35 Years of Metroid, The Anniversary Tribute Piece by Joel Sousa


Hell yes, the Metroid Franchise… it’s been a while. Actually, the first Metroid was released on August 6 in 1986. Developed by the legendary Nintendo R&D1 Team under Gunpei Yokoi as one of the first big video games of its era that had a female main protagonist and so big labyrinth-like structures that had to be explored with the use of various items and weapons that were discovered by our lovely bounty hunter Samus Aran. The original Metroid Games became some of the most influential games of all time, even today 35 years later we are getting games like the upcoming second Hollow Knight game that plays a lot like Metroid.

While there were one or more Metroid games for almost every Nintendo console, Fans of the series are still waiting for something new for many years now. The series evolved into 3D since the Nintendo Gamecube and its masterpiece, Metroid: Prime but the fourth sequel was announced back in June 2017 already..that’s almost 4 years now without even one real-life sign of the game. Joel and me we both hope that this ends this year since its 35th Anniversary would be a really cool year to continue Metroid!

Besides the big feature of exploring and discovering, the player also met a cast of terrible beings, mostly a part of the so-called “Space Pirates” in all of the Metroid games. These foes, once led by Mother Brain are coming in all forms and sizes, some of them like Ridley even return from death. Joel illustrated the most important ones of them in his poster-like Tribute to the Metroid series!


Here are Joel’s own words describing his piece and his thoughts about Metroid..Nintendo and well..how they handle Metroid 😉 


“Hey, guys!! It’s been a while, hasn’t it? (Edit: indeed..we did not do anything in 2020!
But fear not as I’m back with a new illustration, namely a Metroid 35th Anniversary tribute piece for Game-Art-HQ.com!
Since this year is full of videogame anniversaries, Game-Art-HQ was kind enough to invite me and other great artists to begin the celebrations with a bunch of cool illustrations.
Anyway, we all know that Nintendo is going all out with the Metroid festivities ( sorry I can’t say this while keeping a straight face xD ) but I went ahead and gave my best to make a worthy tribute to what is my favorite Nintendo franchise.
Funny enough it wasn’t always like that… I remember the 1st time I played a Metroid game. It was Metroid 2 on my red Zora Game Boy and man!, I wasn’t impressed. Truth be told I died a bunch of times at the beginning of the game and never looked back. So yeah, my first impression wasn’t very good but a few years later I’d be singing its praises to the heavens. Thus enter Metroid Prime!!
The game was out for a while now and the reviews made me curious about the latest adventure of Samus but still, I wasn’t willing to give the jump. After a rough period in my life, I was in dire need of something to help me forget those hard times and upon finding Metroid Prime at half the price I decided to give it a chance. Low and behold that was all that I needed to pick up myself again and to finally appreciate this amazing game series.
Needless to say that after Prime I went back and played all the Metroid games that I could get my hands on and I loved every one of them!
This commentary is getting long on the tooth so let’s dive into this piece where you’ll find a bunch of Samus enemies representing each entry in the franchise like Mother Brain from Metroid, Kraid from Super Metroid, and Meta Riddley from Metroid Prime.
Like always I hope you guys like my take on these characters!
Until next time!!! “

About the Artist

There are a lot of artists who support Game-Art-HQ and our Art Projects, but only a few are so long on board and often participating as Joel Sousa from Portugal, who describes himself as a “Hobbyist” but whenever I see his works I think this guy needs to publish a comic in his art style and wish him that he can change his hobby to his profession sooner or later.

His Metroid Peace for our Anniversary Tribute is actually his second Metroid-themed submission since he also participated back in 2014 when we celebrated the 20th Anniversary of Super Metroid!

Joel participated in Game-Art-HQ’s third art project back in November 2011 already, the Boss Tribute about bosses from fighting games with M.Bison from Street Fighter II doing his iconic “Psycho Crusher” special move in his background stage in Thailand. He continued with submissions for our Links Blacklist as well as our Nintendo 64 Tribute and many more, around 20 excellent artworks actually now!