|Zero Suit Samus|
Zero Suit Samus, as she appears in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U
|First appearance||Metroid (1986)|
|MG appearance(s)||Super Smash Flash 2|
|Created by||Makoto Kano|
|Voiced by (English)||Alésia Glidewell (Super Smash Bros. series)|
Jennifer Hale (Metroid Prime Trilogy)
Jessica Martin (Metroid: Other M)
The concept for Samus began with the first game of the series Metroid, she, like the rest of characters, was conceived by Makoto Kano, while Hiroji Kiyotake designed her. Samus gender was debated during the development of Metroid, the series co-creator Yoshio Sakamoto recalls: "We were partway through the development process when one of the staff members said 'Hey, wouldn't that be kind of cool if it turned out that this person inside the suit was a woman?'". The developers voted on the concept, and it passed. The game's instruction manual refers to Samus as if she were male to keep her true gender a secret until the end of the game. Thus, Samus was one of the first major female protagonists in a video game.
Samus spent her childhood with her family on the mining planet K-2L. The planet was raided by Space Pirates, who were looking for bounty. The leader of the Space Pirates, Ridley, killed most of the people in Samus's colony, including her parents, and then destroyed the planet. Orphaned, Samus was found by a bird-like alien race known as the Chozo, who brought her to their home planet Zebes. Samus was infused with Chozo DNA to give her a strong resistance to foreign environments, then trained as a warrior and given one of the alien race's artifacts, a powered exoskeleton called the Power Suit that biologically entwines itself with Samus's mind and body.
She enlisted in the Galactic Federation Police, but later left because her commanding officer Adam Malkovich sacrificed his little brother to save the team and some three-hundred refugees when a large fusion drive was about to explode. Samus, who is 6ft 3 in (1.91 m) in height and 198 pounds (90kg) in weight, now works as a freelance bounty hunter, and is called on by the Galactic Federation to execute missions "because of her superior skills and sense of justice". Samus is motivated at least in part by wrath as well as an accompanying sense of duty, since her "bounty hunting" helps the galaxy get rid of unsavory elements such as the mysterious lifeforms known as Metroids, who can drain life energy and are frequently used as biological weapons. She also takes the opportunity to exact revenge on the pirates who murdered her family. Typically, one of her suit's arms carries a cannon, which can be charged to shoot an extra-powerful blast, a limited number of missiles, and various beams. Samus's suit can collapse into a sphere, a mode called the Morph Ball, allowing her to roll through tight areas such as tunnels. The suit can scan objects to learn more about them, and has a grapple beam used to cross large distances, such as chasms. Since Metroid II: Return of Samus, Samus has been accompanied by her gunship, which is used in the games to save progress and restore health and ammunition.
Samus's suit can be enhanced by power-ups, the first introduced being the Varia Suit. In the original Metroid, it gives a pinkish color to the Power Suit, but in Metroid II: Return of Samus, because of the limited monochrome graphics on the Game Boy, the Varia Suit has giant shoulder pads to differentiate it from her other suits. The design has remained with the suit ever since. The difference between suits was explained in Metroid: Zero Mission, in which after completing her first mission on Zebes, Samus is shot down and her Power Suit is rendered useless. There, she re-visits a Chozo shrine that she first visited as a child, and receives upgraded armor, with the larger shoulder pads. When the Varia Suit is destroyed, Samus dons the less protective Zero Suit. She wears a unique suit in Metroid Fusion called the Fusion Suit, a weakened version of the Power Suit. Other suit upgrades in the series include the Gravity Suit, P.E.D. Suit, Phazon Suit, Hazard Suit, and Light and Dark Suits. As of Super Metroid, the suits have gained distinctive colors: the Power Suit (and variants) are yellow, the Varia Suit is red/orange and the Gravity Suit is purple. These colors are seen again in Metroid Prime and Metroid Fusion. Also in the Metroid Prime series, the eponymous Metroid Prime creature fuses with the remnants of Samus's Phazon Suit to become Dark Samus, an evil doppelganger of Samus.
Samus typically works alone. Before Metroid: Other M, she had never spoken in any of the games in the Metroid series other than Metroid Fusion and the opening cutscene of Super Metroid, conversing mostly through text dialogue. In the first Metroid, her gender was kept a secret until the end of the game—the instruction booklet for the game referred to her character as male. If the player completes the game quickly enough, she is first revealed as female at the end of Metroid. Typically emotionless, Samus reveals some of her true self in Metroid Fusion. Without her suit, she let slip some emotions while dealing with her artificially intelligent computer. In Metroid II: Return of Samus, Samus bonds with a Metroid, which later sacrifices itself to save her from Mother Brain in Super Metroid. Seeking revenge, Samus destroys Mother Brain in a scene that is "more than a little emotionally charged". In the Chozo's scrolls, Samus is recorded as The Newborn, an "orphaned warrior filled with vengeance". Thanks in part to her Chozo heritage, the Chozo consider her the hope of their race. The Galactic Federation sees her as the protector of the galaxy, and the Space Pirates refer to her as the Hunter.
In the Super Smash Flash series
In Super Smash Flash 2
- Main article: Zero Suit Samus (Super Smash Flash 2)
Zero Suit Samus' inclusion is hinted at because of her inclusion in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and the reveal that she would appear in the classic Power Suit. Her moveset is taken directly from Brawl. Her sprites are based on her appearance in Metroid: Zero Mission which was also the basis for her appearance in Brawl. She is still ranked 28th of B- tier on the current tier list.
- In Super Smash Flash 2, Zero Suit Samus and Samus are separate characters like in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. However, they were revealed to be separate characters in SSF2 before it was known in 3DS/Wii U.