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Offline VladOfWallachia

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Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« on: May 19, 2023, 06:16:09 AM »
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I've always really disliked the use of the word "Metroidvania" to label platformers that focus on exploration. I don't have any proof since it was so long ago, but I clearly remember an era during the GBA days when the Castlevania fan community used "Metroidvania" to refer to Castlevania games specifically, not the genre as a whole, and this makes perfect sense because there is a clear cutoff in the Castlevania series between the classic, linear style Castlevanias and the clearly Super Metroid inspired ones starting with SotN. Yes, there are games like Simon's Quest that take elements from both, but SotN was clearly emulating Super Metroid really closely while SQ did its own thing.

If I ever make an exploratory platformer, I will call it just that, and I hope eventually "Metroidvania" gets dropped and used for its original intended purpose, to refer to Castlevania games specifically.

« Last Edit: May 22, 2023, 07:41:02 AM by VladOfWallachia »

Offline Darkmoon

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2023, 09:20:04 AM »
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Back in the day the community (at least here) didn't use "Metroidvania". "Castleroid" was a more common term to put the focus on Castlevania with Metroid elements... but that eventually fell to the wayside. Likely because it doesn't roll off the tongue.

I always just take it as a genre term. "This game has elements of Metroid, Castlevania, and exploration." Cu if it's a game like Axiom Verge, people usually just call it "Metroid-like". If it's Bloodstained (either Curse or Ritual) then it's "Castlevania-like" or, sometimes, "IGAvania". But the genre as a whole, with games stealing both elements, seems to make sense as "Metroidvania".

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2023, 09:49:00 AM »
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I've only ever -and continue to- use the term Metroidvania to Castlevania titles that play like Metroid. For other titles, if it plays like Metroid but is not a Castlevania game then it's simply an action-exploration game.

'Halodoom' I found to be a bit strange. Doom's popularity didn't happen until after Wolfenstein3D. And Halo only goes back to 2001. A space Odyssey?  :-X  So I think rather then Halodoom, it should be Wolfendoom? Doomstein?

'Chronofantasy' is another. Chronotrigger did not come about till the 90's, and certainly not until after FF6. Both Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest or Dragon Warrior as it was known here in the past were pretty much the first two Fantasy games we had access to, and were in competition with one-another. Fantasyquest maybe? Sounds like another game or book.

The term 'Soulsborne on the other hand just refers to one type of series which we already know of course. The Soul games and Bloodborne. However it would also include Eldenring and Sekiro as both those games were manufacture in the same way as the souls series. By the same team if I'm correct in my assumptions.

'Harvestcrossing'. This I know nothing about. Maybe Harvetsmoon is the game he's referring to. The 'crossing' part is a mystery to me. Perhaps Animal Crossing?
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Offline nokundhi

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2023, 03:46:12 PM »
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Exploration platformer is a sufficient term, I think.

Offline LuxKiller65

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2023, 08:35:06 PM »
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we called them igavanias

Offline Migami Games

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2023, 10:46:40 AM »
+1
We call ours migavanias

Offline X

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2023, 10:00:13 AM »
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Quote
We call ours migavanias

Thanks. My mind just went somewhere lol. Now imagine if McDonalds made their own CV game. McVania.
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Offline theplottwist

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2023, 12:28:06 PM »
+1
I have a hot take: This is one of the conversations where, whenever it appears, I ask myself "What else is there to "get" about the word? It's not that complicated." Feels like the conversation made it needlessly complicated for no reason.

Metroidvania = Has the sidescrolling Metroid exploration elements with RPG elements added on top of it.  Metroid brought that gated non-linear exploration. Castlevania brought the item-collecting and RPG mechanics. That's it, as I understand it.

Nowadays people have started calling anything that is a 2D exploration platforming game a "Metroidvania" - including Metroid itself, which still leaves me bewildered. It's like calling black coffee "a latte" because coffee is one part of the latte, but I digress - and the term has been completelly emptied of meaning.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2023, 12:31:05 PM by theplottwist »
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Offline zangetsu468

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2023, 02:03:37 PM »
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Metroidvania = Has the sidescrolling Metroid exploration elements with RPG elements added on top of it.  Metroid brought that gated non-linear exploration. Castlevania brought the item-collecting and RPG mechanics. That's it, as I understand it.


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Offline Belmontoya

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2023, 02:22:34 PM »
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I'll be honest. There are a plethora of reasons the term is off and never really made sense to begin with.

