Super Metroid Redux


Last updated Saturday, August 06th, 2011

I’ve been wanting to make a video game since I was thirteen years old. I remember rushing to Waterbury’s house to get into Klik & Play on his Windows 3.1 Packard Bell; a simple 2D sprite-based game creation engine capable of simple animations, gravity physics, and action scripts and procedures. We tried all sorts of ideas; from pseudo space shooter like Star Fox to an all inclusive game character fighter like Smash Brothers.

Lately, I’ve been dying to get into the game industry. After all, I went to school for animation; working for a game studio has always been a dream of mine. Reality, though, obviously fares a bit different. Although I absolutely love my current job, I still always have those daydreams of working on the next big title in the game industry.

Super Metroid Redux is my attempt to use my skills to remake a section (or eventually more) of my favorite game of all time, Super Metroid, to look like something from the 32bit gaming generation. Basically what I’m aiming for is a visual answer to a question like, "What if Super Metroid was developed for the Sega Saturn or PlayStation?"

The following segments represent the state of progress of this project at the time of that update’s creation. Tourian, the final "zone" of the game, takes you deep into the stomach of the planet Zebes. Its industrial design is what appealed to me because I’m fond of the more mechanical look and feel it has. Also, the slightly more organic section would be a good introduction to that area of design. The weeds, rolling sands, and mummified ash statues of the planet’s creatures will definitely test my skill. Luckily that part comes second! ;)

Metroid’s 25th Anniversary - Super Metroid Redux teaser | Video created 01.29.2009

Today marks the 25th Anniversary of the release of Metroid! The infamous video game created a whole new genre of gaming and a whole new generation of gamers exactly 25 years ago. I celebrate the day by reviving the long lost project, Super Metroid Redux!

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Metroid Model Started | Images created 05.28.2009

Started working on this model the other day and really didn’t like how it was turning out. I made some tweaks to it tonight just before posting.

Super Metroid Redux - Metroid model

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Samus Model Complete | Images created 01.23.2009

I finally completed the model of Samus Aran. I still need to setup a rig so I can animate her, but that only takes a minute. This is going to look REALLY good inside the level. I have to take a screenshot...

Super Metroid Redux - Samus model front  Super Metroid Redux - Samus model back

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Samus Model Update | Image created 01.12.2009

I worked on the model for a while before adding any color and got the mesh down to 502 polygons. I’m extremely pleased so far with the results of this model. The texture I’ve been working on that is applied to it in the image below is also turning out just as planned. I’ve not really run into anything unsatisfactory except for maybe the length of time it’s taking to complete some of the parts. The hand, for instance, took about five hours of straight work to complete. I don’t think I even got up for a bathroom break. I was gonna post the actual texture files, but I’ve been seeing my images all over the internets and don’t want these getting stolen... :(

Super Metroid Redux - Samus model update

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Samus Model Draft | Image created 12.28.2008

I decided to take a little break from the zone for a bit and start working on some characters. I started with Samus of course, using screenshots from the Nintendo64 Super Smash Brothers as a reference. So far it’s looking pretty good. I still want to make some tweaks, such as decreasing the poly count a bit and moving some vertices around. Next up is the texture... :)

Super Metroid Redux - Samus draft

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Zone Detail Update | Video created 12.2.2008

I actually took some time to produce this video. I blended a comparison to the game as it was being played while moving through my work to show viewers the origin of the project. Added some music and flashiness to make the video less boring... ;)

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Zone Textures Added | Video created 9.21.2008

This video shows some of the template geometry pieces I used to start making the area look more like its two-dimensional counterpart.

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Zone Mock-Up | Video created 9.6.2008

Here, I just took some simple geometry blocks and drafted a quick preview of the three-dimensional version of the area.

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Zone Pre-Production | Video created 9.6.2008

In this video, I took screenshots of the zone during a play-through. Put them together and made a sort of "map" of the area. The result is a sequence of sill images that looks like the path you’d take moving through the area.

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  • Thanks Alex! The lava is just a transparent plane with a lava texture, and then a solid lava texture on the floor plane of the room. As for Samus, the model is articulated, so a skeleton won’t really be necessary for animation, the appendages just rotate at their joints, much like games of old used to be. :)

    Thanks for visiting the site!

  • awesome i loved it, how did you put the magma in the 3D stage??, also the samus mesh looks perfect in that lowpo, if you like you can send the mesh to may email and i can add some bones, so you can animate it XD

  • Hey I found some great music for your project by TheAmazingBrand0
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gyW0l1MU6z4&fmt=18

  • Oh... It automatically titled that reply as Xzereus, but I am both Xzereus and Nathan, as clarification.

  • I’m actually quite new to XNA game studio, too, but I like it. I’ve only worked with it a bit, on a few small projects. My main languages are C++ and flash.

    I’m actually working on a project of my own, with some sort of indie game dev team, and I’ve fuond this particular forum useful.

  • Thanks Nathan!

    Right now, the project lives solely inside the animation software. Any of the videos you’ve seen are just me animating the camera and/or Samus throughout the clip. I’d like to make an engine for it someday, but right now the project is simply aimed at animation.

    Thank you for the reference to the XNA forum. I’ve worked with XNA in the past and found it quite useful, though I’m not fluent in C# yet so I didn’t get far with it.

    Thanks again!

  • Great project! Are you also doing the coding yourself, or do you have a friend helping with it? http://forums.xna.com/forums/42.aspx is a good place to look for a team if you wanted to join an independent team. They are always looking for artists and modelers, so I’m sure if you posted you’d have little trouble finding a team. If you posted some of the conent from this blog, there would also probably me mamy interested in collaborating on this project

    XNA game studio is a C# based project that allows users to create 3d content and other things more easily than in vanilla C#. It is free to download. This forum is mainly comprised of these types of coders, many of which are very experienced. Good luck with your project, I’ll continue to look into this.

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