[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hoahposter_4222.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:''For True Peace In Space...'']]

-->''"Mission complete."''
--->--'''Samus Aran'''

''Metroid'' is a series of games known for having players explore through cramped-yet-open-ended environments, the precursor to the {{Metroidvania}} genre. They star the armored BountyHunter Samus Aran, who is out to exterminate energy leeches called Metroids and annihilate the Space Pirates that plague the galaxy and killed her families.

The ''Metroid'' franchise is somewhat unusual among {{Platform| Game}}ers, especially Nintendo ones, for its substantial continuity. The [[VideoGame/{{Metroid1}} first (NES) game]], released in 1986, deals with Samus's assault on the Space Pirate base on Zebes, where she first encountered the Metroids. After defeating the Space Pirates' leader, Mother Brain, Samus is dispatched in the (GameBoy) sequel, ''VideoGame/MetroidIIReturnOfSamus'' (1991), to hunt down the Metroids on their home world. The end of this game segues directly into (Super Nintendo) ''VideoGame/SuperMetroid'' (1994), where the final larval Metroid is stolen by Space Pirates who take it to a rebuilt base on Zebes.

The series lay dormant for years, skipping the Nintendo 64 entirely (Samus only appeared on the console in [[SuperSmashBros Super Smash Bros]]), primarily due to no one knowing how to follow up after the masterpiece that was ''[[ToughActToFollow Super Metroid]]''. The "latest" title in the continuity, ''VideoGame/MetroidFusion'' (Game Boy Advance) was released in 2002, wherein the Metroid home world has been overrun by shape-shifting parasites the Metroids had kept in check. The series took a turn towards SurvivalHorror with this game. A sequel, tentatively titled ''Dread'', has been stuck in DevelopmentHell for the past ten years, and is intended to follow on from the end of ''Fusion''.

At the same time, Nintendo had made the controversial decision to move the series into 3D on the [=GameCube=], with American Creator/RetroStudios at the helm. ''Metroid Prime'' emerged as an unusual FPS-adventure, [[AnachronicOrder set between the first and second games]]. While the shift to becoming an FPS was [[ItWillNeverCatchOn initially met with confusion and doubt from fans]], the result won the crowd over and received much critical acclaim (including several "Game Of The Year" awards from many publications). Seeing promise in the new developer, Retro was purchased by Nintendo, making it their second American first-party developer after Nintendo Software Technology Corporation.

The first game was [[VideoGameRemake remade]] for the Game Boy Advance a year later as ''[[VideoGame/MetroidZeroMission Zero Mission]]''. The 3D installments have become a franchise in their own right, with ''Metroid Prime 2: Echoes'' ([=GameCube=]), and ''Metroid Prime Hunters'' (Nintendo DS) continuing the in-between storyline, which was finally finished in 2007 with ''Metroid Prime 3: Corruption'' (Wii). Tropes belonging exclusively to this sub-series [[VideoGame/MetroidPrime belong here]].

The latest game, ''[[VideoGame/MetroidOtherM Other M]]'' (Wii), was released at the end of August 2010, and combines elements from both series. It was worked on by the unusual combination of the in-house team responsible for the ''Metroid'' series and none other than [[VideoGame/DeadOrAlive Team]] [[VideoGame/NinjaGaiden Ninja]]. [[http://wii.ign.com/dor/objects/14354733/metroid-other-m/videos/metroid_trl_e3_otherm_060209.html Trailer can be seen here.]] It [[{{Interquel}} takes place between]] ''Super Metroid'' and ''Metroid Fusion'', making it the only game since ''Fusion'' to take place after ''Super''.

Although news on the franchise has been sparse since the release of ''Other M'' (which underperformed and was met with a less warm reception than previous games in the franchise) and series co-creator Yoshio Sakamoto has stated that he has no interest in developing any more games in the series, Creator/ShigeruMiyamoto and Shinya Takahashi have [[http://kotaku.com/nintendo-is-planning-a-future-for-both-2d-and-3d-metroi-1590142491 confirmed]] that additional games in the franchise (both 2D and 3D) are in the planning stages during E3 2014. It is not clear if Retro Studios will be behind one of these, or either.

Across the entire franchise, a number of characteristic elements have persisted, such as the continuous string of upgrades which Samus acquires over the course of the game, most notably the "Morph Ball" (or "Maru Mari," one of several translation oddities), which allows Samus to roll into the shape of a small ball, for better maneuverability in areas where this shape is more convenient.

Being the codifier, this is one of the two best known series of the {{Metroidvania}} genre--action adventure games with an emphasis on exploring a continuous non-linear world and finding powerups to advance. Technologically, the original ''Metroid'' is noteworthy as one of the first multi-way scrolling platformers. Its North American release was also the first game to use a password system to save progress. The Japanese release of ''Metroid'' for Nintendo's disc-based system allowed the players to save their progress on the disc, the cartridge-based US system lacked this ability, so presented a 24-character password which encoded the state of the game, allowing the player to resume his or her progress later.

The ending of the original ''Metroid'' is a TomatoSurprise: if the player did sufficiently well, they are then treated to a [[ItWasHisSled (then) stunning revelation]]: Samus Aran's armor is removed, revealing the bounty hunter as [[SamusIsAGirl a shapely (by 8-bit standards) woman]]. This reveal is also in most of the other games, although no longer a surprise. Those who ReadTheFreakingManual would see that Samus is openly referred to as a female by ''Metroid II''.

Though Samus herself has never appeared on television (except in commercials), Mother Brain was featured as the BigBad of the Nintendo-themed animated series ''[[WesternAnimation/CaptainNTheGameMaster Captain N: The Game Master]]''. (Reportedly, the production staff actually ''didn't know about Samus''); the comic book adaptation introduced her as the SixthRanger[=/=]TheLancer. A live-action feature film based on the franchise was optioned after ''Metroid Prime'' was successful, [[WhatCouldHaveBeen but appears to have lapsed]].
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!!Games in the series:
[[index]]
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Metroid1}} Metroid]]'' (1986, [[NintendoEntertainmentSystem NES]]; rereleased on {{Wii}}, Nintendo3DS, and WiiU VirtualConsole)
** ''VideoGame/MetroidZeroMission'' (2004, GameBoyAdvance VideoGameRemake)
* ''VideoGame/MetroidIIReturnOfSamus'' (1991, GameBoy; 3DS VC)
* ''VideoGame/SuperMetroid'' (1994, [[SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem SNES]]; Wii and Wii U VC)
* ''VideoGame/MetroidFusion'' (2002, Game Boy Advance; 3DS Ambassador Program; Wii U VC)
* ''VideoGame/MetroidPrime'' (2002, [[NintendoGameCube GameCube]])
** ''Metroid Prime 2: Echoes'' (2004, [=GameCube=])
** ''VideoGame/MetroidPrimePinball'' (2005, [[NintendoDS DS]])
** ''Metroid Prime Hunters'' (2006, DS)
** ''Metroid Prime 3: Corruption'' (2007, Wii)[[/index]]
** ''[[UpdatedRerelease Metroid Prime]] [[CompilationRerelease Trilogy]]'' (2009, Wii)
* ''VideoGame/MetroidOtherM'' (2010, Wii)
[[/index]]

[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/crowner.php/BestEpisode/Metroid Vote on the best game here!]]\\
[[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/crowner.php/BiggestComplaint/Metroid Also possesses a crowner page for debating what didn't work.]]
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!!This series is the TropeNamer for:
* {{Metroidvania}} along with the ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'' series, obviously.
* SamusIsAGirl
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!!The Metroid series provides examples of (specific tropes for games with their own pages not included):
%%
%% INDIVIDUAL GAME TROPES SHOULD GO ON THAT GAME's PAGE IF IT IS AVAILABLE, THIS INCLUDES THE PRIME GAMES
%%
* AbandonedLaboratory: Common to the series, sometimes not so abandoned. ''Fusion'' and ''Other M'' take place in space stations made of these.
* AbnormalAmmo: Samus has been shot at with explosive stingers, [[FireIceLightning lava grenades, super cooled plasma, high density neutrinos]], [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and contaminated water]].
** Samus herself has fired plasma, super-cooled plasma, ice, lava grenades, electromagnetic blasts, standard electrical blasts, concentrated light energy, concentrated dark energy, matter/antimatter, sonic booms, ''miniature black holes'', and various other things out of her own beam cannon. And that doesn't account for projectile weapons - missiles, super missiles, ice missiles...
* ActionGirl: One of the earliest video game examples, and ''easily'' one of the most well-known.
* AerithAndBob: Several enemies have weird names like "Desgeega" or "Holtz", or portmanteau names like "Crocomire" and "Sidehopper". A seahorse-like enemy in Norfair that spits fire at you? "Dragon".
** Speaking of dragons, one must not forget Ridley, the giant Space Dragon/Pirate Commander, who's an example of this trope as he has the completely normal human name of Ridley despite being a [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot Dragon Space Pirate Alien]]. What are the other alien's names? Kraid, Phantoon...
* AfterBossRecovery: Many bosses and mini bosses drop tons of health and ammo refills when you beat them.
** Justified in ''Fusion'' as all the bosses and enemies are made of X Parasites that Samus absorbs to recover health, so it makes sense that the bigger bosses have more potent X for her to eat.
* AirVentPassageway: Applies to all kinds of ducts/tunnels, with the Morph Ball. Subverted in ''Zero Mission,'' when after [[spoiler:losing her armor]], Samus must crawl through said tunnels, and she's far from the only creature who can use them.
* AllThereInTheManual: The games usually throw the plot out on their own, but there's quite a bit of canonical backstory for both ''Zero Mission'' and to a lesser degree ''Fusion'', as well as the entire franchise on the whole, to be found in their manuals and the [[http://www.metroid-database.com/manga/listing.php?vid=19 two-volume]] [[http://www.metroid-database.com/manga/listing.php?vid=13 manga]].
* AmbidextrousSprite: Averted in all 2-D games after the first; Samus has different sprites for all directions. In fact, this may only be played straight by the NES version; in commercials for the Famicom game, she has unique sprites for facing left and right. Interestingly, some differentiated left/right sprites are in the ROM of the original game, but are [[DummiedOut unused]].
