Retro Studios tapped to restart Metroid Prime 4 development

Nintendo made the difficult announcement this morning that Metroid Prime 4 development has been restarted. Retro Studios has been tapped to start the project over from the beginning.


Shinya Takahashi, Senior Managing Executive Officer at Nintendo, provided an important development update on Metroid Prime 4 for Nintendo Switch this morning. The game's development has been entirely scrapped, and Nintendo has brought Retro Studios back to start the process over from the beginning. Please take a look at the fulll message from Takahashi-san.

For those who don't have time to watch the video, here's a transcript of what was said:

Hello everyone. I am Shinya Takahashi, and I'm responsible for development at Nintendo. Thank you so much for playing Nintendo games. I wanted to speak with you today to give you an update on Metroid Prime 4, the newest title in the Metroid Prime series. We deeply understand the high anticipation that Metroid Prime series fans have for this title. We have felt it especially from the passionate words from fans we heard when we first announced this title at E3 the year before last. Ever since the announcement, we have not been able to give you an update, but as a result of the continuing development since that time, although this is very regrettable - we must let you know that the current development progress has not reached the standards we seek in a sequel to the Metroid Prime series. Nintendo always strives for the highest quality in our games; and in the development phase, we challenge ourselves and confront whether the game is living up to that quality on a daily basis. If we're not satisfied with the quality, we aren't able to deliver it to our customers with confidence, and the game will not live up to our fans' expectations. From this perspective, we have determined that the current development status of the game is very challenged, and we had to make a difficult decision as a development team.

We have decided to reexamine the development structure itself and change it. Specifically, we have decided to have the Producer, Kensuke Tanabe, work in trust and collaboration with the studio that developed the original Metroid Prime series, Retro Studios in the United States, and restart development from the beginning. By collaborating and developing with Retro Studios, we believe we can make this game something that will meet our fans' expectations. We did not make this decision lightly. This change will essentially mean restarting development from the beginning, so the completion of the game will be delayed from our initial internal plan. 

We strongly recognize that this delay will come as a disappointment to the many fans who have been looking forward to the launch of Metroid Prime 4. I'd like to extend my deepest, heart-felt apologies to everyone that the launch will be delayed. It will be a long road until the next time we will be able to update you on the development progress, and development time will be extensive. However, we will continue developing the game so that when it is completed, it will stand shoulder to shoulder with the past Metroid Prime series titles. 

On behalf of Nintendo and Retro Studios, I sincerely appreciate your understanding. Thank you very much.

Retro Studios has been called upon to restart development of Metroid Prime 4.
Retro Studios has been called upon to restart development of Metroid Prime 4.

This news is being received surprisingly well by the gaming community, and the announcement is a refreshing blast of transparency from Nintendo. Still, Metroid Prime 4 was one of our most anticipated games of 2019, and it appears that we could be waiting for quite some time before we hear or see anything about the game. In the end, gamers appreciate that Nintendo doesn't want to ship a mediocre product. While the news is still disappointing, it is great to hear that Retro Studios will get a crack at making the sequel to the beloved Metroid Prime trilogy. This "please understand" moment may remind some folks of past delays of consoles and games, and the company does usually do right by their fans in the end. 


Asif Khan is the CEO, EIC, and majority shareholder of Shacknews. He began his career in video game journalism as a freelancer in 2001 for Asif is a CPA and was formerly an investment adviser representative. After much success in his own personal investments, he retired from his day job in financial services and is currently focused on new private investments. His favorite PC game of all time is Duke Nukem 3D, and he is an unapologetic fan of most things Nintendo. Asif first frequented the Shack when it was sCary's Shugashack to find all things Quake. When he is not immersed in investments or gaming he is a purveyor of fine electronic music. Asif also has an irrational love of Cleveland sports.

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