Anniversary: Super Metroid Is 30 1
Image: Damien McFerran / Time Extension

Super Metroid, considered by some Nintendo fans to be the best game on the SNES, is 30 years old as of today.

It launched in Japan on March 19th 1994 and came to North America on April 18th of the same year. Europe had to wait until July 28th to get its hands on the seminal title.

Directed by Yoshio Sakamoto and produced by Makoto Kano, the game is built on the template laid down by its NES and Game Boy prequels, introducing concepts such as an automap ability and inventory screen to the series.

With its open-ended yet gear-gated nature, Super Metroid is credited with establishing the 'Metroidvania' genre, alongside 1997's Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, which itself takes inspiration from the SNES game via its explorable world.

Despite its incredible influence, Super Metroid has only sold 1.42 million copies since its release. It was followed by Metroid Fusion on the GBA and Metroid Prime on the GameCube, the latter of which would take Metroid's signature gameplay and shift it into a 3D, first-person world.

More recently, the series has returned to its 2D roots with Metroid: Samus Returns (a 3DS remake of the Game Boy sequel) and Metroid Dread.