* AmazonianBeauty: Over six feet tall, clad head to toe in armour, and the biggest bad ass in Nintendo's arsenal. Why don't we see more like her?
* AnachronicOrder: The chronology is officially ''Metroid Zero Mission'', the ''Prime'' series, ''Metroid II'', ''Super Metroid'', ''Other M'', and ''Fusion''. The original ''Metroid'' was replaced by its UpdatedRerelease ''Zero Mission''.
* AntagonistTitle: Metroids are the parasitic scourge of the galaxy, your job is to shoot them
* ArmCannon: Samus is a type 1, though her arm is not replaced by a cannon, just inside of it instead of holding it. The cannon can open up like a maw to grab things in ''Prime 3'' (it had opened up prior to shoot missiles, that was the first time she used the feature so mundanely). The space pirates and Ghor have been seen with type 2, attached to the wrist.
* ApocalypticLog: The ''Prime'' games have the Chozo, Luminoth and Bryyonian lore entries detail the fall of their respective races to Phazon corruption, the Ing and a MagicVersusScience civil war, respectively.
* ArtificialBrilliance: In ''Fusion'' the cold X will initially chase after you because the Metroid vaccine made you vulnerable to cold and you lose a huge chunk of health from absorbing them. Immediately after getting the Varia Suit they'll still chase after you, but at that point you can absorb them for health. After absorbing a few they'll start to run away from you because chasing you would just help you.
* AsteroidThicket: Used in ''Super'' and ''Fusion'', where something crashes into an asteroid in each. The asteroids look like they're only a few hundred feet across, and tightly packed.
* AttackOfThe50FootWhatever: Kraid in ''Super Metroid'' and ''Zero Mission'', Metroid Prime, the Adult Sheegoth, Flaaghra, Thardus, Chykka, Quadraxis, Mogenar...
* {{Backtracking}}: Obtain previously inaccessible power-ups, curb-stomp previously lethal opponents with your new upgrades, and discover brand new shortcuts and secrets -- all by the magic of backtracking through every area of the game at least twice. It is so integral to this series that fans will frequently complain if the developers remove the ability to backtrack, such as in ''Fusion'' and ''Other M''. Even those at least give full access to the game world once Samus is fully upgraded.
* BagOfSpilling: Samus never manages to keep her fully powered-up suit between games, though more recent entries at least let her hang onto the Varia upgrade. Usually. In games where she keeps the Varia (Excluding the first Prime, see below) it does nothing.
** The Long Beam has only been an actual powerup in the original game and its remake; every other game gives Samus its effects even if she visibly loses all her other powerups. ''Metroid II'' also starts her off with about 30 missiles, since they're needed to even damage the Metroids she's hunting.
** Played with in ''Metroid Fusion''. Samus kept all of the weapon upgrades to her power armor. Unfortunately, her power armor was infected with a parasite which is now using all of those weapon upgrades to try to kill her.
** And in ''Prime''. While trying to escape the ship at the beginning of the game before self destruction, the ship violently rocks to the side, and a small explosion hits her from behind, causing her to slam against the wall, which causes malfunctions with most of her equipment.
*** ''Prime 2'' begins with a fairly well equipped Samus, but is pretty shortly mugged by aliens and has her upgrades stolen from her. The sudden feeling of impotence is felt by both Samus and the player. To recover many of her upgrades [[spoiler:she must find her attackers and fight them, one at a time, while they use her own upgrades against her]].
*** ''Prime 3'' has Samus simply start off without any of her items from the previous adventure, but she does retain a few of her power ups such as the Space Jump Boots, Morph Ball with its bombs, and her Charge Beam. WordOfGod states that they scrapped the idea of Samus having her powers in the start and then losing them right after since it was getting too predictable and boring. [[invoked]]
** And again in ''Other M''. Samus has her full arsenal, but is working with the military in this one and needs authorization to use parts of it. Unfortunately this leads into a VoodooShark situation when the restrictions on her weapons shouldn't cover her nonoffensive equipment, and she won't activate gear she has even in life-or-death situations.
* BallOfLightTransformation: In the 3D games, Samus takes this form inside the [[BeTheBall Morph Ball]], a process that the SpacePirates were unable to replicate.
* BeautyIsNeverTarnished: In ''Fusion'' Samus has to have her suit surgically removed and there is absolutely no scarring. There also appears to be no visible changes caused by the infusion of Metroid DNA (or Chozo DNA for that matter). Not so in ''Corruption'', Samus's phazon corruption causes visible breakdowns on her face and she vomits at one point.
* BeePeople: The Zebesian Space Pirates in the manga comics will follow anyone with enough strength or charisma. In a bit of a subversion, their species can't produce "queens", so they look to other species to lead them. On their own, they're TooDumbToLive. A fan theory even says that the Zebesians are Super soldiers bred by the smarter Space Pirates in Prime, and are MADE to be stupid and not question anything.
** Almost literal with Kihunters. They're physically bee-like in addition to living in hives and having a "king" that commands the rest.
* BerserkButton: If Samus is pointing her arm cannon at you and you just happen to be a member of a race of intergalactic bloodthirsty aliens, ''don't beg for mercy.''
** What's that? You just killed someone [[MamaBear Samus cares for?]] We'll miss you. She won't.
* BigBad: Mother Brain in ''Metroid'' and ''Super Metroid'', [[spoiler: Metroid Prime/Dark Samus]] for the ''Prime'' trilogy.
* BigBoosHaunt: The Chozo Ruins (''Prime'') and the Wrecked Ship (''Super'').
* BigDamnHeroes: [[spoiler:The baby Metroid]] in ''Super'' just before the BigBad lands the killing blow on Samus.
* BiologicalWeaponsSolveEverything: Subverted. The Chozo created the eponymous Metroids as a biological weapon to control the rampant Parasite X on planet SR-388, which could have threatened the entire galaxy if left unchecked. Later, other races discovered the Metroid and the creatures began to spread across the galaxy, proving to be an even worse threat than Parasite X. Then, when Samus eradicated the Metroid, Parasite X came back stronger than ever.
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:''Super Metroid'', ''Other M'', and ''Fusion'']].
* BodyHorror: The X Parasites in ''Fusion''; Phazon in ''Prime.'' Metroids themselves might count, given their habit of turning their victims into desiccated gray husks that turn to powder when touched. In ''Prime'' as well, a vague reference to Space Pirate attempts to replicate the Morph Ball that went horribly, horribly wrong.
** Special mention goes to ''Prime 3,'' where you can actually see the effects of Phazon corruption on Samus. Those eyes could curdle milk.
** Don't forget ''Prime 2'' which featured the Ing, a transdimensional species of dark-matter aliens that can possess and mutate other beings.
* BookEnds: ''Super Metroid'' opens and closes with escapes from structures that are about to blow up.
** ''Metroid'' and ''Super Metroid'' both take place on Planet Zebes. Samus ventures into the planet, defeats Ridley, Kraid, and Mother Brain, and escapes before the planet blows up. In Super Metroid, the end to the original trilogy, Samus ventures into the planet again, kills Ridley, Kraid, Phantoon [[spoiler: (not)]], Draygon, and Mother Brain, and escapes before the planet (the escape shaft from the original game is part of the route) blows up. ''Fusion'' provides two. The end to the original trilogy had [[spoiler:the super metroid heals and gives you a weapon to defeat the final boss, saving your life. In ''Fusion'', the Metroid's DNA cures Samus of the X-Parasite infection (saving her life), and makes her able to absorb the X to heal her and replenish her supplies (giving her the weapon to eradicate the X).]] Also the ending, in which the SA-X [[spoiler:saves your life, heals you, and gives you the weapon to eradicate the Omega Metroid.]]
** Also in ''Fusion'', [[spoiler: both the very first boss (Arachnus) and very last boss (Omega Metroid) are from ''Metroid 2''.]]
*** Those two bosses also have the same basic design. Sharp teeth, huge claws, only susceptible to attacks on its belly. The only real exception is that Arachnus can turn into a spiky ball or shoot fireballs, while Omega Metroid is just big enough to stomp you flat.
* BossArenaRecovery: Avoided in the first game but Zero Mission has the rinkas around Mother Brain occasionally drop health. Notoriously, the boost guardian can destroy all the health dropping pillars in one shot, denying you any recovery in a boss arena that drains your health.
* BreathWeapon: Ridley, as he's a Space Dragon. Also Kraid and OneWingedAngel Mother Brain in ''Super Metroid''. In the ''Prime'' series, Sheegoths, the Parasite Queen, and the titular Metroid Prime.
* BrokenBridge: Sometimes intentional to, [[http://www.metroid2002.com at least try to]], prevent SequenceBreaking.
** Even after ''seventeen years'', [[SerialEscalation people are still discovering new tricks]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMuXUvnk6Hg like this.]] (See 14:55 in the video)
* TheCavalry: Two times, one in ''Super Metroid'' and another in ''Fusion''. In ''Super'', [[spoiler:Samus was losing in a CurbStompBattle with a OneWingedAngel Mother Brain, after taking a blow from her ultimate attack. Before the job can be finished, the huge Baby Metroid zooms in, drains her energy, and then gives it to Samus, restoring her to full health and granting her the [[EleventhHourSuperpower Hyper Beam.]] Then, it dies [[HeroicSacrifice while shielding Samus from Mother Brain's attacks.]] Cue Samus curbstomping Mother Brain.]]
** And then in ''Fusion'', [[spoiler:Samus had beaten SA-X, plotted the B.S.L. Station on a collision course with SR-388, and was on her way to her ship to escape. But when she gets to the docking bays, the place is a mess, her ship is missing, and there is a huge shedded skin on the floor. Suddenly, an Omega Metroid comes in and screeches at Samus. With one claw swipe, Samus is knocked down to one HP and immobilized. Before the Metroid could kill her, the SA-X appears and blasts its chest with the Ice Beam, but it is defeated by it. However, Samus absorbs its Core-X, which restored her Ice Beam ability, and proceeded to blast the Metroid to dust.]]
* CanonForeigner: Captain Nemo in the old Metroid Manga[=/=]Strategy Guide, and moveset wise, the Zero Laser from ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Brawl'' and the "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=opkOtApoqqI#38s Chozo Blood Rights]]" ability from ''VideoGame/MarvelUltimateAlliance'' (she was DummiedOut from the latter game, [[WhatCouldHaveBeen however]]).
