Nintendo surprised the Internet this morning by launching Metroid Prime: Blast Ball onto the 3DS eShop for free. The Blast Ball experience was originally announced at E3 2015 as a part of the revived Nintendo World Championships. The day afterward, Blast Ball was revealed to be the multiplayer component of Metroid Prime: Federation Force, a controversial continuation of the Prime series which features no hint of Samus Aran and focuses on co-op shooting.
For what it’s worth, Blast Ball seemed like harmless fun, a riff on soccer featuring giant mechs and a great future neon color scheme. The free version of Blast Ball available now (branded as a demo in North America, but not oddly in Europe) seems to be fully featured, including online play. The game features support for the New 3DS’s additional controls, as well as Amiibo support to get mech skins based on an assortment of characters, including non-Metroid varieties. The servers for online play will eventually be shut down according to the game’s description, but there’s no reason not to whip our your handheld and give it a go today.
The servers for online play will eventually be shut down according to the game’s eShop description, with a recommendation that this full experience will live on in the final Federation Force game. For now, there’s no reason not to whip our your handheld and give it a go today.
Considering all the backlash that Federation Force has received from fans, this seems to be a smart move to try to win back some sort of audience for the game. I remember a warm reception for Blast Ball during the initial World Championships broadcast, and I hope that this can convince at least a few people to give the greater Federation Force a chance to stand on its own merits.
Are you going to download Blast Ball onto your 3DS? When was the last time you brought your 3DS along with you outside of the house? Did anyone actually buy those Streetpass games the rabbit was trying to hawk a while back? Let us know in the comments below!