August 20, 2016
Next Level Games
Metroid Prime: Federation Force is the first Metroid game where you play as a marine of the Galactic Federation, a law-enforcing organisation where soldiers are divided into platoons and go on planetary missions. Federation Force is a cooperative first-person shooter published by Nintendo for the 3DS and developed by Next Level Games.
The campaign mode is organised into missions taking place on three planets. Players can work solo or with a team of four over local play or through online play in order to progress through the missions, earning medals and unlocking mods in the form of armour and weapon upgrades for your mech.
Federation Force is not really designed to be a solo game, the missions and levels being quite obviously tailored to a team of four. This leads to many frustrations along the way, particularly because unless you have a revive mod equipped if you die there are no second chances, the mission is failed and you must do it all again from the start. Despite solo players being given a mod after going through the tutorial which is designed to increase weapon damage and decrease damage taken, the difficulty of the missions is enough to make you want to throw your 3DS across the room every now and then. Solo playes can take three AI drones along with them, but these are nowhere near as beneficial as having real squad mates by your side.
Playing Federation Force on a regular 3DS means that you will need to aim vertically by physically tilting the handheld up and down whereas a new 3DS allows you to use the nub to aim. This can quickly become tiresome so it’s great that the missions are rather short as the game isn’t really designed for long-term play.
“…missions are interesting and varied. The boss battles, despite their difficulty, are well designed and fun.”
Metroid Prime: Federation Force has some saving graces though. The missions are interesting and varied. The boss battles, despite their difficulty, are well designed and fun. The other saving grace is Blast Ball, which is essentially a mech version of soccer, if you’re interested then check out a free demo available on the Nintendo eShop.
Unfortunately for fans of the Metroid series this game isn’t one that’s going to satisfy your need for a new game. The infamous Samus Aran is only talked about and appears during mission briefings and as a holographic decoy that you can fire off to keep the space pirates busy.
- Interesting and varied missions
- Lots of space aliens
- Not suited to solo play
- Frustrating aiming system
- LOTS of space aliens
- Samus Aran is dangled in your face but non-existent
Whilst the planets that you mission on are interesting and varied, they aren’t enough to save Metroid Prime: Federation Force from its own failings. If you’re happy to play an entire game as a team then go ahead, but communication is once again difficult as voice chat doesn’t exist. Federation Force struggles as a single-player game with clunky controls and a uninteresting story that fails to engage.