* CatastrophicCountdown
** ''Super Metroid'' plays it straight, twice. When Ridley escapes the space colony in the beginning, an announcement claims that the colony's self-destruct has been activated, urging immediate evacuation. Naturally, the whole place starts shaking, steaming, blowing up, and even rocking back and forth quite impressively. Later at the end of the game, the entire planet starts exploding and flooding with acid, because a "Time Bomb has been activated".
** ''Other M''. An AI voice announces over an intercom that a self-destruct sequence will detonate in about five or so minutes. For some reason, your escape becomes riddled with burning debris and wreckage.
** The first game is a bit of an interesting case. While the NES original averts it entirely ("TIME BOMB SET GET OUT FAST!", plus a countdown, that's it), ''Zero Mission'' retcons in a straight example (the "time bomb" causes explosions and flames well before going off) and an aversion (the Pirate Mothership).
* ChainReactionDestruction: Many bosses and planetary bodies exhibit that behavior.
* ChargedAttack: Charge Beam, the beam combos, the Shinespark.
** ChargeMeter: In the ''Prime'' games, discounting ''Hunters'', the arm cannon has a meter to build up when holding down fire. It even has practical purpose when using seeker missiles.
* ChekhovsGunman: [[spoiler:The Etecoons and Dachoras in ''Super'' later save your butt in ''Fusion'', since Samus saved theirs during Super's final countdown.]]
* ChekhovsSkill: Every power-up becomes useful to go to unreachable areas/items.
* ChestMonster: Torizo in ''Super Metroid'' mimics a Chozo Statue early on, and reappears late in the game. One of the X-Cores in ''Metroid Fusion'' also impersonates a Chozo Statue (most likely a Torizo, considering hosts need to be organic), and another Core X impersonates one named Nettori while giving it power over vegetation and the Plasma Beam.
* ClimaxBoss: Nightmare in ''Fusion''. [[spoiler: Especially after playing ''Other M''.]]
* ColorCodedForYourConvenience: Doors are colored depending on what weapon the player needs to shoot them with to open. ''Return of Samus'' and ''Fusion'' are the exceptions. (Return of Samus only has Missile Doors, which would be red if the game had color)
** In ''Fusion'' the doors '''are''' color-coded, but by security-clearance. Samus needs to find the override controls for each security level to unlock them, after which any beam will do the trick. [[spoiler:This becomes a plot point, as unlocking the controls also allows the X-parasites to spread further through the station.]]
* ComicBookAdaptation: There are ''tons of them''. Two of which are tongue-in-cheek semi-guide books, one is a ''Magazine/NintendoPower'' comic, one is loosely based upon the first ''Metroid Prime'', a prequel manga and a manga based on pre-''Prime 2''. Let's not even get started with Samus and Joey series...
* CompletionMeter: More recent games have a percent counter that rises as you collect items.
* ContinuityNod: The remixed music in the latest installments, plus pieces of the original Brinstar and Tourian in ''Super Metroid''. Possibly also parts of Kraid and Ridley's lairs, although Kraid's "Lair" (especially the piece in question) is very far from where it ought to be. ''Super Metroid'''s "Item Room Ambience" is a (particularly odd/creepy) remake of the original ''Metroid'' item room theme.
** Something of a Call Forward: The lower Yellow Door connecting Crateria and Chozodia? Turns out it's part of the Wrecked Ship From ''Super''.
* ConvectionSchmonvection: Averted, in a rare video game example. Without her Varia Suit, Samus can't even get near lava without being burned, and walking into superheated rooms will cause her to take continuous, non-trivial damage. Most Metroid games make the lava dangerous to touch even when the Varia Suit provides resistance to convection; only more powerful armors like the Gravity Suit (in the 2D games) allow her to walk in lava without getting hurt. In ''Fusion,'' she gains a vulnerability to extreme ''cold'' as well, as a side-effect of the Metroids DNA she was injected with, which can be overcome with the Varia.
** And in ''Other M'', her commander sends Samus into a lava area without letting her use the Varia upgrade. Fans did not take that well.
** It should be noted that the only two games to play ConvectionSchmonvection straight are the original ''Metroid'' (hey, it was 1986...) and ''Metroid II: Return of Samus'', in which most players couldn't even tell it *was* lava until they explored a section of ''Metroid Fusion'' built to simulate the game... ...or [[AllThereInTheManual saw a picture in ''Metroid II'''s manual]].
** ''Super Metroid'' plays this straight in Tourian, the final area of the game, probably because they weren't expecting anyone to get that region without collecting any of the suits. It's also worth noting that not all areas of Norfair (even Lower Norfair) cause damage to the player, but it mostly seems to be dependent on whether there's lava in the region. Naturally, the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3THRhCgCO4 reverse boss order speedrun]] (which contains some truly magnificent platforming) takes full advantage of this.
* CoolStarship: Samus' gunship, all Three of them. The loaner ship she gets from the Federation after totaling her own in ''Fusion's'' opening may count as well.
* CowboyCop: In the manga, Samus herself, as well as her partners Mauk and Kreatz.
* CriticalAnnoyance: ''[[MostAnnoyingSound Dua-dua-dua-dua-dua-dua]]'' -- few things are better motivation to search for energy.
* CriticalExistenceFailure: As long as that suit has ''just one point of energy'', she'll be okay.
* CuteBruiser: Samus' pet, Pyonchi, is a rabbit-squirrel from her home planet, who has been known to beat the crap out of schoolyard bullies, complete with a sign saying "Play nice."
* [[CutenessProximity Roundness Proximity]]: Samus had this often in one of the gag mangas.
* CyberneticsEatYourSoul: For the most part averted, as most characters get along just fine with their cybernetically-enhanced PoweredArmor.
** Ghor is a special case. Though he's only 6% organic, he's a very nice guy. When he interfaces with computers or his battle armor, though, he becomes aggressive and bloodthirsty.
* DamnYouMuscleMemory: Most gamers familiar with platformers go from left to right out of habit, but the original ''Metroid'' forces you to go ''left'' in the first area to get the Morph Ball and continue... which is FridgeBrilliance, as Metroid was one of the first games featuring a sprawling open ended world. Making players go left was a way to make players realize that this wasn't just some sort of sci-fi ''Mario''/''Pitfall''/Whatever game.
** Perhaps in homage to this, the path to the right is blocked off entirely at the start of ''Super Metroid'' (until you get the speed booster and/or power bombs) and for the entirety of ''Fusion'', as the only path out of the docking bay is to the left.
* DarkerAndEdgier: While ''Metroid'' itself is already kind of the DarkerAndEdgier alternative to Nintendo's other franchises, the earliest version of ''Metroid Fusion'' (then just called "Metroid IV") was... [[http://www.unseen64.net/2008/04/08/metroid-iv-fusion-gba-proto-beta/ very unusual.]] It sported a "bladed" logo, a number that looked like it was torn from a claw, a darker color scheme, and a new suit that made Samus look hyper-muscled.
* DeathIsCheap: Ridley has evaded death every time Samus encounters him, from NeverFoundtheBody to sneakily flying away while the camera isn't looking (we saw your shadow sneaky) to getting a robo upgrade. He never actually dies until ''Super'', but when he does [[spoiler:some TooDumbToLive reasearchers in ''Other M'' unwittingly CLONE the bastard]].
** He even appears as a boss in ''[[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Super Smash Bros. Brawl]]'' [[spoiler:FOUR TIMES. As Ridley, as Meta-Ridley, and then again for each form in the Great Maze]].
* DefeatEqualsExplosion: Most bosses in the series will explode. Ridley, on the other hand, only gets this treatment once, in ''Zero Mission''. ''Metroid Prime 3'' subverts this with Ridley; fans noticed Omega Ridley's shadow flying away during his "death' cutscene after a mere FIVE YEARS.
* DepthPerplexion: Justified. Samus can shoot through walls, but only if she has the Wave Beam, which explicitly has the ability to penetrate solid matter.
* {{Determinator}}: Nothing will stop Samus Aran.
** And nothing will stop Ridley from trying to take her down. Well, except for his remains being on an exploding planet. Even when [[spoiler: he's cloned, he gets to go after Samus twice before the clone dies.]]
** [[spoiler:Same with Crocomire, who comes after Samus even after ALL HIS SKIN HAS BURNED OFF. That's right. He tries to attack you as a SKELETON. [[HilarityEnsues And fails miserably.]]]]
** [[spoiler: Chronologically, Phantoon goes after Samus two games in a row.]]
** The Space Pirates, although they get their space-faring asses handed to them all too often, never give up their goal of galactic domination. Their penchant for finding Phlebotinum and SealedEvilInACan lying around might support this.
* DestructibleProjectiles: In various games of the series (''Super Metroid'' in particular), certain projectiles can be destroyed for health or Missile refills [[BossArenaRecovery during boss battles]].
* DestructiveSavior: It seems Samus cannot escape the cold hand of destruction, whether it be a large base or the entire planet. So far, her "kill count" includes Dark Aether, Phaaze, Zebes, and [=SR388=], the third of which wasn't even her fault. Granted, the others were of her own doing, Phaaze because it kept popping out Phazon Leviathans to infect other planets, Dark Aether because it was just ''evil'', and [=SR388=] so she could wipe out the X Parasites, but still. Not even space stations are safe, since the Biologic Space Labs orbital station dies with [=SR388=]. And Samus' first order of business on Tallon IV? Blow up the Space Frigate. Doesn't count the five Space Ships/Colonies that blew up with her on board, (although most of those weren't her fault) And her own ship in ''Fusion'''s opening.
** Heartwarmingly averted with Tallon IV and Aether. You can scan the planets via satellite in ''Prime 3'', and learn that both are recovering from the events of the first two games. The Luminoth are rebuilding their civilization and Tallon IV's native life is thriving again.
* DoomMagnet: In addition, very few characters with personal connections to Samus ever survive.
** Guess what happens to the Bottle Ship at the end of the PlayableEpilogue of ''Other M''? The music is even the same as during the escape sequence in ''Super Metroid''.
