Women of Video Gaming: Samus Aran
Profession: Intergalactic Bounty Hunter
1st Video game appearance: Metroid
Additional game appearances: Metroid 2, Super Metroid, Super Smash Bros. series, Metroid Prime Trilogy, Metroid Fusion, Metroid: Other M
Samus Aran is the hero protagonist of the vastly popular Metroid franchise. She was introduced to gamers in 1986 by Nintendo soon after the initial launch of the NES in The United States of America. Samus is widely considered to be the first female protagonist to be featured in a video game (I’m sure you knew that). What you
may not know is how the gaming world found out about this video game characters gender. In a time where it was fairly easy to not reveal more information than necessary about a video game before its release, developers of the first Metroid title surprised gamers with Samus depicted in a bathing suit if they completed the game in under one hour. This revelation was such a splash with the gaming community that an Easter egg of the gender reveal was included eight years later in Super Metroid on the SNES for players who finished the game in under three hours.
The functions her power suit allowed are unique and give the player new ways to explore the enviroment as well as defeat the advesaries that attempt to keep her from succeeding in her missions. Some of my favorites included the morph ball, grapple beam, ice beam & the speed boost. I still consider this heroic bounty hunter to
be quintessential to the video game community today. She paved the way for females to annihilate evil rather than wait for someone to rescue them from the clutches of evil. One things for sure I’ll never forget my first experience with Super Metroid. It was the very first time I flew a spaceship & became an intergalactic bounty hunter.
Man all of this nostalgia has me wanting to revisit this franchise again, the only question is which game do I play? I believe Metroid Prime on the Gamecube is calling me.
Do you enjoy playing as Samus Aran? If so let me know in the comments section. Also be sure to check out other content on the site in our tribute to women celebrated across all of the genre’s we write about.