There has only been ONE series of video games that has never disappointed me. One series that has captivated me and augmented my reality since I first played it. That series was Metroid. The first time I played the original game on the NES, I had no idea how addicting it would be. I drew my own maps, I had dreams of being in the game. And if it weren't for school and chores, I would NEVER stop playing it.
Finding out that the main character was a girl didn't really stop me either. When I finally beat the game after weeks of obsession (I went so far as to draw my own maps!!), my reaction to the revelation of who was in the suit was simple: "Wow, COOL!!" I had no idea, at the time, how revolutionary that little 8bit animation was. Samus just became the first girl I ever related to. Then I started playing the game again. It wasn't until years later, that I realized Samus was one of the first female heroes in video gaming and to date, she remains a powerful role model for young girls everywhere.
But the game that sealed my love for the series was Super Metroid for the SNES. That game tapped into the obsession I had with the original from the moment I heard of it's existence, thanks to the commercial where the game turned a rowdy german shepard into a traumatized chihuahua. The day before it came out, my mother had gotten me the bazooka for the SNES. When I told her I wanted Super Metroid she said, "But I just bought you the gun. We can't buy another game." So, I made her return the SNES gun and buy Super Metroid. Never gave that gun a second thought. At one point while playing Super Metroid, I had EVERY SINGLE KID IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, staring through my windows or hanging in my living room watching me play, cheering me on and shouting out hints. I even created my first internet handle from the name of the boss I had the hardest time beating: Ridley.
This is how much I was into Metroid: I didn't buy the Nintendo64 because they never released a Metroid game for it. Neither Zelda or Mario was enough for me. I was waiting until Metroid got a game, and it never happened. The N64 got multiple Mario games, a plethora of Zelda games, yet for some reason, Samus didn't merit an appearance. Then the Gamecube was released and one of the first games scheduled to ship out within the first year was Metroid: Prime.
I have to admit, I was a bit concerned when Metroid went first person with the Prime games, but they handled it beautifully and about 30 seconds into the game, I was in love with the new format. They even worked the trademark Morph Ball of the Metroid series into the 3D prime games exceptionally well. Prime 2 rocked and the only reason I have to buy the new Nintendo console is to continue with the Metroid series. Unfortunately, I can't fund that at the moment, but someday I will.
I'm hoping that at some point, they'll make a movie or even better an ANIME of the Metroid series just to fully complete the arc! Until that day, I'll just keep my Gamecube running, waiting for the next time Samus is needed to put foot to Metroid/Space Pirate ass!!