** Also, Ceres Space Colony. It wasn't her fault, but it still did collide with an asteroid and blow up right when she left it. And then there's Samus' own ship in the ''Fusion'' prologue, but again, not her fault. She lost consciousness and the ship also collided with an asteroid.
* [[DieHardOnAnX Die Hard On An Entire Planet:]] Except when it is on a space station, complete with [[AirVentPassageway air vent escapes]] and everything!
* DisneyDeath: [[spoiler:Anthony Higgs acomplished this]] in ''Other M'' with [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3arI6eIPXhM&feature=player_detailpage#t=284s some clever enemy manipulation.]]
* DoomedByCanon: See ForegoneConclusion.
* DoomedHometown: Samus lives through ''two'' of these, first on [=K-2L=] and then on Zebes.
* DownTheDrain: Maridia, the crashed frigate, Torvus, Sector 4 - AQA.
* TheDragon: Ridley is a high-ranking member of the Space Pirates under Mother Brain, and is typically the second-to-last boss fought in every game. He also takes the trope to its literal extreme.
* DumbMuscle: The original Japanese strategy guide was also a manga; Samus was depicted as a trigger-happy [[TheDitz ditz]] with far more strength than smarts.
** Although the humor here is that the reader never knows she is a female at this point, and the strategy guide never reveals it either, just basically saying at the end that you can "meet the true Samus if you beat the game quick enough." in hindsight it's hilarious.
* DummiedOut: Two very interesting things were removed at some point from ''Zero Mission''. One was the ability to turn suit upgrades on and off from the pause menu, as in ''Super Metroid''; fans are still wondering why this much-missed feature was taken out. (Cheat codes can turn it back on.) The second was... [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKvTYQSc_VA Crocomire]]! This Super Metroid boss was found in the ROM, with a full set of sprites and some movement code, but nothing else. It's possible to hack him into various rooms.
** In turn, ''Super Metroid's'' ROM includes some interesting objects that were never used, most notably a "reflector" which would bounce any beam or missile off at a 90-degree angle. A form of this was used by two pirates in Ridley's Lair who act as a miniboss.
** The first ''Metroid'' game on the NES had unique sprites for Samus that would have avoided the AmbidextrousSprite trope, but those got replaced with the current sprite the game uses currently.
* DungeonBypass: The Shinespark.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: By the truckload. The 1986 design for Samus Aran gave "his" suit a large red barrel chest, tubes under both arms, a more "ray gun" barrel on the cannon, a red glove, and red boots. In addition, the artwork for enemies in the NES version of the game differed considerably from the Famicom version. In both, Kraid was a stout, yellow lizard with long green hair. Ridley, however, resembled a cute baby dragon in the Famicom art, and a bizarre horse-mouthed creature with five eyes (three down the forehead) in the NES art.) We can see why this game [[WordOfGod no longer exists]].
** And that's just for artwork. The gameplay lacks many of the refinements found in the latter ones (maps, shooting kneeled/[[DenialOfDiagonalAttack diagonally]]), and put it straight into NintendoHard territory.
** As for Samus' trademark Varia Suit upgrade, in the original ''Metroid'' it's simply a [[PaletteSwap color swap]] of her original suit. The Varia Suit didn't gain its trademark shoulder pads until ''Metroid II'', where the change in costume had to be conveyed with a proper sprite change because of the Game Boy's graphical limitations. This was both {{Retcon}}ned in ''Zero Mission'' to be due to Samus acquiring a more advanced Power Suit near the end of the game, which does indeed sport the shoulder pads unlike the suit from the rest of the game.
* EarthShatteringKaboom: Lots. See also: [[spoiler:Dark Aether at the end of ''Echoes,'' Phaaze at the end of ''Corruption,'' Zebes at the end of ''Super'', and [=SR388=] at the end of ''Metroid Fusion''.]]
* EasterEgg: In ''Super Metroid'', if you return to the Surface of Zebes after obtaining the Super Missiles but before descending into lower Brinstar (when it's still raining) and use the bombs and super missiles to go into the cave on the right, you can listen to the "arrival on Zebes" music again.
* ElaborateUndergroundBase: Arguably, every game features at least one ([[DieHardOnAnX or ARE one]]), though Tourian (both versions) is probably the most classic example.
* EldritchAbomination: Phaaze is a [[GeniusLoci living, sentinet planet]] intent on infecting as much of the galaxy as possible with Phazon, Gorea is a starborn monster capable of assimilating anything and everything thrown at it, and Phantoon is a bizarre [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot alien parasite ghost]] that can fuck with local space-time and looks a fair bit like something out of the Lovecraft playbook.
* EleventhHourSuperpower: Beginning with ''Super'', most {{Final Boss}}es have a weapon used only against them.
* EmergencyWeapon: The stun pistol in ''Zero Mission''.
* EmergentGameplay: The open-ended nature of the games, especially the earlier ones, lent themselves very effectively to SequenceBreaking, SpeedRunning, low percent completions, and more.
* EquipmentBasedProgression: The first thing you have to do in the first game is get the morph ball so you can roll under a ledge to the right. All ''Metroid'' games make use of this trope. Ironically, the first game's remake, ''Zero Mission'', was the first to have several progression elements not based around new equipment.
* EternalEngine: Tourian, and most of ''Fusion''.
* EverythingsBetterWithSpinning: Screw Attack.
* EvilIsVisceral: Mother Brain and the Aurora Units are [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin big brains in jars]] that do not look very pretty. [[SubvertedTrope The latter aren't evil on their own though]]. Starting from the first game, the Metroids themselves have visible blood vessels of some sort. In the second game, they were given an insectoid life cycle. In the third game, one of them grows really big, letting you see even more organic bits inside of the body.
** Same goes for Dark Samus in the ''Prime'' series: the more beat-up she gets, the more glowy Phazon innards start showing. And then the same thing starts happening to Samus herself in ''Corruption.'' The leviathan insides are visceral too.
* EvilTwin: SA-X. Dark Samus in ''Prime 2'' and ''Prime 3''.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: "Choujin-zoku" roughly translates to "bird race". The Chozo are, y'know...
** There's actually more. "Choujin" is "bird people," which is roughly what the Chozo are. However, "choujin" for "bird people" is phonetically the same as "choujin" for "superhuman."
** The Metroids as well. "Metroid" is revealed to be Chozodian for "ultimate warrior". In the early games, Metroids were near-invincible, and by far the most dangerous non-boss enemies around.
** And the SpacePirates are... Well, pirates. InSpace.
** Samus' powers aren't safe from this either. The [[SprintShoes Speed Booster]] boosts your speed. The Missile Launcher launches Missiles. The Scan Visor scans things, the Thermal Visor sees heat, the X-Ray Visor sees X-Rays. The Command Visor sends commands.
* ExpandedUniverse: Many characters and stories such as Chairman Keaton, Chief Hardy, Old Bird, Adam Malkovich, and Armstrong Houston made their first appearances and/or are fleshed out in the Japanese manga and the Nintendo Power ''Super Metroid'' comic.
* {{Faceship}}: Samus Aran's Gunship has the design of her helmet built on it.
* FanService: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O69x87ahasA Your reward for finishing the game with 100% completion in most games.]] Slightly subverted in ''Super Metroid'' and ''Fusion'' when her armor blows off, leaving her in a skimpy outfit, as it is her death animation.
* TheFederation: The Galactic Federation.
* FlyAtTheCameraEnding: In ''Super Metroid'' and ''Zero Mission''.
* ForceFieldDoor: A staple of the games. Doors that open simply by being shot are handwaved as being set up to keep out unwanted wildlife. Certain fluff scans suggest they don't always succeed.
* ForebodingArchitecture: From the very first game we have "air tubes" which spawn a variety of increasing dangerous flying nuisances. Sometimes the enemies would not spawn, or would spawn later than normal to give you a false sense of security. Each entry in the ''Prime'' trilogy has Metroid storage tanks which inevitably are broken out of except for a rare few who stay put.
* ForegoneConclusion: Judging from the dialogue in ''Fusion'', Adam Malkovich will [[spoiler:sacrifice himself]] in ''Other M''. [[spoiler:Also, Ridley reappears in that game -- and, of course, dies, allowing his remains to get frozen.]]
** ''Other M'' also explains why [[spoiler:Ridley fell apart so easily when you encounter the body in the freezer in ''Fusion'' and the X Parasite escapes his body. The last we of see Ridley in ''Other M'', is a dried, gray husk after having his life sucked out of him by the Queen Metroid.]]
* ForMassiveDamage: The traditional way to kill Metroids has been to [[LiterallyShatteredLives freeze them with the Ice Beam and then shatter them with a rocket]].
* FreezeRay: A vital tool of the series, both for its creative uses, and for stopping the titular threat. Subverted with ''Prime 3'' and ''Fusion'', which use Ice MISSILES rather than a beam, but otherwise has the same effect.
* FungusHumongous: found in a few corridors of Crateria in ''Super Metroid'', yet noticeably absent in Brinstar. Also, the Phazon-irradiated mushrooms in ''Prime'''s Phazon Mines.
** Mushrooms also appear near the entrance to Tourian in ''Zero Mission'', which is in a section of Brinstar similar to ''Super'''s "green" zone, but otherwise still rocky.
* GameChanger: ''Metroid: Zero Mission'': Samus destroys Mother Brain and blows up the Space Pirate's base on Zebes, just as she did in the original game. [[spoiler: Then pirate ships ambush her starship and send her crashing back down to the surface, now without a suit, weaponless, and with little hope of escape.]]
