Who will Metroid Dread drive crazy first, between its developers and its players? The most seasoned speedrunners, familiar with the games of Norfair, Brinstar and other legendary areas of the saga, continue to find bugs converted into surprising techniques on ZDR, the planet where the universe of the last born of the saga takes place. The latest, called “Ledge Warp”, risks (already) revolutionizing the discipline.
It’s a fact: Metroid Dread is a game designed for speedruning and exploiting surprising bugs! So, barely a week after its release, the best players who have explored the planet ZDR in its every nook and cranny have already found a whole bunch of surprising techniques, more or less wanted by MercurySteam, studio in charge of the development of this latest Nintendo Switch exclusive. The latest player find is quite revolutionary since it consists of an instant teleportation mechanic quite impressive, which we detail below.
- The “Ledge Warp”, the bug that breaks Metroid Dread
- What is Ledge Warp and how do I perform it?
- … And the “Space Ball”?
- What consequences for the Metroid Dread speedrun?
- A real bug or a deliberately implemented technique?
The “Ledge Warp”, the bug that breaks Metroid Dread
One of the most notorious mechanics of Metroid 2D is to put Samus in a ball, via the famous morphing ball, which you will recover a little earlier than in other episodes in Metroid Dread (see our walkthrough for the chapter concerned). It is this which will be exploited here, and with great precision, for a rather astounding result, discovered by the Discord “Metroid Dread Speedrunning” bringing together subject matter specialists and speedrunner apprentices. One of the community members, RoboRotembo, suddenly proposed an explanatory video (in English) of this method:
The “Ledge Warp” is a very advanced technique, and complex to set up, so much it requires a precision and a delicate timing to join simultaneously. The objective, according to the explanations of RoboRotembo, is to record a very precise position of Samus in an area of the game map, in order to teleport there on command thereafter. Said position can only actually consist of a ledge that Samus can cling to (luckily, there are a lot of them in Metroid Dread!) Because it is with the animation of the heroine clinging to it that the bug will take shape.
Concretely, as RoboTembo explains, the purpose of the “ledge wrap” is to cancel the animation performed by Samus when she clings to a ledge by pressing the key putting it in a ball (the “morphing”) during a precise “frame” of the animation (yes, these famous frames numbering 60 per second!). The timing is extremely precise, but if the manipulation is done correctly, the game will remember the exact position of the latter. The video indicates that you have to perform this “morph” movement exactly two frames before the animation of Samus hanging on to the edge.
It will then be necessary to stay in ball to continue to memorize this famous position, the goal being to “teleport” there thereafter. This is very important because if the glitch has been performed correctly, when Samus comes out of his Morph Ball (the “unmorphing”) by jumping, she will reappear as if by magic at the place kept in memory by the console! What to teleport instantly to save precious time in some round trips. However, you need to know two things: first, this technique requires leaving the ball looking in the same direction as when generating said position, otherwise the glitch will cancel. Then, it will not work either if this “umorphing” is carried out on the ground and without jumping. Also note that teleportation works between several different “rooms” on the map: as long as Samus does not come out of his ball, the memorized position does the rest!
… And the “Space Ball”?
As you will have noticed, the video also shows another technique called “Space Ball”. The latter is also detailed because it uses the same animation around the ledge used for the “ledge wrap”, and more surprisingly still, it works… one frame after the manipulation required for the previous glitch! Either stack a frame before Samus hangs up. The interest of this technique is make Samus’ Morph Ball “bounce” so as to perform like a kind of double jump by leaning on the ledge where to perform the glitch. To top it off, this second jump is more powerful and sends Samus higher than if you had jumped straight into a ball from the ground!
Note that these techniques, according to the speedrunner community, have been tested on console and work perfectly (as long as no corrective patch is announced by Nintendo, which is what we wish for the “runners” of the game!).
What consequences for the Metroid Dread speedrun?
We recently presented you with a first world speedrun record under 100 minutes: the latter already has a good chance of being sprayed, although speedrun.com, the leading authority on the subject, has not yet defined the separate categories for Metroid Dread on its page dedicated to the game. If it is relatively to exclude that the “ledge wrap” is authorized within the framework of the “any%” (category aiming to finish the game as quickly as possible without worrying about the completion, but without major bugs), it has a very good chance of being part of a category dedicated to glitches, which is still popular in this universe. Conversely, it’s a safe bet that the “space ball” is less controversial, because of more minor time savings, and “brittle” less the game.
We spoke with Metroid Dread players about this, who confirmed to us that the leaderboards of this game would open on speedrun.com 7 days after its release, either this October 15, in accordance with the desire to leave a week for the community of players to experience as many techniques as possible in the first place. Quite classic categories such as 100% and any% will of course emerge just like the very popular “0%”, not to mention the categories specializing in the “skip” of EMMI for example …
- To read also: Metroid Dread speedrun techniques followed by the game community
A real bug or a deliberately implemented technique?
We had already had the opportunity to come back to other techniques, like the famous “sequence break” already famous. If it’s far too early to say anything about this, however, we can allow ourselves to speculate on the origins of this type of speedrun technique. MercurySteam is indeed in its second development on an opus of the famous 2D license which partially gave its name to the “metroidvania” style, and this time had the opportunity to create a completely new episode. After all, the Spanish developers having, for example, hidden the good old technique of the “bomb jump” (one of the most notorious of the saga) in an alternate form in Metroid: Samus Returns, their remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus released on Nintendo 3DS four years ago. The latter is not officially documented in the game, it wouldn’t even be surprising if their team had deliberately left a few small surprises in the code of their new game, which has already fascinated a whole community for a week …
Metroid Dread Complete Solution Summary