said, I kind of doubt the ability of either successor to replicate the sorts of emotions I got from this game. While the work on both is admirable, I've already expressed my issues with Samus Returns, and AM2R seems to play much more in line with the sort of thrills you'd get out of Super Metroid. Throughout the years of the Metroid series and the discussion surrounding it, Metroid II: Return of Samus remains a one of a kind beacon of the Game Boy, and reflects everything I find special about the console's lineup.

honestly, i went into this game assuming i'd hate it, and yeah it's really outdated and can be frustrating sometimes (COUGH QUEEN METROID COUGH) but I honestly had a great time with it. its pretty linear, which would usually be a downside for a metroid game, but considering the lack of a map, i think it helped. still, if you're gonna play any version of metroid 2, just play samus returns or am2r, they are much better experiences.

A game solely focused on committing genocide should not have any right being this fun, but here we are

Samus never really returned to my childhood gaming life since the day I first met them back on the NES, it was quite a hole there between that and 2002, aka The Year Metroid Beat Everyone's Ass. Metroid II for all intents and purposes was just the cover for the box of the Super Game Boy, that was everything I knew it as. Just the front of a piece of cardboard that I saw at some store or in a JC Penny catalog maybe. It existed, that's all I knew.
I have many bones to pick with the way Nintendo treats it's back catalog of classics and oddities, but if there's any silver lining to the dripfeed of past content it's finding a reason to finally give a serious go at Samus' mission to genocide a race of beings for the supposed sake of the galaxy. The final enemies that you were once scared of back on your original adventure are now the sole focus of your mission, and as it turns out those were just the little baby forms. The nightmarish vampire jellyfish can evolve into monstrosities that could no doubt devastate many a civilization.
This is a fight for survival on both ends, it's us or them. It's not pretty.
The sprites are huge and chunky, resulting in screen space being closed in on you. This isn't just the screen, this is the darkness that Samus must traverse as she delves deeper into SR388. There's no telling what's coming up, and you're allowed just the faintest sighting of a Metroid before it spots you and begins it's attack for you to contemplate a battle or to make a strategic retreat to restock. Missiles require more and more care as the Metroids grow stronger and more terrifying as fear begins settling more and more during your first venture into this journey, and the music joins in on making your life go from disturbing to downright hellish with one of my favorite scare chords in recent memory.
Metroid II is a milestone for gaming as a medium, it truly drives home the utter misery that is to carry out a mass killing of other living beings who wouldn't think a second thought to do the same thing to you and your loved ones. It is...dare I say, an early example of Survival Horror. I don't see this game brought up a lot, but it really leans into much of the same pillars of which that genre builds itself upon. You traverse unexplored maps, looking for either dangerous creatures that make your universal counter go down one by one, or energy and ammunition to keep yourself strong to carry out said objective with more confidence. Your little vacation at SR388 begins all fun and games, then only gets more and more visceral as it becomes apparent just how destructive the Metroids truly are with long pathways that bear little to zero life. Violence to end violence...and at the end of all the destruction, an innocent that you can't go through with the killing of....a shred of hope that peace could be theoretically achieved with these lifeforms still intact.
Peace Sells, I'm buying.
Over the course of the 2010s I used to hear a lot of hollering of this game requiring a remake. It got them, all two of them. Personally, I feel once you take the aesthetic of the Game Boy away from Metroid II it dampers the experience a smidgen and it's identity is lost. That fear isn't really there anymore and many AAA-isms get thrown in to make the experience more "epic", which puts a bit of a bad taste in my mouth when the original foundation was to be a legitimately Dreadful experience as opposed to Samus doing kickflips off an Omega Metroid and striking a pose for the camera as the cutscene does the actions for you. Maybe it's just my age showing, but considering I only got to play this seriously recently and formerly brushed it off myself, I think there's legitimacy behind it.
Give this one a go, wait for the sun to go down, close your curtains, and play this on your Switch while under your blanket in your room. Simulate that feeling of a child playing this haunting game alone with only the sounds of that experimental atmospheric soundtrack going off as you wander the caverns of SR388. Perhaps even get a worm light on a Game Boy Color to get the ultimate experience. I don't think you'll regret it. It's an experience I wish I grew up with.
Respect the originals, don't replace them. Admire them.

Metroid games are broken up into two groups: the good ones are 5/5, and the bad ones are 2/5. This is one of the good ones.

be sure to play it on the game boy color palette, NOT the super game boy palette.

i, for one, am very impressed they managed to make a game that is both too confusing AND too linear

Per essere un titolo del Game Boy bisogna fargli i complimenti , ma soffre in buona parte degli stessi problemi di lentezza del primo titolo , anche se meno criptico. La mancanza di una mappa in tunnel così simili e ampi a una certa si fa sentire , anche se questa è più una limitazione tecnica che uno sfavore del titolo. Interessante , ma non benissimo.

Return of Samus was a lot better than I was expecting and is miles better than the og. No menu is weird but surprisingly great controls for the gb

güzel denecek tek övgüm hiçbir metroid oyununda görmediğim spider ball dı
onun hatrına 1 puan oynamayın amk

Would be so much better without that ridiculous difficulty spike in the end.