* GameMod: ''Super Metroid'' has several. Of the complete overhauls of the game, amongst the best are probably ''Super Metroid Redesign'', ''Golden Dawn'', ''Super Metroid Dependence'', ''Super Metroid Limit'', and ''Metroid Legacy''. Other good ones include ''One Room'', ''T-Metroid'', ''Magma'', and ''Reverse''. Of these hacks, ''Metroid Legacy'' is by far the easiest, being only negligibly more difficult than the original game (there are a couple of segments that require the use of "glitches" like the mockball and the wall jump, but by and large there is very little trickery required to complete it). ''Golden Dawn'' is somewhat more difficult, but still not that difficult. Most of the others are at the very least NintendoHard and often descend gleefully into PlatformHell territory. ''Redesign'', for example, has a [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iIYJAtVrv8 segment]] where you are required to go into the toxic regions of Norfair ''without'' the Varia Suit, and must progress rapidly and kill enemies in order to survive. (There is a way to get the Varia Suit before this with SequenceBreaking, but the sequence break is probably even more difficult). Worth special mention is ''[[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Super Metroid Impossible]]'', a "slight" overhaul of the original game that, thanks to the withholding of crucial items and strategic placement of obstacles, brings it up to ''KaizoMarioWorld'' levels of difficulty. It is also worth noting that, while most of these hacks are roughly equal in size to the original game, ''Redesign'' is absolutely gigantic, being maybe three times the size of the original game. ''Redesign'' is also unique among ''Super Metroid'' hacks for significantly altering the original game's physics, which makes playing it a significantly different experience from playing any other ''Metroid'' game.
* GeniusBruiser: Samus and Ridley in addition to being twenty different flavors of bad ass. The character page has more.
* GhostShip: Literally, with the GFS Valhalla from ''Prime 3'', the Wrecked Ship from ''Super'' with the ghost-boss Phantoon, and the Bottle Ship from ''Other M'' to a lesser extent. [[spoiler:Though this one is played more straight in the epilogue, when it gets taken over by Phantoon himself.]]
* GoForTheEye: Frequently.
* GrapplingHookPistol: Grapple Beam.
* GratuitousJapanese: Maru Mari means something akin to "rolling into a ball". It's the only item in the original ''Metroid'' to keep its Japanese name in some translated releases.
* GuideDangIt: HundredPercentCompletion is HARD.
** ''Fusion'', ''Zero Mission'', and ''Prime 3'' really cut you breaks on this. At a certain point in Prime 3, you can launch exploration probes to the various planets you visit. These probes will report back every collectible you have yet to pick up. There are still a handful of items that reside on a derelict ship that you absolutely need to find yourself but otherwise, it is within reason for everyone who plays the game to get 100% without consulting a third party source. Not present on the first playthroughs, but ''Fusion'' and ''Zero Mission'' will have a timer and an item checklist for each area during each subsequient playthrough.
* HailfirePeaks: Practically every zone in ''Fusion'' is "X meets EternalEngine". The original and ''Super'' had a lot of "UndergroundLevel meets X".
* HalfHumanHybrid: Samus is a [[TouchedByVorlons genetically augmented human]] with Chozo DNA, and then later receives an anti-X "vaccine" made from Metroid cells, which allows her to eat the X as if she were a Metroid.
* HappilyAdopted: Samus considers the Chozo her "real" family as much as anything, and they certainly don't skimp on their love for her.
** Fans who'd grown to associate Samus with this trope were understandably peeved when in ''Other M'' Samus refers to Adam as "the only father figure she'd ever known".
* HardLevelsEasyBosses: ''Zero Mission'' has this on Normal. The final boss gets significantly more challenging if [[spoiler:you've got 100% completion]], but by that point, you're so armed to the teeth anyways, it barely matters.
* HasTwoMommies: In the manga, Samus' two primary caretakers are Old Bird and Gray Voice, two presumably male Chozo elders. However, in the games, her younger self's depiction of her "parents" includes a third Chozo never shown in the manga. This may be Platinum Chest.
* HeWhoFightsMonsters: [[spoiler:Samus nearly succumbs to this in the third chapter of the manga. On the planet of Jigrad, she saves a group of slaves from the Space Pirates. When confronted by Samus, the last remaining Space Pirate pleads with her to show mercy. Driven by her memories of her homeworld K-2L being mercilessly razed by the Space Pirates, Samus is about to murder the last Space Pirate in cold blood when the sound of a small girl crying snaps her out of her rage. Shortly thereafter, the small child thanks Samus for saving her, and Samus tells her that she saved her as well from becoming just as much of a merciless killer as the Space Pirates.]] Also, Samus begins to physically, not mentally, resemble Dark Samus as ''Prime 3'' goes on. A non standard Game over has her playing it straght though.
** [[spoiler:In ''Metroid II'', Samus is charged with the task of eradicating the Metroids once and for all. After destroying the Metroid Queen, Samus finds a newly hatched Metroid. Despite knowing that Metroid is a Chozo word for "ultimate warrior", she still can't bring herself to kill a newborn child.]]
* HeartContainer: Energy Tanks.
* HeelRealization: [[spoiler:The baby Metroid in ''Super'']] has one just before it drains all of Samus' energy when it recognizes who she is.
* HeroicMime: In ''Prime 3,'' the first voice-acted game in the series, she has no voice acting beyond her usual grunts, on the grounds that Samus talking would be "too creepy." In ''Fusion,'' she's a veritable chatterbox, and converses with her computer towords the end. She also does some narration in Zero Mission and ''Super'', but only the very begining of each game.
** Now she'll be talking in ''Other M,'' which, combined with the fact that she had verbal taunts in ''Brawl,'' seems to suggest she's going the "talking hero" route.
* HeroicSacrifice: Samus almost attempts one in ''Fusion'' [[spoiler:by detonating the self-destruct charges on BS-L to destroy the X-Parasites aboard; herself included. The AI Adam, however, informs her that doing that would be stupid, as it would not destroy the X on Planet [=SR388=], and only serve to destroy the X's greatest obstacle: Samus. Adam then promptly makes a heel face turn and decides to help Samus, making a different plan, which destroys all the X in both locations and allows Samus time enough to escape the station.]]
** Also [[spoiler:Adam Malkovich]] in ''Other M'' and [[spoiler:the Metroid hatchling]] in ''Super Metroid''.
** Both of Samus' parents sacrifice themselves as well. Her mother does to save Samus, and her father sacrifices himself blowing up the Space Pirates vessel, along with most of their force. Ridley later taunts Samus by revealing that without a ship, he consumed the bodies of the dead humans to stay alive. Including [[KickTheDog her mother]].
* HeWasRightThereAllAlong: Acid Worm, Ridley in Zero Mission, Torizo...
** Ridley is an interesting case. He was not even near the planet when Kraid was defeated, only just landing on it when Samus reaches his hideout. In ''Super Metroid'', he plays this pretty much straight, for both encounters.
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Mother Brain attempts to finish off Samus with the Hyper Beam at the end of ''Super Metroid''. Before dying, the infant Metroid steals it from her and gives it to Samus...
** Also the Space Pirates in the remake portion of ''Zero Mission''. Turns out the reason Tourian is empty is because the Metroids they were producing got loose and killed them all. This happens to people who try to use Metroids A LOT.
* HopelessBossFight: First fight against Ridley in ''Super''; you can sort of win, as he fumbles the hatchling if you hit him enough times, but he still takes off with it after.
** Not to mention the ''Super Metroid'' FinalBoss, which can only be won [[spoiler:AFTER the Baby Metroid's death]] -- and yes, it's possible to fumble it and LOSE during this fight. And SA-X before ''Metroid Fusion'''s finale. And the Giant Metroid in Super Metroid.
* TheHorde: The Space Pirate Confederation
* HubLevel: The Main Deck in ''Fusion'' and the Temple grounds in ''MetroidPrime 2: Echoes''.
* IAmNotShazam: A somewhat common outsider mistake is to call Samus "Metroid"; the Metroids are a race of aliens that she hunts.
** In-universe, however, it's ironically fitting, considering that she has Metroid DNA in her as of ''Fusion''. Also, "Metroid" is apparently the Chozo word for "Ultimate Warrior" (or something along those lines). Which is [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin pretty much what Samus is]].
* AnIcePerson: Samus, considering all the ice power-ups. She gets this affinity turned around on her in ''Metroid Fusion''; because she has Metroid DNA, cold becomes her greatest weakness. The organism in her old suit, the SA-X, uses her old ice beam to devastating effect whenever she bumps into Samus.
* {{Imprinting}}: One of the series' iconic scenes is at the end of ''Metroid II'', where a Metroid hatches and imprints on Samus as its mother (and Samus is at least mericful enough to not kill it). The plots of ''Super'', ''Fusion'', and ''Other M'' all refer back to this scene.
* InCaseOfBossFightBreakGlass: ... well, how else are you going to [[AttackItsWeakPoint Attack Mother Brain's Brain]]?
* InsectoidAliens: The "[[http://metroid.wikia.com/wiki/Ki-Hunter Ki-Hunter]]" pirates of ''Super Metroid'', ''Fusion'', and ''Other M''. The main space pirates seemed to be too but ''Prime'' revealed them to be reptilians in insectoid armor. ''Zero Mission'' pirates are not reptilian but still revealed what their [[ExtraEyes heads look like under the helmet.]] The latter design was prominent in ''Prime 3''.
* InSeriesNickname: To space pirates, Samus is "TheHunter".
* {{Interquel}}: All of the games released after ''Fusion,'' though their exact placement in the timeline varies.
* InterspeciesAdoption: Samus was raised by the Chozo, who also taught her everything she knows as a bounty hunter.
* IrishNames: Both "Samus" and "Aran" are generally Irish in origin. Samus being a female variant of James and Aran being a group of islands near the West coast of Ireland.
** Samus is also a variation of the Greek name Samos, which is also an island in the area of Greece.
* ItsPersonal: Just read the manga and you'll see that Samus has quite the bone to pick with the Space Pirates, Ridley, and Mother Brain.
* JokerImmunity: The one time Samus finally kills Ridley in ''Super'', he comes back, despite the fact a planet was blown up under his corpse's feet. No wonder she had a HeroicBSOD in ''Other M''.
* KaizoTrap: The Core-X that gives Wide Beam shoots even if your hit kills it, so you can die ''just'' as you kill it.
* KillItWithIce: The titular monsters, annoying as hell before you get some weapons effective against them. Though not as much with some of their later forms, the games rarely throw those at you.
* LastOfHisKind: ''Super Metroid'' features the last Metroid. Samus herself might even count, given that, although human, she's carrying the DNA of the practically-to-totally extinct Chozo race.
* LateArrivalSpoiler: The ending of ''Super Metroid'' is spoiled in the opening cutscene of ''Other M''. Then again, it's one of the most iconic games in the series, so odds are a new arrival looking up ''Metroid'' info has already stumbled across it on a message board or something anyway.
