Before being outsourced to other developers and turned into a first person shooter, Metroid was one of Nintendo’s most celebrated franchises of both the 8 and 16-bit era. Come to think about it, it’s still one of Nintendo’s most celebrated franchises even after being outsourced to other developers. Its exploration heavy gameplay has made it a hit among gamers, and its heroine Samus Aran is one of the most recognizable female protagonists in gaming. Super Metroid represented the series at its best.

Super Metroid takes place after Metroid 2. After the adventure on the Metroid’s home planet, Samus finds a lone hatch-ling. Taking it back a research colony, the scientists discover that it can be used to benefit humanity. However, the facility is attacked by space pirates who steal the Metroid hatch-ling. After the space station has been blown up, it’s back to Zebes to pursue them. You’ll explore a vast network of underground caverns, derelict spacecraft, and other regions on the planet. In true Metroid fashion, you’ll collect powerups which help you access other sections of the planet. You’ll encounter some huge bosses. Kraid in particular is a mammoth which takes up several screens. The music and atmosphere is dark, moody, and reminiscent of sci-fi films, particularly Alien.

I could tell you more about the game, but there is too much that was awesome about this classic title. It’s 16-bit SNES gaming at it’s finest, and elements of it’s style of gameplay have showed up throughout several other titles such as Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, La Mulana, and even Batman Arkham Asylum. If you haven’t played this game yet, then you need to do so. It’s only 30 cents on the Wii U Virtual Console for a limited time, so download it, play it, love it.