This franchise did not translate to the game boy at all. Play the remake.

I have very fond memories with this game. As a kid, my first playthrough was done alongside a friend, and we both challenged each other not to look up guides or anything.
We would explore the game and share details with each other when we both got stuck, trying to see who could beat the game first. Whenever I found a cool weapon he hadn’t, I felt a sense of pride. I imagine he felt the same when he showed me where he got an upgrade that I didn’t find.
That said… that’s the only context I hold fondness for and find it hard to return to and replay. The lack of a map was fun for a challenge back then but now it’s just cumbersome, the aspect ratio on the sprites is also not fun to work with. The game is just okay.

Metroid 2 is a fantastic game for the Game Boy. It's full of atmosphere, eerie music, hostile as fuck Metroids, and the kind of very satisfying progression I've grown used to with the previous Metroid. The only problem I see with the game is the lack of a map system can make it frustrating to nevigate. But there's a reason why this game has a dozen fan remakes. It's a pretty stellar Metroid game. Definitely worth the little time it takes on NSO.

Mucho mejor que la primera entrega
Metroid II mejora la mayoría de los fallos que tenía el primer juego. Añade unas cuantas más opciones de movilidad a través y hace que el mapa se sienta no tan repetitivo.
Lo que sí se siente repetitivo es el gameplay, pues consiste en buscar y matar a todos los metroid del planeta, con la excepción de un mini-boss que ahí andaba. Estos metroid tienen diferentes etapas evolutivas pero todas se matan igual: llenandoles la cara de misiles.
El problema aparece cuando se te acaban los recursos ya sea salud o misiles, por que el juego te obliga a darte una vueltota hacia los puntos de recarga, pero es mejor que farmear salud como en el juego pasado.
La música palidece a comparación mucho, no hay ninguna canción que resalte como icónica tanto como en el primer juego, solo como una o dos me gustaron.
Fuera de eso esta bien, mucho mejor y menos tosco que el primero, con buenos power-ups y mejores sprites pero repetitivo en su jugabilidad.
Si lo vas a jugar usa de preferencia un mapa.

It was aight. I can see why a lot of metroid fans don't like it though. It is definitely linear, and the fact that the linear map is also non-euclidean (you pretty much need a pre-made map with this game, drawing this game as it is on paper is literally impossible) makes this not really much of a metroid game in all honestly. If you instead choose to see it like some sort of weird 2D collectathon or something then maybe that might be a better experience. I give a rec since its still pretty badass for an original game boy game, but still a cautious rec if you are a fan of the series or somethin. Maybe try the 3DS remake instead, though I haven't played that yet.

I liked this one but.. I just don't have the drive or desire to finish it. the problem with Metroid 1 and 2 is that even with a map, navigating and playing is still a pain because of how stupid it is to heal. There are healing stations in this game yes but they're so out of the damn way it's like they're not even there at all. I'll leave this one behind unfortunately.

I’m comfortable recommending that new players start with Super Metroid instead, but that isn’t to say I don’t like this game. It’s just that it’s much easier to say I like Metroid 2 now that I’m done with it and not faced with the prospect of having to actually play it again.

Metroid II is an interesting sequel. It makes some changes to the gameplay of the first and introduces things that would become franchise staples like the shoulder pads on the Varia Suit, Screw Attack, Space Jump, and proper save rooms. While those gameplay changes are very much appreciated, just like the first game, it's limited by the hardware it was designed for.
When comparing the two in terms of which is better, I'd almost consider them equals in a lot of ways. But the reason I give the first the edge over this comes down to something that I think is crucial to the series: the music.
Metroid II has some very good tracks. The reoccurring overworld theme is well done in getting you excited about your adventure through SR388, and when it comes back into play later, succeeds at motivating you as the Metroid counter decreases further. Other tracks worth highlighting are the final area, the Queen Metroid's theme, and the lovely piece of music that plays when you and the baby Metroid are heading back to the ship. However, if you noticed what tracks I highlighted, most of them come from the endgame. For a good chunk of the game, it relies heavily on silence and the occasional Game Boy bleeps and boops to have something go on in the background.
Its attempts at trying to be more atmospheric are welcomed, but I don't think it really succeeds in being scary or tense. Never found the Metroid fights intense or exciting. Besides the annoying bastards that are the Omega Metroids, they're nothing special gameplay-wise, but they do have some cool designs. In fact, I dare say that this game is easier than the first because you aren't dealing with old-school jankiness as much as you did in the NES original.
Having finished both Metroid I and II, it's pretty clear to see why these got the remake treatment. In Metroid II's case, it happened twice. The game continues to build upon the foundation of the original to help solidify the series' identity, but like its predecessor, its successors do a much better job at refining the formula. Also like its predecessor, this is really only worth checking out if you're a die hard Metroid fan. Besides that, check out either of the 2 remakes, which I will get to soon.
(Still figuring out what to do about Samus Returns but we'll cross that bridge when we get there.)