** For that matter, the opening cutscene of ''Super Metroid'' spoils the endings of ''Metroid'' and ''Metroid II''.
** Believe it or not, SamusIsAGirl was itself considered a plot twist at the beginning of the series, to the point where the original game's manual either strenuously avoided mentioning Samus' gender (in the Japanese text) or outright referred to her as male (in the English text). At this point it's [[AllThereIsToKnowAboutTheCryingGame the only thing some people know about the series]], and crossover media such as ''Franchise/SuperSmashBros'' don't even try to hide it.
* LatexSpaceSuit: Zero Suit Samus.
* LavaIsBoilingKoolAid: In the original Metroid, lava was a red palette swap of acid.
** While later games subvert ConvectionSchmonvection, Samus is still able to dive in it. This is justified by her suit most likely being more dense. In addition, the lava-proof Gravity Suit is a device whose primary function is to treat [[WaterIsAir liquid as air]], so by the time she's completely protected against lava, she should have no problem at all submerging in it.
* LeftHanging: Some people are a bit annoyed at the lack of a sequel to ''Fusion'', in no small part because the ending to that game addressed but didn't resolve a little factoid: [[spoiler:Samus just ''blew the shit'' out of a Federation-owned scientific laboratory, taking a planet and an illegal Metroid cloning project with it. Sure, Samus was getting rid of the repli-Metroids and the X all in one go, but a secret faction within the Federation ''wanted'' to keep both of those around so ''they'' could use 'em as weapons... meaning that Samus is, in all likelihood, ''an outlaw now''.]] The prequel, ''Other M'', also deals with a similar rogue faction, but it's still otherwise undeveloped beyond the possible inclusion of a Colonel in their ranks. Is it a little too much to ask for a game ''about'' this, Nintendo?
* LegacyBossBattle: Ridley, a SpacePirate pterodactyl/dragon-thing, has made an appearance for a boss fight in every game in the franchise except for three.[[note]]''Metroid Prime 2: Echoes'', ''Metroid II: Return of Samus'', and ''Metroid Prime Hunters''[[/note]]
* LegoGenetics: Samus is a human being genetically enhanced by Chozo blood. By ''Fusion'', she's also part-Metroid.
** Although [[DownplayedTrope not as blatant as the trope normally implies.]] She doesn't change too much. Her immune system and body regulation have changed, but both could be justified.
* {{Leitmotif}}: Ridley, ever since ''Super'', has his own boss music, a remix of his/Draygon's/Torizo's/the escape theme from ''Super''.
** The SA-X also has its own distinctive theme music.
*** Samus herself, of course, has [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvGrd8jnCdM&feature=related Appearance]].
** The Brinstar Theme has become rather iconic in its own right, despite not necessarily being the main theme of the game and being listed as such in ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Brawl''.
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SguK44fzVLI Morph Ball Acquired!]]
* LethalLavaLand: Present in some form in every Metroid game.
* LeParkour: Samus in every game after ''Super'', except ''Prime'' and that may count too because she still has awesome [[CutscenePowerToTheMax cutscene moves.]]
* LivingGasbag: Many of the organisms float this way, including the [=titular=] Metroids.
* LoadBearingBoss: At least one in every game which will inevitably result in the destruction of a nearby planet (if not the planet under Samus' feet)...except ''Metroid II''. At least, during the course of the game...
** Metroid/Zero Mission: Mother Brain and Mecha-Ridley.
** ''Prime'': Parasite Queen and Metroid Prime.
** ''Prime 2'': Emperor Ing
** ''Prime 3'': Meta Ridley [[spoiler: and Aurora Unit 313]].
** ''Super'': Mother Brain
** ''Other M'': [[spoiler: Phantoon]]
** ''Fusion'': SA-X (though, destroying it just removes the obstacle in the way of ''you'' doing the destruction)
* LoweredMonsterDifficulty: The titular creatures are the scourge of the universe in ''Metroid'' and ''Super Metroid'', needing to be frozen and pelted with missiles to kill. Through the ''Prime'' series, they become progressively less of an actual threat. In ''Prime 2'', even their possessed and powered up forms can be beaten with enough firepower from any of your weapons, and in ''Prime 3'', you eventually get the ability to kill Phazon Metroids by shooting through their nuclei. [[ParanoiaFuel Until then, though they can turn into vapor...]]
** Possibly [[JustifiedTrope justified;]] the Metroids in the ''Prime'' games are a different strain (Tallon Metroids) that have been horribly mutated by massive, repeated exposure to Phazon. The "Natural" [=SR388=] strains, on the other hand, are only vulnerable to cold until late in their life cycle.
* {{Magitek}}: The franchise various implies either this or SufficientlyAdvancedAliens as the explanation for why Chozo tech is so incredibly powerful and versatile.
** Chozo magitek is canon in the Prime continuity, and Prime 3 even involves travelling to an alien planet devastated by TheMagicVersusTechnologyWar, where magic won a PyrrhicVictory, killing off the last of the Science Lords and devolving into feral barbarism, when those Science Lords gave themselves away by activating the magitek devices that now keep the planet alive.
* MalevolentArchitecture: All over the franchise.
* MeaningfulName: To paraphrase TheOtherWiki, Samus is the female variant of the name Seamus, which is celtic for James and means "One who supplants." Her last name, Aran, is the name of an island. One who supplants an island, ''or'' One who conquers isolated territory by force.
** Perhaps also, one who ''is'' an island, in a metaphorical sense -- one who is isolated, existing and subsisting as an entity unto herself. Samus does pretty much always operate alone, without any outside aid or companionship (except for briefly in the beginning and towords the end of ''Corruption'', throughout ''Other M'' and ''Fusion'').
* MechanisticAlienCulture: The Space Pirates.
* MetamorphosisMonster: While on their home planet at least, the Metroids go from floating parasitic jellyfish to beetlelike creatures to giant armored lizards. In an interesting twist, the first stage is not only the most well-known and arguably most dangerous, but while nearly every game has a variant of the jellyfish stage, the later stages have only appeared in a handful of games.
* {{Metroidvania}}: Pretty much [[TropeMaker started]] and [[TropeCodifier codified]] the genre.
* MinusWorld: In the NES original and Game Boy sequel.
* MultipleEndings: The Segmented Endings subtrope applies to the ''Prime'' series, ''Metroid 2'', ''Super'', and ''Other M''; whether based on completion time, [[HundredPercentCompletion percentage]], or both. Played somewhat straight with ''Fusion'' and ''Zero Mission'''s ending portraits.
* MythologyGag: [[spoiler:The final boss fight of ''Fusion''. You get reduced to 1HP in a single swing (no matter your remaining health prior to this), and then someone shows up to save your hide. That creature gets killed, Samus gets a new upgrade (including a new beam), and you beat the unholy tar out of whatever you were fighting. There are some discrepancies, but the similarities to ''Super Metroid'' are obvious.]]
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: When Samus eradicated the Metroids on [=SR388=], her intention may have been to stop the Metroids from being used as a biological weapon ever again, but by removing an apex predator from the planet's ecosystem, the X Parasites that the Metroids preyed on were able to multiply unchecked. This sets up the events of ''Fusion'', where the parasites become a potentially greater threat than the Metroids.
* NinjaPirateZombieRobot: Ridley started as a dragon space pirate, and adds more to this title in the ''Prime'' games, culminating in him being a [[UpToEleven mutant cyborg dragon space pirate]].
** In ''Super'', there are two gray Space Pirates that fight by using martial arts, which were called "Ninja Pirates" by fans.
* NintendoHard: The original game (given the trope is named after the NES having abusively difficult games, not surprising). Getting 100% without a [[GuideDangIt guide]] is hard, doing that while beating it in under [[SpeedRun 2 hours]] is even harder.
** The other games are easier due to gameplay refinements. But if this is you first time playing any particular game, be you a veteran or a newcomer, you WILL die at least 20 times. Now try and get 100% under 2 hours without dying on hard mode!
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: Samus to Mother Brain during the mother of all MamaBear moments at the end of ''Super Metroid''. After what Mother Brain did, she completely deserved it.
* NoobBridge: The TropeNamer is a crumbling bridge encountered early in Brinstar in ''Super Metroid'', and the first place in the game that would require any player (of less than insanely good skill) to use the run button. The run button, however, is not part of a standard control scheme anywhere else within the Metroid series. Many newbies get stuck there, unaware of the otherwise obvious solution.
* NoTranshumanismAllowed: One of the rare and surprising aversions: not only are cybernetics commonplace and carry no notable social stigma, Samus herself is a [[HalfHumanHybrid transgenic lifeform]], with her adoptive Chozo caretakers having grafted their species' DNA onto her own to increase her adaptability to the harsh environment of [[DeathWorld Planet Zebes]]. Further, by ''Metroid Fusion'', Samus is also [[spoiler:part Metroid]]
** Not to mention, [[spoiler:Adam (and many other political and scientific figures) regularly underwent BrainUploading]].
* NotTheIntendedUse: And not just in SequenceBreaking form either. Glitching Kraid in ''Super Metroid'' for instance, is not a sequence break, but certainly counts.
* OminousLatinChanting: Lower Norfair... [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome and it's awesome.]]
* OneHitPolykill: The plasma beam works this way.
* [[OneManArmy One Woman Army]]: The Galactic Federation staged an all-out attack on the Space Pirate base on Zebes. [[OneRiotOneRanger When that didn't work, they sent Samus.]]
* OpeningTheSandbox: ''Fusion'' and ''Other M'' are the most linear games in the series yet, and thus have very few opportunities to let you backtrack to earlier sectors on your own until the endgame.
* PaletteSwap: As mentioned, lava was a palette swap for acid in the first game. It also had palette swaps of multiple enemies in a given area, with one color being tougher than another. The beam troopers in ''Prime'' are colored based on what beam they use on you.
* PersonalSpaceInvader: The titular Metroids, many other creatures to lesser degrees.
* PinballSpinoff: ''Metroid Prime Pinball''.
* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything: Arguably the Space Pirates, who often are found in lairs breeding bioweapons but rarely found actually committing piracy.
