Level Select Thursday’s: Norfair
Hello one and all to the first installment of Level Select Thursdays. Now you may ask yourself, what exactly is Level Select Thursday? Every week for the foreseeable future I will be doing a write up on some of my favorite levels/areas in the video games I have played over the years. The first level comes from the classic known as Super Metroid. If you owned a Super Nintendo back in the 90’s, chances are you owned a copy of Super Metroid. In short this game has so much replay ability, great music, great music it’s just a great game period. However all this amazingness can be found in one area in the game and that area is Norfair. Let’s turn on our Super Nintendo’s to find out what I find fascinating about Norfair. Also spoilers abound for those who haven’t played this classic, you are warned!!
Now you maybe asking yourself, what makes Norfair a interesting level? Why not the intro level of Brinstar? Why not the haunted wrecked ship? Why not the biggest area in the game in Maradia? Well to put it simply, Norfair is where the player will learn the trick to loving Super Metroid.
Immersion is the key word when describing Norfair, while you did explore Brinstar a bit this is where you will know whether or not you love this game. The music has this ominous sense of danger giving the player that great feeling of not knowing what will appear in the next corridor. You feel alone in Norfair (aside from all the enemies trying to kill you) and the music just simply adds to it. This is also the part of the game where you understand the basics of what the Metroid franchise great. This area (and the game in general) doesn’t tell you where to go, it is up for you to decide on where to go. Now while there are some gamers out there who will not like this at and want to be told where to go and how to do an objective.
Enemy variety is also what makes Norfair the best area in Super Metroid. While yes backtracking will make you run across the same enemy in the same spot over and over again, Each enemy you encounter provides a new obstacle that will allow you to hone your abilities even more so. However there is some cheap enemy placement in some instances but those are far and few between.
Finally Norfair is great because of the boss battles you will encounter in this game, I especially love how you just happen to stumble into Crocomire’s lair and have to defeat him in order to survive. Each boss battle is unique and they stand on their own, requiring separate methods. The best part is that the game doesn’t tell you how to defeat each boss, just like the rest of the game it is up to you to figure out the proper form of attack. Although figuring out a boss battles weakness isn’t exactly difficult, it’s just a nice thing to not know since most modern games commit the deadly sin of to much tutorials.
Norfair basically sums up what Super Metroid is and why people still play it to this day. If you a Wii or a Wii U and haven’t experienced Norfair, well open that debit card and purchase this all time classic. Now for some music.
Thanks for reading and spread the word please. 🙂