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Video Game / Metroid Prime: Federation Force

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Spoilers for the Metroid Prime trilogy and all Metroid entries preceding this one will be left unmarked. You Have Been Warned!

"The Galaxy is not at peace. The war is far from over."

Metroid Prime: Federation Force is a 2016 Co-Op Multiplayer Metroid Spin-Off game for the Nintendo 3DS developed by Next Level Games. It is the 12th entry in the overall series, the 6th game in the Metroid Prime sub-series, and a Spiritual Successor to Metroid Prime: Hunters. It is also the sixth game in the franchise's chronology.

Following the events of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, the eradication of Phazon has completely removed any attempt to harness its power for both the Galactic Federation and Space Pirates alike. To remedy this issue, the Federation enacts "Operation Golem", having their soldiers train in the use of special mechs based on Samus's Power Suit technology to combat new threats. During one of the first field missions, the Federation learns that the Space Pirates are also in the region and have come with some of their own solutions to the lack of Phazon as well, forcing the small group of soldiers out of field tests and into actual combat in order to make sure their plans don't come into fruition.

Federation Force is notably the only entry in the series where you don't play as heroine Samus Aran. Instead, you primarily control one of several nameless Galactic Federation Marines in a small squadron, though Samus does appear as a recurring NPC granting the Galactic Federation information as she investigates the Space Pirate threat separately. While the game's focus is on multiplayer, it is possible to play the campaign in single player, with the game offering a few methods to boost your firepower to compensate.

The game also includes a multiplayer sports game called Metroid Prime: Blast Ball, a soccer-like team game where you use your blaster to shoot the ball in order to score points instead of your foot. This side mode was the first aspect of the game announced, revealed during the E3 2015 Nintendo World Championship event without anything linking it to the Metroid franchise. The complete game was fully revealed during Nintendo's E3 Digital Event.

This game includes examples of:

  • A Day in the Limelight: The Federation troops are the main focus of the game's plot, and get to prove that they're far more than just a Red Shirt Army in the Metroid universe.
  • Ambiguous Gender:
    • General Alex Miles. Alex is a gender neutral name, and we never hear a voice or see a face to decide the matter.
    • There are no confirmed male characters in the entire game. The marines can be set to female voices, and the Space Pirates don't have any gender characteristics.
  • Angry Guard Dog: The Space Pirates keep zurburats, vicious alien beasts that serve this role.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: The game has several mods exclusive to single player that make it easier for solo play, such as Attack Drones and increased damage and defense.
  • Artifact Title: Considering what happened to it at the end of Metroid Prime 3, the title character of the Metroid Prime Trilogy does not make an appearance. However, a Metroid egg does play a small role in the games ending and Sequel Hook.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: As is standard with the series, most bosses and some normal enemies are invulnerable save for a few weak points. Whatever the weak spot is, it's yellow.
  • Badass in Distress: Samus is captured late in the game.
  • Big Bad: "Master Brain,"note  the Space Pirates' new head of their latest excursion and the biomechanical control mechanism of the massively powerful battleship, the Doomseye.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Samus plays this role several times.
    • She pulls a Gunship Rescue against the rohkor beetle.
    • In the final mission, she wipes out a group of pirates to save the marines.
    • She rescues the marines from floating into space after the destruction of the Doomseye.
  • Breakout Character: The Federation troops are now the protagonists as opposed to expendable extras.
  • Call-Back: The pirates are described as being as large as an Omega Pirate.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Did you play Blast Ball? Hope so, because that's a key part of the final boss fight.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer: Teammates have different colored visors and Tron Lines-like glowing areas to differentiate from each other.
  • Collapsing Lair: Multiple examples, including one unusual example of the lair having its own health bar.
  • Comeback Mechanic: In Blast Ball, every time a goal is scored, doors close around the scored-upon team's goal, making it more difficult to score more. (If the regulation period ends with a tied score, the game goes into a sudden-death overtime period where all goals are at their largest size.)
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: The goal of the game is to work together with other Galactic Federation Marines to take on missions for the Galactic Federation.
  • Demoted to Extra: Samus Aran does appear, but she has a small role until she unwillingly becomes the final boss.
  • The Dreaded: The general is clearly terrified at the idea of the pirates with metroids.
  • Elite Mooks: Elite Pirates and Elite Troopers, which pack more of a punch and have more health.
  • Expy: The sawken are basically Serris.
  • Fictional Sport: Included with the game is another multiplayer mode, called Blast Ball, which is about shooting a large ball into goals, with laser guns, in a soccer-style event.
  • First-Person Shooter: As usual for the Prime series.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing:
    • In one of the missions, Grim class turrets appear amid the other mechanical enemies. These turrets were previously only seen being used by space pirates. Guess who shows up a few rooms later?
    • The only hints to Master Brain's existence are earlier in the level where it appears, which also happens to be the last one of the game.
  • Fusion Dance: The two sawken fuse into a single, larger version.
  • Giant Mook: Justified. The pirates augmented their physiology to increase their size and used the same process on their attack animals and Metroids, while the mechanical enemies were likely just built to larger scale. Though there is no explanation for the various wildlife.
  • Gunship Rescue: Mission 12. Samus's gunship strikes the final blow against a Not Quite Dead boss that was about to devour the marines.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: The team is addressed as [3DS profile name of player 1] Squad.
  • Hero of Another Story: It's clear from the snippets of information you get that Samus is doing just as much, if not more, to hamper the pirates as you are. Besides that, you're only one of several squads being deployed.
  • In the Back: The weak point of the bruisers.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Bion, a hot planet covered in volcanoes and deserts.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Partway through the game Samus is kidnapped by the pirates. In the final mission they have taken control of her suit, and a gigantic Samus in morph ball form serves as the final boss.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: Most non-boss enemies can be killed instantly by freezing them and shooting a missile.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: Destroying the Master Brain deactivates the defensive shields of the Doomseye, allowing the Federation to open fire with their warships... without giving you time to get away.
  • Metroidvania: Like Metroid Prime Pinball, this Spin-Off seems to avert this.
  • Marathon Boss: The Mainframe has three distinct phases, must be fully depleted of its substantial health to move to its next phase, and takes a lot of time and effort to become vulnerable. For solo players, it can be a long fight.
  • Minimalist Cast: Since the marines are nothing but blank slates, the only characters are General Miles, Samus, and Master Brain.
  • Mini-Mecha: They aren't just clad in Powered Armor like Samus, the playable characters are also piloting mech suits 3 times the height of a regular human. These allow them to mimic the firepower of Samus's suit, to an extent.
  • Mook Maker: The ice hopper nest.
  • Not Too Dead to Save the Day: Samus is buried under heavy rubble after her boss fight and presumed dead by the General. She shows up alive and well to save the marines five minutes later.
  • Old Save Bonus: Prior to Federation Force's release, Blast Ball was given a stand-alone release as a demo, with temporary online servers. Players' stats in the demo could be carried over to the full game.
  • Post-Final Boss: The Master Brain is fought after Samus, but its only defense consists of weak turrets and it has low overall health.
  • Sequel Hook: In keeping with Kensuke Tanabe's desire to make a Metroid Prime 4, the final cutscene of the game shows Sylux breaking into the Galactic Federation labs and forcibly hatching the Metroid egg the marines retrieved.
  • Shockwave Stomp: Used by several enemies, such as pirate bruisers, ice titans, and the Cyranon.
  • Shrink Ray: Inverted. The pirates use one of these to increase the size of their warriors to match the mechs.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Excelcion, a planet completely covered in ice and snow due to radical climate change from a meteor impact 20 years prior to the game.
  • Spin-Off: The game isn't part of the main Metroid or Metroid Prime plotlines. Samus Aran herself does appear, but in a limited role.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Samus, as the protagonist of the other Metroid games and the galaxy's premier badass, definitely plays this role.
  • Sticky Bomb: The proximity bomb can serve as this or as a deployable land mine.
  • The Stinger: Sylux breaks into the Federation base and hatches and steals the Metroid egg. However, this only happens if you accomplished the optional mission to collect the eggs in mission 17.
  • Super-Deformed: The proportions of the Marines and other assorted characters have been scaled down here so that they have small bodies and huge heads, giving Federation Force a more cutesy look and feel compared to the rest of the series. The creators of the game say that this would make it easier to see the characters on the smaller 3DS screen.
  • Timed Mission: Multiple missions end with the marines having to escape a base before a self-destruct timer reaches zero.
  • Too Awesome to Use: The rarest and most powerful mods in the game often stay unequipped due to the risk of having them be destroyed upon failing a mission.
  • Underground Monkey: Fire and ice hoppers.
  • Weapon of Mass Destruction: The Doomseye, the ultimate weapon of the Space Pirates. It's capable of wiping out the Federation HQ, despite all its defenses, without even leaving the Bermuda System.
  • Wreaking Havok: A number of the game's puzzles involve rolling spheres into slots.
  • Worldbuilding: A stated goal of the game is to expand on the Metroid universe outside of just Samus' perspective.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: A couple of missions, including the game's first, have an apparent ending where the extraction point appears on the map, but enemies attack before they can leave, forcing one last battle before the mission actually ends.