** Justified in that Samus is usually sent in to pirate lairs post-piracy. The pirates pirate the first discovered Metroid in ''Zero Mission'''s manual. You can see the pirates in action in the opening sequence of ''Super Metroid'', when Ridley pirates the last metroid from the research station. [[AddedAlliterativeAppeal Presumably, pangalactic police prevent protracted piratical processes,]] only summoning up their favourite bounty hunter to go in and blow up the place when they track down the actual lair -- which would probably be largely immune to a head-on raid by federation forces.
** The Pirates did quite a bit of pirating in ''Prime 3: Corruption,'' in which they hijacked an entire Federation battleship (GFS ''Valhalla''), murdered its crew, and stole its onboard Aurora Unit. Later, they tried to pull the same trick against the GFS ''Olympus.'' They didn't count on The Hunter being aboard...
** Samus herself fits this trope, as she doesn't actual any "bounty-hunting" except in the first game/Zero Mission, Metroid II and arguably in the prelude to Fusion (catching specimens from SR-388 for the Federation). Supposedly, RetroStudios wanted to add bounty-hunting side missions in Prime 3: Corruption, but this was vetoed by the higher-ups from Japan, who it's rumored [[ValuesDissonance thought it made Samus look like a criminal, having evidently never considered what "bounty hunter" means]].
* PlugNPlayTechnology: Samus' suit is described to be "modular", which means it can also identify other technologies and adapt them into itself. The suit is able to form new abilities just by absorbing "data" acquired from rooms and the DNA of the X parasites in ''Fusion''. Hell, SPACE PIRATE tech will work on it in some games.
** Subverted in ''Zero Mission'', where you find a few upgrades incompatible with your suit. [[spoiler:You need the Fully-Powered Suit to use them.]] May be double subverted in that the suit you need is the one with Plug 'n' Play tech to begin with.
* PosthumousCharacter: Adam Malkovich is technically this, although ''Fusion'' puts an odd spin on it. ''Other M'', which takes place before ''Fusion'', shows him before his death.
* PowerCrystal: The ''Literature/{{Lensman}}''-like hand crystal on the back of her left hand. Originally just a visual effect, ''Zero Mission'' made it integral to use of the Power Grip, and the first ''Prime'' game made it the source of the Grapple lasso.
* PoweredArmor: Samus' suit.
* PuzzleBoss: Many, including Crocomire and Flaahgra.
* PuzzlePan: All 3D games but ''Echoes'' especially. Sometimes accompanied by weather patterns or fauna movements to smack where you need to go over your head.
* RaisedByNatives: Samus.
* RasputinianDeath: Crocomire in ''Super Metroid''.
* RecurringBoss: SA-X in ''Fusion'', though it's not really a boss until near the end of the game. Ridley may be a better example, considering he appears in almost every game, twice in ''Super'' and ''Corruption''. Also, [[spoiler:The final boss and title antagonist of ''Metroid Prime'' comes back as Dark Samus for the second and third games of the trilogy]].
* RidiculouslyCuteCritter: In the manga, Samus' pet Ponchi appears to be about half squirrel, half rabbit, and ''all'' adorable. Also, the Etecoons [[note]]monkey-koala hybrids[[/note]] and the Dachoras [[note]]ostrich-style creatures[[/note]] in ''Super'' and ''Fusion''. Maybe the "little birdie" of ''Other M'' as well, al least until you learn [[spoiler:it's actually Ridley's clone]]
* RoarBeforeBeating: Some of the bosses do this.
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: In ''Super Metroid''.
** Revenge on the space pirates could be seen as one of Samus' main motivations, especially against [[ArchEnemy Ridley]], who personally killed her mother right in front of her when she was four years old.
** The last bits of ''Zero Mission'': [[spoiler:The defeat of Mother Brain is spoiled by space pirates shooting you down. And your suit is lost. Then you get a better one which is followed by the annihilation of every Space Pirate on the Mothership.]]
* SavageSetpiece: Multiple non-hostile indigenous creatures will turn into this if you attack them.
* SavePoint: The second type is a common sight in the series. With the exception of Chozodia save points in ''Zero Mission'' and Samus's [[CoolStarship gunship]], they never refill health. The Save Stations in the ''Prime'' series, however, save and heal.
* SceneryGorn: Old Tourian in ''Super'' and post-Mother Brain ''Zero Mission'', [[spoiler:Sector 5 (ARC)]] in ''Metroid Fusion''.
* SchematizedProp: Many of the more recent games have taken up this trope, most notably using a Power Suit schematic as the item/weapon status screen (''Zero Mission'', ''Prime'', ''Prime 3'', ''Super'', ''Fusion''; the schematized suit was also seen in the instruction manual for ''Metroid II'').
* ScifiWritersHaveNoSenseOfScale: Very few of Samus's weapons have numbers behind them, but those that do are absurdly powerful -- like "fully automatic nuclear explosion launcher" powerful.
* ScrewTheRulesImDoingWhatsRight: In the 3rd chapter of the manga, Samus - a newly recruited Galactic Federation Police Officer - and two fellow officers Mauk and Kreatz, are sent to planet of Jigrad on a recon mission to monitor the Space Pirates' activities there. Finding the Pirates are using human children as slave labor, Samus jumps in and massacres the Pirates before they can execute a child for being "unfit" for labor instead of reporting the find and waiting for orders. She and her team are later scolded by [[DaChief Chief Hardy]], but Samus is praised by the Jigradian people for her help.
** The finale of ''Fusion'' has [[spoiler:the Federation ordering Samus to stand down so that they can capture the SA-X for study (also Samus just blew up their top-secret Metroid cloning facility, so they're a bit ticked about that). Samus knows firsthand just how dangerous the SA-X is, so she proceeds to crash the space station into nearby planet [=SR388=], destroying both and eradicating the X for good.]] Given how much the Federation had invested into that, the general thought among fans is that Samus is no longer on their good side after this.
* SeaMonster: The boss Serris is a sea serpent with SuperSpeed. Before Serris, there was ''Super'' miniboss Botwoon, who was a serpent like Serris who sped up as he took damage, and could spit acid spread-shots. Also Draygon, the boss of Maridia.
* SequelHook: ''Fusion'' sure seemed to leave one hell of a sequel hook, what with [[spoiler:Samus having ''illegally blown up a Federation outpost'' and become something way other than human. Sure, Samus had her reasons, but all the implications in-game are that the Fed will be ''pissed as shit'' with her now.]]
** A sequel on the DS with 2-D gameplay, ''Metroid Dread'', was supposed to have been shown at {{E3}} 2006, but was mysteriously dropped. Potentially hinted at again in ''Corruption'', however.
* SequenceBreaking: The ''Metroid'' fandom coined this term from their extensive experience with this trope. ''Zero Mission'' was made with this in mind, pretty much the only thing set in stone is that Kraid must be beaten before Ridley[[note]]Until you learn to perform an Infinite Bomb Jump and find out what to use to break a certain block in a certain room's ceiling, and which block it is, at least.[[/note]], Ridley must be beaten before Mother Brain, and Mother Brain must be beaten before Chozodia.
* ShapeShifterBaggage: Samus herself with the Morph Ball but the shape shifting is not actually the worst thing about it (the issue of vision is) nor is it the most glaring example; that goes to the X Parasites. They not only multiply impossibly fast but they can take on new, often large, forms nearly instantly.
* SharkTunnel: These are a common feature, starting with the tunnel between Brinstar and Maridia in ''Super Metroid'', to the underwater tunnel in Sector 4 in ''Fusion,'' the skywalk between Chozodia and the Pirate Mothership in ''Zero Mission,'' and the skywalk from Magmoor to Phazon Mines in ''Prime.'' All of them can be shattered with power bombs to allow free travel between the two areas.
* ShiftingSandLand: Sector 3 - PYR in ''Fusion'', the Agon Wastes in ''Echoes'', and the Experimental Simulated Desert in ''Other M''.
* ShoutOut: Several to the ''Franchise/{{Alien}}'' franchise. Ridley is named after director Ridley Scott, and the opening shot of ''Prime'' is almost identical to that of the first film. Even the title logos have similarities (ALIEN - メトロイド).
** A non-enemy creature in ''Super Metroid'' has a turtle like shell that flies around while spinning. Likely a nod to {{Gamera}}. Or possibly Bowser. Its offspring look strikingly similar to [[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Buzzy Beetles]].
** A blink-and-you'll-miss-it example is the name of the planet that houses one Federation shipyard, where the GFS Olympus and Samus' gunship (the one used in ''Prime 2''; she goes through gunships like other people go through tissues) were built: [[{{Film/Alien 3}} Aliehs III]].
** And then there's the fact that, as of ''Super Metroid'', Samus can [[GetterRobo SHIIIIINESPAAAAAAAARK]]!
** Houston from the ''Super Metroid'' Comic in ''Magazine/NintendoPower'' seems to refer to Captain Dallas from the first ''Film/{{Alien}}'' film.
** The original Famicom Disk System version of the first game's Escape theme and subsequent arrangements in future games don't have it, but the NES version features a slight expansion that includes [[RecurringRiff a recurring six-note melody]] from the ''VideoGame/KidIcarus'' soundtrack.
** [[Creator/MichaelJackson Moonwalking]] in ''Super Metroid''.
** The Restricted Area in ''Fusion'' looks and acts a hell of a lot like Tourian.
** Outside the actual series, in ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Brawl'', one of Zero Suit Samus' air-attacks is the Inazuma Kick from ''Anime/GunBuster''.
** In the Wanpakku manga[=/=]strategy guide for the original game, there's a sequence where Samus comes across a door for the first time, but doesn't know how to open it. She tries saying "OpenSesame!", followed by "Bamble, bomble, bambopp!" and "Pastel, popple, poppinpa!". (Neither of them worked.) The latter two phrases are incantations from MagicalGirl shows (specifically ''Anime/MagicalAngelCreamyMami'' and ''Anime/MagicalIdolPastelYumi'', respectfully).
** The Zero Suit is one to the datasuit of ''Manga/{{Appleseed}}'' that Deunan wears in her landmate.
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: Sector 5 - ARC in ''Fusion'', the Cryosphere in ''Other M'', and the Phendrana Drifts in ''Prime''.
