Metroid Dread has “greater freedoms when exploring” than past games

Metroid Dread exploring

Metroid is renowned for its maze-like worlds, so exploration has always been a key aspect of the franchise. However, later entries in the series began to sacrifice this focus on exploring in favor of a more linear approach. With Metroid Dread on the horizon, many players have been wondering which approach it will take. According to the latest Metroid Dread Report, the branching paths and alternate routes of the past are back!

Metroid Dread focuses on exploring

Volume 3 of the Metroid Dread Report focuses on seven key phrases that define the 2D Metroid games. “Exploration” is the fourth of these key phrases, and it looks to play a big role in Dread. I recently expressed optimism that Dread‘s extremely detailed map would allow the team to create a more open world. As it turns out, that’s exactly the case!

Since the Metroid series of games is all about exploring, it was clear to us that the map—the foundation of exploration—would be an important thing for us to focus on. This new map is powered up from previous, traditional maps in terms of look and function, which we think will make exploring the world feel even smoother than before.

In addition, players can enjoy greater freedoms when exploring compared to in previous installments, which might encourage you to try new strategies each time you play through.

The detailed map in Metroid Dread should allow for an experience that focuses on exploring without handholding. It shouldn’t be too hard for it to beat Fusion in terms of its open world, but can it rival even Super Metroid? We’ll find out when it launches on October 8!


Ben Lamoreux
Nintendo Enthusiast's Managing Editor. I grew up on Super Nintendo and never stopped playing. Been writing video game news, opinions, reviews, and interviews professionally for over a decade. Favorite franchises include Zelda, Metroid, and Mother.