vsf3000's Ratings and Reviews
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V E R T I C A L I T Y by Tundain [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on May 12, 2024 (Star Star Star Star Star )
91% in 3:41
v1.2

Creative, fun puzzles, nice new gameplay mechanics, and a fresh feel. I was very immersed in this one. More difficult than vanilla, but nothing extreme or too frustrating for me.

My main gripe would be that it felt like entering Tourian came earlier than I expected. Would have liked a little more need to go back down to lower levels, Norfair in particular.

Also I liked the idea for the new music, giving it a more weird and creepy feel. But it felt a tad off. Perhaps slightly over-remixed.

Overall, this is a top 5 hack for me. Excellent work!
Metroid II EJRTQ Colorization 1.3 by Quantam [M2 Improvement], rated by vsf3000 on Dec 05, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 3:03
finally played M2 for the first time (not counting AM2R). really enjoyed the original experience.

while a map would be nice, its not the intent of the hack, thus i dont think it makes any sense whatsoever to take an orb away. the hack accomplished exactly what it intended to do, and incredibly well.
Metroid + Saving by snarfblam [M1 Improvement], rated by vsf3000 on Dec 05, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 1:33
great. makes the game much more enjoyable, by simply improving the experience, not really changing it.
Project Base 0.8.1 by begrimed [SM Improvement], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 16, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
96% in 1:32
for what it is (a base for other hacks to work from), its absolutely astounding, and continues to just get better and better.

as a SM playthrough, its great because of the updates it brings, but as some have mentioned, the speed at which certain events happen detract a bit (like doors closing so fast you occasionally get stuck in them, boss battles moving so fast that they are weird, dramatic events losing their drama). also the way it allows for more sequence breaks is great, but leads to an absurdly easy experience.

if someone could take this, and make a few tweaks to adjust the pacing of certain events back to how it was in original SM, and maybe add a higher difficulty mode to the game (with some extra secrets trickled in), then that would basically become a perfect Definitive Edition of SM.

regardless, if someone is looking to replay SM with some updates to gameplay and minor map/graphical tweaks, this and Ancient Chozo are the ways to go. fantastic hack.
Super Metroid: Ascent by Benox50 [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 15, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 4:13
just incredible. probably the greatest hack of all time (to date), as it set so many high standards.

most of what i see people calling "flaws" about it, id say are more a matter of personal preference than actual flaws. its probably the least flawed hack ive played, and showcases a whole new world of SM hacking that can be attained (subversion being a perfect example of that). it makes me excited about the potential of future hacks, as well as what benox50 may do in the future, since this was his first real hack.

a must play.
V I T A L I T Y by Digital_Mantra [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 15, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 5:21
incredible experience. very different. very dark, even flat out creepy at times. new concepts. amazing visuals. immersive story.

i would say this is definitely for veterans, not just due to the difficulty (although its certainly more difficult and requires more skill than SM) but also due to some of outside the box thinking that is required.

only issue i had was at times the dark visuals make it difficult to distinguish whats going on. sometimes platforms and background are difficult to differentiate. some of the lava (or whatever it was) can be hard to see, and you wont know to avoid it until you fall in since its nearly clear as water. but those werent major issues, especially since this is a hack geared towards veterans anyways. they shouldnt have much trouble with those things.

strongly recommended, especially for people who want something completely different from a near vanilla SM experience. this is probably the most unique hack ive played, in terms of the story and world, and easily the most creepy metroid experience ive had since i was a 4 year old playing nes metroid in the dark at midnight on my little tube tv lol.
Ancient Chozo by Albert V. [SM Vanilla+], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 09, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 2:44
basically a mildly altered super metroid with zero mission elements. fantastic hack, beautiful tiling.

about the only complaint i had was the hyper speed boss battles. i wasnt a fan of it against most of the bosses, but i flat out disliked the experience it gave against phantoon. also, use of the x-ray was odd. not bad, just different. if i could give it 4.5 orbs i would, but i think so much about this is so well done that it earned a round-up to 5.

strongly recommend, particularly for people who arent looking for a completely different experience, but rather just a remix of SM.
Metroid Super Speed Zero Mission by advancedpillow, SBniconico [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 08, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 5:40
well done, with much needed improvements to the original. more reasonable difficulty levels, particularly if going for 100%. some small frustration factors here and there, but i think the majority of players wont find them as bad as some make them out to be. strongly recommend this one over the original hack.
Super Metroid: Escape II by Hiroishi [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Nov 02, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 6:34
very surprised at how much i enjoyed this. wasnt a big fan of the whole blue scheme going into it, but it wasnt nearly as blue as some of the pictures seemed to be. still would have preferred less, but it didnt really take away from the experience, which i was quite honestly incredibly impressed with. one of the most fun experiences ive had playing a hack. still stuck to the main SM storyline and progression, but with some very unique twists, secrets and more. strongly recommend. even if the whole "blue" thing seems like a turn-off, don't let it stop you.