* SoleSurvivor: Samus, twice over: first when the K-2L colony was slaughtered by the Space Pirates, and again when the Space Pirates, under Mother Brain's direction, invaded Zebes and killed the remaining Chozo. Well, on Zebes, anyway. And then there's the last remaining Metroid from ''Metroid II''.
** The only Space Pirate who actually survived ''Super Metroid'' [[spoiler: without being cloned or remade was Phantoon.]]
* SomethingCompletelyDifferent: ''Metroid Prime Pinball'' qualifies.
* SomethingOnlyTheyWouldSay: How Samus discovers the identity of her AI CO in ''Metroid Fusion''.
** Many fans realized what the mysterious trailer for ''Other M'' was as soon as Adam said "Any objections, lady?" Prior to this, it was intentionally unclear what the game in question was.
* SpacePirates: The primary antagonists for most of the series; only three games didn't have them as the main attackers, and in two of the three, they made cameo appearances anyways.
* SpaceMarines: From ''Super'' and ''Prime'', Space Army in ''[[MetroidOtherM Other M]]''. Both are [[BadassArmy okay]], just not as good as Samus.
** Samus herself had once been a Space Marine when she was serving under Commander Adam Malkovitch.
* SpeedRun: ''Super Metroid'' and the following sequels have their maps designed so that you can solve them in a fraction of the expected solving time by using special techniques like wall jumping, bomb jumping, mock ball, etc. to get key items ahead of time.
* SprintShoes: Speed Booster.
* StarFishAliens: The main ones are X Parasites, the Ing, and Metroids, but others tend to pop up.
* StatuesqueStunner: Samus. Gandrayda is even taller.
* SteamVentObstacle:
** In the intro level for ''Super Metroid'', Samus needs to escape a space station, while avoiding gushes of steam coming out from practically everywhere. Getting hit by the steam doesn't cost you energy, but you lose precious time to escape.
** Happens again during the escape from planet Zebes, only the steam's escaping ''from the ground'' itself.
* SubBoss: ''Return of Samus'' is the only game that doesn't have at least one, if tougher Metroids don't qualify. (Although one might argue that Arachnus - even if being optional - can be considered to be one.)
* SuddenlyVoiced: In ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Brawl'', Samus finally spoke her taunts. However, they sounded rather... [[FetishFuel odd]]. In ''Other M'', she speaks for the first time in her own series.
* SuperweaponSurprise: Don't mess with Chozo statues... just, don't: ''"Those who defile [our statues] shall know our wrath, unfettered and raw."''
** In addition to that: do you know what you get when the peaceful, spiritual race bird race actually trains someone to fight, and gives them the technology to do so? You get ''[[OneManArmy Samus Aran]].''
*** And there used to be many more just like her (albeit Chozo). Samus is referred to as the first "Chozo" in many generations to choose the path of the warrior.
* SuspiciousVideogameGenerosity: If there is a save station -- and possibly recharge room -- next to a huge room, expect a boss to be nearby...
* SwissArmyWeapon: Samus' cannon shoots various beams, including power, ice, plasma, and wave, and also missiles. The whole power suit kind of qualifies.
* SympathyForTheDevil: As the series goes on, you realize the Metroids aren't so bad -- this culminates with Samus becoming part-Metroid in ''Fusion.''
** In ''Other M'', [[spoiler:MB when you know her past and the reason of her rampage.]]
* ThemeMusicPowerUp: This occurs in every ''Metroid'', but perhaps the most gratifying moment is in ''Zero Mission'' when, after running for your life from Space Pirates with nothing but your [[EmergencyWeapon Emergency Pistol]] and defeating the Chozo Ghost, Samus' unknown items transform into the Plasma Beam, Gravity Suit, and Space Jump. At this point, you can finally kill the Space Pirates... with ease.
* TheFederation: The Galactic Federation
* TomatoSurprise: SamusIsAGirl: [[TropeNamer Duh.]]
* TookALevelInBadass: In ''Super Metroid'', Samus' surrogate Metroid child returns. [[spoiler:It's gone from tiny to around four times as big as Samus. It later holds off Mother Brain.]]
** In most games, the Ice Beam is a useful weapon, but not that powerful. In ''Fusion'', Samus develops a weakness to cold and loses the Ice Beam. It becomes a weapon of pure murder when used against her, and [[spoiler:it's the last weapon she gets in the game.]]
* TraumaInducedAmnesia: [[spoiler:Happens to Samus in the manga. The trauma of watching her homeworld being destroyed and watching her parents die is essentially forgotten until Ridley forces Samus to remember what happened in their first encounter many years later. After remembering the event, Samus suffers a horrendous HeroicBSOD and begs her comrades to kill her.]]
* TheUndead: Coverns (Three skulls stuck together), Phantoon (Huge malevolent spirit allied with the Pirates), Chozo Ghosts, Dark Troopers, and Skeleton Crocomire.
* UndergroundLevel: The setting of a good majority of ''Super Metroid''. All of the action in ''Metroid II'' takes place in the caverns of [=SR388=]. The only part of the surface the player sees is the immediate area around Samus' ship, and the hills behind it at the end of the game. The first ''Metroid'' is entirely underground as well.
* UniqueEnemy: Used frequently beginning with the 16-bit installments, especially ''Super Metroid''.
* TheVeryDefinitelyFinalDungeon: The FinalBoss is always in an impressive location:
** The original puts Samus in [[spoiler:Mother Brain's subterranean lair, where you fight the Metroids for the first time.]]
** ''Metroid II'' has [[spoiler:the nest of the Metroid Queen.]]
** ''Super Metroid'' takes us [[spoiler:even deeper into planet Zebes, to fight Mother Brain again.]]
** ''Fusion'' ends things [[spoiler:WhereItAllBegan: the final boss is faced in the docking bay.]]
** ''Prime'' ends in [[spoiler:an impact crater from a Phazon meteor.]]
** ''Zero Mission'' has Samus infiltrate [[spoiler:the pirate mothership.]]
** ''Echoes'' finishes up in [[spoiler:the collapsing, Phazon-filled gateway of the Sky Temple -- the holy structure of the Ing.]]
** ''Hunters'' gives us [[spoiler:the [[TailorMadePrison Oubliette]], a ship constructed for one purpose: to house an EldritchAbomination.]]
** In what may be the most over-the-top instance of this trope in the series, ''Corruption'' [[spoiler:ends on a '''''sentient planet'''''.]]
** And to finish things off, ''Other M'' [[spoiler:brings a cloned Metroid Queen back for a showdown in a secure room aboard the Bottle Ship. At the end of the epilogue, Phantoon is fought in a giant, wide open room with glass Phantoon attacks from.]]
* VictorGainsLosersPowers:
** Samus in ''Metroid Fusion'' had all [[PowerCopying her abilities copied by X]]. After killing X-infected bosses (which tend to be able to produce similar attacks), she can absorb the X-parasite to regain that power.
** ''Metroid Prime 2'' does something similar, where, after losing most of her starting abilities to a mob of Ing, she has to regain them in one-on-one boss battles where they're used against her.
** The Phazon Suit from the Omega Pirate in the first Prime. ''Metroid Prime 3'' has Samus gain the Ice Missiles, Plasma Beam, Grapple Voltage, and all the Phazon upgrades this way.
* VideoGameRemake: ''Zero Mission''.
** A dedicated fan is remaking ''Metroid 2'', but with an engine similar to that found in ''Fusion'' and ''Zero Mission''. Curiously enough, it's named ''[[http://metroid2remake.blogspot.com.br/ Another Metroid 2 Remake]]''.
* VillainBasedFranchise: ''Fusion'' more or less {{Invert|edTrope}}s this, giving Samus herself Metroid-DNA.
* WallJump: Starting with ''Super Metroid'', Samus quickly became one of the most notable employers of this technique. It also is the primary tool of sequence breakers.
** ''Prime 2'' was the first game that explicitly informed the player that this was one of Samus' abilities; in all previous games, it was a secret, and admittedly optional, technique.
* WhatMeasureIsANonHuman: Averted in ''Metroid II''. Samus couldn't bring herself to kill a child, even if said child was a parasitic monster and a potential threat to the galaxy. It certainly helped matters that she felt an attachment to the creature.
* WolverinePublicity: The Varia Suit is used in almost all of the series' covers and promotional images, even though it's typically only the middle of three suits.
* WombLevel: The innards of the Leviathans in ''Prime 3'', though that's more of a case of 'Womb Boss Chamber'. Phaaze is a living planet, too, though only a few parts of what we see of Phaaze is definitely organic.
** The Impact Crater in ''Prime'' and a couple of the rooms in Red Brinstar in ''Super'' also qualify.
* YouDontLookLikeYou: Samus suffered this problem until about ''Metroid Zero Mission.'' She was usually a blonde -- except when her hair was brown, green, or [[DarkSkinnedRedhead Dark Skinned Purple]] -- and her various facial features and overall style of rendering fluctuated. However, once ''Zero Mission/Prime 2'' hit, her appearance seemed to standardize. Her ''Fusion'' appearance could be explained by the surgery, or her altered DNA.
** Her armor also changed drastically between Metroid 1 and 2, and all flashbacks to the first game depict the redesigned armor. It got a further redesign in ''Other M'', which is also depicted in flashbacks to ''Metroid 2'' and ''Super Metroid''.
* YourPrincessIsInAnotherCastle: You've defeated [[BigBad Mother Brain]] and escaped Zebes in ''Zero Mission''... the game is over, right? Though, you never did find out what those mysterious power-ups were for... [[spoiler:Your ship gets shot down and you must [[UnexpectedGameplayChange sneak through the Space Pirate mothership to get your suit back.]]]]
* {{Zeerust}}: It's not really apparent in-game, given the low graphical capabilities of the console and the general lack of technology aside from Samus' suit, the doors, and the elevators, but the artwork of Samus for the original NES game makes it very apparent that ''Metroid'' was made in TheEighties. It has a rather boxier look than later portrayals, for one thing. Later games aged much better in this regard: even the immediate sequel to the first game, which was released only a few years later, features an artwork design for Samus that still looks pretty good even after twenty years.
* ZipMode: Samus' Speed Boost could be considered this if having to trek along a long straight path; she will travel fast enough to kill all normal enemies in the way.
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-->''See You Next Mission!''
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