There Has Never Been a Better Time to Play Metroid II

There Has Never Been a Better Time to Play Metroid II

Metroid II: Return of Samus is a Gameboy classic that deserves your time
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After Nintendo’s surprise announcement of not one but two new “Metroid” titles at this year’s E3, fans of the company and the series itself are abuzz. Years of perceived neglect towards everyone’s favorite parasite-fighting bounty hunter seem to have been lifted during Nintendo’s main Spotlight segment of their conference. They revealed that work is underway on “Metroid Prime 4” for their console/handheld hybrid the Switch. Though right now there is not much to go on aside from a simple logo and a small, atmospheric musical cue, this has been enough to get people riled for the classic series again.

What is perhaps even more surprising, however, is the announcement that came after the Spotlight segment. A classic, Metroidvania sidescroller is not only in the works but fairly far along into development on the Nintendo 3DS. So far along, in fact, that Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé brought the game out to be demoed at the show for all to see. It was revealed during this demo that the game, titled “Metroid: Samus Returns”, is a reimagination, a complete overhaul, of the 1991 Game Boy game “Metroid II: Return of Samus”.

With brand new 2.5D graphics and a shot of adrenaline to really quicken the game’s pace, this looks almost nothing like the chunky black and white (or honestly puke green) of the original Nintendo Game Boy. Due to be released in September “Samus Returns” looks to be an atmospheric action-adventure game that brings a handheld classic up to the modern industry’s standards.

A fan project once attempted this with the unofficial game “Another Metroid 2 Remake”, attempting to recreate “Metroid II” as a smoother, more attractive experience on the PC. They took the pixel-art styling of “Metroid 4: Fusion” and “Metroid: Zero Mission” and emulated the Game Boy Advance’s more sophisticated sprite work. This effort has, unfortunately, received the ire of Nintendo’s ever hostile legal team, a copyright hit squad that pounces on fan projects whenever they grow conspicuous enough.

With “Metroid: Samus Returns” appearing to be just around the corner there seemingly has not been a better time to go back and revisit, or maybe experience for the first time, “Metroid II: Return of Samus”. Seeing as “Samus Returns” is more a reimagining than a direct remaster or remake playing through the original game, and comparing and contrasting the games upon the release of “Samus Returns”, is a worthwhile experience. The technological limitations of the past versus the free-for-all jamboree of the modern gaming industry.

Playing “Metroid II: Return of Samus” has also grown increasingly easy in recent years. Outside of going out to find a (probably expensive) classic Game Boy cartridge “Metroid II” is now available on the Nintendo 3DS’s eShop. The digital copy of the game has been cleaned up and includes virtual console amenities such as save states and the ability to swap between screen colors, but the essentials of the game have been kept entirely intact. On a brighter, higher resolution screen in 2017 “Metroid II” has never looked better, and the 3DS is far more comfortable to hold for extended periods than the Game Boy ever was. To sweeten the deal even further the eShop copy is only $3.99 and takes up a measly 37 blocks of system storage space on the 3DS.

“Metroid II” certainly shows its age at times and the pacing is a far cry from the zippy combat and finishing moves of its upcoming remake, but to hold the years too harshly against the game is to ignore the eerie atmosphere, creative structure, and sheer fun of this Nintendo classic.

Cover Image Credit: nintendojo

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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New Technology Has Forever Changed The Way We Live Life And It's Mostly A Good Thing

The convenience and knowledge that our technology provides literally at our fingertips is unparalleled in history.

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It's no question that social media has impacted our culture tremendously and shifted the way we live our lives. We are living through one of the greatest technological revolutions in history and communication hasn't been changed this drastically since the invention of the printing press. We spend every day connected through texting, email, Facetime, social media and the internet. Technology provides enough convenience that we could hypothetically never leave our homes. Entertainment is available for streaming, food can be ordered to our doors using simple apps and everything from clothing to furniture can be shipped to our houses in under a week.

Is this constant tuning in and continuous connection good, is it bad, or is it simply a massive shift we need to adjust to? I'm not sure that there is one answer.

In our culture, smartphones are almost a necessity in order to optimize success. Jobs require constant emailing, classes are shifting to online, social media is one of the most major marketing tools you can employ and people expect you to always respond ASAP.

Before smartphones relationships were conducted in person, through letters, and over an occasional phone call. Now, with the invention of the text message the expectations of relationships have changed. People expect their significant other to always be there, ready to text back at almost any hour of the day. Friends who don't reply to text messages are labeled as self-absorbed and rude. Not receiving something as simple as a like on Instagram has major connotations for the way someone feels about you.

A lot of this connectedness is good. Positive social interaction leads to a happier life and feeling closely connected to your friends, family, and partners can be a really good thing. You don't really have to ever be alone and if you need something, someone is always there. The internet is an incredible database that anyone with wifi or cellular connection can access.

Educational materials can be found online and the information is not only kept in books that may be inaccessible to some people due to the sophistication of language or lack of copies. YouTube has millions of videos breaking down the most complex topics in the simplest ways. Technology allows us to listen to music all the time and have the ability to watch more movies than ever before. Our apps keep us updated on news, as long as we have the sense to fact check and avoid believing click bate.

As with everything, technology also has its pitfalls. The ability to be anonymous online makes users of technology bold, enabling them to say things they would never say to someone face. Constantly communicating over a screen can hinder our abilities to communicate in person. Being a bully online is easy, and suicide rates have gone up thirty-three percent since 1999, a time block that aligns suspiciously with the rise of new technology. People's perfectly curated social media pages inaccurately represent the complexity of their lives and seem picture perfect to struggling viewers.

Negative thoughts about one's own life can be worsened when constantly exposed to visuals that seem to suggest everyone else has it all figured out. The internet can feel deceptively safe, like a void where you can say anything with no consequences and still feel like people are listening to you. People my age tend to use their fake Instagrams, "finstas" as diaries. They spill their feelings to their followers and post photos and videos that could have negative effects on their future.

It's also questionable whether it's good to always be connected, to never have time alone, unplugged, away from the cyber world. Some people even want to call our obsession with smartphones an addiction. While I see and acknowledge the negative effects of our revolutionary technological world, I also can't dismiss the benefits. The convenience and knowledge that our technology provides literally at our fingertips is unparalleled in history.

It is changing, but change isn't always bad.

I think that we haven't had the chance to adjust to how fast we've created so many new things. In order to minimize the negatives aspects of technology, our society is going to have to undergo a massive change that reframes the way we view life, what we teach students, how we act from day to day and how we interact with one another.

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