Metroid fans have had to wait a very long time for a brand-new 2D Metroid game — 19 years, to be precise. And if they want to use Samus Aran’s iconic morph ball power in Metroid Dread, they’ll have to wait even longer.
[Warning: The following contains mild spoilers for Metroid Dread.]
Samus’s first upgrade is the morphball almost always. There’s only one other 2D Metroid game that deviates from the pattern; in Metroid FusionSamus has her missiles and morph balls first. By contrast, Metroid Dread really makes you wait for it — and work for it.
The fearSamus receives multiple upgrades to her armscanon, before even coming close to finding the Morph Ball. It’s not even located in Artaria, which is the first area that she explores; she’ll have to defeat a couple of bosses there (her first EMMI robot and Corpious, who drops the Phantom Cloak ability). Then she’ll navigate to Cataris and fight another EMMI robot, which will finally drop the prized morph ball.
Ball mode didn’t even used to be seen as a prized ability. Fans just accepted it because it was so common in Metroid games. (I referred to the morph ball as “ubiquitous” in my backstory explainer of Samus Aran’s adventures prior to The fear(.) Since this game takes so long to dole it out, fans have realized how much they treasure Samus’ ball mode, and they’ve been posting about it online.
CanadianAniGuy’s comic features Samus livid at her AI companion Adam. Adam gets to live in a spherical body even though Samus doesn’t:
One of the replies to CanadianAniGuy’s comic notes that Samus won’t cooperate by crawling into narrow passageways — even though she does have the ability to slide under narrow obstacles in Metroid Dread
Before I found the Morph Ball: “The Energy Tank is just like one foot into a vent… JUST CROWL IN AND TAKE IT!”
Samus says: “No crawl… only ball.”
— Dragon Quest? More like Dragon BEST!! (@yohohoskulljoke) October 10, 2021
This clip sums up most of the reactions to receiving the morph balls.
It can frustrate to wait so long before you unlock your door.
It keeps getting in the way of my ability to use it.| please game just let me get it
— Mattt working on commissions (@MatttGFX) October 8, 2021
A Twitter user made a joke about it after another. Metroid Dread is a lot like the movie Dude, Where’s My Car?Another user added this twist to the poster, since Samus is always trying to return to her ship.
Of course, once you finally get that sweet, sweet ball … you can’t beat the feeling.
All that said, if you do bend the game’s rules a bit and acquire the morph ball upgrade earlier than Metroid Dread intends, it will prove very useful in a boss fight against one of Samus’ classic adversaries.
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