That being said, when you are in the shoes of one working to promote your game, there is still no more effective of a hashtag to use to reach the people who might care other than #metroidvania.

As game developers, we want people to know our games exist.

As whacky as it is, until someone comes up with something that eclipses it for real, that's the game. 🤷
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Offline VladOfWallachia

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2023, 07:50:11 AM »
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I guess the cool part about Metroidvania as a genre label is seeing part of the name of Castlevania being used in such a widespread manner. Why wouldn't Castlevania fans be happy to see this?

At the same time, this also reminds me a bit of the 90s, when all first person shooters were often labeled "Doom clones". Metroidvania is nowhere near that bad, but I also don't like how when you label a genre after a game, you always have to bring up the name of said game when discussing a very broad range of possible creative expressions, and that just doesn't sit well with me. Nobody calls first person shooters "Doom clones" anymore for obvious reasons, and I think exploration platformers as a genre has also grown into this huge, diverse thing, the same way first person shooters did. Yes, we owe it all to Super Metroid and SotN, but we don't have to bring this up every single time we discuss an exploration platformer.


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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2023, 11:46:44 AM »
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i've never understood how people can say super metroid and sotn are in the same genre of game. Super metroid is a sidescrolling action adventure. SotN is a sidescrolling action rpg. everything about the way these games are structured supports this.

the biggest similarities are
1.) the map kinda looks alike (they use blue squares with white outlines)
2.) it is an open map with locks and keys you have to get through exploration, often as abilities instead of true keys
3.) it scroll sideways and look pretty

is number two and three it? is that all a game needs to be a metroidvania?
i guess megaman 1 is technically a metroidvania.

but it's all pedantics. language is not an exact science and is dependent on context and popular usage. argument of wrong and right becomes irrelevant when nearly everyone uses a word a certain way. sorry if your open map sidescrolling game takes all its influence from chrono trigger. it's a metroidvania
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Offline JR

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2023, 11:21:51 PM »
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i've never understood how people can say super metroid and sotn are in the same genre of game. Super metroid is a sidescrolling action adventure. SotN is a sidescrolling action rpg. everything about the way these games are structured supports this.

the biggest similarities are
1.) the map kinda looks alike (they use blue squares with white outlines)
2.) it is an open map with locks and keys you have to get through exploration, often as abilities instead of true keys
3.) it scroll sideways and look pretty

is number two and three it? is that all a game needs to be a metroidvania?
i guess megaman 1 is technically a metroidvania.

but it's all pedantics. language is not an exact science and is dependent on context and popular usage. argument of wrong and right becomes irrelevant when nearly everyone uses a word a certain way. sorry if your open map sidescrolling game takes all its influence from chrono trigger. it's a metroidvania

By your train of thought, I guess it depends on how much you differentiate between adventure and RPG. And I could see how some people would find both to be similar since games blend genres together constantly. The biggest differences between the two seem to be weapons, setting, and presence (or absence) of a loot system . But I dunno, I guess I'm happy that fans have attached CV to the (somewhat) mainstream gaming lexicon. Well, not classic CV. Dammit  :-[
« Last Edit: May 26, 2023, 11:23:52 PM by JR »
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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #13 on: May 31, 2023, 03:57:49 PM »
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It's so irritating when people misuse the term Metroidvania to describe any sidescrolling platformer with exploration elements.  Part of the problem is that half of the fans can't agree on the definition, and the obvious solution is to use mine:

A sidescrolling game with platforming elements and a large, interconnected map, in which the player gains access to new areas by finding items that grant permanent traversal upgrades.


It rolls right off the tongue.  There should be something in there about backtracking too, but I hit my word limit.

Games like Turrican and Shadow of the Beast may seem like Metroidvanias, as they are sidescrollers with exploration elements.  But they're not.  Turrican doesn't have one big interconnected map.  Shadow of the Beast doesn't have permanent traversal upgrades.  Zelda is really similar; in fact SotN was supposedly inspired by Zelda and not Metroid.  But Zelda isn't sidescrolling (except for that glorious second entry and those terrible CD-i games), and the items you find don't generally enable traversal upgrades.

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Re: Metroidvania Fan Refers to Platformers as Mariosonics
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2023, 12:56:21 AM »
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That's a good point. It has really become a trendy term to throw around with retro-styled exploration games. Leading to some disappointment in some cases.
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