E3 06: Metroid Prime 3: Corruption - hands on

The first Metroid Prime let you climb into Samus Aran's head and see her futuristic world in first-person. With Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, you'll be using both the wand and nunchaku attachment to work the heroine's metal-clad, alien-squashing arms.

The Corruption demo opens with a planet under siege. Once your new ship touches down, you find that this base is falling apart, and your space marine buddies are getting pounded. So it's into the fray you go, using the wand to aim and the attachment's analog stick to move around. The wand essentially becomes Samus' arm cannon - point, then shoot with the A button.

In the other hand is the nunchaku. In one instance, we used it to target an elevator lock that had to be moved by hand. So, you literally grab the handle, twist your wrist to unlock it and then push forward to click the elevator into action. The left hand also houses Samus' energy-crackling grappling hook, which is used to snag enemy shields and yank them out of their hands. And it's all in the wrist.

Along the way, we noticed that Corruption is, at least in this demo, a very straightforward game. There was no sense of a larger world or crannies to explore - in fact, the point-and-shoot nature of the game made it feel more like an on-rails shooter than a Metroid game. It was still fun, though, primarily because you get to mime Samus' sci-fi actions. Yet another case of people diving into Wii games without worrying about what they look like.

Visually, Corruption is on par with GameCube's Echoes. There may have been some little effects popping up here and there, but absolutely nothing happened, on the graphics side, that made people take notice. They'll never be the most important part of any Wii title, but even the wand bits feel like they may get stale after extensive shooting. We'll know more... well, when Nintendo lets the world see Wii again.

May 12, 2006