Metroid Prime 4 development restarts with Retro

Western Nintendo fans were greeted Friday morning by somber news. Metroid Prime 4 isn't coming this year. In fact, it isn't coming any time soon. In a video Nintendo's General Manager of Entertainment Planning & Development, Shinya Takahashi, addressed fans and announced the delay.

"Nintendo always strives for the highest quality in our games; and in the development phase, we challenge ourselves to confront whether the game is living up to that quality on a daily basis," he said before breaking the news that the highly anticipated next installment in the Metroid Prime series is not meeting these standards.

Tanabe announced, "...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." The Retro team who spawned the series seems to be the key ingredient needed to make Metroid Prime 4 "...stand shoulder to shoulder with the past... series titles."

Since their last release, in 2014, (Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze) Retro Studios has been quietly working on a project that has yet to be revealed to the public. The move to bring in Retro on Metroid Prime 4's development may indicate that this mystery title is quickly approaching completion, or that it might be shelved altogether. One thing is for certain, Metroid Prime 4 will not be arriving in 2019, and most likely not for a few more years after that.

Official announcement video and a full transcript can be found below.

"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, 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 to 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 the 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."
 
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