i personally couldnt really find much to complain about. imo it was among the least flawed hacks ive played. the only thing that i found odd was how my progression led to golden torizo not appearing, but i think my progression was probably not expected for someone playing it the first time (when a person plays it through and finds all the secrets, this will make sense)

side note, this is definitely for more experienced players. not supremely difficult, but its got its tough moments, particularly for those trying to get 100%.
Super Duper Metroid by Metaquarius, Daltone [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 10, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 5:20
very enjoyable. nicely balanced difficulty (some parts call for advanced tactics, especially if going for 100%). i didnt really have any real issues with this one, other than not understanding the ship scene at the beginning (maybe theres more to it than i realized, it seemed interesting but pointless), and that the conclusion felt very abrupt.

overall, i strongly recommend this one, one of the best for sure.
Super Metroid: Subversion by TestRunner and AmoebaOfDoom [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 05, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
100% in 9:31
ive played ascent, hyper, redesign, ancient chozo, vitality, zfactor, super zero mission. this one has been my favorite experience of them all. the only thing i wasnt a huge fan of was some of the new music felt subpar in quality. i liked the idea of them and the atmosphere and feel they tried to capture, but felt some missed the mark. regardless, not nearly enough to knock an orb off. excellent work, hope to see more from this author!
Hyper Metroid by RealRed [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Feb 24, 2021 (Star Star Star Star Star )
No completion stats.
amazing hack. not too much to say about this one, its really just an extremely well done revamp of SM. zebes is much bigger, the game is more difficult, but not too difficult.

the name really speaks for itself. strongly recommend.
SM - Cryogenesis by Onnyks [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on May 18, 2024 (Star Star Star Star Star )
75% in 2:30
i feel this has potential to be a top 3 sm hack of all time. however, it felt a bit incomplete by the end. would have been 5 if not for that feeling.

will re-review in more depth when DLC is released. but this was absolutely fantastic overall.
Super Metroid: Z-Factor by Metaquarius [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 28, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 8:38
really good overall. felt like a brand new super metroid experience.

definitely for veteran players. however there is no heat run required as some have claimed. i think they simply got things out of order.

i found myself lost quite a few times, but realized that for the most part, its just like SM, but dialed way up. pay close attention to small detail everywhere you go, and you will find your way around. if something feels or seems unusual, check it out.

bomb, wall, and morph jumping are extremely helpful (id venture to say they are required, but i cant claim that as fact). there are spots for other special techniques like mockball, but they arent necessary to finish the game.

the main frustration i dealt with is parts where you fall through the floor, or miss a grappling hook, and have to spend a few minutes just to get back to your spot to try again (and most will fall on these multiple times, some of the grappling beam and morph jumps require incredible precision). thats about the only gripe i had (albeit a big one imo), and i would have given it 5 orbs if not for that. i personally find that a cheap way to add difficulty, but others seem to love it. however, if you are playing with savestates/rewind, then this is easily 5 orbs lol. great job overall, i definitely recommend.

oh and tourian is AMAZING. best tourian experience ive had so far, without question.
Polarity by Oi27, Moehr [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 21, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
% in 1:22
extremely different, strange, and so much about it seems like it would be an absolute waste of time. but its not. its oddly captivating. the music got a bit repetitive, some of the tracks could be improved, but i liked the mood it tried to set.

i initially had no desire whatsoever to play this, especially when i saw it was mostly grayscale. im glad i did though. its not very long, not too difficult (wall and bomb jumping was all i used, not sure if it was even necessary), and kept pretty simple once you understand whats going on. id definitely recommend, especially for people who like something different.
Eris by Digital_Mantra [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 20, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
No completion stats.
very solid hack overall.

some frustration factors to it, particularly with how sometimes its difficult to tell what's solid ground, and what isn't. its pretty challenging, almost annoyingly so early in the game. the hack was obviously intended to present more of a challenge, so thats not a bad thing, just a heads up for anyone who looks to play this.

it definitely requires some advanced skills if you want 100%, otherwise you should be fine as long as you know how to wall jump, bomb jump, and morph in mid air.

a great hack for someone who wants a very different experience and story. would give it 5 orbs if the graphics were cleaned up a bit. some areas are a beating on the eyes. a remaster could get this into top 5 status.
Super Metroid Nature by Jefe962 [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 11, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
78% in 4:05
Enjoyable. Pretty much a remix of SM. If a player is looking for something drastically different, then this isn't for you. But if you want a moderately altered experience of the original SM, this is fantastic. A tiny bit more challenging than the original.
Metroid Depression by Silver Wing [SM Exploration], rated by vsf3000 on Oct 19, 2022 (Star Star Star Star Star )
No completion stats.
sucks.