If you remember that Metroid Prime 4 was announced at E3 2017 then you might be a little confused at E3 2019 considering the game did not get a mention. There’s a good reason for this – Metroid Prime 4 has a new developer and the original progress was scrapped in 2018.
The new developer is Retro Studios, the studio that developed the previous Metroid Prime games. Thus, be assured that the franchise is in very good hands right now. Of course, this means the release date has been pushed back by around two years. Development has essentially restarted from scratch so we will most likely receive no major news for a little while longer.
In April 2019, Retro Studios posted on Twitter that they were hiring for several roles at the studio:
In June the developer was looking for an Art Director (https://twitter.com/RetroStudios/status/1141083823947620353 ) for the game
From these, we can understand that the team is clearly still in very early development stages as they continue to pull the right people into place.
What does this mean for Metroid Prime 4?
In short, the game will not be released for next year and maybe not even in 2021. It seems likely that Metroid Prime 4 will take on at least 3 years in development, which could extend even further if there are setbacks or issues.
Do we really mind that much though? It might be a bit annoying for fans but this builds the expectations that we will get a game worthy of the Metroid Prime series. Not just that, the original developers are back once again for the project.
Now, if only Square Enix had their original team back on their remake. fortunately, we think they’ve done a good job so far!
Naturally, there have been some team changes since the time Todd Keller, Lead Artist in 1 & 2 and Art Director for 3, left the company in 2008. It’s uncertain how much of a difference this will make right now so we just have to wait and see how development rolls out.
Fortunately, while we wait for a new Metroid Prime game to be completed, we can look forward to other games from an incredible lineup of new XBox products and an amazing release of games from Nintendo Direct.